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on 30 October 2014
This series is pretty typical of military SF. Simplistic Good guys vs Bad guys, where the military are all good guys and the bad guys are politicians or space pirates (really).

The series is also pretty devoid of any interesting SF ideas, I didn't find the bit of technology central to the story convincing, and if you will forgive the slight exaggeration, any story that relies on geniuses inventing a whole new technology with some string and chewing gum in an afternoon looses my respect pretty fast.

As you have probably gathered, this is not the sort of stuff that usually excites me, however the author writes well, the main characters are quite engaging despite being cliches, and there are some interesting combat ranging from one to one to space battles.

However, I bought all 5 in the series so even with all the negatives I still found it an enjoyable light read.
A very expensive enjoyable light read because each book is more like an episode of a series rather than a complete book.
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on 28 November 2013
I came to this from a first chapter included at the end of the kindle edition of Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie. This is a different sort of space opera from Ancillary Justice, but the opening chapter was so gripping that I immediately ordered a copy so that I could read the rest of it.

The universe it is set in is sort of recognisable as a fast forward on our current one. The initial setting is in a naval academy that would be recognisable to anyone with military experience (and the author served in the USMC, no doubt she drew on that). That's just the starting point for the story though, and most of the action takes place on board an interstellar freighter.

The story is told mostly by the main character (Ky Vatta), although there are a couple of short switches of viewpoint to her father. This limited omniscience drives the story well, although the only character that is well developed is Ky herself. That said, she is a very interesting character, she knows she has flaws and tries hard to come to terms with them. The pace of the story is very good, and it kept me reading to find out what happened next, even getting to the end of the chapter wasn't enough to stop and I found myself reading it when I was walking along the train platform at the end of my commute!

In outline, Ky is kicked out of the local naval academy for helping the wrong guy. Her family run their own merchant shipping line and they send her off with an experienced crew in a ship destined for the breakers yard at the end of the trip. She succumbs to the Vatta instinct for 'trade and profit' and decides to make a side trip to fill a need for agricultural supplies at her first port of call. This takes her to another system. On the way in her ship's hyperspace drive fails, and while she's trying to scrape up funding for both the repairs and the tractor parts a war starts.

From there it becomes a very interesting sequence of events in dealing with the crisis and its fallout. Ky's ship ends up being used to intern the captains and senior officers of the other ships in the system, largely because it has no working hyperspace engine. This causes another set of interesting twists and turns in the story. Throughout the background to this we see a few glimpses of other things happening in other parts of the universe, which cleverly expands the background and lets the reader join some of the dots before Ky does it.

Overall an enjoyable and compelling read
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on 17 February 2015
I found myself unable to stop turning pages (if that's a thing on a kindle). The second book was the highlight for me, and some of the the chapters wore a little, with a lot of rehashing old stuff in the later books, in case we'd forgotten (which is probably fair if you didn't read them all in a couple of days).
Ultimately, a strong series, and you could do a lot worse if you're looking for some entirely readable space nonsense. The major upside was a really solid science behind communications and space battles. The entire series hinges on the fact that the majority of communications can only work at speed of light (apart from system "ansibles" which allow FTL communication between each other, permitting distant systems to communicate). The fact that ships have to be close to communicate effectively, along with a genuinely powerful understanding of (theoretical) space weapons and combat meant I read with interest rather than rolling my eyes, and the main character, while seemingly based on author, is entertaining enough to be believable. If anything, I felt like the final battle in the final book was a little underwhelming - I'd have happily read a few more pages about that.

But yeah, crack on, enjoy!
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VINE VOICEon 7 July 2017
Two nights running I went to sleep way too late because of this book. And bought book two straight after. The space adventures, the dangers, the people and their relationships, all written well. I was completely drawn in, getting to known them all. I want to know what happens next to Ky Vatta and her crew.
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on 3 January 2016
Really enjoyed this first step into a new universe, having read some of the other reviews, I thought I got the wrong book, ok there is a McGiver moment, but the other review makes out they built a starship from bubblegum and belt buckles. Erm its a adventure story dontcha know.
The comparison to Honour Harrington is a little unfair, Hornblower v Ramage anyone.
The story concentrates more on the human aspect than the gadgets, the gadgets are there but are dealt with in the way someone born today will deal with ipads, its just part of the world.
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on 2 June 2016
I was recommended to this book(s) by a pal and I devoured them as fast as I could read them and I eagerly await the next one in November 2016.
If you like strong female leads in your sci-fi, then this series is for you.
The fall and rise of the Vatta's due to espionage, sabotage and much shenanigans is an entirely satisfactory plot.
Well written, though my appreciation of some of the 3D imagery I needed to create in my head was a bit taxing, the sequences are well written and you get hooked very early on.
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on 8 December 2017
I have been reading science fiction for over thirty years. How I failed to come across her work before this I will never know.
I intend to make up for lost time...
Great writing, well-formed protagonists and a wonderful plotline.
If you don't know her work, put it right... SOON!
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on 27 December 2014
While the action is well done, the series of books are let down by extensive bloated character expositions which wouldn't be out of place in Dallas. The characters are bland and lightweight, the writing style itself matches.

When it gets to the action, it's very well done and if she compressed the full series into one or two books it would quite possibly be brilliant.

But it's not, it's a long drawn out trawl through simplistic characterisation of frequently annoying people.

It's a shame because Moon can really write when she wants to.
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on 22 June 2017
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Enough to go straight to Book 2 ... and the rest of the series. This one sets the scene for the 'war' and gives us a chance to know the various characters. Some good twists and turns.
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on 25 July 2017
Well read complete from the original book. Got this for long journeys and when waiting to pick up grand kids.
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