Great, Solid Military SciFi / Evolving Space Opera
While one book does not a great, sweeping space opera (usually) make -- this book is a solid foundation for what could be a great series. . .in t..Show More »he tradition of Campbell's "Lost Fleet," or other similar series (Ian Douglas, John Ringo, William Dietz, David Weber, David Drake, John Scalzi). There are really good ideas here, and excellent battles in space. The seeds are also planted for what is coming next -- along with a number of really good "concepts" about technology. I did not read earlier iterations of this book, just listened to the 'final' Audible version -- which I thoiught was EXCELLENT. The writing is not tight -- but tight is not what I think of as the 'be all and end all' in this type of "writ large"" type of opening salvo. And it seems clear that as this rolls out it will provide an opportunity for greater control of language and syntax. But this is no amateur venture by a mile. This is a fine story well written and well performed. If you liked the Lost Fleet you will love this. If you enjoyed the Dietz takeoff on the Foreign Legion, you will also appreciate the sinilarities here. I cannot wait for the next book -- and what more can you say about a new writer and series ????
My husband and I both listened to this. While I enjoyed it for what it is, he really didn't like it at all. We both had read the first book. I enjo..Show More »yed the action; he felt it was poorly written.
If you're read the first book (and I recommend you do), you can expect the same in the second. A mix of action, philosophizing about war, and a lot of perspectives on the same situation.
As with the first novel, the writing isn't as strong as you typically find in the genre. It's not terrible (read a few YA dystopian and you'll know what I mean) but does come off as a bit weak in the military sci fi/sci fi genre.
There is a LOT of philosophizing on the necessity of war and soldiers, told in a way that is a little too obvious (obvious comparisons to big issues in certain wars like Viet Nam and Iraq are rather glaringly obvious and takes away from the plot). But when the action kicks in, it's a fun roller coaster of a read.
The narrator is the same from the first book. I enjoyed him on the first and was glad he's on the second. However, as with the author, there are some issues in quality of the performance: odd pauses where there shouldn't be and especially in this book, an affectation that has him swallowing the words at the end of every sentence. Unlike the first book, this reading feels a bit too mannered and that is really distracting. That said, I like the way he reads and he brings an easy humanity and grace to the characters that suits the book.
Homeworld is the third (but not final) book in the Odyssey One series. It has a very definite arc ending and fans of the series will find this a satis..Show More »fying end to that arc with a glimpse of how Currie will continue the series with a new arc in Book 4.
I was hard on Currie in my review of his debut book, Into the Black. There are some of the same weaknesses here (e.g., a tendency to overwrite every scene and strong personal political underpinings) but I have to admit that as soon as I was 10-15 minutes into the book, I was so happy to be back in the Odyssey One universe. Currie has really honed his skills and there are a lot of loose ends or logic jumps in Homeworld. We are back with the characters we've grown to love and it is as comfortable as an old leather armchair in front of the fireplace.
The story starts out with action: the Eastern Block has developed an FTL ship (though different from the Odyssey) and head out to explore the nearest habitable star system. What they don't realize is that they aren't alone and that they can't 'see' the Drazin in their FTL state. Which means they may end up leading the biggest threat in the Galaxy right back to Earth.
The action and focus of this book shifts away from the Colonies and the Prim and instead is mostly about the Terrans. About half way through the book, grab a drink and a good seat because you're going to be riveted as the action cranks up and doesn't let up until the epilogue. Currie doesn't have qualms about killing off main characters and certain he'll ratchet up the stakes in this third book in the series.
I listened to the audible version and although the narrator isn't my favorite, I was glad it was his voice consistently throughout. The strength of Currie's books are the 'everyman' characters - the narrator has a voice quality that complements that approach.
There are very interesting reveals about the enemy and certainly some surprises I never expected as well. It made all the action even more fun when it is all put into context.
In all, I've greatly enjoyed this series so far and appreciate that the first arc is finishing and we are starting on a new one.