This book starts right in the middle of something so it’s a little hard to figure out what’s going on at first. It does explain about our alien “First Contact” with Mentor, from a species know as the Cats. He apparently has come to Earth to warn us that the galaxy has become aware of us and is not know for its friendly treatment of newly discovered civilizations, especially one that is so un-advanced as is Earth. We’re several centuries behind most of the galaxy and that’s going to cause us serious problems if we don’t do some thing about it and quickly.
Mentor has brought some of his advanced technology which he starts sharing with Earth and we finally start getting ourselves ready to face the rest of the galaxy. The Cats have been the dominate race throughout known history but they are declining. They are immortal and like all immortals, they begin to get tired of everything happening over and over again. They are loosing control of the other species which has been about the only thing keeping some from attacking and destroying each other.
The Hegemony, in particular, are a lizard race that knows nothing but warfare as a means to promote their society. They are perfectly willing to enslave any other race that gives them trouble and usually have the military might to do so. The Cats and the other races seem to turn their heads at the Hegemony as long as they are not their current victims.
Now the Hegemony has foun is in no shape to do anything about it so they have to let it happen all the while trying to build up something that would resemble a galactic fleet. It’s not going to be easy but Earth has learned that none of the other civilizations, including the Hegemony, have done any advanced research to improve current weapons capabilities.
Earth has a very good advance research capability and they begin improving their starships with attack weapons and defensive systems that should be able to defeat even a Hegemony SuperDreadknot! Earth will get a chance soon to see if their advances will prove effective when they move to take back New Terra.