To say J. N. Chaney is a prolific writer is similar to saying the Death Star 2 (Star Wars) is tiny! Neither one is true and I know because this is the 25th book that I have read written by Mr. Chaney! That covers seven different series and I’m almost sure that he has many, many more out there that I have not touched. He is fast becoming my favorite writer.
In this book we get to meet a number of new characters, but, due to the circumstances, that number is limited to a very manageable few. First and foremost is Chief Mission Ward Kent-9464. Yes, that’s his name and designation. He’s one strange guy, but that due to his upbringing and creation! You see, he is a genetically enhanced and grown human built for one purpose. That purpose is to wage war against the enemy. He does so very efficiently and if teamed up with his fellow Black Shield Corporation members, they become a very deadly asset.
Yet, this story isn’t about a bunch of mercenaries doing their thing and that’s the strange part of the book right out of the gate. Kent-9464 has become obsolete to the Black Shield Corp (BSC) and is being sold off. Yeah, he’s not considered a free human since he was grown at the expense of the BSC. He was also trained all his life to fight in combat. He’s learned his lessons very well and has never lost a battle. But, the time for his disposal has come, but instead of being finally disposed of, he’s given a new mission outside of his military role that he’s know all his life.
Now, going back to the “grown” part. Kent-9464 was genetically tailored for combat and the chaos of war. He’s very different than other “unenhanced” soldiers. He has no need for emotions which can negatively effect his fighting efficiency, so they have been tampered out through a special drug he is periodically given. He is highly intelligent, much more than the average human, his reflexes are faster and he has increased stamina and above average healing abilities. He also has a much higher Agression Quality (AQ) which will not let him not complete his mission no matter what obstacles he has to overcome.
So, what has happened to him. Well, he’s been sold off to a new company, the Rodon Corporation and placed on the colony ship, Exodus Ark. This ship is now headed away from Earth to a new colony world, one that has never been explored or colonized by humans. Kent-9464 is now the Mission Ward for the colony ship Exodus Ark. In plain English, he’s the Head of Security for the entire ship and it’s mission. While that’s not a military job, it’s the one he has and since he can’t show emotions, he accepts his new mission and move on. He’s supposed to be in stasis as are the majority of the colonist until they reach their new home planet.
Everything is going just fine as Mission Ward Kent-9464 is quietly sleeping in stasis and has been now for hundreds of years! That is until he is awoken to gunfire! Things are already happening on the Exodus Ark that should not be happening and the fact that he is just finding this out isn’t too promising. He is just going to have to find out who or what is attacking the Exodus Ark and eliminate it before it eliminates him and everyone else. The ship is infected and he’s just one guy. He doesn’t remember ever having odds of survival this bad.
Great start to a new series. I would have like to read some of Kent-9464’s exploits as part of a BSC team, but that could be a whole new series for Mr. Chaney. Still, this one is off to a good start, unless everyone gets killed, so I look forward to this series continuing. I kind of like how the author is using the artificial intelligence on the ship. Can’t really tell if they’re trustworthy or not. Having fun reading this book.