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Publisher's Summary

A shattered Concord. A united crew. A critical mission.  

The Concord is in shambles after the return of the Statu, but under the guidance of the Zilph'i, trust is slowly being rebuilt.  

Thomas Baldwin remains confident in his team, the secrets of his ship and the Concord no longer a dire threat.  

While the Founders continue to appease the Concord members, the Border Wars are picking up steam, and Constantine is sent to the far reaches of space to the Zilph'i homeworld to request the Ugna's aid.  

Baldwin and his crew are tested beyond their wildest dreams, but if anyone's up to the task, it's the Concord's brightest stars.

©2020 Nathan Hystad (P)2020 Tantor

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  • Jas P
  • 20-11-2020

Unification is a thrilling Sequel!!

Unification picks up not long the events of book 1 in the series, and sees the once united and powerful Coalition in disarray, with the Statu having returned, and Council members having been implicated in all sorts of serious accusations including hiding how the Statu managed to move around so easily in the previous war, and that they used those that they captured as mindless ‘Soldier Drones’ in their own armies in the war, somehow taking control of their prisoners minds, putting them in Statu Uniforms, and then dropping them back on the battlefield as brainwashed Soldiers, allowing them to use them as cannon fodder against opponents and never risk their own forces. Baldwin and his crew are still recovering from their harrowing experiences including the loss of some crew, and the revelation of Treena Starling being an Android. At the start of Unification, Baldwin has been called to answer for his actions, whilst Starling is back trapped in her own body in her room. Tarlen has joined the crew as a trainee (his Sister is in Medical with the Dr), and Reeve and Brax try to work out what they should be doing to support their Captain. We quickly learn that the Concord is in trouble, that the Zilph’i are threatening to pull out of the Concord due to recent events, and, as founding members, their leaving will cause multiple others to leave, not to mention that their members make up a large amount of key positions in the Concord. This includes the elusive Ugna, the Psionics that are capable of so many incredible things (not to mention they have their own fleet). Instability has already seen several planets pulling out of the Concord, and Baldwin and his crew have been tasked with going to Zilph’i to convince them to stay, at any cost, as the Concord cannot afford to lose the Zilph’i, as one of the founding members leaving the Concord would shatter faith in the Concord and tear it apart, right at a time when it is needed most with the apparent resurgence of the Statu. This is a very interesting book, somewhat different to the first, as although it is another Star Trek, Orville type ‘Episode’, in this particular book, the focus on the characters is a lot different. Treena Starling is restricted to the shell of her former broken body, her android body having been destroyed in Book 1, and a replacement being a slow consideration for the Concord. As such, she is battling with not just her own self-worth, but her position in the crew, and her worth to the ship. We have young Tarlen, having lost nearly everything, and feeling displaced not just from his house, but his planet, and the only thing that makes sense to him right now, is a starship full of aliens that saved him, especially a Captain that he has a bad case of Hero Worship for. But through young Tarlen’s eyes we get to see a different side of things, and his character is not only very complex, but very gritty, realistic and at times, emotionally powerful. Reeve and Brax make for a fascinating pair, the Twins not only understanding each other, but also having an intense determination towards the success of the Constantine and her Mission, as well as supporting the Captain. Captain Thomas Baldwin is an extraordinary character, able to see things other don’t, and often he is overlooked or seen as not been up to the challenge because he is younger, however, he was raised by the great ‘Constantine Baldwin’ himself, and has been training to be a Captain his whole life. Although he had a complex relationship with his Grandfather, he made him into one of the finest Captains the Concord has ever seen, and with the crew, each some of the best in their fields, he excels. The other really fascinating character in this book is Ven, the Ugna aboard the ship. We get to learn a huge amount about the Ugna and their culture in this book, a lot more than you think you will. (No Spoilers). It makes for a really interesting read. As the book barrels forward at an intense pace, and you realise that there is a lot more going on than originally assumed, especially when ‘the Assembly’ become involved (again, no spoilers), the book turns into a full-on thriller, mystery, and is totally action-packed. If you loved the first book, if you are a fan of Trek, the Orville, or if you just like a good Space Opera, good Sci-Fi, then you have to read this series, and definitely this book. If this is the quality of what is to come in this series, this will easily become one of the best series for the start of this decade, Hystad is just Brilliant. James Patrick Cronin again does a superb job as the Narrator, providing clear and concise Narration, with an excellent range of voices. Not only does he provide a wonderful range of voices, they are very distinct, so that you are able to easily tell which character is talking, without having to be told. Cronin brings these characters to life, giving them strong emotions as he reads, so you really understand how they feel, and what the Author is trying to convey. It adds so much extra depth to the Audiobook. This is an exceptional telling of the story, you can really feel Starling’s turmoil, at times her disappointment, and at other times, her pain, at being in her special containment tank. And with Baldwin, Cronin gives a powerful voice to the Captain, conveying the full spectrum of emotions, from Anger at various situations, compassion when speaking to Treena and Tarlen, and true Stoicism as the Capt of the Concord. The Narration makes this an easy choice to listen to the Audiobook, rather than read it, as it is just so good!!

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  • Nat 87
  • 11-08-2020

Excellent second installment

Another great listen - I love the many twists and turns in this book and thoroughly enjoyed listening. I am really enjoying the characters as well - they are multiple species and they all have special skills and character development based on their race etc. Nathan has written a very character driven book which I love, and the story is "vast" with huge potential to take this series into many books following the voyages of Constantine and its crew.

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