Three stars, three worlds, three civilizations...one massive war. In a triple star system, not all planets are equal. When the Demon Star swings closest in her orbit, the Insectoids always invade. They raid the inner worlds with grim regularity, riding hordes of stealth ships in ever-growing waves. Their mission is to destroy all opposition - alien, human, or otherwise.
Cody Riggs, lost among an endless chain of interstellar rings, flies his task force of starships into the middle of an eternal struggle for survival between three civilizations. He takes it upon himself to help the more peaceful worlds, but only manages to bring disaster to all humanity. Demon Star is the twelfth book of the Star Force series, a novel of military science fiction by best-selling authors B. V. Larson and David VanDyke.
©2015 Fireball Press (P)2015 Audible, Inc.
Well, I've finally reached the end of the main Star Force series of books
with the twelfth title, Demon Star. As with pretty much all the books in the
series, this one continues right on from the previous which sees our hapless
hero arrive in a star system with three races which are all very different
from each other.
In a way, this story is less satisfying than the previous one and for
reasons I cannot put my finger on precisely. I don't know if the general
undertone of the narrative was a little different in subtle ways perhaps due to
a greater majority of the writing work being handed over to David Van Dyke
now collaborating on the third book with B V. Larson or perhaps some other
reason. Maybe it was just my personal impression that there was something
not quite up to the standards seen before or maybe it was just a getting
used to Larson's exciting prose and plot that I had acclimatised to and
therefore felt I needed more. Either way, Demon Star didn't quite work as
well for me as the previous two Cody Riggs Star Force books.
In my previous reviews of the Cody Riggs stories I had been dubious of how
the character had been written in that he seemed far too clever considering
his inexperience and youth. He would often seem to exhibit wisdom well
beyond his years as a matter of course in the most stressful of situations
and come up with the right decision pretty much all the time it mattered. I
had critiqued this character trait in the other two books but rather
strangely I found that in Demon Star almost the reverse was now the case.
Some clearly odd and ill judged decisions were made often against the advice
of others which placed his crew into situations that could well have been
easily avoided. Had this character flaw and inexperience been part of the
first Cody Riggs story, Outcast, then it would have actually worked much
better as it would have been far more realistic for a young freshly
commissioned Ensign to be making such errors of judgement.
On the positive, Larson has always excelled at his depiction of alien life
and comes up with clever and different traits for the various species
encountered in his books and we have three of them feature in this story.
However, I would have liked it if Larson had developed the "Demons" a little
more and gave us more insight into their motives and mindset. I felt there
was a lot left unexplained as to why they did what they did and there
appeared to be a hint at more to them given the fact they attacked the other
two species on an annual basis and took lots of prisoners during the attack
depicted in the story. I think an opportunity missed and something that
would have been of great interest and added to the fabric of the story. We
do see a prisoner taken and interrogated but other than a brief scene
depicting this we hear nothing else of this captured alien at all thereafter
which I feel was another wasted opportunity. In addition, the whale aliens
described sound almost exactly the same in their appearance as those
described on the water moon where Valliant's crew hid during Outcast as I
recall and yet nothing was mentioned of this. This and other aspects to this
story lead me to conclude that Demon Star was much less Larson lead or that
it was a somewhat hurried project by the two writers.
Still, in the Larson style, the combat scenes are well written and quick
paced in a way that it seems clearly only Larson can write and this helps
keep Demon Star moving nicely. Cody Riggs eventually gets his man in terms
of the long running thread throughout the trio of Cody Riggs stories that is
a "Who done it." sub-plot. The person responsible had been on my short list
from the outset actually but the true nature of this individual and the
extent to which their influence had spread like a cancer was a real surprise
to me so hats off to the authors for pulling this off so well.
We are left with a tantalising possible continuation to the Cody Riggs story
but as yet, Larson has not chosen to go down this route - or not that I have
yet come across. There are some spin-off or stand alone stories set in the
Star Force universe but nothing I've seen so far to extend the series. The
idea we are left with for the next possible chapter in Cody Rig's
adventures would make for very interesting reading I'm sure.
A few anomalies I found in this book spring to mind. A clear error was made in the writing when 40 light years was written when it should have clearly been 40 light hours based on the context of the distances within the star system. Also, I was rather confused by a statement at the start of this book that seemed to suggest that Hanson was not the XO or first officer despite him being promoted to that rank at the end of the previous story. However, he appears to be firmly in the role of XO thereafter so perhaps this was just me being confused in some way. For some reason the Valliant's AI voice is now female where as before it was always rendered as clearly male in the previous stories. This last oddity may be explained by the fact that it was alluded to that the ships AI was exhibiting learning traits and more personality but then why not clearly state that it had chosen a female voice now as part of that evolution?
I also found this book to feature more obvious audio editing than the last in that we can clearly hear distinct differences between the main dialogue track and the inserted edits which is rather clumsy production in my opinion but to be fair, this is just me being my usual nit picking self when it comes to how I review a book.
Despite plenty of action as is usual with Larson novels, I did find Demon Star less enjoyable than the previous two books featuring Cody Riggs. It still stands as a good read and by no means a poor story. Just not one of the best I've read from Larson and in no small part to the sudden rashness shown by the formerly insightful Riggs. Other plot elements were not explored as I've mentioned above which did reduce the depth of the story to my mind so not a five star effort I think in overall terms.
