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The Cost of Victory: Crimson Worlds 2 Kindle Edition
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If you are looking for a really original piece of military science fiction, then you might want to look elsewhere and run the risk of being disappointed. If, however, you are just looking for some easy, uncomplicated Entertainment (as I was), then you might like this one. I did, largely because I was not expected very much from it to begin with.
Regarding the clichés, you have, of course, the “goodies” of the Western Alliance made up of what used to be Canada, the US and the UK, at war against the “nasties” of the Caliphate (does I need to explain who they are?) and the CAC (more or less China). The PRC (or Pacific Rim Confederation loosely organised around Japan) sides with the Alliance. The “Empire” (of South America, apparently) takes the other side.
This one is about the Third Frontier War. It takes place in space, but on a larger scale than the previous ones and it is a fight between some of “the Superpowers” for control of planets and their resources outside of the mostly demilitarised solar system.
This book’s strong suit is the various ground battles and space battles so that fans of military science fiction will not be disappointed here. As for the story itself, the ultimate outcome is not exactly a surprise even if each engagement seems to be more desperate than the previous one.
Regarding clichés, there are quite a collection of them. One is about the profiteering and privileged elites who oppress the populations of their various countries on Earth, none of which are democratic anymore. Another is about the ruthless and simply “horrid” intelligence services on all sides that largely rule behind the scenes and will stop at just about nothing to achieved their objectives. A third is about the brave soldiers and naval personnel of the Western Alliance, just about all of which seem to have originated from the lower and oppressed classes (the “cogs”) whose dedication and sense of duty and honour contrast so sharply with the unscrupulousness of the hereditary political and economic elites.
By and large, this was a pleasant and entertaining read and a “nice” piece of escapism, however implausible some of it may be (such as the damage done by thermonuclear explosions in space vacuum). Worth about four stars, for the entertainment.
Having said that the only gripe I have is to much info about the battles, more human interaction please less statistics.
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