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4 Small Stars

While this book is definitely in the military science fiction genre, it takes a while to get started; a long while! Most of the book is about the “Star Brigade”, of course, but it’s really about it falling apart. That’s where the main character, Captain Habraum Nwosu, comes in. He has to come back to the Star Brigade and get it back into shape before the budget-cutters have their way and disband the entire Brigade. The problem is, Captain Nwosu, is now a single parent and prior to his departure from Star Brigade, his entire Combat Team, except for one, was killed while under his command.

But, the consensus amount the existing senior officers of Star Brigade, which amount to two individuals, is that Captain Nwosu is the only one with the moxie and know-how to get the job done. So, Commander Samantha D’Urso, the only survivor of Captain Nwosu’s former combat team, is sent to try and talk him in to coming back. She doesn’t really want to do that to her friend. She knows he has a small son that is still grieving over the lost of his mother and Habraum’s wife. Yet, that’s the job she’s been assigned and she means to successfully accomplish it. One other character, Atom Greystone, is also sent to retrieve Captain Nwosu, but he only wants him back on his terms. Greystone is a Ministry of Defense flunky, who has no meaningful military background, yet he sees himself as the savior of the Star Brigade, with the help of Captain Nwosu. Only thing is, he wants Captain Nwosu to bow to his command so he can take all the glory for the results and none of the blame if the Star Brigade doesn’t work out.

We read bits and pieces about Captain Nwosu’s former experiences and learn that everyone in Star Brigade has some kind of “maximum power”. This means they are superheroes. Some have incredible strength, or the ability to shoot photon blasts from their hands. Others can move with speed and grace that can’t normally happen with such a large species. And finally, one can kind of move through stuff. Anyway, that’s why the are here, to concentrate all these talents into one super fighting brigade, except the war is over and they are finding themselves on the short-end of the budget ledger.

The gist of this book is background. The entire book is background on the galaxy or universe where the book is set. We get exposed to the entire political scene of the Galactic Union (GU) and the Galactic Union of Planetary Republics (GUPR). Also, there are aliens, lots and lots of aliens. In fact, Earth doesn’t even exist, although there are humans who now claim another planet, but that’s a whole story unto itself. You’ll read about it and you’ll read about the Korvenites, a race of psionic power peoples who have came upon hard times. All this background information gets a little tedious after awhile and you find yourself wishing that the author would just get on with the story. He does, eventually, then the book ends!

I found the book interesting although I don’t understand why I had to learn how to pronounce Mandarin and Hindu words just to cuss! Not only are all the alien names hard to pronounce, but you also have to pronounce Mandrin and Hindi cuss words! A little overkill if you ask me, but the author is well traveled and used his time wisely learning the most useful words of those two languages, I suppose!

I just might read the second book, “Star Brigade: Maelstrom”, but not anytime soon. At least I think this next book will have all the action in it. I hope!

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