Aspect, Jul 2003, 24.95
Five years ago humans applied alien technology to convert a gas giant planet into a sun. However, when they destroyed the gas giant the humans unintentionally massacred the previously unknown residents, numerous Hydrogues. The unwittingly genocide has since led to a solar war never seen on this scale befoe aimed at the Terran Hanseatic League as the Hydrogues keep the pressure on their foe.
The Hydrogues see an opportunity to rid themselves of a more dangerous enemy to their existence than the humans. They feel they can finally eradicate their ancient foe, the Verdani, an interconnected, semi-sentient Worldforest. Meanwhile the Earth Defense Forces must also deal with another enemy not as blatant as the Hydrogues; the Klikiss robots reprogram "compies" into human exterminating machines. On the positive side, contact with other sentient beings may lead to a needed ally or two, with both of these species apparently caught in the middle of the increasingly nasty solar hostilities.
The action is packed and the cast includes a “compy” fully developed, but what makes this sequel in the “Saga of Seven Suns” so good is the deep look at the causes of war. The story line never loses sight of its theme even while insuring plenty of adventure without preaching. The non-human species appear real, which makes the annihilation threats stronger, generating an even more powerful military science fiction novel that readers will appreciate for its insight inside a terse thriller.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner