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The Northern Star: Civil War Kindle Edition
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Having the advantage of reading Mike's first novel in this series seems important enough to the full appreciation of this second installment Civil War to bring the reader new to this realm up to date. THE NORTHERN STAR: THE BEGINNING opened in 2058 (actually a Prologue began in 2048), a time with oil depletion has created the battleground for the super powers of China, the US, and the EU who have united in a military fashion to occupy all of the oil rich countries, a situation that has driven the masses into ghettoes, stimulated even further the Terror wars to the point where terrorist acts occur daily in the streets of the remaining cities. The only defense against this decimating progress is the creation by the corporation Mindcorp who has invented a computer based technology called Mindlink that allows people to have their mind outside their body: people can `live' in a virtual reality online. Out of this, Tank Majors (or bionic soldiers) are created to combat the powerful perpetrators - the first and primary one being John Raimey. Gullickson personalized these bionic warriors demonstrating the author's ability to create identifiable characters in a bizarre situation that helps drive his story to a surprising end. Now, in CIVIL WAR, John Raimey, the bionic Tank Major who sacrificed himself for duty and family has the ability to have the power to level buildings and more. His sacrifice was in vain. Ten years later, mentally ill, estranged from his daughter, and stationed in Africa to protect the mines needed to keep cyberspace alive, he airdrops into a town where the adults are murdered and the children abducted. What Raimey uncovers sets him on a new mission: save his daughter, no matter the cost.
Without question Mike Gullickson has found that path that appeals to both sci-fi and futurists addicts as well as though of us who do not usually appreciate this genre, and much of that is due to his skill in keeping the language contemporary as he steps beyond the crises we know as reality - and just pushes reality further. Where his mind finds these incredibly credible concepts we most likely will continue to discover as he (hopefully) writes more books in this series. Hi sending pages suggest that is a strong possibility. He understands how to make the impossible possible and it works. Grady Harp, October 14
As the second book it is darker than the first one. Virtual reality is very advanced, with quite a few interesting and realistic twists. Which makes the growing factionalism, fighting and terrorism online actually interesting and downright terrifying a few times. You won’t look at virtual reality in the same way again. The other sci-fi tech the bionics are just as well thought out. Most soldiers are some type of cyborg, and the biggest Tank Majors, aren’t sleek handsome robots, they’re massive, machines that do not look human.
The society is also appropriately bleak. After reaching peak oil, resource wars broke out, and now the first world dominates the third world getting as much as they can to keep society going. This makes terrorism and counter terrorism operations a daily occurrence; so much of the fighting is very short and involves bombings, and rapid raids rather than typical big style military fiction. A rather nice change after reading a lot of Ringo, Webber and other big name military sci-fi writers.
The end left me wanting more, as the world is in a very bad place by the end. Which makes getting the third book a must. Overall I’m quite pleased with this dark future.
John Raimey continues to be a compelling and deadly protagonist that shows the human side of a universal conflict, and even though it can be argued that the world has forced him to lose his humanity, Gullickson grabs you by the throat and forces you to face the same impossible choices and almost feel the palpable pain of loss and desperation that the main character experiences...this is a book that you won't put down - not until the last page. Gullickson is a powerhouse, and might just be the sort of author who can spark some real change in society. Frightening and fantastic.....this is what science fiction is all about.
Most recent customer reviews
I found The Northern Star: Civil War to be an improvement from the first book in the series.Read more