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Summary

The destruction of the secret archive of the Royal Order of Keepers on Mars has left Damien Montgomery, Hand of the Mage-King, with his enemies defeated, his lover dead - and his questions unanswered.

When he seeks out the remaining Keepers for answers, he discovers only violence and death in their strongholds. Someone else is hunting down the survivors to make sure they never answer Damien's questions - or anyone else's.

As a wave of murder sweeps Mars and the consequences of the Keepers' conspiracy sink home, Damien is summoned before the Council of the Protectorate to answer for the deaths of two other Hands. In the political heart of the Protectorate of Mars, he finds he may be forced to choose between honoring the oaths he swore and preserving the survival of the Protectorate itself.

©2017 Glynn Stewart (P)2017 Tantor

What listeners say about Judgment of Mars

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5 star's 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

Great book I highly recommend listening to the book series 👍 i am looking forward to the next book🙂

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excellent conclusion to the series.

another excellent story in this series. good narrator even though he was grim but still good.
hopefully this is the last one but I do hope there is more.

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getting more action

the past book has lacked excitement but this one makes up for it and can't wait for the next

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  • Ed
  • 02-09-17

Great book, can't wait for the next installment

The whole series is great. I look forward to each new installment. this book was one of the best.

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good continuation of the series

i think this is a typical middle if series book. it can't stand and you need a for working knowledge of the series, but it dives much deeper into tge world and gives a lot more context to the intrigue behind the scenes.

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Excellent

Another fantastic book and up to Glenn Stuarts usual excellent standards. If you read the other books in this series it will not disappoint. In the fifth book of the series hand Damian Montgomery faces off against several enemies which are no more than knives in the shadows and not even he can come away unscathed this time.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-08-17

I hate omniscient villains

For me there was just too much of the bad guys always getting their way, too much of the good guys being just a little too late, too much of almost knowing the secret. I admit I got annoyed about halfway through and listened to the rest in bits and pieces but I am truly disappointed in the ending - I hate omniscient villains!

I give the title 3 stars because I'm still interested in the plot to give the next one a try. I hope it's a more balanced story.

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  • KLM
  • 03-08-17

First Hand... when is the next book

This book is just as good as the previous ones if not better. Unlike previous books (arguably) this one focuses more on political intrigue but still has the action you would expect. We don't get to find out what the keepers secret is in this book and I'm not quite sure we will ever find out. But I would really like to know what it is. We see more of the Mage King in this book and I quite like him. I am eagerly awaiting the next book can't wait.

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  • Bunty
  • 02-08-17

WOW, ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC!

Wonderful writing and performance. Damian Montgomery, the Hand of Mars, is kept busy trying to find the Keepers but is constantly thwarted by his enemies. With his strength and his mage powers he was able to save so many people from death. I like that the Mage King of Mars appreciates his efforts and loyalty and he was rewarded at the end of this book with a promotion and recognition of his achievements. Glynn Stewart is a talented writer and I hope he will publish the next book in this series ASAP. Jeffrey Kafer performed excellently and I hope he will continue to narrate future books in this series.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 09-05-19

This is the fifth Book in the Starship Mage series

I have listened to this Auditable Book twice now and I still love it . Our main protagonist is everything that I could ever want in a main character. The world building is fantastic the support characters are amazing too . This Author has like four series going on all at once but this series has me HOOKED . I can't wait for more of this series .

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  • Harvey
  • 07-02-19

Great futuristic science fiction.

I enjoy reading and listening to books by Glynn Stewart. Holds my interest while relaxing and driving. The Narrator Jeffery Kafer is gifted with his talent. Holds my interest while I am driving and makes my commute to and from work seem shorter. Great series to read as well as listen.

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  • Troy Bowlin
  • 18-09-21

Damien Montgomery continues to amaze.

I'm a fan of the continuing Starship Mage storyline. Damien continues to unravel the mysteries, shine light in the darkness, and amaze all with his acts bravery, duty, and magic. I would continue to recommend the story to anyone who enjoys a blending of sci-fi and fantasy.

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  • milbrill
  • 23-07-21

Thumbs down! Talk about a nose dive.

The series started out well written, clever and quite enjoyable. Books 1, 2, and 3 were wonderful. However, beginning with book 4 there has been a clear and steady decline in the quality of the storytelling. Frankly, I nearly couldn’t finish, having skipped entire chapters get to see where the story ended up. Infuriatingly ridiculous. Only purchase if you absolutely must know what happens.

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  • Troy Kukulka
  • 14-06-21

A universe of idiots

Glynn Stewart has no business trying to write intrigue. The first few Starship's Mage books were fine as schlocky action sci-fi but the whole Keepers of Oaths and Secrets arc proves how out of his depth Stewart is. Every character is an absolute moron, Damien was never a super genius but his one specialty is teleportation yet somehow he's always late to do anything and whenever someone springs a scheme on him he just shrugs his shoulders and says shucks nothing we can do. Someone last minute adds a traitorous mage to his detail? No back tracking who arranged that just gone and forgotten. Someone on Mars puts a tracker on his car? Well shucks no need to look into that. The book is a complete waste of time, and its infuriating to boot. Nothing new is learned, no character progression occurs it just wastes your time while Stewart does a tour de force of poor plot development.

