Friday, May 30, 2014

Review::Shadow of Freedom(Honor Harrington series #14) by David Weber (or #18- or Honorverse #5)

Shadow of Freedom (Honorverse, #5)Shadow of Freedom by David Weber

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Shadow of Freedom(Honor Harrington series #14) by David Weber

This is the 14th installment (And by some indicators its book 18) on my list but in all truth this is not an Honor Harrington novel. This is a Vice Admiral Gold Peak Michelle Henke novel. And why not, it's about time she got her own novel.

The odd thing is the cover in amazon says A New Honor Harrington Novel and my copy says A New Honorverse Novel. I think mine is the mass market edition But I'm not sure and its a 6 by 9 paper back.

I enjoyed this book and 'David Weber' gives us a new side to the novels by starting out with some rebel forces on some Solarian Protectorates. There are a handful of new characters being introduced who are pretty interesting and some more political intrigue. Just when you though you had a handle of all the things going on in the Honorverse David throws another wrench in the works.

Manticore is being misrepresented as supporting the rebels and the people doing the job are so far delivering the goods, but will that remain the standard and what will happen to Manticore's credibility with these people when everything goes south.

One thing right away that I have a big quibble about is that chapter six in this book is verbatim the same chapter as chapter four of the previous book. Yes that ties things in nicely and even tells you that we are back in time a bit and all; but really: the same pages from one book dropped into the next.

The story with Anton Zilwiki and Victor Cachat and Yana and their escape from disaster has spanned the last three books so it's no surprise it shows up here. So now that we have established the time line of this story we should be mindful that this is the sixth chapter. And the one chapter before when Michelle shows up is a bit ambiguous toward identifying the timeline.

This book can actually stand alone which might reinforce the notion of recycling chapters. I think if someone wanted to jump into the series currently without reading all the rest this might be a great point to do that. Honor Harrington only has honorable mentions so it's pretty much a Gold Peak novel.

Michelle is coming into her own as a strategist and the hardware seems a quite a bit better than what Honor started with; a long time back. The one problem is that this makes the battles with the Manticoran Navy quite one sided most of the way through the book.

The style of writing in this book is quite different and somewhat subdued compared to the previous and if I were inclined to conspiracy theories I'd suggest that David might have only had part of a hand in the creation of this story.

Still with about half the number of pages that previous recent novels have had this is a good standout novel on it's own and I think I could grow to like Michelle Henke as much as I do Honor.

Great Procedural and military and political suspense SSF for the Usual Fans.

J.L. Dobias

View all my reviews

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