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New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and international bestselling phenomenon David Weber delivers book #18 in the multiple New York Times best-selling Honor Harrington series. Honor Harrington’s Royal Manticoran Navy fights space battles alongside planetary rebels as its old rival, the corrupt Solarian League, begins to crumble. #18 in the multiply-bestselling Ho New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and international bestselling phenomenon David Weber delivers book #18 in the multiple New York Times best-selling Honor Harrington series. Honor Harrington’s Royal Manticoran Navy fights space battles alongside planetary rebels as its old rival, the corrupt Solarian League, begins to crumble. #18 in the multiply-bestselling Honor Harrington series. Wrong number? There are two sides to any quarrel . . . unless there are more. Michelle Henke, Queen Elizabeth of Manticore's first cousin, Honor Harrington's best friend, and the commanding officer of Manticore's Tenth Fleet, is just a bit surprised when a messenger arrives from the Mobius System to inform her that the Mobius Liberation Front is prepared to rise in rebellion against the hated regime President Svein Lombroso. She can understand why anyone would want to rebel against someone like Lombroso, but why tell her about it? After all, she has problems of her own, like the minor matter of a life-or-death war against the Solarian League. Michelle has just handed the "invincible" Solarian League Navy the most humiliating, one-sided defeat in its entire almost thousand-year history in defense of the people of the Star Empire's Talbott Quadrant. But the League is the most powerful star nation in the history of humanity. Its navy is going to be back – and this time with thousands of superdreadnoughts. Yet she also knows scores of other star systems — some independent, some controlled by puppet regimes, and some simply conquered outright by the Solarian Office of Frontier Security — lie in the League's grip along its frontier with the Talbott Quadrant. As combat spreads from the initial confrontation, the entire frontier has begun to seethe with unrest, and Michelle sympathizes with the oppressed populations wanting only to be free of their hated masters. And that puts her in something of a quandary when the messenger from Mobius arrives, because someone's obviously gotten a wrong number. According to him, the Mobians’ uprising has been carefully planned to coordinate with a powerful outside ally: the Star Empire of Manticore. Only Manticore — and Mike Henke — have never even heard of the Mobius Liberation Front. It's a set-up . . . and Michelle knows who's behind it. The shadowy Mesan Alignment has launched a bold move to destroy Manticore's reputation as the champion of freedom. And when the RMN doesn't arrive, when the MLF is brutally and bloodily crushed, no independent star system will ever trust Manticore again. Mike Henke knows she has no orders from her government to assist any rebellions or liberation movements, that she has only so many ships, which can be in only so many places at a time . . . and that she can't possibly justify diverting any of her limited, outnumbered strength to missions of liberation the Star Empire never signed on for. She knows that . . . and she doesn't care. No one is going to send thousands of patriots to their deaths, trusting in Manticoran help that will never come. Not on Mike Henke's watch. About Shadow of Freedom: “This entry is just as exciting as Weber’s initial offering. . . .The result is a fast-paced and action-packed story that follows [our characters] as they move from reaction to command of the situation. Weber builds Shadow of Freedom to an exciting and unexpected climax.”—Daily News of Galveston About Mission of Honor, #13 in the Honor Harrington series: “Weber combines realistic, engaging characters with intelligent technological projection and a deep understanding of military bureaucracy in this long-awaited Honor Harrington novel…Fans of this venerable space opera will rejoice to see Honor back in action.”–Publishers Weekly  “This latest Honor Harrington novel brings the saga to another crucial turning point…Readers may feel confident that they will be Honored many more times and enjoy it every time.”–Booklist About David Weber and the Honor Harrington series: “. . .everything you could want in a heroine …. Excellent … plenty of action.”–Science Fiction Age “Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!”–Anne McCaffrey “Compelling combat combined with engaging characters for a great space opera adventure.”–Locus “Weber combines realistic, engaging characters with intelligent technological projection . . . Fans of this venerable space opera will rejoice . . .”–Publishers Weekly


