Alliance (Linesman, #2)

By S.K. Dunstall

Rating: 4 stars

Ean Lambert is trying hard to unravel the mysteries of the lines, now that he’s discovered that they’re actually sentient, and the New Alliance is trying hard to to keep their alliance together and find and train crew for the fleet of new alien ships that Lambert uncovered at the end of Linesman. Into this comes Captain Selma Kari Wang, broken and grieving, who is thrust, unwilling, into the limelight and given command of one of the new ships.

Although Linesman was pretty political, this book feels like it turns that up to eleven (no pun intended). Ean has to work through layers of politics and politicians trying to keep the fragile New Alliance happy while also trying to help determine a threat that wants to destroy everything they have built. While politicking can be fun, I felt a bit lost at times, trying to keep up with who was allied to whom at the moment and who’s double-crossing who. The mysterious enemy was more interesting to me, as was the slow rehabilitation of Captain Kari Wang. She starts of as a broken woman (the link between a captain and their line ship is very strong) as the only survivor after her ship is destroyed but we see the strength in her, and it’s nice to see her develop as a character.

The major flaw for me in this book was that the ending was very low-key. I guess that’s middle-book syndrome all over, but it felt like there were lots of plot hooks flapping around without a hugely satisfying resolution. Still, that’s all the more reason to move straight on to volume three.

Book details

ISBN: 9780425279533
Publisher: Ace
Year of publication: 2016

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