Looking for a book I read in 1992

MacBadger

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I have great memories of a paperback I was loaned in High School, but can remember the title or author. I do remember the plot well.

It opens with a young man willingly going as sacrifice to the Gods. He walks to meet them and is taken into a ship. The empire conscripts soldiers from primitive planets in this way.

He is taken and given a download of information about how the universe works. The soldiers are given a symbiote that functions as a suit and stress reliever.

There is a high attrition rate among the soldiers and they don't bother getting to know newbies until they have survived a battle. Needless to say he survived and they become an elite squad.

The empire has respite space stations for r&r that are basically brothels. The squad goes to one and falls in love and are inspired to rebellion by some of the girls.

The soldiers go to their next mission and rebel against the empire and go back to the station to liberate it. But because of faster than light travel, white it has only been months for the soldiers, it has been 25 years for the station.

The station is liberated and they plan to form a new society there. In an epilogue we find out the empire isn't worried because all of them were sterilized to limit potential longterm spread of revolution and they are left to grow old and die childless.

At 17 I thought it was great. I would love to read it again and see if it is as good as I remember. Sadly a lot of books aren't.

Thanks for any help.
 

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