A general in the United States Army by the name of William Thornson once said, "There are only two kinds of people that understand Marines: Marines and the enemy. Everyone else has a second-hand opinion."
I've come to believe the general was wrong. I say that because no enemy in his right mind would remain the enemy of a Marine...if...he truly understood the Marines. Of course, the universe is filled with crazy people and in my occupation I got to meet more than my fair share of them.
One such group was a terrorist organization called the Donalites. Their name apparently derived from the Irish Donal meaning "world ruler". They held to the belief that all of Earth's problems had their roots in interactions with alien cultures. Their agenda was a very simple one. Earth for Earthers. I would discover that they would say anything, do anything, and hurt anybody...basically go to any length...to force their will on the rest of humanity. Unfortunately, as I learned with a race called the Ollies, it turns out bigotry is not a solely human failing.
My name is Commander Anthony Grant Stone and this is a piece of my story.
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"Inane, insane and whatever else begins with in-."
Two years have passed since the ending of the last book and Stone had become a Commander in the Marines following a spell in Officer Training School. Working with aliens can be tricky: a special etiquette data base is kept to ease humans through their early interactions so that a species war isn't accidentally ignited. Things could so easily go wrong ..
This, the second book in the Infinity Brigade series by Andrew Beery is imaginative, exciting and sometimes funny. Nice alien descriptions, too. Written in the first person, Stone's story is well narrated by Rich Miller this time. Although he is very good, with well paced reading and distinctive character voicings, it seems unfortunate that the original narrator from book 1, Adam Verner, was no longer reading as, in my head, he was Stone and so was difficult for Mr.Miller to replace. However, his performance was good, if sounding somewhat older than the original Stone.
My thanks to the rights holder of Stone Hard for gifting me a copy of this fun military sci fi book, via Audiobook Boom. This is a very enjoyable series and I look forward to book three
- Norma Miles