Today's book review is Torch of Freedom by David Weber and Eric Flint.
This is part of the ongoing Honorverse series. You do NOT want to try to start with this book. The episode in this book is more complete than the last couple have been.
I was having a conversation at a con recently with someone who knows Weber and that person said that Weber's family life has severely disrupted his writing career. It really shows in this book; large parts of it really feel like it was a first draft cranked out on deadline. There are many long passages which (despite being nominally presented as dialog) are exposition, not just of what's going on (which is complicated enough), but of what one particular set of players (with imperfect information) thinks is going on. There are many, many references to events and characters in other books which aren't actually explained. Some of them I can remember, but some I can't. We do learn a little more about what's going on with the big bad guys in the Honorverse series. We do meet some new characters for this book which are interesting. There is some good adventure; the excitement that made the Honor Harrington series is still there in places. But there are large parts of the text that feel rough and contrived, and when we get to the end, we realize that, while we have advanced the series a little bit, Manticore is still in the middle of a whole lot of crises and we've only partially established one part of solving one of them.
5 out of 10.
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