Rating:

5 Small Stars

Politics! If every politician were eaten by an alien horde, the world and galaxy would be much better off. They are so far removed from what is happening to their supposed constituents that it’s ridiculous we give them such power. Vice Admiral James Somerville, former Supreme Commander of all Earth Forces, has been relegated to command of the Outer Defense Fleet in system X-38. There he was to ensure the Flex-aor did not spring a surprise attack against Earth or any of it’s colonies. He was doing the job as he saw best being the on-site commander.

Meanwhile, back on good ole Earth, politicians were stirring up trouble. While Vice Admiral Somerville was sending reports back of his mission, they were getting very upset that he left system X-38. But, this was actually only a seed for them to grow a whole litany of charges agains Vice Admiral Somerville while he wasn’t any where near to defend himself. It seems that the United Nations Military Tribunal had a lot of power over the Earth’s consolidated space forces. The Admirals and Government Representatives on this Tribunal were all losers who had lost some prestige to Admiral Somerville when they attempted to attack Haven or join the Russian invasion forces. Admirals from Brazil, Argentina, and India were on the Tribunal and their de facto leader was a Indian Representative named Jalesh Kapoor. She had a very extreme grudge against Somerville for what he did to the Indians during their war with Haven. She was attempting to rail-road Admiral Somerville out of the UN Navy!

So, while that mess was getting stirred, Admiral Somerville was finding some significant things during this military exploits. While on patrol in one other out systems from X-38, his fleet ran across an unknown fleet of many very fast starships. It turns out that this fleet was a contingent from the Varanni Trade Alliance which consisted of 12 alien civilizations, one of which was the Crain who commanded this current fleet. James was shocked to say the least. Earth had long thought themselves to be alone in the galaxy. Now they were to find out that the galaxy was actually quite crowded. While he soon learned that Earths technology wasn’t necessarily lower than the Crain, there were things they had technoloy-wise that he knew would make good trade deals between the two civilization. And to thing there were 12 other civilizations with different and even better technology, well, the Earth was going to be very busy in the near future.

Right now, Admiral Somerville and the Crain Admiral Ya’sia had agreed to combine their fleets and attack the Flex-aor at their homeworld. If they could damage then enough, especially their ship yards, it might delay any future attacks by this species for a long time. What they found was a whole lot of trouble, but nothing that couldn’t be dealt with later. But, suddenly, a gigantic starship had shown up on Admiral Somervilles scanners coming straight for the combined fleet. It was soon found to be a dreadnaught of the Varanni, a very advanced race that had formed the Varanni Trade Alliance. They came to recall Admiral Ya’sia of the Crain due to another enemy that was slowly advancing into Trade Alliance systems. This new enemy had to be stopped or all civilizations were doomed. Admiral Somerville decided that he needed to be part of this new war since he would be anyway if the Trade Alliance wasn’t successful. Despite not knowing the humans that well, the Varanni began immediately helping to upgrade Admiral Somerville’s fleet ships. New technolgoy was coming to the Earth and very soon.

Again, meanwhile, back on Earth, the UN Military Tribunal had decided that Vice Admiral Somerville was to be relieved of command of the Outer Defense Fleet and to return home for a courts martial. They said he was derelict in his duty when he left system X-38 and further attacked the Flex-aor. They had no knowledge of how successful he was nor of his discovery of many alien civilizations near Earth that were more than willing to share their technology. Acting as stupid politicians they were, they ultimately and rudely slammed the door on the Varanni trade delegation even thought they were warned that to do so would put them facing this new very technologically advanced enemy on its own!

It looks like the Earth is doomed unless someone can stop the rampant stupidity brought on by the UN Military Tribunal. Vice Admiral James Somerville has been branded a traitor and mutineer, but he’s returning to Earth with his fleet. This next book should be very, very interesting!

While this book was long, it almost seems like two books in one. What’s going on with Admiral Somerville where he’s at is one complete story while the idiocy back on Earth is another. Still the author puts them together very well and I’ll certainly continue reading this exciting series.