Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Audiobook: Ashes of Victory by David Weber

Ashes of Victory
Author: David Weber
Narrator: Allyson Johnson
Publication: Audible Studios (Dec. 15, 2009)
Length: 25 hours and 45 minutes


The People's Republic of Haven made a tiny mistake when it announced the execution of Honor Harrington. It seemed safe enough. After all, they knew she was already dead.

Unfortunately, they were wrong. Now Honor has escaped from the prison planet called Hell and returned to the Manticoran Alliance with a few friends. Almost half a million of them, to be precise . . . including some who know what really happened when the Committee of Public Safety seized power in the PRH.

Honor's return Schfrom the dead comes at a critical time, providing a huge, much-needed lift for the Allies' morale, for the war is rapidly entering a decisive phase. Both sides believe that victory lies within their grasp at last, but dangers no one could foresee await them both.

New weapons, new strategies, new tactics, spies, diplomacy, and assassination. ... All are coming into deadly focus, and Honor Harrington, the woman the newsies call ''the Salamander,'' once more finds herself at the heart of them all.

But this time, the furnace may be too furious for even a salamander to survive.

My Thoughts: This episode concerns itself with with happens after Honor returns from imprisonment along with 400,000 other former prisoners including a Peep Admiral who knows what really happened at the time of the Harris assassination and the role the current leaders on Haven played in it. This is a very bad public relations problem for the Peeps just when they are starting to amass some military victories under Admiral McQueen.

Meanwhile on Manticore, Honor is getting ready for all sorts of medical intervention to fix the nerves on her face, reinstall her artificial eyes and manage a new prosthetic left arm. Nimitz is also going to undergo repairs of his injuries but the loss of his telepathic connection with his mate and the other treecats isn't as easy to repair. However, Honor's mother has an idea based on an old Earth language called "sign language" which might give Nimitz a way to communicate again and will open a whole new way of interacting with all the treecats who have adopted humans. Honor is also tasked by the Admiralty to teach at Saganami Island and take over as Commandant of the Advanced Tactical School while she is on convalescent leave and is supposed to be resting.

On Grayson, Steadholder Mueller is continuing his campaign to undermine Benjamin's reforms and he has a new partner from the religious fanatics on Masada financed by the Peeps though Mueller doesn't know all those details. Mueller just sees them as subordinates funneling illegal funds to him in his campaign to undermine Benjamin's reforms. They have a bigger plan though: they plan to assassinate Benjamin and Queen Elizabeth of Manticore to throw the Alliance into chaos. Honor is able to save Benjamin and Queen Elizabeth but she is unable to save the Prime Ministers of either Star System. The lack of the Prime Minister on Manticore means that those who opposed his plans finally get a chance to form their own government and they are sure the Peeps are just misunderstood and really want peace with Manticore.

The Peeps need the chaos! Manticore and its allies are finally ready to debut their new weapons which will give them a strong tactical advantage and finally let them bring the war to its conclusion. And the leaders of the Peep government are ready to get rid of their successful military leader before she decides to overthrow them. Their policies have been working against them as a number of military leaders and the spies they set on them are finally coming to realize just how bad the Peep government is and a quiet revolution is growing.

While this episode still had quite a few space battles and descriptions of weapons, I felt like the focus on this one was more political. The government of the Peeps was imploding and the military was coming together to oppose all the government abuses. Honor becomes much more politically astute even though she really doesn't want to. I'm eager to see where the story goes next.

I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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