A thrilling spin-off from Jack Campbell’s The Lost Fleet series, The Lost Stars: Tarnished Knight delivered "excellent tales of space battles and struggles against tyrants and aliens". Now the New York Times best-selling author returns with the next chapter in the overthrow of the Syndicate Worlds’ oppression….
Following a successful coup, the leaders of the rebel Midway Star System struggle to forge a government free enough to please its citizens yet strong enough to secure power. But in a world where former rulers have become new foes, an alien threat to humanity may turn old adversaries into uncertain allies.
General Artur Drakon knows three words describe someone who confides in a Syndicate CEO: Stupid. Betrayed. Dead. Despite his misgivings, he partnered with another former CEO to overthrow Syndic forces. Now, with an enigma fleet menacing their hard-earned independence, he can ill afford to trust her - or lose her support.
President Gwen Iceni believes Midway is humanity’s defense against the enigmas. Syndicate training taught her self-preservation in a crisis, yet she’s determined to fight for the star system’s fate…even if it means joining forces with Drakon - and an officer of the hated Alliance.
Their plan places the Midway flotilla at great risk in hopes of greater reward: recruiting the personnel necessary to man warships against the enigmas. But before facing the alien advance, Drakon and Iceni must survive hidden dangers closer to home: all-too-human threats that could jeopardize Midway’s freedom…and their own lives.
©2013 John G. Hemry (P)2013 Audible Inc.
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"The Midway Star System viewpoint"
The Lost Star Series is Jack Campbell’s the second spin off of the Lost Fleet Series. This series takes the view point of the Syndicate Worlds primarily, The Midway Star System. This system has been featured in a number of the recent book. This book is the alternate view point from the book “The Guardian” from the Beyond the Frontier Series. The key players are President Gwen Iceni and General Artur Drakon head of the ground forces of Midway Star System. The last half of the book is new material relating only to Midway. The story has lots of space action as well as intrigue, suspense and some humor. Commander Bradamount, the Captain of Dragon, a cruiser in Admiral Black Jack Geary fleet is assigned to be the liaison officer to Midway and stays behind when the fleet leaves the system. Togo is President Iceni’s body guard and Morgan and Malen are General Drakon key assistants these three provide a lot of the intrigue and suspense of the story. Bradamount accompanies the Midway fleet to Alliance Space to retrieve 5000 prisoner of war. These highly trained spaceship crews are vital to the needs of Midway. There are about 1500 of these that chose to go to their home worlds and some promise to get their families and come on to Midway. But the underline suspense, are there SNAKES (Syndicate secret police) hidden in the POW’s? Marc Vietor did a good job narrating the book. I cannot wait for the next book in the series.
"Another Sleepless Night..."
I just can't say enough good about the skill of the Writer, or the Narrator... What a team! I waited for this book for a long time, and it was absolutely worth the wait! Even WAY above my expectations! Jack Campbell seems to LEAP forward with his writing skill with each new book! VERY Well Crafted from Start to Finish! Another "Couldn't Stop Listening Book" that left me sleepless last night!
Be sure to read the first book in the series, Mr Campbell doesn't spend much effort on "Catching up a new reader on past events", which I think is the way it should be!
The Lost Stars Perilous Shield was another wonderful Jack Campbell/Hemry novel - riveting, full of action, and with the characters we've come to know and love (even if they were once syndics!). The first half details the back story on several events occurring in the Lost Fleet: Guardian - it was great to see how it all transpired from a different perspective though admittedly some of the impetus was lost since we knew the results.
All the good Jack Campbell trademarks are here - those great space battles and machinations, traveling through gates (very little takes place on Midway planet this time), and high stakes action. Some of the weaknesses are there as well - women are still screechy, over emotional wrecks next to their calm, easily seduced, and bemused male counterparts. And yes, there is still a lot of political commentary here that can be very thinly veiled metaphors for 20th century world politics. But honestly, Jack Campbell is to military sci fi what Tom Clancy was to military fiction - one of the best out there. So I'm going to cut slack here on the above simply because I love everything else about the books.
