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4,4 von 5 Sternen
5,0 von 5 SternenExciting Space Opera Action
3. November 2015 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle AusgabeVerifizierter Kauf
This is officially my new favorite book of the year. The main characters all have believable and complex motivations. The obstacles and encounters on the way to the planet that the titular brother is on, and the actions of the crime boss who is holding the brother for ransom all serve to ratchet up the tension and make the story more interesting.
The action both space and ground, is exciting and serves to move the plot forward. The space naval action is completely believable, something which is not always the case, and while I lack experience in ground combat, nothing broke my willing suspension of disbelief.
The story's universe is well fleshed out and gives the impression of being full of stories. Some of the secondary characters are obviously "heroes of another story" and there are numerous sequel hooks and possibilities.
The solo efforts of authors whose collaborative work I've enjoyed often disappoint. Not this time.
Mike Kupari turns in a polished effort as his first solo novel. Not a single false note.
The space opera setting is richly imagined with a bare minimum of handwavium and McGuffinite. The design of the primary spacecraft makes it clear Mr. Kupari has done his physics homework, and he gives a tuckerized tip of the hat to Winchell Chung and Chung's excellent "Atomic Rockets" science-of-SF website.
The characters are competently drawn, and occasionally surprising. The plot moves along at a good pace, and is complex but clearly drawn. There are plot threads that never fully develop, but hint at things to come. I'm hoping those lead to further installments. (Sequels, please!)
Character deaths are sudden and unpredictable when they happen, but I suspect that's the way actual combat deaths seem to the others involved, and Mr. Kupari's own combat experience is shining through.
The story takes place during a third wave of interstellar human expansion and colonization, after a devastating war and economic/social collapse. This has the dramatic utility of high technology as a given, but in an environment with considerable disorder and gray/black markets in areas distant from (or ignored by) the large interstellar governments. If you ever enjoyed playing "Traveller" or watching "Firefly", you'll probably like this book.
Some may find the sympathetic and positive depiction of privateers and mercenaries jarring, but think 18th century instead of 21st: these men and women risk their lives to provide security, defense, and enforcement of law and contracts in places where governments can't (or won't).
Kupari's characters are handsomely compensated for that risk, but they're also on their own. No government backs them up. If they break the law and get caught, they cannot hide behind "sovereign immunity". They go to prison. If they break a contract or betray an employer, even worse: they become unemployable pariahs, or they're dead.
On a lawless frontier, they make more convincing "good guys" than the smugglers, drug-dealers, and warlords that so often inhabit the wilds.
Mike does an excellent job of worldbuilding, which is always part of the trick of doing multiple stories. As the old joke about Architects vs. Doctors goes, "The doctor gets to bury his mistakes... the Architect can only plant vines..."
If you do a poor job of worldbuilding, it gets more and more glaring as you write more stories set in it. The assumptions and conflicts, the flaws and missed components start to stand out.
But Mike has done a very good job, recommend both this and its sequel. Hope to see more in the series.
4,0 von 5 SternenMothers don't let your daughters grow up to be starship captians
9. April 2019 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle AusgabeVerifizierter Kauf
When Catherine Blackwood was denied inheriting the family business in favor of her brother, she joined the navy. When she was denied command due to being female, she left her home world to make her way in the universe. Now her family has sent for her because they need her to rescue her brother from a hell hole at the end of known space where he is being held hostage. It will be a long journey through system barely short of being hostile. She will have to hire mercenaries to protect her crew and turn a young girl into a sailor and use them find her brother and extract him alive. – lots of back story to this tale. I am going to buy the second book in the series.
4,0 von 5 SternenFun adventure and great new story universe.
4. Januar 2016 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
This is a fun adventure that introduces an interesting story universe. Kupari, unsurprisingly, portrays military team interactions, terminology and firefights, as well as what it's like to leave family behind, exceptionally well. The world building likely suffers from there being too many different worlds described during the story though all the different worlds and the vast breadth of the galactic civilization has got to be considered a plus . The emotional build up and pay off over the course of the story could have been stronger. Kupari also managed to do this "thing" at the beginning... less as the story progressed... that I find exceptionally irritating although I see it *often* and it seems to be standard prose these days. Most readers probably won't notice at all. That is inserting what feels like an "aside" every alternate paragraph to explain what the characters are talking about or doing. As a reader I feel those take me out of the immediate story. I think that much of those mini-explanations could have been removed with no loss of understanding what was going on. Bottom line, though, the rest of it was good enough that it didn't really matter. I'm looking forward to more books from Kupari set in this story-world. This one was definitely worth my time and I look forward to seeing Kupari as an author.