A stuffed-shirt account of Earth’s return to the stars. As in the previous book, “Battlecruiser”, now Captain William Sparhawk is sent on a mission to the stars. He’s to find out what happened to Earth’s lost colonies and try to make peace with them. He is to command a once derelict battlecruiser built by one of those former colonies, the Betas. This ship is by far the greatest ship the Earth has ever seen. In it’s prime, it could destroy all of Earth’s current space navy and then destroy all civilization on Earth itself. Yet, by cunning and courage, Captain Sparhawk managed to make this ship space worthy and brought it back to Earth.
Having been re-outfitted and repaired, Star Guard Command now wants Sparhawk using this ship to find allies if possible. For on Earth have been found another remnant of a lost colony called the Stroj. These were once humans who are no more machine than human although they make a habit of ingraining human body parts into their mechanical bodies. They have little emotions nor feelings as do humans, but they do want one thing and that is the destruction of Earth and anything that reeks of humanity.
As Captain Sparhawk begins his mission, he finds on major problem at the very beginning. His Aunt who through advanced anti-aging treatments is still among the living. She is from a powerful political house and has managed to insert herself into Sparhawk’s mission as the Ambassador. Now two strong-willed leaders will have to some how manage to share command of this mission, something that never works.
I found this book to be written in a very stuffy style. It’s as if someone wrote it with the intentions that a commoner would be reading it and therefore had to explain every little nuance about Sparhawks actions. He is not royalty nor is his Aunt. She is a political animal much like those of today and apparently her politics were the reason Earth plunged into the Cataclysm some two hundred years prior. I don’t dislike this writing style, it’s just so different from the other books by this author. There is some humor in the story and some weird actions between Captain Sparhawk and his crew that would not or should not have happened. Still, it all made a good story and it appears there will be a third book since this is a trilogy.