In Perilous Shield, Midway is still teetering - CEO Boyens waits to swoop down and retake Midway once the Alliance Fleet leaves. As well, Commander Bradamont, Alliance Liason to the planet, will find herself thick in the middle of the very dangerous arena of a former syndic world - will she survive long enough to help Iceni and Drakon find the resources they need to protect Midway? Meanwhile, assistants Togo, Morgan, and Malen have secrets of their own that may end up destroying their bosses.
I am constantly surprised at where Jack Campbell can take these books and especially love that Perilous Shield had so much space action. The one thing that kept this from being a 5 star book for me was the ending (a cliffhanger for the next book in the series) which ended up playing out too much like an overwrought Mexican Telenovela soap opera. I think it would have worked better in the middle of the book rather than being the random punctuation on an otherwise wonderful read.
Greatly looking forward to the next in the series.
"Drakon sure has his hands full!"
Perilous Shield ranks at least 9.3 out of 10 among the audiobooks stacked on my groaning virtual bookshelf.
The best thing about this book and the Lost Stars series so far is discovering how utterly depraved, ruthless and backstabbing the smarmy, nasal voiced Syndic leadership is as seen through the eye's of Midway Star System's dynamic duo: Iceni and Drakon plus their respective minions, scions, syncophants and suck ups. The way I see it, even Syndic newborns better crawl to a back corner of their crib pronto and start erecting their fluffy CEO dolls into a makeshift barrier against all suspicious subjects - and don't discount mommy be she biological or, ahem, surrogate.
Also, I now know whom to never, ever have in the back seat sitting behind me in any vehicle anywhere - Morgan.
Marc Vietor is a narrator of the first water. He injects the right amount of menace, if that is the word I want, into the story. Vietor's narration style complimented the spoken text to make this audiobook a solid listen. I particularly like his sultry, Southern-drawl voiced Morgan. This f......ed n the head rocket is a stone cold give you a soft, warm sensuous kiss then empty a clip of 9mm hollow-tip poisoned slugs in the back of your head kind of gal. Whenever she enters a scene someone is going to die, be left crumpled in an expanding pool of their own blood, or stage a hasty retreat hampered by a pronounced limp.
Will Iceni and Drakon finally get some peace and quiet to realize that what is most important is to jump each other's bones?
A guaranteed cert listen. Black Jack Geary and all of his superhuman, golden touch baggage is now starting to mess with the minds of the Midway Star System's mucky mucks. I bet they start to get pissed at this added psychic burden in the next installment with hilarious results.
"The Other Side of the Story"
I’m guessing most people picking up this book have also read the Lost Fleet books, and so now you get to hear Midway’s version of those encounters. That takes up a little less than half of this book and it is fun seeing the other side of that story. I never thought reading about morally ambiguous characters striving to use their talents for good while trying to not admitting to themselves that is what they are doing would be this much fun. Still, maybe more will turn out to be just as selfish as they think they are . . . guess we will have to keep reading.
Oh, and the revelation at the end of this book is just awesome. If you've become emotionally invested in the characters it will put their relationships in a whole new light. It’s a well placed twist.
Campbell does a wonderful job of making his power politics as interesting as his space battles. While this was done to a lesser degree in the Lost Fleet series, it really takes stage in this series. It gives these books something fresh and distinguish them from the adventures of Admiral “Black Jack” Geary.
As a criticism, things are a little repetitive at times. Things we were told not a few moments before get told to us again, and sometimes even a third time. Additionally, we all know by now the mental struggles of our central characters, and like in the Lost Fleet books, the detailed mental deliberations can get a little long winded. Still, we are on book 11 and if this criticism really bothered you, I doubt you’d be reading this review.
Marc Vietor continues to do a great job with this new series. I loved his readings of both The Black Company and The Nightside. Of course it different hearing his portrayal of Geary and other known voices from the Lost Fleet, but it’s not a huge part of the book and he does well enough that it is not distracting.
The short of this review is, that if you are a fan of the Lost Fleet/Lost Stars series, you should not be disappointed.
"The saga continues and the pace never lets up"
This book carries on from the first book of this series and overlaps Guardian in the "Lost Fleet: Beyond The Frontier" series.
I highly recommend listening to the first two "Beyond the Frontier" books, then the first "Lost Stars" book, then Guardian, then this one. (And before them listen to the "Lost Fleet" Series. - all excellent books.)
