Jack Campbell's Lost Fleet

Mangara

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I'm on page 113 of Dauntless, which has been a godsend after reading the pretty dire Red Dust by P. McAuley. Its brilliantly paced, engaging, and I've not found a fault with it yet!
 

rand00

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Don't fret. I could only read Ender's Game. I don't know why but O.S.Card doesn't suit me. Heh.

Edit: I forgot quote from Vertigo. Below.

Oh absolutely a religion, and as you say a good opportunity for that bonding. My reference to the cultural bit was that, albeit a religion, I think the author is mainly using it to highlight the cultural gap between Geary's and everyone else's approach to it.

Also I must confess with some embarassment that Orson Scott Card is an author I've not yet read, he has been in my TBR for far too long.
 

Vertigo

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Don't fret. I could only read Ender's Game. I don't know why but O.S.Card doesn't suit me. Heh.

Edit: I forgot quote from Vertigo. Below.
I have since gone on to read Ender's Game which I enjoyed but had some issues with. I went on to Speaker For the Dead, which I also enjoyed but had probably more issues with. With the general view that I have seen around on the following books I think it unlikely that I will continue with them. I certainly feel no burning need to know what happens next.
 

Mangara

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The first book was brilliant, tense and full of suspense. Must be hard to live up to others expectations knowing you are only human. Lacked a bit of character development, but that's not really a priority with such engaging political intrigue and battle sequences!
 

Vertigo

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What to do when your pseudonym outdoes your real name? Why re-publish using the pseudonym, of course!

I have just noticed on Amazon that a number of John Hemry's books (The Ethan Stark and the Paul Sinclair ones) have been re-published using the name Jack Campbell as the author. My guess is that his Lost Fleet series have proved so popular that the publishers consider it worth republishing under that name with "author of the Lost Fleet series" added on the cover.
 

Rodders

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I finished the last book in the series and I have to say that it was very enjoyable and it brought the series to a satisafactory end. It looks like John's going to do a book that tells the story from the perspective of the Syndics some time in October.
 

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On recommendation from a poster on another thread I read Dauntless. If held to only make positive comments I would be forced to say Captain Geary is a likable character.

If permitted to be honest, I'd fill paragraphs noting how badly done this book was from the pacing, characterization, lack of suspense, lack of tension, lack of description, and mind numbing repetition of scenes that completely wrecked the book for me. Then there's the eternal question of if this is an idiot plot, or the plot of Idiocracy. I would only recommend this book as an example of what not to do when writing a novel. Aside from Geary being likable and the use or realities of combat at relativistic speeds and the vast distances of space combat, there isn't a single redeeming quality to this book.
 

J-Sun

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I read and greatly enjoyed the first set of six Lost Fleet books. Then I read and somewhat enjoyed the first of the next set, but thought it'd be better to take a break from that, as I was more interested in the idea of the Lost Stars series. So I haven't read the later Beyond the Frontier books but have just finished my paperback of The Lost Stars: Tarnished Knight.

On the downside/attack side: there's a kind of juvenile fetish of names, ranks, and numbers, but I'm mostly okay with that. There's an awkward romantic subplot that I could well do without and which threatens to grow. The dialog is strangely hard to read (mentally "say"). There is no real focused plot that takes actual shape in this actual book - this is another excerpt in which really nothing is resolved and the next installment is required. And it's strangely structured in that we alternate between two main protagonists for awhile until we go off with one of them for about 100 solid pages. Then we alternate briefly and go off with the other one for a long time. And then we alternate again briefly until the "end". The protagonist of the first extended section is Iceni and that section is space-oriented and is better than the second which features Drakon and is ground-oriented. Campbell demonstrates a fair but lesser talent at Army vs. Navy material. Also, there's something too "nice" about this. If the Lost Fleet is Star Trek: TNG/Star Wars, then this is Star Trek: DS9/The Empire Strikes Back and he does darken the material and complicate it, since we are dealing with post-Syndicate issues here, and there's the occasional firing squad and assassination and shaky grasp of "freedom" and all, but not enough. They start reaching for "democracy" and "justice" much too directly and easily and subordinates start speaking their minds much too soon and freely and so on.

But it's still an interesting difference from TLF. And, as intrigue-filled and sword-of-Damocles-like as TLF was, TLS is even more so. Very cloak-and-dagger oriented.

Continuing on the good side, while I didn't care for Drakon and Iceni together, each was interesting apart. And many SF books deal with the rise and fall of galactic empires in grand abstract sweeps but this did a good job of getting up close to and into the nitty-gritty of a collapsing empire and a new nucleus rising out of the rubble. There's a lot in here relevant to the Soviet collapse and more contemporary things like the "Arab Spring" and so on. And it's interesting to read about the former enemies of "Black Jack" trying to figure out how they can be more like him but not *too* much like him. He hovers over the story, popping into the characters' minds like a ghost - or a spirit of an ancestor. :)

So, basically, most of my expectations were met. This is strongly related to the Lost Fleet stuff but different enough from it to have an interest all its own; the darker, more ambiguous DS9 tones are there to some degree, and it was - overall - very entertaining.
 

Vertigo

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That's interesting J-Sun. I've still not ventured past the first series though I do intend to do so. There's just so much else in my pile to be read at the moment.
 

J-Sun

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Yeah, this is true. I have a huge number of books to read but when I got this I just ignored them and jumped right into it. But, if you could still track them down at the time, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to wait until they had all come out (or at least all of each subseries, as I don't know if the whole thing will ever stop) and read them one after the other.

Of course, if everybody did that, then they wouldn't sell in the first place and they would stop coming out after all. :)
 

Brian G Turner

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Saw Courageous in a charity shop today - was seriously tempted to buy, but had no cash on me. However, would it be a bad idea to pick that up without any intention to read the rest? Would I really need to read Dauntless instead?
 

Parson

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Sigh! They are most certainly a progressive series and should be read in order. But I think you would find it worthwhile. I certainly did.
 

J-Sun

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Yeah, I second that - you basically have to sign up for six (relatively short, in today's terms) books because it is basically one giant novel split into parts - I mean, almost all end at a stopping place - I think only one felt like a cliff-hanger - but you'll want the whole story. But it's very worth it. So much so that I signed on for both sequel series. But you don't have to do that - the six tie up the first story very well.

I think Courageous was the third one and, while I guess it's possible, I don't think that would work so well by itself. He does try to catch up new readers though (to the mild annoyance of many old readers), so he intended it to be possible.
 

Brian G Turner

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Finished Dauntless a while ago, and enjoyed it. Have now started Fearless and settled into the easy narration - good pace, and good conflict.

Spoiler?
However, just got to the bit where the POWs are being shuttled between different ships, and wondering when Geary will spot the potential for this to facilitate an insurrection under Captain Falco. :)
 

Brian G Turner

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Well, I did enjoy Fearless. Looking forward to Courageous.

I'll have to see if the charity shop still has it for a pound, otherwise I'll have to wait until Christmas for a new copy!
 

Vertigo

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I think you're probably right, it could work well in a film/tv version. I'd certainly watch it ;) Glad to hear you seem to be enjoying it. One of these days I'll get my TBR pile down far enough for me to start a new series and get going on either Beyond... or the spin off one.
 
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