Rating:

5 Small Stars
Operation: Bug Spray
835

Once more I’m back aboard the Argonaut after having captured another Purple Phant. It wasn’t easy and that part of the book is pretty exciting as usual. It’s a team effort, but what a team. The Argonauts have mouths on them that are really talking trash cans. That’s all they do is talk trash. I don’t know how Rade can put up with it, but he does. After a while, their vile trash talk gets pretty tiring. You’d think the author could come up with a better way to demonstrate how a crack para-military team should communicate with each other. They way they go at it reminds me of a bunch of junior high or high school students far behind on their studies.

Ok, so they’ve captured a deadly Purple Phant named Zhidao, one of their most dangerous adversaries. They had it in a containment device and loaded it aboard the Argonaut to transport it to the nearest star/sun. Once thrown into the sun, the Phant would never be able to leave, trapped forever due to the tremendous gravity of the star.

Of course, things didn’t go as planned. Even though the Argonaut’s A.I. is supposed to have been shielded against takeover by a Phant, it fails for some unexplained reason and now the crew is trapped aboard their own ship with a dangerous Phant in control. Of course, this is much worse than usual because Reid and Shaw have their two kids on-board the Argonaut. This is definitely not a place for kids. So anything that can be used against the Argonauts by the Phant will be used. He forces the Argonauts into a shuttle and tells them he’s going to keep the kids as insurance against their further attacks. He also knocks out all the Argonauts and they eventually wake up on a deserted planet without a real easy means of escaping.

Meanwhile, Zhidao has taken the kids and gone through a slipstream to another galaxy. Where he goes after that is anyones guess, but first the Argonauts must get free of the deadly planet they are trapped on. It never seems to amaze me that the Argonauts are all very powerful and skilled fighters, but they just don’t seem too bright. These Purple Phants are always, always turning the tables on them even though they say they are protected. I can’t count the times the Argonaut ship has been stolen by someone or another right from under the nose of Rade!

So, how does Rade and Shaw recover their children and can they do it in time. What kind of effect will this have on the kids even after they are recovered (if they are)? When are Rade and Shaw going to understand that their children with them are a terrible risk and could eventually get the entire family killed. It just seems like more of the same for the Argonauts. Not sure how many more books I can read in this series.

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