This is kind of a strange book. We’re at the end of the Republic with even Goth Sullus dead and gone. There’s really no government in the galaxy. Most of the worlds that were part of the Republic are attempting to pretend there is still a Republic because they probably have some Senators or Representatives at an Embassy that hasn’t been torn down yet. That’s the case with Kublar and that’s the planet this book takes place. Yes, we’re back where we started in book 1!
Kublar hasn’t exactly prospered while part of the Republic. In fact, it’s been treated pretty badly. While the indigenous population is mostly passive, they do have some terrible tribal wars and that’s been causing most of their problems. The Republic attempted to establish one Tribe as the ruling tribe, but that didn’t work so well, so they brought in the Zhee in hopes that the two would start fighting and not mind that the Republic was around running their planet. Bringing or encouraging the Zhee to come to any planet other than their own is not a kind or considerate thing to do. The Zhee attempt to take over and if not outright get that done then they just try to kill as many of the “unclean” beings that populate the planet. But, someone has come to Kublar to fix things.
That someone is called Big Nee and he’s quite rich and powerful. He has established a considerable mercenary army on Kublar and made friends with quite a number of Kublaren tribes. We’re going to follow a couple of mercenary squads and one individual as they attempt to accomplish missions setup by Big Nee who is also known as Mr. Nilo. Carter is the main squad of mercs we follow around. Most of the work they are doing right now is just clean up and by clean-up, I mean they are picking up dead Kublaren bodies from some kind of previous fight. Not the most glamorous of work, but they are getting paid very well to do so. And that’s the key to all of this. These guys are former Legionnaires who have suddenly found themselves without a paycheck. With the Republic gone and no real administrative organization to the new Legion, they aren’t getting paychecks so they’ve gotta’ do something to feed their families. So, these form Legionaries, Marines, Army and Basic solders are on Kublar under the employ of Mr. Nilo. And he pays well if you live to collect. Carter has a good squad of Mercs with even one guy who doesn’t appear to have any military background but is still quite skilled.
The other squad we find is commanded by Hopper. There is only a quasi-military structure to this mercenary organization. Apparently not enough time was allowed to form a real military type chain of command through out this entire mercenary army so they play it as they go and try to get things done with what they have. Hoppers squad has been assigned a mission to secure an underground museum that Mr. Nilo wants very, very badly. How badly could cost Hopper and most of his men their lives.
Then we meet up with Jack Bowie who appears to be some kind of secret agent that is undergoing some kind of test for Mr. Nilo. He’s been instructed, as a test of his skills, to kill one of the high priest in the Zhee temple. This is not going to be easy since the Zhee temple is crawling with Zhee obviously. He’s also on his own although his does have comms with Mr. Nilo’s HQ and they are providing him with some intel and oversight as he heads towards his target. He will eventually also be required to secure the museum, but not for the person who he thinks he’s working for. A little twist is coming.
And back to Carter’s squad. They also are eventually going to have to help Hopper’s squad in securing the museum. It seems that Mr. Nilo has been busy suppling the Kublarens with brand new weapons and encouraging them to take back their planet. Unfortunately, the Kublarens seem to think they should be killing everyone, even their mercenary allies! So, there is a lot of fighting in this book. It’s not that hard to follow and it’s pretty interesting. You get the idea that Mr. Nilo, who does actually show up, is kind of like Goth Sullus in that he has big ideas for Kublar and the entire galaxy. Still, he’s not like Sullus in that Mr. Nilo appears sane, or at least for now!
Not sure where the Galaxy’s Edge series goes from here, but it will be back with book eleven, “Legacies”. I’ve already got it on my list.