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  • Andrew
  • 09-06-21

Yet again...raw power for the win

It's a bad habit sign the final conflict of the story is resolved, always, by the raw power of the protagonist. Add that together with the protagonist being pretty bad at their job, failing at every turn to nail down the mystery of the story. Frankly, I think the "good guys" are just dumb at this point. The prior story was filled with "Me rar smash don't care about mysteries!". This one is all "Me no can capture anyone ever." It caps off with the protagonist breaking established rules and having more power than everyone. This last is particularly frustrating because the proper solution would have been "even though the King is displaced, the heir is back at the big magic throne and can intervene, proving the value of the monarchy". Apparently the heir is busy with his love life or something, because that's about all we know about him. However, instead of a responsible monarchy following through on Chekov's Super Throne, or a basic respect for delta-V, we get special protagonist powerz.

I'd avoided this series for a while, mainly because I suspected it would turn into this sort of drek. The first one seemed to circumscribe appropriate limits. The second was clearly a "pivot to series". The third...I probably should have stopped there. I spent most of the fourth wondering why the guy supposed to be investigating stuff preferred to boom things up instead of ask questions about the mystery. Honestly, after the guy wallowing in a conspiracy in his own organization tells a couple hundred people he's going to go get his last chance at a clue, I kinda put this in the "too dumb to live" category.

Also, anti-matter is stupidly energetic. The author should stop talking about conjuring GRAMS of antimatter into existence if he doesn't know it's like saying a 100 megaton bomb.

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  • Anonymous_Reviewer
  • 17-07-20

The Author Earned ONE Book Like This...

I have really enjoyed this series so far, but I did NOT enjoy this book. With the prior books in the series Glynn Stewart has earned my trust enough for ONE book in the series like this. Throughout the entire book the main character is always a step behind the bad guys. He keeps getting beaten up (figuratively and literally at times), and he can't get a "win" to save his life. You keep expecting him to finally have a "win" throughout this book, but it NEVER happens (the ending is only a half win, and that is being generous). Part of the reason I read sci-fi books like this is for a break from how depressing the real world can be, and so this book wasn't very helpful with that.

I have a few problems with this book:
1. The statistical improbability of so many bad things happening to the main character, or things the main character can't stop. Yes, the bad guys have a lot of knowledge that the good guys don't which gives them an advantage, but how many times can you show up a few minutes too late. The one that pushed me over the top was when the "last person who knew the truth" (who the bad guys didn't even know existed) died as a result of some completely unrelated politicians goals who just so happened to attack the main character at the meeting giving the other bad guys an opportunity to kill the "last person who knew the truth."
2. The main character and his helpers acted incredibly stupid during certain aspects of the investigation. I understand taking the first lead or two of an investigation casually, but once those leads fall apart because your enemy is clearly ahead of you and has infiltrated your government I would expect you to by much more careful after that. There were multiple times throughout the book during an action scene when the main character would walk into a room for a fight (he knew he was going into), but then he would let someone he wanted to protect die before he could act. I can imagine that you might be shocked or surprised into hesitating once, but not in multiple fights against the same enemy. When you go into a fight when you have the element of surprise (and the amount of power the MC has), and your enemy has time to see you and act before you can that is a bit hard to stomach. After I was too late a number of times to save someone I think I would stop leaning towards hesitation and instead lean towards acting too quickly. In other words, after enough stuff happens you would expect the main character to start "always double tapping" (to quote Zombieland), and assuming the worst about the enemy before the fight starts.
3. Honestly, this book felt a bit like emotional manipulation. The author gets your hopes up, then dashes them, gets them up, dashes them, and it continued until the end of the book. Modern culture seems to think this makes books and movies good by being "unpredictable" (Game of Thrones did this kind of emotional roller-coaster all the time, and as a result I was surprised people liked it so much). I do not enjoy this kind of emotional manipulation.
4. ******Spoiler******** The main character gets crippled at the end of the book limiting his power in the future. ******Spoiler******** Part of what made this books series fun was how intelligent and overpowered the main character was. I'm concerned the author will fall into the trap of many authors who feel they have to "nerf" an overpowered main character. I have seen it in a number of books (For example, in the Sword of Truth Series, every book creates a reason Richard can't use his gift). I haven't read past this book so I don't know how much the author will "nerf" the main character in the future, or if it will be permanent. So, while this is a concern, I don't know if it is valid or not since I have not read the next books.

HOWEVER, I have really enjoyed this book series so far, and I believe Glynn Stewart is an excellent author. I can also acknowledge that the main character has to go through some adversity to grow, and characters who don't ever struggle aren't interesting. With the prior books in the series Glynn Stewart has earned my trust enough for one book in the series like this. So, I will count this entire book as adversity for the sake of character development. I'm planning to read the next books, but I really hope the author lets the main character have a "win" occasionally in the future books. I don't like feeling more depressed after reading a sci-fi book then when I started reading it.