Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Boundless by Jack Campbell
Series: Outlands #1
Published by Ace on June 15, 2021
Genres: Space Opera
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Geary believed in the Alliance. Even when he uncovered overwhelming evidence that the highest echelons of the government and fleet command were involved in secret programs and prison camps, he believed it was worth saving. And that his duty was to see that justice was served even though some factions feared that revealing the truth would cause the Alliance to crumble.
But after narrowly surviving two assassination attempts when he brings evidence of the misdeeds to the capital star system, Geary realizes that some have decided the easiest way to make the Alliance's problems go away is to get rid of him. He finds himself ordered to undertake a perilous new mission outside of the reaches of human-occupied space while the Senate clashes over the evidence.
Geary's warships must escort a diplomatic and scientific mission across the dangerous, disintegrating remnants of the Syndicate Worlds empire. But even if he can make it to Midway Star System, the gateway to alien-controlled space, Geary will face former Syndicate officials who have rebelled and regard the Alliance with deep suspicion. And that will be the easy part. . .
If you have enjoyed Jack Campbell’s other series, Lost Fleet and Beyond the Frontier, and Lost Stars, Genesis Fleet series, you will love this too. I started reading Jack Campbell in 2015 when I was sent an ARC of one of the Leviathon, which was the final book in the Beyond the Frontier series. Of course with my OCD, I had to read the previous NINE books before I could read it. I was in the middle of moving from Minnesota to North Carolina, so I got the audio CDs from the library. And thus, my love affair with this world began.
These are people with character strength , compassion and intelligence. Characters of this exceptional quality are classic in Jack Campbell’s works. I love the strategy and technology and politics! I love Geary’s reaction to the politics. This reaction, along with the personal qualities of some of the crew provide some humor in what is often a life and death situation.
Boundless is the start of the new Outlands series which is the farthest into the future of the Lost Fleet world. It is a joy for fans like me who have read everything and want to know what happens next after the Alliance and the Syndicate worlds have a peace treaty. Well, the politics and battles are not over. People either want Geary to be their leader or assassinate him because they think he has too much power. The Senate sends him on a new diplomatic and science mission while they sort out those who worked around the Senate and the ongoing politics.
First, their ships must have repairs and that allows John and Tanya to visit the Geary home in Glenlyon. My heart was full with learning even more of this history. Then they went on to the Midway star system which is a revitalized Syndicate world, now operating independently. The Lost Stars series is the one which shows the development of the Midway star system at the end of the war. It was great to see the characters here who are like old and dear friends.
The missions are to further development of the hypernet gates and then go on for a new diplomatic mission with the Dancers. Boundless is only the start with the work at Midway with the hypernet gates. Many people don’t know what to think about the different aliens discovered in Geary’s previous mission. They didn’t expect them to find aliens; it was supposed to be a suicide mission to get rid of him. Instead they found three alien species and were able to establish communication with the Dancers. I was worried all through about some who seem to have prejudices about the Dancers. I feel protective about the Dancers.
I am ecstatic to have more of this world and these characters. I hope Boundless will have an audio version. I was glad to have listened to some of the earlier books on audio. Christian Rummel gave a wonderful performance with just the right emotional tones. Reading Boundless, I could hear his voice (pronunciations) of the the names of characters and places.
After Iceni’s and Drakon’s virtual presences had left, Bradamont lingered to salute Geary. ” Thank you for getting my colonel back safely to me, sir.”
Ambassador Rycerz beamed at her. “They understand now, don’t they? That I really am in charge here?”
“No,” Bradamont said, shaking her head. “They still think he runs the Alliance, but is doing so behind a screen. Even his time leaving Midway to go to Kane is to them simply more proof of how Admiral Geary is maintaining the pretense of answering to you rather than you answering to him.”
“No, I’m sorry, I’m not. That’s how they view the universe, and everything they see is filtered through that. But they also view Admiral Geary as an, um, enlightened leader in their own mold, which is why they remain willing to deal with the Alliance as long as the Alliance is perceived to be Admiral Geary’s kingdom.”
“Fine.” Ambassador Rycerz had apparently developed yet another headache.
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