Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer Reading: Victorious

Victorious (The Lost Fleet, Book 6 of 6) is the final book in the Lost Fleet series by Jack Campbell, who used to be John G. Hemry. It's a dry space opera, with a fleet commander facing tremendous odds to bring his troops home, and then to finally defeat the Evil Empire. And, for fun, face off with the mysterious aliens who have been encouraging the war between the two space empires.
I like watching the corrupt politicians and the occasional honest one interact with the mostly honorable but occasionally fanatical military. The hero, Black Jack Geary, gets to wrestle with his gigantic shadow -- he woke up after decades of cold sleep to find himself a legendary figure who inspires thousands into insanely stupid feats of bravery, the kind of mindless heroism that he finds abhorrent. Luckily his fame is great enough that the military may even follow him into intelligent tactics, but not without kicking.

There is a silly romance subplot, because the True Loves can never touch -- she's in his line of command. Really, the romance reminds me of Lensman type characterization, except the women are military officers instead of fluff. Hemry's best work is still his Stark books, and I don't think it's a coincidence that the rumors of Stark's girlfriends are all false. However, the trope of putting honor above personal wishes is one I enjoy, so I'll keep buying the books. (I think some new books will follow the aftermath of the final victory, so we can learn more about the aliens.) Unless you can hear them in Hemry's ironic, humorous voice I'm not sure the Black Jack books really work. B-

By the way, this is the official first day of summer; we'll see how well I do on the book-a-day goal I set last year.


kmitcham said...

That series sounds like a good candidate for the library- do you really want to own them after you read them?

Beth said...

Well, I tend to put them up on paperbackswap after I read them. I'm a sucker for buying books if I've met the author.