From star force book 1 with kyle rigs and all the way to this latest instalment with his son codi rigs, this series is the best I have listened to by far!
fantastic book great listen always wanting more the stories line makes you want more fantastic
Throughly enjoyed this book. Just like the last 11 books it held my attention throughout. I really hope book 13 comes out real soon and Kyle Riggs comes out of retirement.
fantastic book great listen always wanting more the stories line makes you want more fantastic
Oh how i wish Marvin/2.0 were real... The author has really described in detail and with humour what I've always suspected that form of an artificial construct to be, would. Loved every second of it! Next book B V! No resting on the success of this the latest in a long line of successful books in this series...
I liked the detail in the plot the story line and action and also the Narrator who has narrated all of the previous Star Force books
After struggling to find other good reads I was really pleased to find the author had released this book. I'm not disappointed.
As usual the performance was great but this story did wrap up the story arc very well for me, therefore the first half of the book was good and the second half seemed to setup the next story arc but in a very sloppy way.
However still a good listen.
and another great offering. not too sure about the end. upto 90 percent was fab, then... the final revelation I felt a tad weak. but I can forgive because I love these books
"Riggs 2.0 comes full circle"
The saga that began after book ten of the “Star Force,” series, the beginning of the Cody Riggs odyssey, finally reaches some closure in book twelve, “Demon Star. I found the first part of the series with Cody’s father, Kyles, a more compelling story but Cody’s “Lost in Space” adventure trying to find his way home after inadvertently going through a worm hole and encountering many different alien life forms while trying to find out who tried to murder him a story worth listening to. There are some interesting surprises while questions are answered and the ending leaves the door open for the series to continue.
Mark Boyett is still consistently great as the voice of this series.
"An action-packed Adventure full of story progression"
This action-packed installment was my personal favorite of the series. Fans of the series will enjoy this installment and I found it to be full of action and story progression. Cody Riggs makes mistakes battles aliens all the while bargaining width Marvin The robot for help showing himself to be his father son in true. For my part the authors did a great job with making the story come full circle check it out I think you will enjoy it.
"Worth the wait!"
I wanted to hear this book months ago, but I knew the audio wouldn't be released until November 17th. So I saved a credit and purchased Demon Star that day. I love this book. Really. I've heard all of them, but this one takes the cake. It is rewarding and never has a dull moment.
I think every sci-fi fan should read these books, but even if they start with this one, it's a good place to begin. What a great book. Let's hear it for Cody and Marvin!
Okay, now I'll be waiting for number 13. I hope Larson writes another dozen in the series - at least.
"another great book "
I can't wait to see what happens with Cody Riggs next . dose he get his command and go after the ships .
"Possible end point for the Kyle and Cody Riggs & nano-ship saga"
This is book 12 and still fun and interesting. Of all exploratory/military science fiction not carried by a publisher. This book and the entire series was just amazing. The author starts with some very simple and believable technologies that are quite clearly on the horizon. And takes them to a fun speculative place that is populated by a wide variety of life forms. But what kept things from becoming boring like so much hard sci-fi is that the main characters were vivid and central. They were not just pawns for one mans speculation about an alien or tech scenario. And that along with lovable characters, well painted vicarious experiences from sex to nano injection to tightly drawn battle scenes, that make the reader effortlessly jump from book to book and not get bored. That they have been able to keep things fresh without too much redundancy for this many episodes is a real testament. Anyone who like military or light science speculation with lots of adventure will love these books. They were a genuine delight for me while I was needing the solace of a book, or in this case a well performed book on audio. Every book involves you, gives you a bit to speculate on, and lots to feel vicariously. Everything a well told story should do. I would recommend it to any Sci-fi reader or listener. Well written and terrifically performed.
"Can't wait for the next book in this series!"
Looking forward to the next book in this series. Well written books, That make you glue the headphones to your ears.
"Great story line"
I enjoyed this mates installment in the series. Mark doe his usual great job narrating and his ability to Change his voice and accent to depict the various characters in the story does a fantastic job of bringing them to life. The only thing about the story line that troubled me was that the character Kyle Riggs was not more involved. He appears briefly at the start and finish of the story. Based on his actions in previous novels I find it hard to believe he would stay in retirement and not take any action. I won't say anything more for fear of spoiling the story for others. Having said that if you are a Riggs and Star force fan I recommend this latest installment to you.
Mark Boyette gave a great performance as usual. But the story didn't keep my interest as the previous books had. I know this is a spin off off the original nano ship books, but something is missing. Open for a forth in the series, yes I'll buy that one too.
"Can't buy into it no matter how hard I tried"
yes. Just because I'm into the story though. But the book by itself is a hard sell. The premise of this story is that a your 20 something year old out wits a several thousand year old ancient. I'm in my late 40's and I've rarely if ever met a 20-21 year old with the level of maturity and wit this this character brings to the table. The kid is meticulous and so sure of himself. There is zero character development involving the shortcomings of his age and his personal struggle to make the right choice despite his lack of experience in life and lack of experience in the particular situation. I was constantly dismayed by how the author calls him a 20-21 year old, but acts, thinks as only a 40-50 year old with years of people experience in managing people could bring to the table. For those who are caught up in the book series as I have, you will find the story may have been better left dead. yeah, there are some questions that are answered about things that happened in the first 3 books. But it wasn't worth it. I'm not sure if there is another book in this series, but I know I won't be getting it. I'm done with the series.
The writing was comparable to his other books. But there is a severe lack of development in the characters in this book. The action is great. The surprise ways they get out of the crazy situations is still fun.
The characters seem so alive. I love Mark Boyett voice acting.
let's just say I teared up in this book, not gonna spoil anything. A+ yup
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