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Sungrazer by Jay Posey. Book review

July 21, 2017


In the future, Earth and its colonies on Mars are locked in a Cold War, where it would take little to make them commit to open warfare. When a dormant and powerful super weapon, Sungrazer, is suddenly awakened, then disappears, it’s up to the Outriders, a special team of super-soldiers to solve the problem of finding and neutralising Sungrazer. But first they have to navigate a tricky path around a political faction which is up to no good as far as peace between Earth and Mars is concerned.

Sungrazer is an example of Machiavellian scheming rubbing shoulders with military might and ingenuity, as the Outriders (a specialist black ops military team) are sent to deal with yet another political hot potato.

Like the first book in the series, Outriders, Jay Posey knows how to grab your attention from the very first sentence and hold it. Sungrazer opens as the spy, Elliot Goodkind, appraises the life-threatening situation he has just walked into and how he’s going to try and extricate himself with little more than brazen banter and the minimum of fuss. Posey’s prose makes sure you invest in Elliot very quickly, and you’re on board in the same way you would be for a character in a classic spy novel. The switch to the military part of the plot is equally as fascinating as the writing takes a slight change in tempo and the dialogue shifts to the back and forth of a group of people who know they can rely on each other.

What lifts Posey’s writing above so many other military science fiction novels in the market is the way in which the Outriders work as a team by pooling their intellectual and physical resources to analyse both the political overview of a situation, as well as focusing on the type of detail required for an on-the-ground, close combat resolution of a problem. Posey’s skills as a narrative designer really come to the fore in the way the prose dovetails with credible dialogue to drive the plot along at a good pace. This enables the reader to get a real sense of the different personalities and rapidly connect with the characters even if they’ve not encountered them before.

As with the Outriders the plot is nail biting and you’re left waiting for the next instalment.

Outriders was courtesy of Angry Robot.

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