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3.7 out of 5 stars26
3.7 out of 5 stars
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on 28 December 2010
John Ringo "painted himself into a corner" with the Posleen series. The Posleen where unstopable, Geneticaly engineered to be unstopable, attacking in numbers so huge that defenders literally ran out of ammo, breeding faster than space-locusts etc... And some how Humanity is supposed to stop them. John Ringo writes convincing military S.F. Too convincing, by the 2nd book I was convinced. The Posleen where unstopable! So I just didn't believe the next 3 books where John Ringo says (without much explanation) "Humans stopped them".
The Troy series avoids this problem. We get John Ringo's convincing writing, without him contradicting himself. He's cleverly laid the plot for alien races who have been given technology they can use, duplicate, even enhance. but they don't understand the underlying theory. Because they were given it during their equivalent of the 16th century, like giving Henry the V or Tokugawa the technology to build starships. Humanity has a serious advantage, because it understands 5 more centuries of basic theory than it's alien enemies.
Troy is the sequel to "Live free or die" and John chose to start the 2nd book several weeks before the end of the preceeding book. So we get to read the same events from the viewpoint of some new characters. Notably the first book has a single paragraph about a pilot crash-landing a shuttle inside the Troy battle station at the start of the Horvath's final attack on Earth. The 2nd book re-explores that event in detail from the viewpoint of other charactes, including the pilot of the shuttle. We also get to read how one of the alien races (Rangora) views human technology.
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on 15 November 2010
Although I have some trouble with the term Revenuer being a government employee involved in taxation I won't dwell on the aspects of the book that got in the way of my enjoyment of a good read.
JR has created another vehicle for his own brand of Republican Sci Fi and fair play to him, I have enjoyed reading the book which has a good pace and many moments that made me laugh out loud.
The idea of a war fought over a simple product of the Rebs / Mountian folk is genius as a plot driver.
The friendly aliens are a right laugh and the unfriendly aliens easy to hate. So if you like a good Sci romp that has humour, action,a decent plot and the odd rant about how awfull people like me are because we've never done a decent days work in our lives and just get in the way of more wortwhile hard working people with our basic inefficiency then this is the book for you. I will be checking out the next one in the series and am a big fan of JR's work in general.
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This is the first volume in a new series which blends elements of First Contact, Space Opera, and military SF.

Originally described as one book in three parts, the three volumes of the "Troy Rising" series published to date are

1) This book, "Live Free or Die"

2) "Citadel (Troy Rising)," and

3) "The Hot Gate (Troy Rising)."

The books are best read in this order. At the end of the third instalment there are lots of possibilities for further books in the series and I hope Ringo will pursue them.

Mankind's first contact with aliens was friendly and almost anticlimatic: a race of traders, the Glatun, arrive in our solar system and set up a "gate" which can be used by themselves, mankind, or any other star travelling race to travel from here to other star systems.

Unfortunately, having provided our system with a gate on the off chance that we would have something worthwhile to trade, the Glatun did not at first find that we had anything enormously valuable.

And then the gate in our system went from being of little benefit to an enormous disadvantage when a second alien race, the Horvath, sent a warship through it, dropped rocks from space which obliterated three human cities as an initial warning that we should do what we're told, and demanded all the heavy metals earth had available, or they would drop more.

Earth's governments had little choice but to agree, leaving the planet effectively at the mercy of the Horvath.

But a former Science Fiction publisher called Tyler Vernon has a few ideas on how to get the Horvath off Earth's back, and is willing to stand up to anyone, human or alien, to do it. And some of his ideas are very big ideas indeed ...

In my opinion the "Troy Rising" series is the best thing John Ringo has written, even ahead of his Council wars series which begins with "There will be dragons" or the first four books in his "Posleen" universe.
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on 31 October 2011
If you like Hero journeys, then this is a very good offering of the genre. An excellent bit of escapism, when life gets a bit boring.
Our hero is just that little bit smarter and sneakier than the competing aliens, so of course, he makes a fortune, rules the world for the betterment of all, and after some adventures, manages to conquer the universe; sort-of. Anyway, it's not suitable for analysis or for being taken seriously.
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on 29 December 2011
This book is hard work as it is mostly based on dialogue, it's a bit like reading a radio play script (well not quite that bad). There is very little narrative to build any atmosphere which really kills it for me.

