At heart, this is the tale of a Mesan (think: slavers) attack on Torch (think: former slave colony) using the remnants of the Peep (read: Soviet Union hardcore) fleet as a proxy. There’s a story thread with Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki (two of my favorite characters in this–or any–story) doing some (effective and decidedly brutal) field work, and a family rescued from a dismal-but-interesting life on a largely abandoned space station/resort. This leaves out a host of complications we’ve been watching since co-author Eric Flint joined the party; we can see a bigger war developing, but perhaps Cachat and Zilwicki have set it back a bit.
This story heavily overlaps both At All Costs and Storm from the Shadows in the Honorverse timeframe, and has scenes in common with both. A partial cost is that the first half of the book occasionally seems like a rehash. And, as has become common in this series, there’s probably too much going on.
That said, I really like this book, and I suspect it actually coheres as a stand-alone novel.
This review was originally published on LibraryThing.