Back to one of my favorite series, a very well written military science fiction story that is so smooth and easy to read. This one also has a good balance of non-warfighting and war fighting.
Captain Andy Grayson is heading back to Earth after his ordeal on Mars. He’s going home to New Hampshire for some much needed rest and relaxation. It will be that much more pleasant since his wife, Major Haley Grayson will be joining him for the entirety of their leave. With the action on Mars over and done with, they both will be looking to new assignements. But, for the present, they relax and rest and do a little thinking about their futures. I like this part because I think every military person goes through a period of thinking what it will be like once they are done with the military and are civilians again. Some don’t know what they would do, but others start about planning out as much as they can, but still want to continue their military careers since they don’t feel they are done quite yet. Both of the Grayson’s feel this way, so they are looking forward to their new assignments even if it just means a change from what they were doing previously.
Haley knows something of her new assignment already, but doesn’t know a lot of specifics. Andy, on the other hand, doesn’t have any information but where and when to report for his new assignment. As it turns out, both get to experience one of those rare assignment situations where they both get assigned to the same starship. And what a starship it is! The NACS Ottawa turns out to the one of the very newest starships built by Earth near the backside of the Moon. There is a secret space station floating near the backside of the Moon outside of view from Earth which has been building starship unlike any ever produced by Earth. Both Andy and Haley find themselves assigned to this new ship and they are in for some major surprises!
As with any new starship, there has to be a maiden voyage where everything is put through it’s paces to make sure it works as expected. These “shakedown” cruises are not easy, but they also don’t usually go in harms way. You certainly don’t want unexpected breakdowns during combat, so these kind of trips are very necessary for the ship crew. While the ship’s crew can begin observing and fixing things that just don’t work right, the combat contingent usually run exercises to hone their skills. All this happens with the NACS Ottawa. What is unusual, is that the Ottawa seems to be very well built. Nothing major is going wrong and here capabilities appear to be extraordinary. She is certainly much more combat capable than any Earth ship built before her and their are about three more of her kind coming out of the docks starting in about six months.
It’s been three years since the Lanky’s last attacked an Earth colony although it’s not been that long since the action over Mars. Now Mars isn’t usable to either the Lanky’s or humans! So, while deep in their “shakedown” cruise, the inevitable happens. The Lanky’s are back and now attacking New Savlbard, the last remaining Earth colony. So, the “testing” of the Ottawa is over just like that! It’s off to war again for Captain Andy Greyson and Major Haley Grayson. Will they both get out of this one alive? Are they really testing fate by going into harms way together? Time will tell.
This book reads so smoothly. Everything just seems to flow like it should. I don’t know what makes me like these stories so well since I know that Mr. Kloos wrote another series, “The Palladium Wars”, which is kind of slow and tedious to get through. Still this series isn’t over and I’ve already downloaded “Orders of Battle” book 7 in the Frontline series. Can’t wait to start reading it.