The Lost Fleet: Victorious
Ace, Apr 27 2010, $7.99
In the far distant future, the Alliance and Syndicated worlds have been at war for over a century. Captain John “Black Jack” Geary was in cryogenic sleep for almost that long. Since his fleet successfully evacuated from the system where the Syndicates set a trap, he is regarded as a hero by a war weary public where millions would support him if he chose to be a dictator with the military backing him up. He accepts the post of fleet admiral even though the Ruling Council fears Black Jack.
He asks the authorities that promoted him to give him permission to negotiate with the Syndics, who have lost much of their ships and military; they are in horrific shape. Granted the authority, when he arrives on the home space station of the Syndics, he did not expect the fight of his life. If he wins, they still have a common enemy; an alien race on the other side of the Syndicate space whose strategic plan is to take control of this sector and ultimately the Alliance too. Geary leads a counter insurgence to prevent this Machiavellian scheme from occurring, but he will need Syndic cooperation to succeed.
This is the sixth book in the Black Jack military space opera series and fans of the saga will relish the tale as am entertaining twist occurs. The hero is a terrific leader who understands military and political strategy but also understands he sends soldiers to their death while fat cat council leaders have a different agenda than those on the front line. Readers will enjoy Jack Campbell’s latest Lost Fleet science fiction thriller because like President Eisenhower the hero has a deep regard for life even with his first hand field knowledge that many of his troops will never go home. Harriet Klausner
Dead in the Family
Ace, May 4 2010, $25.95
Sookie Stackhouse, like many of Bon Temps, Louisiana residents, remains in shock as much from the torture she received as from the grief she feels following the fae war that left so many Dead and Gone. Among those who died is Sookie’s fairy cousin, Claudine. Much of the surviving Faes went home.
Meanwhile the late Claudine’s triplet Claude asks Sookie if he can move in with her; she unenthusiastically agrees. The Feds want better control of the paranormal two-nature Werewolf packs with designated registries. This upsets the Were population that fears hunting season. Sookie’s lover vampire Eric Northman has problems when his creator the newly named Vampire King Appius Livius Ocella accompanied by Alexei Romanov arrives without warning, an invitation or an explanation,
Dead in the family is a superb entry in the Sookie saga albeit a bit less action (and deaths) than the previous thriller. The story line focuses on what is a modern paranormal extended family and how politics by those claiming the righteous right of patriotism to intrude within the family under the guise of. security. Fans will enjoy this thought provoking urban fantasy as Sookie has little time to heal. Harriet Klausner
St. Martin’s, Mar 30 2010, $7.99
Unnatural States of America NSA chief David Cassius the vampire yanked FBI profiler Jace Valchek from her United States of America realm to his to hunt for a human serial killer who murdered vampires and werewolves (See Dying Bites). Jace partnered with Charlie Aleph the Golem, still works for David as she agrees to remain here until she ends the reign of terror of Aristotle Stoker.
NSA employee vampire Gretchen Petra’s significant other Saladin Aquitaine was magically fried. His garb was that of the DC comic book character The Flash though superhero comics are banned in this USA. Part of the Bravo Brigade, Saladin is the first killed, but other comic book look alikes follow. Jace and Charlie have to switch gear to prevent another serial killer; this time acting like a super-villain.
The second Bloodhound Files is a spectacular alternative urban fantasy police procedural. The action-packed story line soars from the opening scene and never slows down for even a respite as Jace investigates a comic book serial killer. Faster than a speeding bullet with a tongue in cheek feel that will remind readers of Jasper Fforde's works, fans will marvel over this delightfully charming tale.