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Koban: The Mark of Koban Kindle Edition
|Length: 451 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top customer reviews
The story is excellent, switching between several perspectives. Favorite characters from the first book are here in addition to a growing number of new faces who are well developed. In my review of the first book, Koban, I mentioned the "power of one" was prevalent. This wasn't detrimental in my opinion, just an observation. In this book the "power of one" is absent, many characters contributing to the survival and flourishing of the Kobani. Most fascinating to me were the children in the book, who likely will take an even more active role in future books.
Humor deftly inserted throughout continues to make the reading immensely entertaining and a pleasure to read.
The book also had me revisiting some thoughts on morality, like sentience in non-humans. To be honest, I was waiting so much in anticipation for this book to come out, that when it did I gobbled it up and read it over two days. I fear I missed some other social issues and will have to re-read the book to discover other social issues of our time nestled in this treasure of a book. It will be a pleasure to re-read.
Editing has vastly improved over the first book, and although there are misspellings and typos, they are greatly reduced, with no detraction to the book. On the first book I subtracted one star because of editing but I felt this book deserved to have the full 5 stars.
Finally, I have to say that my excitement continues to grow with this story. The universe Mr. Bennett has created is full of possibilities for future stories, and in my opinion ranks with sci-fi's greats. I eagerly await the next book in this well thought out and enjoyable series.
You know you've stumbled across a great series of books when the first sequel is even better than the original book. The Mark of Koban starts immediately after the first book and continues into about the eighteenth year of the first Koban-born generation of humans. Dillon and Norleen (Mirikawi's First Officer), and Thad Greeves and Marlyn Rodriguez (First Officer from a ship captured later) become the first married couples to have even more genetically enhanced children.
Because of the last minute arrival of so many newly captured ships and humans at the end of the first book, the majority of the humans stuck on Koban still resist human gene manipulation, both for the social stigma attached and because of the extreme laws banning such science in human-controlled space. Those against genetic adaption move to the larger abandoned Krall dome nearby, which is safer. Ironically, "Hub City" relies heavily on Mirikawi's group to survive.
While the rest of the human race finds out about the Krall as rim worlds are attacked and decimated, Mirikawi's group adapt to Koban and negotiate truces with two of its most important predator species, the Rippers and Wolfbats. The firstborn children, with additional gene enhancements, have already become stronger and faster than the Krall. Just in time, because a Krall clanship decides to land on their forbidden future homeworld for a little rhinolo hunt.
Mirikawi's plan seems to be working. The Krall are no match for the new Kobani. Unfortunately, their enemies vastly outnumber them and have a seemingly inexhaustible supply of war materiel furnished by their as yet unmet alien slave species. But now that they have a clanship, they can steal two others, one to scout deeper into Krall territory, one to go to the aid of "normal" humans on Thad's old homeworld of Poldark, and one to investigate what kind of secret experiments are taking place on the human controlled world of Heavyside...
There is just too much going on in this book to summarize! The plot is like a tapestry, and each thread can be expanded into another book. There is enough here to fill at least ten more books, and I'll be waiting for each one to come out!
1)Great bad guy aliens! Not "evil" because they don't grasp that concept, but very bad and very satisfying when they are killed.
2) Nice mix of other alien races. The ones that we see interacted with are believable, interesting, and not overly anthropomorphic.
3) Well written action sequences. Both in hand-to-hand and in space, the author has a knack for generating tension and getting me to read every word.
4) Plot: its a big war, decades pass, yet events are tied together well and I felt very involved.
5) Science (fiction): The author loves to detail the scientific rationales behind the gadgets in his universe.
1) While improved over the first book, there's still a good bit of extra material that an editor would have (rightly) chopped out. This material fell basically into two categories...it was either redundant, or it was overly pedantic. On the bright side, this was easy to spot and easy to skip past, so it didn't bother me.
2) Dialog. Someone has to say it, perhaps other reviews have, but writing dialog is truly this author's Achilles' heal right now. If I were an author, perhaps I could offer some insightful advice or analysis, but I'm not. All I know is that the dialog is usually very ham handed and attempts at expressing humor never come across. I rather expect the author has a good sense of humor, but two books of old-woman smacking young-guy in the nuts is just painful...no pun intended.
Some of the dialog is ok, but it always falls under two categories: "This is what I think..." and "This is what we're going to do..."
But the type of interpersonal dialog that builds character and gives characters a unique voice is just not good. I imagine this is not easy to do...but learning to do it well (or better) would be so worthwhile. I have seen many authors struggle with this (often the ones who have a knack for it tend to fail badly at 1-4 of the above "Strengths"), but one thing I've seen that can help is using more "internal dialog" that show what/why a character is thinking/feeling.
Anyway, if book 3 was out now I'd have already purchased it and would be reading instead of writing this review. Is there a mailing list to alert when it comes out?
Most recent customer reviews
Exciting storyline, moderately good character development, very interesting ideas and plot twists all make this book an improvement on the first...Read more
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