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New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and international bestselling phenomenon David Weber delivers book #18 in the multiple New York Times best-selling Honor Harrington series. Honor Harrington’s Royal Manticoran Navy fights space battles alongside planetary rebels as its old rival, the corrupt Solarian League, begins to crumble. #18 in the multiply-bestselling Ho New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and international bestselling phenomenon David Weber delivers book #18 in the multiple New York Times best-selling Honor Harrington series. Honor Harrington’s Royal Manticoran Navy fights space battles alongside planetary rebels as its old rival, the corrupt Solarian League, begins to crumble. #18 in the multiply-bestselling Honor Harrington series. Wrong number? There are two sides to any quarrel . . . unless there are more. Michelle Henke, Queen Elizabeth of Manticore's first cousin, Honor Harrington's best friend, and the commanding officer of Manticore's Tenth Fleet, is just a bit surprised when a messenger arrives from the Mobius System to inform her that the Mobius Liberation Front is prepared to rise in rebellion against the hated regime President Svein Lombroso. She can understand why anyone would want to rebel against someone like Lombroso, but why tell her about it? After all, she has problems of her own, like the minor matter of a life-or-death war against the Solarian League. Michelle has just handed the "invincible" Solarian League Navy the most humiliating, one-sided defeat in its entire almost thousand-year history in defense of the people of the Star Empire's Talbott Quadrant. But the League is the most powerful star nation in the history of humanity. Its navy is going to be back – and this time with thousands of superdreadnoughts. Yet she also knows scores of other star systems — some independent, some controlled by puppet regimes, and some simply conquered outright by the Solarian Office of Frontier Security — lie in the League's grip along its frontier with the Talbott Quadrant. As combat spreads from the initial confrontation, the entire frontier has begun to seethe with unrest, and Michelle sympathizes with the oppressed populations wanting only to be free of their hated masters. And that puts her in something of a quandary when the messenger from Mobius arrives, because someone's obviously gotten a wrong number. According to him, the Mobians’ uprising has been carefully planned to coordinate with a powerful outside ally: the Star Empire of Manticore. Only Manticore — and Mike Henke — have never even heard of the Mobius Liberation Front. It's a set-up . . . and Michelle knows who's behind it. The shadowy Mesan Alignment has launched a bold move to destroy Manticore's reputation as the champion of freedom. And when the RMN doesn't arrive, when the MLF is brutally and bloodily crushed, no independent star system will ever trust Manticore again. Mike Henke knows she has no orders from her government to assist any rebellions or liberation movements, that she has only so many ships, which can be in only so many places at a time . . . and that she can't possibly justify diverting any of her limited, outnumbered strength to missions of liberation the Star Empire never signed on for. She knows that . . . and she doesn't care. No one is going to send thousands of patriots to their deaths, trusting in Manticoran help that will never come. Not on Mike Henke's watch. About Shadow of Freedom: “This entry is just as exciting as Weber’s initial offering. . . .The result is a fast-paced and action-packed story that follows [our characters] as they move from reaction to command of the situation. Weber builds Shadow of Freedom to an exciting and unexpected climax.”—Daily News of Galveston About Mission of Honor, #13 in the Honor Harrington series: “Weber combines realistic, engaging characters with intelligent technological projection and a deep understanding of military bureaucracy in this long-awaited Honor Harrington novel…Fans of this venerable space opera will rejoice to see Honor back in action.”–Publishers Weekly  “This latest Honor Harrington novel brings the saga to another crucial turning point…Readers may feel confident that they will be Honored many more times and enjoy it every time.”–Booklist About David Weber and the Honor Harrington series: “. . .everything you could want in a heroine …. Excellent … plenty of action.”–Science Fiction Age “Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!”–Anne McCaffrey “Compelling combat combined with engaging characters for a great space opera adventure.”–Locus “Weber combines realistic, engaging characters with intelligent technological projection . . . Fans of this venerable space opera will rejoice . . .”–Publishers Weekly

