Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Kill Orbit by Joel Dane
Series: Cry Pilot #3
Published by Ace on July 7, 2020
Genres: Science Fiction
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Maseo Kaytu's squad is yanked from a much-deserved furlough by an emergency deployment off-planet. But why is Command sending grunts into the "Big Empty"? Without CAVs, without backup--hell, without gravity--the squad is more vulnerable than ever. Tasked with a mission that only they can complete, they track the enemy across the killing vastness of space, from a bizarre interplanetary warehouse to the hidden heart of a research habitation...and beyond.
But the enemy is tracking them, too. Scanning, calculating, preparing. Kaytu joined the military to redeem the bad choices of his past, yet now--trapped in hostile territory--he learns that soldiers face the hardest choices of all.
I read Cry Pilot and Burn Cycle right afterward to start the Cry Pilot series. The story went right on as the military is fighting a new threat. You do want to read the series in order so you understand what is happening. Each book adds to the development of our characters, primarily Anvil Squad and the fight against the enemy. Our perspective is Kaytu and he has made some eye-opening choices.
Telling you about Kill Orbit is difficult without spoiling any details from earlier books but I’ll keep it general. Anvil Squad is the most unusual but most successful fighter against the enemy. But those in charge, the “corpos” don’t trust them really. That’s why Rana is back with them, even though she is a Flenser, part of the space fleet where they are ground troops. She’s here to lead them on what is highly likely a suicide mission.
Throughout the series, the camaraderie and inside jokes of this team of diverse misfits is built. Rana, at least, understands them. But I don’t like her. She sees herself as better than them, and she is to the “corpo” world, but this team is the one who gets the worst jobs done. They are sent again as a sacrifice.
The situation looks and is very bad. The enemy is killing the space fleet and people on Earth as fast as it can. Everything the Flensers and the team has tried has failed. Ting is left on an enemy ship and so Kaytu jumps into space untethered to save her. It’s a heart-stopping battle with the only chance for humans is those they would throwaway as too violent or too dangerous or too undisciplined.
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