This is a series I started reading a while back, bought this book and then forgot I had it! I got it on my reading list and I’m certainly glad I did. While at the start of this series had the main character, Miles Hunt, was mostly in trouble with the Republic Navy. He had found a gateway into another part of the universe, had done some exploring and then, eventually, encountered an alien force. They had battled which really mad those back on Earth mad because they were hoping to have a peaceful relationship with the first aliens humanity had encountered. Yet, these aliens, the Zodarks, didn’t want peace at all.
Now, move way ahead and we find that Miles Hunt has been recognized by the Galactic Emperor for his military skills. He was called to the capital of the Empire and bestowed with the title of Viceroy! He is now the overall military commander of the Empire to the chagrin of the Altairians. Those same Altairians have been running the Empire’s military for thousands of years and they have been at war with the Zodarks and Orbots. The Altairians just can’t seem to find a winning strategy, so the Emperor has appointed someone new, a human, as his military expert. With that, obviously, comes some great responsibilities. The first challenge Viceroy Hunt has is the battle going on at the planet Alfheim.
Alfheim is an ice planet with nothing spectacular about it, except for the fact is does have one single very unique mineral that is used by the Altairians and the Zodarks in strengthening their starships. The Republic Navy along with the Primords have managed to land on the planet and have successfully taken it from the Zodarks. There are still Zodarks on the planet and the human troops on the ground are fighting to eliminate the last of this Zodark threat. Now they are preparing for what they expect to be a counterattack by the Zodarks. Since this planet has the attention of the Orbots, also. They have decided to provide forces for that counterattack.
The problem with this counterattack is that the Republic and Primord naval forces aren’t going to be able to counter it. The counterattack is massive! There are over one-hundred ground forces on Alfheim and they are soon going to be on their own! The naval forces are getting destroyed and have to warp out with what they can save. Hopefully, they can regroup and come back in time to save the ground forces. That problem is what Viceroy Miles Hunt has to face immediately. He has to find additional Naval forces to throw into this new battle, one that he believes will result in both sides losing so much that they will have to agree to a peace treaty or at least cease fire.
This book though isn’t just about the Naval engagements, although you do get to read a lot about that, but you’ll also read about what a soldier on the ground is going through. You’ll also run around with a medic on the ground as she does her job treating the vast number of wounded from the initial ground invasion to the new counterattack which was eventually stopped. This gives you a really far ranging perspective of the fighting. At the same time, you’ll read about the actions of Viceroy Hunt as he tries to gather more forces to ensure he keeps Alfheim. He’s also making plans for the future, far ranging future. Some how he’s going to have to find a way to make all the different alien militaries to work together and do the right things when needed. He is the strategic expert which has been lacking in this very, very long war.
So, we’re now to the point of reading what’s going to happen when the combined power of the Zodarsk and Orbots come back to Alfheim. Can’t the Empire under new Viceroy Hunt stop this counterattack and keep the planet under the Empire’s control and therefore control the unique mineral found on the planet? The fifth book, “Into the Fire”, is available on Amazon and I’ve added to my reading list.