If you like to be immersed in descriptive detail that makes you feel your are there, this is not the book for you. I can't give it one or two stars as it's an OK story, just the execution that's not to my taste.
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on 25 November 2014
I Want to first say that i am for all relivant purposes a redneck boy. I am a farmer from the back of beyond, i am suspicious of goverment, and i literaly have a redneck from working outside. So no fury please, i say Redneck with affection, own your label boys and girls. Now to the Review.

Its a brilliant story of how just one man can save the world. Much better than that pesky goverment, for Dam..d sure, better than those limp wristed bureaucrats in Washington, they are probably Commies mutter mutter, Obamacare! mutter Mutter.

I Mock but its Brilliant! A wish fufilling fantasy for the Libertarian heirs of Heinelin, after all if one man can sell the moon, one man can save us from alien invaders with nothing more than Maple Syrup and an iron will. It gets progressively sillier as it goes on, books 2 and 3 go from wish fufilling to absurd, but its a crackaling good read, just dont take the politics too seriously.
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on 7 July 2011
It's all been said before so all I'll say is that this series is top of my list for reading.

I loved E.E.Doc Smith as a kid, went through Anderson & all the other greats & basically sat for years
waiting for some really good space opera. It had all been taken over by the fantasy freaks (sorry), or so I thought.

Eventually I found David Weber & what a read. Then because of Weber, I found the Baen website which is packed
full of top notch science fiction, ohh & some fantasy as well, not that it interests me though.

Weber led me to Steve White & John Ringo both of whom have collaberated with Weber at different times to make excellent science fiction.

This series though, is by far my favourite & even surpasses the Safehold series by Weber, just.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I continue to do.
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on 6 June 2013
Admittedly this was right up my street, earth leaping forward in technology and getting out into the big wild universe, but have read it multiple times now and still love it. John Ringo's best work, i hope there is more to come from this series. Hot Gate and Citadel not as good as the first offering, i liked the story more focused on Tyler Vernon than all the other characters, especially didn't enjoy the bits focused on the south american personnel, but that may have been Ringo's aim. Authors political leanings clear from all the 'don't care for his politics, but...' type statements from characters, bit distracting but story wouldn't be the same without them, suspect portion of the motivation to write is authors' frustration with channels other than Fox News!
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on 16 July 2011
This is a very mediocre sci fi romp, not awful, definitely not a work of literature either.

The problem is that this is a very, very thinly disguised piece of EXTREMELY right wing propaganda.

Through a series of rather forced deus ex machina, the author's utopia of blond, illiberal hard working, non-muslim humanity with a hyper-libidoed female population is brought into being. Conveniently by the evil aliens without the heroes' approval or intervention thereby enabling everyone to enjoy the resultant paradise without that pesky guilt that more mundane ethnic cleansing usually brings.

It is, in a word, juvenile. The lead character, super smart computer guy yet a good ol' man of the land, is transparently just a mouthpiece for the author's prejudices. He becomes the richest man in the world overnight and routinely shows up those liberal city folk (the President, corporate executives, etc.) for the low down cowardly sneaky liars they are. And in the end of course, saves everybody with only the Asians, Africans, Middle Easterners, Muslims and city folk falling victim to the ensuing conflict.

No loss there then.

I would expect this kind of thing to be written by a socially outcast teenager as a wish fulfilment fantasy after he'd just been snubbed by the prettiest girl at high school when asking her to the prom.

From a published author, it's just a bit sad.
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on 14 November 2015
A very fun and interesting storyline with fantastic world building. The characters are entertaining and well thought out, the only negative is the terminology that was introduced early in the book and broken down into acronyms pop up throughout and I had completely forgotten what they meant. Also a lot of American acronyms that I've never heard before living in Ireland.
A definite recommended book though, already got a friend to buy it and he's loving it too!
I would recommend getting the audiobook and playing it on 1.25 speed (it's crazy slow otherwise) and enjoy the ride! It's a lot of fun.
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