What I really like about the "Lost Stars" series is the change of style from the "Lost Fleet" series. Here we have multiple viewpoints rather than just one and we are not confined to a ship but have things happening on planets, in space, on orbital facilities - all over the place. I especially like the multiple viewpoints and having multiple main characters.
The series is the story of basically good people who have been brought up in a tradition of totalitarian government and trained in how to carry out ruthless repression, trying to not only break away from the central government but also from their fixed ideas, their past training, and their past sins.
The book starts with some overlap of events in the Guardian book, yet Campbell somehow keeps you on the edge of your seat. The overlap is seen from other viewpoints and the dangers to the main characters are different from Guardian and never boring.
The narration is excellent. He never misses a beat and maintains a consistent rhythm and a pace so that when the book ends, you are just dying for the next one.
A great book. I can't wait for the next in the series.
"wow. just wow."
I enjoyed all of it. from the beginning where we got to see different points of views for the events at the end of invincible and the beginning of guardian, I suspect you will all enjoy how Iceni, used to being a paranoid (I.E. alive) CEO, interprets Geary's words and actions. to the end and the last two twists. I for one saw the second to last one coming and with the time left thought it would be the last big event, I was somewhat dissipated as I had seen it coming and had hoped for an end that gave me something new to think about, then the last twist blindsided me, though there was enough info others may have suspected it. the way Drakon discovers this last twist is also hilarious as are his final thoughts about it.
Its a hard call. my two favorites are Drakon and Morgan.
He narrated tarnished knight. he also acted as the main, and in my opinion best, narrator for the black company series. I have enjoyed all of his performances.
yes and no. while I did not want to stop listening and in fact did not I also wanted the book to last longer so as there could be more sittings.
while I would recommend this book I would also recommend reading both the lost fleet books and tarnished knight first.
"Same Lost Fleet, Completely New Angle = A"
I finished this book in about 2 days, I am a big fan of Jack Campball & his lost fleet series & this is a spin off of the series but from the POV of the other side (Syndicate) side of the series towards around the same time 'Guardian: Lost Fleet Beyond the Frontier' takes place. It is interesting & well written to give the background of how a Syndicate officer is brought up within the rank vs. an Alliance officer (more traditional ways our army work off, still keeping many of the same ranks). The main protagonist's are two people that if not for the rebellion against the Syndicate yolk would probably figuring out ways how to screw each other over. In this book u get the internal thoughts of both of them thinking these ingrained idea's that brought them to their current position but at the same time they are no longer 'Syndicates', they are a free world at the edge of known human space that has struck a deal with a larger than universe character in John 'Blackjack' Geary. It's well written & includes not only ship to ship battles but mobile ground forces as well. It also includes a great deal of uncertainty in who might be double-crossing or triple-crossing whom & how the 'Free Worlds of Midway Star System' views a character we already know so much about from the 'Lost Fleet' series & the 'Beyond the Frontier' series.
IMO this book was much better than the first book of the series 'Tarnished Knight' & believe this POV could develop into a great series to compliment the 'Lost Fleet' Series, I recommend it to anyone who likes military universe building & the overlap of characters. In this particular book it leaves u with a great ending I did not see coming for a type of book I can usually predict the ending. I would not say it was a cliffhanger but a great set-up for another book in the series.
I don't think Marc Vietor did a bad job, in fact he did a much better job with this one than the 'Tarnished Knight' book before this one. I just happen to think Christian Rummell would probably have done an awesome job since he already does the 'Lost Fleet' series. Hearing 'Blackjack' sound like 'John Taylor' or 'Croaker' from his other books or even the Posleen Wars was weird... but he did a great job
"Outstanding from beginning to end"
LOL! I'm writing this immediately after completing the last chapter in this audiobook. What a GREAT ending that promises to create some very compellingly juicy subplots in future episodes. Outstanding!
"The syndicate leaders.... oh my!"
Just when you think you have a handle on what is going on.... you don't. No one understands Geary. Not the alliance... not the syndicate.
"Jack at his best the story just gets better,"
you must read this , as a fan of black jack to see the whole syndicate universe just makes it better and better
finding out that colonel morgan is colonel malins mother
a sense of perspective to all the chars
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