Earth has been a scarred ruin for three decades, its scattered people struggling to survive amid the poisoned and radioactive wreckage of the final war between its despotic superpowers. While the people of Earth struggle to survive, out on the frontier, on a thousand worlds, mankind thrives and grows, building new civilizations and looking boldly to the future. But man has never been able to live in peace, and even Earth's sad fate has failed to slow the call to war. Most of the colonies lack the industry and economic power to sustain their own armies and navies, and they look to the mercenaries of the Great Companies for aid in time of war. These futuristic condottiere contract themselves to the highest bidder, and the mightiest strike fear into the hearts of all who oppose them.
Darius Cain is the leader of the Black Eagles, the most renowned of all the companies. A military genius, he has led his undefeated warriors from victory to victory. The Eagles command the highest rates of any of the companies, and leaders bankrupt worlds to pay their price. But amid the ruins of Earth and on planets all across occupied space there are signs of a greater darkness, a force working in the shadows, waiting for the right moment to strike, to launch a final war to reduce all mankind to slavery. As Cain slowly uncovers the truth, he must forge an alliance among old enemies, the other companies his men have fought for years...and the twin brother he hasn't seen in a decade. The Crimson Worlds are about to explode into a war that may be mankind's last.
©2015 Jay Allan Books Inc. (P)2015 Audible, Inc.
This was my first listen of the Crimson Worlds series, and I am only sorry I listened to this first instead of the previous books.
Narration was brilliant, as always, with Mark Boyett.
It was one of those books which was hard to put down. However, my reason for only 4 stars overall was the repetition. Less repetition, please.
Apart from that, this is a not to be missed book, in my opinion.
"The next generation of the Crimson Worlds"
Another great book by J Allan. This book is the continuation of the fall, which is the last book of the Crimson world series. The story takes place 17 and 33 years after the fall and centers on the legendary general Eric Cain's two sons who have both risen to power but on opposite sides of politics and public opinion. Darius Cain is the leader of the mercenary army called the Black Eagles who contract their services out to the rich across the human colony worlds, resolving conflicts with extreme prejudice. Elias Cain is the leader of the planetary police enforcement agency. Elias enforces governmental planetary law with a strict blind justice approach. The two estranged brothers both face an unknown enemy that threatens both of their livelihoods and the existence of mankind. A great start to a new series.
"A good story and it keeps you coming back for more"
Good story a little hard to follow but when you get the idea the story line becomes like a item you can't quite put down.
"Undertones of authoritarianism without action"
This is the first book in the entire series I've read and I didn't know there were other books in the series when I picked it up.
As a military scifi, I was expecting a bunch of good old mindless action. That's not what I got.
Instead, I got a bunch of subplots and political twists with minimal action. There were a multitude of scenes that were only connected much later in the book. Each scene lasted long enough for me to start to like the characters, and then those characters went away for several chapters. A new scene would start, and it's as if I was starting an entirely new story - seemingly unconnected to anything else in the book. The story would progress enough for me to start to like these new characters, and then a new scene would start with conpletey new characters seemingly unrelated to any of the other stories told so far. The timeline jumped back and forth from present day to 33 years ago to 15 years ago and back again with each new chapter. It took a while to figure out what was going on, especially since a couple of the main characters have the same name (it wasn't until about a third of the way into the book that it was revealed that the characters with the same name were related).
Outside of all of this, there was a strong undertone of Authoritarianism. The author seems to love the military while simultaneously hating the government - despite the fact that militaries are a part of the government. He gets around this by having the best military force in the galaxy be a mercenary unit. All the strict discipline and mindless killing with none of the government to slow them down.
Every primary character had a deep love and respect for dictatorships. This was flat out said several times. Any government or organization that wasn't ruled by an iron fist of a dictator was utterly destroyed. All politicians were corrupt and incompetent - unless they were a politician who supported dictatorships. Any civilian who happened to live in a world that was destroyed deserved what they got for daring to live in a democracy. They voted in the corrupt politicians so they deserved the death that reigned down on them by the mercenary companies (who can't be blamed for the killing they do, because they're just doing their jobs - blame the people who hired them).
It wouldn't have been so bad if there was some decent character depth or some good action scenes. But even the action scenes (as minimal as they were) were lacking in emotional depth or raw description. Scenes were described in an almost clinical manner, leaving one with an understanding of how a battle occurred, by absolutely no emotional attachment to any of it.
I think the worst of it was that I kept thinking everything would soon pull together, it's just a little bit more for the story to really pick up. And then it ended.
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