Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Author Roundtable and Destroyermen Review

Just one review this week at SFFWorld from yours truly, but before that, I'd like to link to thread topic in the forums - Authors of the Roundtable: Jon Sprunk, Peter Orullian & Wayne Batson. Jon Sprunk recently released his second novel, Shadow's Lure; Peter Orullian (whom I previously interviewed) recently released his debut novel - The Unremembered; and Wayne Batson recently released his first novel targeted at an adult audience - Sword in the Stars. This is the first of a few planned author roundtable discussions at SFFWorld, all masterminded by KatG.

On to my review, which is of the fourth book of an ongoing series. The book under review serves as a break from the previous three books, as a sort of second stage of stories in Taylor Anderson's Destroyermen milieu. The fourth book is Distant Thunders and here's the standard blurb, which follows the cover shot.

The morality of an ongoing war comes into play and Anderson does a good job of presenting both sides of the argument, for lack of a better word. The Grik are an unrelenting foe, and although it seems they’ve modified their tactics and held back rather than come immediately for another attack, the threat is ever looming. Reddy and the crew have to contend with the potential threat and how to permanently eliminate that thread while not compromising some of their moral codes with the potential introduction of chemical warfare. Furthermore, the spies he finds in his midst from the New Briton faction bring up the question of what to do with such people especially since Reddy’s people are essentially forming a new country and civilization. In short, Anderson’s overall narrative for the series is evolving in logical and believable ways.

All that having been said, I did have some problems with the cohesiveness of the novel. It held my attention somewhat less than previous volumes as some of the exposition felt overwrought. Though Anderson closed out a trilogy and story-arc with the previous volume, he left the door open for more stories but Distant Thunders felt as if it was stretched from a half book into a full novel. Though I haven’t read the fifth book Rising Tides yet, I get the feeling that, based on the fourth book, two books could possibly be edited into one more tightly woven narrative.
Full review here.

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