Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Book Review: The End of All Things by John Scalzi

The End of All Things
Author: John Scalzi
Series: Old Man's War (Book 6)
Publication: Tor Books; 1st edition (August 11, 2015)

Description: Hugo-award winning author, John Scalzi returns to his best-selling Old Man's War universe with The End of All Things, the direct sequel to 2013's The Human Division

Humans expanded into space...only to find a universe populated with multiple alien species bent on their destruction. Thus was the Colonial Union formed, to help protect us from a hostile universe. The Colonial Union used the Earth and its excess population for colonists and soldiers. It was a good arrangement...for the Colonial Union. Then the Earth said: no more.

Now the Colonial Union is living on borrowed time-a couple of decades at most, before the ranks of the Colonial Defense Forces are depleted and the struggling human colonies are vulnerable to the alien species who have been waiting for the first sign of weakness, to drive humanity to ruin. And there's another problem: A group, lurking in the darkness of space, playing human and alien against each other-and against their own kind -for their own unknown reasons.

In this collapsing universe, CDF Lieutenant Harry Wilson and the Colonial Union diplomats he works with race against the clock to discover who is behind attacks on the Union and on alien races, to seek peace with a suspicious, angry Earth, and keep humanity's union intact...or else risk oblivion, and extinction-and the end of all things.

My Thoughts: THE END OF ALL THINGS is the group of novellas that bring the Old Man's War series to a satisfying conclusion. The first novella tells the story of a human pilot who was captured by the Equilibrium - a very secretive organization that wants to bring down the human Colonial Union and the alien Conclave - a government of over 400 alien species. The Equilibrium didn't need Rafe Daquin's body so they discarded it and turned him into a brain in a box to pilot one of the ships they stole. What they didn't realize was that before Rafe was a pilot he was a computer programmer and was thus able to get into the program they were using to subdue him and subvert it. He escaped after causing a good deal of damage and brought all sorts of evidence of the Equilibrium's plot to the Colonial Union.

The second novella concerns itself with the Conclave and the political maneuverings happening in it. It stars Hafte Sorvalh who becomes the Premier of a very divided assortment of aliens and governments.

The third novella tells about current events from the viewpoint of Lieutenant Heather Lee who is leading a platoon of Colonial Defense Force soldiers as they are sent to various planets under the control of the Colonial Union that are in various states of rebellion.

The fourth novella brings together Lieutenant Harry Wilson, Ambassador Ode Abumwe, Ambassador Danielle Lowen, Premier Hafte Sorvalh, and other characters from earlier books in this series as they figure out a way for all three rival groups - the Conclave, the Colonial Union, and Earth - to find a way to defeat the Equilibrium and find a way to live in peace.

This was an excellent story with memorable characters and great world building.

Favorite Quote:
"Interesting times we live in," Danielle Lowen said to me. She and I were at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, in Washington, D.C. Hart Schmidt we with us, on his first trip to Earth - the surface of it, at least. He was determined to be the most touristy tourist who had ever touristed, and was presently snapping pictures of the statue of Jefferson from every conceivable angle. It was late March, and the cherry blossoms were beginning to bloom.
I bought this one August 11, 2015. You can buy your copy here.

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