While this story is about a British Starship, the Ark Royal, there isn’t a whole lot of British in the story. It reads like any other science fiction story although it’s probably got a lot more realistic stuff to it than most. While this is an old British Starship, it becomes valuable because of it’s old style hull armor. Apparently, the new stuff built by most of the Earth’s countries have gone to high tech defenses that are not supposed to allow these ships to be directly attacked. Unfortunately,the new alien threat doesn’t know this and systematically begins destroying every ship in human fleet.
So, the Ark Royal is brought out of moth balls and put into action. While it has been captained by a drunk Commodore that the British Navy didn’t know what to do with, he shows some spine when he’s almost relieved of his command on the verge of it’s first deployment. The Captain has sobered up and now intends to put his ship and his considerable fighting skills to the test.
They survive their first encounter with the aliens in spectacular fashion giving the aliens a taste of defeat for the very first time. We cannot talk to these aliens because there is no magic translation device which is as it should be. We do capture some aliens but it will still take a while before we lean to communicate, if it’s possible at all. The aliens are nothing like us and we have no idea of their motivations or why they attacked our colonies in the first place.
The story is pretty exciting. I had trouble putting it down since the actions were coming pretty fast. While this is a British starship, there’s nothing particularly British about the story. Yeah, they talk about the Admiralty, but that’s about as far as it goes. There is some sexual content but it’s treated OK and is a part of the story.
I look forward to the next book. I think anyone will find these good science fiction reading.