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4.3 out of 5 stars24
4.3 out of 5 stars
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I started reading the Lost fleet a few years back and after getting a kindle and gift card for Christmas I decided to treat myslef to this trilogy from Jack Campbell. After the usual fast and easy service from Amazons I settled down to read the set. I have to say that there are some similarities between the series, the commanding officer who doesn't want the job, the military being controlled by increasingly inept politicians who in this case are in the grip of powerful corporations who don't care about anything except profit. I always get the feeling that a lot of the militaristic attitudes are from personal experience (which i believe the author has) which makes them all the more readable. As books go this series is an easy read, I don't mean that they are lightweight or throwaway, but they are well written, easy to get into and very hard to put down, I have read all three and enjoyed the full set, the story arc is well plotted and fills the three volumes nicely. While I am a fan of Sci-Fi and fiction works in gerneral I have to say that I love these books and the Lost Fleet series so to any other sci-fi fans out there I recommend them heartily, I love the easy storytelling without the host of boring dry technical details that you find in a lot of fiction works which keeps the plot rolling and the story flowing nicely. Excellent set, now waiting for the JAG in space series to appear for the Kindle.
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on 16 January 2013
The three stars is an overall judgement of the entire three-book series, and I think it's fitting that they be reviewed like that. To me, the series starts off well, maintains the momentum in the second book and finishes off rather lamely (I'll say no more than that in order not to give anything away).

The story is of mutiny in the US Army on the Moon, pushed too far by commanders caring only of their own futures, with Sgt. Ethan Stark reluctantly forced into military leadership. How he handles this against the combined enmity of the other nations on the Moon and the US Administration back on Earth, and copes with the equally rebellious but suspicious Moon civilian colonists, forms the story of the books. The story is in general quite well told, with Stark, with an enormous burden of major command on his unprepared shoulders, trying to cope and to grope towards a future the nature of which he's totally uncertain, even if he wins. The dialogue is occasionally repetitive and we really don't need so many Spanish words sprinkled into it.

What I really liked is the portrayal of a government totally in the pay of major corporations (like the current US Republican Party) and the total divorce of these people - government, military and corporate - from the everyday concerns of ordinary folk/soldiers, and the ability of those on high to live in an alternative reality that, in their view, will always perform exactly according to their rules, like the Bush (Dubya) Administration and its attempted remaking of reality to suit particular political/commercial ends. And it comes complete with suitable jargon to bolster this perceived reality (Mr. Campbell produces some lovely examples, frighteningly not that far removed from the sort of garbage routinely churned out by company upper managements). However, as Helmut von Moltke famously said, battle plans rarely survive first contact with the enemy, and so it is here, with these US soldiers thrown into battle on the Moon, micromanaged on the one hand but the realities of their plight ignored on the other; the plan shouldn't go wrong, therefore it doesn't/didn't/won't.

So, overall, an undemanding, entertaining read, not on a par with Mr. Campbell's Lost Fleet series, but not bad.
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on 29 December 2011
Stark's Crusade is the last book in the Stark trilogy. It's a pretty good read, but it is unfortunately the weakest book og the three. The battles are as fine as they come, but the story is rather heavy on the flag-waving. All the we-are-good-Americans and long-live-the-Constitution is of course in line with the feel of the triliogy and you do sort of have to accept it as part of the premise for the story. However, for a non-American like myself, there does seem to be rather a lot of it and the near constant boy-scout do-goodery unfortunately takes up too much space in the story for my taste. I feel Campbell/Hemry could have fleshed out the story a little more, instead of being quite as blatantly pro-American.
The trilogy is still very much worth a read, eventhough the ending is a little weak.
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on 19 November 2013
Don't get me wrong, I quite enjoy Jack Campbell's books. I've read the Stark trilogy, one of the JAG books and two of the Lost Fleet. This is the kind of sci-fi I can enjoy when I don't feel like something more thought provoking, like China Mieville or Stephen Baxter. They rattle along at a good pace and have barely a quiet moment however they are all from the same mold, corrupt or ineffective powers that be, a crisis and a hero who is just better at fighting than the opposition. Notmthe worlds most thoughful books but sometimes you don't need that.
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on 14 September 2012
Jack Campbell is one great writer. Excellent entertainment.Pure Sci-Fi escapism. Just keeps getting better and better. Couldn't put the book down.
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on 4 May 2013
3rd in the trilogy - excellent finale to the fantasy of where the world could end up if we're not careful.
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on 27 November 2011
The last surviving superpower on Earth, the USA is fighting a war to conquer the moon and obtain its riches. However, the American military has its own battles to fight before it can claim victory.

In this final instalment in the `Stark' series we see Sergeant Ethan Stark who was sent into space to protect the US Lunar Colony. As the two previous entries documented, when faced with orders that would do nothing but get his soldiers needlessly killed, he led a rebellion. This adventure sees Stark and his soldiers having to fend off deadly aggression from their own country whilst simultaneously preventing a full-scale civil war from erupting.

This entry sees desperate ship to ship battles as well as the ones on the lunar surface. The stakes are even higher for this final outing for Hemry's uncompromising hero.

Governments and greedy self-interested corporations still pose a threat to Stark and his band of loyal followers and the colonists they are protecting. A greater threat of mistrust and espionage also exists as well as a fearsome new technology: the autonomous robotic combatants who exist for one sole purpose: to destroy.

Together with technology and hardware this is also packed with tactics, military feints and counterpunches as Stark draws on all of his resources, experience and nous to stay one step ahead of his foes. Hemry has clearly saved all the pyrotechnics and drama for this the `grand finale.'

`Stark's Crusade' is not just a battle for the moon, rather it is a battle of ideas and for the kind of leadership and government citizens deserve and want. Big themes punctuate the unrelenting and gripping action.

I found myself eagerly racing to the stories (and series) conclusion and I can state with confidence that this entry is the final pay off that fans of Stark were hoping for. Once again Hemry shows just why he is such a revered writer of military science fiction.
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on 15 May 2013
Have now read all of this triology, almost without putting them down. Very enjoyable, I would have liked to read more of this world but the books do come to a very good end.
I will be getting more of this authors books infuture, and can also recomend "the lost fleet serries" by the same writter using a different name.
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on 4 December 2013
A very enjoyable tale, which just when you thought you had it the next twist in the tale would come and then the suspense would start to build again.
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on 12 December 2011
Wow! I didn't see that ending coming.
Fast action all the way.
Makes you believe that you're really there and part of story, really loved it.
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