The Scoundrel Worlds Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Scoundrel Worlds

Roc, August 2003, 6.99, 352 pp.
ISBN 04514599366

Trimalchio IV is the home base of Star Risk, Ltd., a mercenary outfit headed by Friedrich Von Baldur that takes on unusual cases and political hot potatoes. Von Baldur went AWOL from the military arm of the Alliance to escape his court martial. Other members of the group include Jasmine King (an operative who might be a robot), Grok (a Chewbacca looking alien), and Riss (who quit the Allied Service after squaring off with her lecherous commanding officer).
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The former premier of the Planet Dampier hires the team to free an intelligence officer accused of selling state secrets to the Torguth homeworld. Both Dampier and Torguth claim the Belfort worlds even though the former currently controls them. The ex-premier believes that there is still a highly placed mole in the government and he wants Star Risk to catch the culprit. Once they arrive on Dampier they are immediately caught up in the politics and espionage shenanigans of the planet and must hire mercenaries to guard their own backs if they want to live to free an innocent man and catch the traitor.

The members of Star Risk are a lovable bunch of misfits who use self-deprecating humor to keep from taking themselves too seriously. Though some supporting items seem familiar such as the skyball game they play seems Harry Potter like and Grok the Chewbacca intellect, these elements are actually fresh and different once the reader clears the surface. The world of Dampier is a treacherous place, particularly suited to the battle-hardened mercenaries who meet force with even more force. Chris Bunch is one of the top authors of military space operas.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of The Scoundrel Worlds

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 10%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% Tone of book    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Spying & Investigations    -   Yes What is main char. doing?    -   unraveling a conspiracy    -   finding a spy/saboteur Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   business executive Age:    -   40's-50's


A substantial portion of this book takes place on a non-Earth planetary body:    -   humans in a futuristic society Planet outside solar system?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   a moderate amount of scientific explanation How much dialogue?    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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Chris Bunch Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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