We continue with HMS Titan and Acting Rear Admiral James Somerville, commander of half of the Combined Fleet. That total fleet, under the command of Admiral Cunningham, had just been ordered to head back to Earth. This would be a long and difficult journey given what they knew about the Russians and their attacks of systems approaching Earth. While they knew Russian Admiral Koroylov aboard the RSFS Ekaterian had not yet attacked Earth, he was very close to doing so which meant the Combined Fleet had to get there as soon as possible with as many ships as they could gather.
Admiral Koroylov knew the Combined Fleet was headed his way, but wasn’t too worried. He still out gunned the entire allied naval forces, but the arrival of the Combined Fleet would set his conquering of Earth back a few weeks if not months. So, he went to meet the Combined Fleet and offer a special deal to some of it’s members. The Brazilians, Argentinians, and Indians all had various histories with the other allies, especially the Americans, Brits, Chinese, and Japanese. They were part of the Combined Fleet only because their ships were necessary to met and defeat the current alien invasion. Yet, Korolyov didn’t think this allied alliance was that strong and was going to offer some peace incentives to the Brazilians, Argentinians, and Indians if they would switch sides and join him! Unfortunately for the Combined Fleet, these traitors did just that will still in the middle of the Combined Fleet. That battle lasted only a little while, but it devastated a number of starships and further weakened the Combined Fleet. Admiral Cunningham also died when his command starship was destroyed. That place Acting Rear Admiral James Somerville as the new commander of what was left of the Combined Fleet.
Meanwhile, back on Earth, the political scene was becoming a mess. The Russians had set up a blockade of Earth and food was becoming scarce. Admiral Jonathan Somerville, First Space Lord of Britain, had been put in charge of all Earth forces in order to have a consolidated front against the Russian fleet. Somerville was beefing up all the planets stationary defenses and making sure all missiles were stockpiled where needed. He also was keeping an eye on the Brazilians, Argentinians and Indians as he did not trust the one bit.
The original plan to defend Earth if an alien civilization were to attack (Plan Kappa), was to being pushed towards execution by the United Nations. Yet, considering the very meger number of starships available to the nations of Earth after they had sent the best to the Combine Fleet, wasn’t going to be enough firepower to defeat the Russian Admiral. So, Admiral Somerville convinced his Prime Minister and King to refuse to participate in Plan Kappa, even though they had previously been part of the forces when the plan was originally drawn up. Still, those countries except Britian and the Americans did form up and head out towards Mars to fight the Russian fleet. It did not go well for them.
Suzanna Somerville, wife of Acting Rear Admiral James Somerville and Governor to Haven was still on Earth, but wanted to go back to Haven to try and enlist some help for Earth. Because of the Russian blockage, she was forbidden to leave by Admiral Somerville, yet she went anyway. Her intent was not only to asks the Havenites for help, but also the Vestarians and Kulreans for aid. She’d do this if only she could some how slip through the Russian blockade!
Theres a lot of stuff going on in this book. A lot of things happen, some very quickly, while others happen over time. You’ll follow the progress of the Combined Fleet all the way to Earth and then read about the almost destruction of Earth when the Russians attack. It gets pretty intense there for a while.
Just a side note. There is a short novella at the end of this book so if you’re reading and thinking you have a ways to go in the book, you’ll find it ending much quicker. I belived on my Kindle Paperwhite I was at about 80% through the book when the primary story ended. I’m not a fan of short stories so I didn’t read it, but it’s about Admiral Jonathan Somervilles exploits when he was younger. Gives some more background to the characters if you need that. Still, I’m more interested in how the next book reads after this one ending surprisingly!