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Book Title: Mutineer|
ISBN 13: 9780441011421
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 782 KB
City - Country: No data
The author of the book: Mike Shepherd
Date of issue: January 27th 2004
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Reader ratings: 5.9
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I wanted very much for this to be better than it was. But while it was not bad, neither was it particularly good. It's a Big Mac of a space opera, a perfectly average, standard, processed serving delivering a pleasant if unexceptional taste but no nutritional value. Mike Shepherd seems to be trying to imitate David Weber or Lois McMaster Bujold, and since I am not particularly a fan of either of them (I know, sacrilege), this story did little for me. It was entertaining enough for the time I spent listening to it, but I don't really care about Kris Longknife and her future military career and whatever political shenanigans will continue through the next few books, nor was I even lured by the promise of the aliens repeatedly mentioned in this book but never seen.
Kris Longknife is a daughter of privilege in this far future where Earth is a corrupt, decadent old world at the center of a union spanning hundreds of colony worlds. Her father is the Prime Minister of Wardhaven, and he's been a cold, political creature since Kris's little brother was killed following a botched kidnapping when she was ten. Kris, following years of guilt and a bit of teenage alcoholism, was inspired by her war-hero grandfather to join the Navy, much to her parents' horror.
In the first part of the book, we are introduced to Kris as a boot Ensign in charge of a bunch of space marines who are on a rescue mission to save a little girl who's been kidnapped by terrorists. Of course this dredges up all of Kris's issues, and already she was trying me, because the whole time it was "OH, the angst! I'm coming, Tommy! I won't let this little girl die like you did! Oh, how can I focus on the job when I keep remembering my dead little brother angst!angst!angst!"
I'm sure something like that will haunt you for your entire life, but it happened when she was a kid, and now she's an adult and a naval officer. One would think she'd have developed some coping skills by now. But saving the little girl was clearly meant to be the point where she finally is able to put her brother to rest.
Then we get more family background, Kris takes a lot of crap from fellow officers because of course she's one of "those Longknives" and everyone knows she's a rich girl who decided to join the military for whatever reason. She is assigned to a humanitarian mission on a nearly-abandoned colony world where people are starving and facing floods and plagues, and since she's so exceptional, she manages to whip the green, bottom-of-the-barrel unit she's assigned to into kick-ass troops who beat off bandits and save the starving farmers, etc.
In the meantime, there's some kind of plot where political enemies of her family are trying to set her up to be killed, which introduces the main bad guys and a dubious romantic interest for future books.
The "mutiny" of the book's title does not take place until nearly the end of the book, and like all the things Kris does, it's an act that requires a certain amount of bravery and competence, but no hard moral choices — throughout the book, the reader is never left in doubt that Kris is absolutely doing the right thing and anyone who opposes her is wrong.
If you really like military SF and female protagonists, this may be worth checking out, but I'm unlikely to pick up the rest of the series unless I'm starved for something better.
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Read information about the authorA pseudonym used by Mike Moscoe.
Mike was born in the Philadelphia Navy Yard Hospital -- and left that town at the age of three days for reasons he does not presently recall. But they had to draft him to get him back there. He missed very little of the rest of the country. Growing up Navy, he lived about everywhere you could park an aircraft carrier.
Mike was one of those college students who didn't have to worry about finding a job after graduation. In 1968, his Uncle Sam made him an offer he couldn't refuse. Two days into boot camp, the Army was wondering if they might not have been a bit hasty. Mike ended the day in the Intensive Care Unit of the local Army hospital. Despite most of Mike’s personal war stories being limited to "How I flunked boot camp," he can still write a rollicking good military SF yarns.
Mike didn’t survive all that long as a cab driver (he got lost) or bartender (he made the drinks too strong) but he figured he could at least work for the Navy Department as a budget analyst. Until he spent the whole day trying to balance the barracks accounts for paint. Finally, about quitting time, a grinning senior analyst took him aside and let him in on the secret. They'd hidden the money for refitting a battleship in that little account. Slowly it dawned on Mike that there were a few things about the Navy that even a kid who grew up in it would never understand.
Over the next twenty years, Mike branched out into other genres, including instruction memos, policies, performance standards and even a few labor contracts. All of those, you may notice, lack a certain something. Dialogue ... those things in quotes. In `87, Mike’s big break came. He landed on a two year special project to build a digital map showing where the trees, rivers, roads, Spotted Owls and other critters were in western Oregon. The list went on and on with no end in sight and two years became ten.
Since there was no writing involved in his new day job, Mike had to do something to get the words out. He signed up for a writing class at Clark Community College and proudly turned in a story ... Star Wars shoots down the second coming of Christ.
Two years later, Analog bought "Summer Hopes, Winter Dreams" for the March, 1991 issue. Four years later he sold his first novel. In the ten years since then, Mike’s turned in twelve novels and is researching the next three.
Mike's love for Science Fiction started when he picked up "Rocket Ship Galileo" in the fifth grade, and then proceeded to read every book in the library with a rocket sticker on its spine.
Mike digs for his stories among people and change. Through his interest in history, he has traces the transformations that make us what we are today. Science launches us forward into an ever changing universe. Once upon a time, the only changes in peoples lives came with the turning of the seasons and the growing wrinkles on their brows. Today, science drives most of the changes in our daily lives. Still, we can't avoid the pressure of our own awakening hormones or hardening arteries. Mike is happiest when his stories are speeding across thin ice, balanced on the edge of two sharp blades, one anciently human, the other as new as tomorrow's research.
Trained in International Relations and history, salary administration and bargaining, theology and counseling, Mike is having a ball writing about Kris Longknife ... coming of age while the world her grand parents built threatens to crash down around her ears. These are books I think you’ll love ... and my granddaughter and grandsons too!
Mike lives in Vancouver, Washington, with his wife Ellen, his mother-in-law and any visiting grandkids. He enjoys reading, writing, watching grand-children for story ideas and upgrading his computer -- all are never ending.
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