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on October 29, 2016
Being in the Navy myself, I found some of the things portrayed as a little far fetched bordering on ridiculous (such as calling a Master Chief "Chief") but overall I really liked the book. The characters are easy to like, and the author in my opinion gives decent background as to why they act the way they do. I think the only thing I disliked is how Peters is smart, and it takes characters to point it out. That wasn't something that broke the book for me though, it was just something I noticed. Anyway, I hope a sequel is released because I too would like to know who these Makers are, and how two species can become separated but totally the same. Anyway, great read!

Edit- Well shoot, I was hoping for a sequel but I literally just found out the author passed away a few years ago. I had no idea.
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on November 14, 2015
I see a lot of reviews whining about characters, politics, etc. This was a great book, fun, interesting and a nice look at a different type of future. No star wars, alien invasions or BEMs. It was a quick read, I like the writing style AND the characters. Most naval officers and CPOs ARE major pricks and fighter pilots tend to be arrogant, it goes with the job., Mr. Locke got that part correct. The main characters were decently fleshed out, looks like the death of the author stopped any sequels and more in depth character development This was just a fun, fast read, like old ER Burroughs, RE Howard or a host of old pulp writers. Get it, everything does not have to be War and Peace to be worthwhile.
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on May 24, 2017
I could hardly put this down. Each episode starts out in routine but takes unexpected Ted twists and turns. Never repetitive never unbelievable once you accept the premise of the first contact. This has a look of real life navy savvy and atmosphere (from the enlisted point of view) the most realistic part is how basic human motivations remain constant in spite of the space and alien presence. Elements of TaiPan and the clippers voyages of the 19th century seem to be the framework. Highly recommend not starting this unless you have some free time. It is very addictive
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on February 21, 2015
I don't normally write reviews but the book was so good that I'm getting ready to start a fan site.

The story is about two lowest-ranks Navy men who had an unique opportunity to come aboard the first alien ship that ever visited Earth ahead of everyone else. The US is being run by bureaucrats, IRS agents are running around with guns and all US Navy officers are kids of the power magnates. The enlisted men are much more adaptable to the alien ways and languages than the officers, so they gain an upper hand in space after barely surviving on the war-devastated Earth.

The aliens are many but by the plot they all share humanoid traits and for the most part act very much like humans. I didn't find this to be of a problem however. The book is filled with military terms and jokes, which might deter some readers, but the plot makes up for that. There's plenty of adult scenes and language as well.

The plot thickens when one of the men realizes that his enlistment has ended, he's no longer a member of the US Navy and he can live his own life and make his own decisions on an alien spaceship....

My only small problem with the book is that it seems a bit rushed towards the very end. I'm still giving it 5 stars!

The fan site is now up, the address is temporaryduty-dot-org
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on February 24, 2017
Showing up is half the battle, or in the case of the protagonist, the key to success.

Plot summary: an alien race shows up and offers to trade. Earth, not having much to really offer except aggressive pilots, rents them out to the aliens who take them on tour and pit them against other races in mock dogfights. The aliens are users of technology and have no idea how it all really works. They also aren't very big on maintaining or even cleaning their massive ship. Lowly enlisted men volunteer to TDY on the ship, and by actually interacting with the aliens and performing routine tasks, gain insight into the ways of the galaxy - and make a pile of money in the process. When they return to Earth after the tour, they face prohibitive taxes on their new-found wealth and .... well, you will have to see.

I understand Mr. Locke has passed away, which is unfortunate, because I think he could sell the rights to this story to Hollywood.
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I bought this book by accident and for whatever reason didn’t try to return it. Several years later, going through my digital to-be-read pile, I started it up. Unfortunately, it is written for an audience of an 8th grade boy and was very juvenile and I quit reading at the 4% mark. Save your money and time, and don’t make the mistake I did.
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on April 10, 2015
It's a good bit of escapist fiction. The scenes are well set and the characters can be identified with. The premise for this world-view is a pretty cool one. I'd read more from this author.

Spoilers, sweetie... These types of stories all lead to a happy ending, which is part of the escape and is enjoyable, but there is a bit of a bend to this book's end that jumps a few steps. My best guess would be that, as with many stories, the rush to conclusion and tie things up after writing so long steals a bit. I must confess that I still keep looking for another installment in this universe, as it is just fun with a little grit.
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on May 31, 2016
After several readings this has become one of the books I will always cherish. It isn't filled with impossible feats of daring do or massive fleet battles, what it is filled with is humanity and humor. An awesome legacy left behind by the author who has passed on. If you enjoy this and aren't familiar with Nathan Lowell look him up for more in this very refreshing style of storytelling.
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on May 15, 2017
This book is obstensibly about naval personnel, but the navy provides only a framework for the story. If you are looking for battle action, you will largely disappointed.

It took a while for the plot to work up a head of steam. The first half of the book is spent on detailed descriptions which, in my opinion, are for the most part unnecessary. Still, it was worth wading through to see where the story would take the reader.
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on April 5, 2018
Amusing Sci Fi written by a Navy junior petty officer's prospective. It appears that the author was tasered, hit by lightening, or replaced about 2/3 of the way through the book as the mood, content, and addition of juvenile sex scenes seem to invade.
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