- File Size: 645 KB
- Print Length: 264 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: June 25, 2013
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00DN8XKIK
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #172,233 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Battlecruiser Alamo: The Price of Admiralty (Battlecruiser Alamo Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
My only trouble is that it seems to be a book for teens. If this is true, it will limit the character growth and soon limit the potential for fan growth. Amazon used to have a feature where your favorite authors could be listed and when new books came out, you would get an e mail. This author would be on mine.
Richard Tongue is one of those self-published authors and proof that talent isn't dependant on label or a printing house. Battlecruiser Alamo is hard science fiction, with a sharp eye on what technology is and isn't possible within its universe. The writer also has a firm grasp of both modern and future politics, a relief from a lot of American military sf where politicians are presented as narcissistic chimps or where `instant betrayal' always informs the storyline. By contrast, in Battlecruiser Alamo the politics are interesting, relevant and believable. What machinations do exist are intelligent, well thought through and about what you would expect from any number of governments acting in their own self interest.
So what did I specifically like about Battlecruiser Alamo? The pace was good, the characters believable and its technology supportive of the story line rather than constraining. This was especially true in the space combat scenes where orbital mechanics, laser recharge times and the missile duelling between ships felt `right' as did the responses and actions of the crew. Writing a believable battle scene sounds easy but is actually quite difficult, especially when the technology used is based on much of how we know the universe actually works. Its easy to write a scene with fantasy technology, but writing within real world constraints? Much more difficult! In Battelcrusier Alamo I found the battle scenes well presented, logically thought through and, most important of all - both fun and relevant! The scenes draw you in as a reader and tension ratchets up as the battles progress. Excellent! Equally good were the rationalizations of how and why the different crewmember behave as they do, both the good guys and the bad. One scene in particular where an African officer from Titan explains why Titan colony is the way it is rang especially true. In Battlecruiser Alamo the African character is looking back in time and explaining just what drives him and Titan and why. I've lived in a variety of countries including many in Africa and have heard the exact same explanation given in Battlecruiser Alamo from many of Africa's politicians today. The same firm grasp on modern politics is presented as back-story for the Australasian descended colonists of the planet Ragnarok where most of the action takes place. Here the Australasians discuss the geopolitical reasons why they fled Earth and those concerns are the same ones one hears today in both Australia and New Zealand. Its that kind of detail - modern politics shading the development of an alternate future that make Battlecruiser Alamo believable and engaging. Its future is one that might just be possible based on how things could turn out if we had a star drive of some sort.
One other small good point. The writer does not have a problem with tense. Too many self-published books do, even ones I like. Its just dang pleasant to read a self-published book where the writer cares enough about his craft to get the basic bits right.
And what didn't I like? Hmmmm... not much comes to mind which is pretty unusual for me! That said, I didn't like the cover art - I thought it was, well, awful. Not a bigee but it probably cost the author a sale or two. Fortunately cost tempted me past it and the content more than made up for it.
So all in all a good, solid read, worth the money and I'll be buying the next
Battlecruiser Alamo: The Price of Admiralty
Erica and I first came across Richard Tongue’s work while trying to find an artist for our own book’s cover. Impressed by what we saw, we ended up using the same artist. Erica isn’t a huge fan of space opera military fiction, but I remembered having a ton of fun reading Timothy Zahn and Dean Wesley Smith back in middle school, and so I decided to go ahead and give the Battlecruiser Alamo series a whirl, starting with The Price of Admiralty.
The plot and characters of this first series entry are already well-described by other reviewers, so I won’t spend a lot of time covering that. Suffice it to say, a lot of the well-loved tropes and plot twists that we expect from any good scifi milfic are present in droves, right down to the mandatory zero-gee spacewalk to recapture the bridge from the enemy. The characters are the ensemble of archetypes we all expect, from the sexy-veteran-ex-wingman-turned-tactics officer to the don’t-take-no-guff-sawbones-ship’s-surgeon. And of course, the ship itself starts out as a nonfunctional mess thanks to the ressentiment (not resentment, but rather the French word for “anger and jealousy”) of its previous crew and commander. Actually, that whole scenario made me think of the allegations that Bill Clinton’s staffers removed all the “W” keys from the White House computers (also causing $15,000 in other damages) before handing over the reins to Dubya back in 2004.
But none of this is bad: these are the things that milfic fans love, desire, and outright expect their authors to produce. We want a scrappy crew of misfits making the best of a leaky rustbucket of a ship to overcome an impossible situation through pluck, irreverence, and lots and lots of bullets. Which hearkens to the point I first brought up: this is like Star Trek TNG but without the cringe factor. Although I was a fan of the show (and even videotaped its final episode when we still had VCR’s), I never got over how bothered I was by the utopian perfection of the Enterprise D and its crew. Really, it was a show about well-adjusted professionals performing their duties admirably in the most advanced ship in the galaxy, funded by post-scarcity economics where replicators can make you earl gray, hot, on command. And honestly, that annoyed me. Conflict and deprivation create drama. A lack of those things, while desirable in real life, is boring as hell to sit through.
So The Price of Admiralty hits all the high notes for me. Space is a terrible and dangerous place where you will always be clawing at the bleeding edge of survival, and yet you still have to make money. I’d hate to live that way myself, but it’s damned fun to read about other people doing it. I will definitely be checking out the next installment.
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