This is the book I have dreaded reading since I saw that it was published. Now, don’t think that means this is a terrible book, because it’s certainly not; just the opposite. This book and this entire series, IMHO, is one of the best military science fiction stories written in a long time. There have been eight books detailing the highly interesting and exciting military career of one Ryk Lysander, United Federation Marine Corps.
You start reading this series with “Recruit” which is where everyone who has had anything to do with military service starts. You learn things as you follow young Lysander through a career that would terrify any normal Marine, Soldier, Sailor or whatever. No one, except the character in this book, could live through the “excitement” he has had and no one would want to! Yet, if you have been in the military you already know that it’s part real boring and part deadly terrifying. You also know it’s a lot about the people you meet and the life long friendships you make. This book and the series brings out that comaderare you find in the military. Some friends go through everything you do, but some friends get left behind or worst yet, die serving their country and fellow man. The author has done a good job of writing about people in the military and how they act and react to one another in peace and in wartime.
You always wonder if you would be as good as the main character in a book. I doubt most of us would. Although they are shown to be not quite perfect, some characters seem to be almost too perfect. Ryk Lysander seems to be one of the perfect ones. He does things his way and he usually comes out smelling like a rose. That’s not the way it happens in real life so don’t get this book confused with the real thing. It’s a fictional account of a fictional character in a world far different from ours. But, what I got from the book is the memory of belonging to something far greater than myself. And that’s what I think makes this story so good. Ryk is a United Federation Marine. He’s surrounded by like mined individuals going through much the same things he is. He belongs to something and that is a feeling that most of us want no matter what we’re doing. And in this series, the organization he belongs to does what he wants it to do, eventually. He’s not left behind although a couple of times he should have realistically been just that. I mean you don’t really slug the Commandant of the Marine Corps and then get promoted!
I liked the ending. It seems to fit the book and the situation although I don’t think it would ever happen that way. I hate to see a series end because, even though the characters I read about may have lived to the end, they are actually gone forever to me. I never read a book twice on purpose. I might do that with this series, but I right now I can remember so vividly almost every book. So, when I close the final pages of this series, that’s it. The only thing I hope is that someone out there will see this series and being reading it from the start. I absolutely know you’ll love it.
Thanks to Jonathan P. Brazee, Colonel, USMCR (Ret.) for a fantastic military science fiction book series.