Rating:

4 Small Stars
Age of Expansion: Formation
835

A new series which has a ring of familiarity to it because I’ve kind of read the same theme in other books. The premise to this story is that a down and out ex-military Captain by the name of Edward (Eddie) Teach, has been found by a General Lance Reynolds and Commander Julianna Fregin. They found him in a bar on an out of the way planet just as he got in a huge fight with some alien Kezzin, well, three of them to be exact. When Julianna showed up, it didn’t go well for the Kezzin.

Their purpose in finding Eddie was to recruit him into a super secret organization that would fight the new Federations battles without anyone knowing they were part of the Federation. Humanity had just came out from the Ethric Empire to join in this new Federation with a number of alien civilizations. One of the stipulations in that Federation charter stated that humanity and in particular, humans couldn’t use their military might to attack other civilizations. They were there only to keep the peace in their own territory. But, lately the Kezzin were raiding human colonies and killing every last being. That had to be stopped and Eddie along with Julianna were the start of a team that was going to stop these kind of actions.

They would be funded by General Reynolds and supported with equipment and as many personnel as he could quietly assign to them. But, they couldn’t be known as Federation military or have any known affiliation with the Federation.

So now Eddie along with Julianna have to gather a team to work with and accomplish missions they are fed by General Reynolds. They are given some early missions which they accomplish rather easily. Julianna is an “enhanced human” much more capable than she appears. Eddie isn’t enhanced, but he’s quite capable in his own right. They seem to make a good pairing right from the start. It’s puzzling to understand this rank structure. While Eddie is referred to as a Captain, Julianna is called a Commander. If Eddie’s rank is Army, then Julianna outranks him, but that’s not the way General Reynolds treats them. While he says they are co-commanders, Eddie is eventually given direct command of a previously destroyed human battleship. So, this is a little confusing. And, even on the battleship, he is the Captain, but doesn’t actually act like he’s in charge. Also, he leaves the battleship to go on missions without indicating who is in charge while he’s gone. It seems like the author left out a character who should be commanding the battleship while supporting Eddie and Julianna.

Still, this is the start of a pretty good series, if things don’t get too easy. So far every mission they have been on has gone perfectly although not exactly according to plan. There’s also a lack of attitude about everything they do. They’re all 100% loyal to their mission and the General and there’s no infighting or back-biting of any kind. They do recruit a particular non-human who tries to talk tough or rough, but he doesn’t carry it off well. I don’t know what it is, but this whole story seems a little off; like these people are just too good to be true. I don’t know how to describe it. Eddie seems so enamored with the famous General Reynolds that if he told him to jump off a cliff, the would do it without thinking. He also doesn’t realize that Julianna is a very good looking woman. There’s nothing between them and probably won’t ever be. This books just seems to clean to get them together in a steamy scene.

Ok, so there’s already a second book, “Age of Expansion: Exploration – The Ghost Squadron, Book 2” which I have and will probably start reading very soon. I wonder why it takes three authors to write these books?

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