(Above is the review of the first book of the series)
Followers of my reviews of Jason Anspach’s and Nick Cole’s Galaxy’s Edge series know I am an avid fan. Each volume has expanded the scope and depth of the imaginary universe that Galaxy’s Edge inhabits. But “Turning Point” represents a sea change in the story. It literally represents the turning point of the war. For whereas each volume has included heroic resistance by the Legion to the enemies of the Republic, the corrupt regime of the House of Reason has always had free rein to sabotage every effort to save the Galaxy from its many enemies. But in this episode, the mask is off and the Legion is unleashed to fight war as war should be fought, on equal terms. To fight a treacherous foe without quarter and pay back sadistic evil with a merciless reckoning. How sweet it is.
The story revolves around the decision by the House of Reason to arm the barbaric zhee with cutting edge weaponry and ships. These fictional zhee are modelled after Islamic jihadis and they have a propensity for suicide bombings and decapitations that immediately reminds the reader of the Al Qaeda maniacs hiding out in the slums of Baghdad waiting for a chance to ambush any unlucky American soldiers guarding the Green Zone or manning a Forward Operating Base (FOB). The other bizarre touch is that the zhee have donkey heads. Now maybe this is the authors’ idea of political humor but it is truly a weird image for me.
The House of Reason is playing some kind of three-dimensional chess where they use the Black Fleet or the zhee to weaken the Legion so that the House can maintain control of the Galaxy even if it risks one of these enemies threatening to destroy the Republic itself.
In several of the earlier volumes there have been memorable battles portrayed, especially in Attack of Shadows and Legionnaire. But Turning Point brings it to a new level. Several new characters are very memorable but it’s the action that stays with you. The set up is dire and just to make sure things don’t get easier there is treachery at the highest levels. And the zhee are so despicable it’s hard to not enjoy every single gore-flinging kill. The struggles, reversals, heroic sacrifices and exhausted victories keep your attention right to the end of the book.
And finally, the end of the book is a catharsis that the readers have been waiting for since book one of the series. I won’t spoil it by giving details but I will say that the writers have given the readers what they needed and deserved, revenge.
Anspach and Cole have justified my loyalty through the whole series and now I’ll continue on to (!) Book Eight? Sure, why not? How many modern science fiction series not only provide fantastic mil-sci-fi action but also make fun of Progressives, the Deep State, Democrats and Al Qaeda all at the same time? Not many that I know of. So, in the words of the Legion, KTF and Ooah!