30 review for Shadow of Freedom

  1. 5 out of 5

    Aaron Brown

    This is far and away my least favorite book in the Honorverse thus far. Mr. Weber: please, please, please STOP copying and pasting entire chapters word-for-word between your books. This book, by my count, has at least three chapters that have appeared verbatim in another book. It has one that has now appeared in three books. Come on. If you're going to rehash the same scene, at least make the effort to write it from another character's point of view. To make matters worse, one of the chapters whi This is far and away my least favorite book in the Honorverse thus far. Mr. Weber: please, please, please STOP copying and pasting entire chapters word-for-word between your books. This book, by my count, has at least three chapters that have appeared verbatim in another book. It has one that has now appeared in three books. Come on. If you're going to rehash the same scene, at least make the effort to write it from another character's point of view. To make matters worse, one of the chapters which was otherwise an exact copy had a couple of paragraphs in the middle changed, in a way that completely changed the context of the conversation being held between the Detweilers. :| The ultimate sin for me though was the fact that this book was just flat boring. Full of trivial non-entity characters that are dredged up and are clearly not going to be reappearing much or making much of an impact to the story elsewhere. Worse, NOTHING HAPPENS. The book reminds me very much of Robert Jordan's last couple of books in the Wheel of Time: lots and lots and lots of boring political fluff, nattering on about trivial stuff for page after page after page, and then just stopping for no apparent reason with nothing resolved. This book was a complete waste of my time and did nothing to move the story arc forward. Also, why is this one billed as being in the main Honor Harrington story arc when she does not appear in it at all? It's more accurately the third book in the Saganami Island / Talbott Cluster series. Really, I think this is actually "all the boring crap that got cut out of A Rising Thunder by the editor in order to make that book readable", now published as a separate volume, because Weber's got himself stuck in the tapestry details, and can't remember how to actually meaningfully *progress the story arc*. Feh.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

    [11/17/2012] Another Goodreads member said it was like "a good steak dinner without the steak and potatoes." That is an excellent metaphor. It is well written, as usual with Weber, but contains much repetition from previous installments. But it is so obviously an installment that doesn't really come to any final resolution. This is the second installment like this. It's not that nothing happens. Quite a bit happens, but it's all "secondary" to the real trajectory of the series. It's rather frustr [11/17/2012] Another Goodreads member said it was like "a good steak dinner without the steak and potatoes." That is an excellent metaphor. It is well written, as usual with Weber, but contains much repetition from previous installments. But it is so obviously an installment that doesn't really come to any final resolution. This is the second installment like this. It's not that nothing happens. Quite a bit happens, but it's all "secondary" to the real trajectory of the series. It's rather frustrating. [11/9/2015] Second Read I enjoyed it more this time. It is still annoyingly incomplete, but I think this time through I had a better appreciation of the scope. When you are trying to depict a galactic empire falling apart, it is probably necessary to focus sometimes on the peripheral action, the multitude of liberation activities among the verge worlds. It helps to understand the pressures that are gathering against the Empire of Manticore. But it makes it more frustrating when it stops at a critical time. There is some real action in this book, (view spoiler)[from the attack in Saltash to the liberation of Mobius to the capture of the Meyers System (hide spoiler)] . However, it still has a number of slow patches. Not the kind of "data dumps" that Weber is famous for, where he spends a chapter or two describing space hardware in excruciating detail, but long conversations -- long boring conversations that are more like speeches or reports than actual conversations -- that seem to be a device to advance the plot without having to get into that nitty gritty of action. Still worth reading if you're a fan of the Honorverse.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Aildiin

    First this is not a Harrington novel per say but more a Talbot Quadrant novel ( in the line of The Shadow of Saganami and its sequels). It fits within the current Harrington arc and we are retold events we have already been told 3 times in other books but this seems to be the current Weber paradigm( this is what happens when you have 3 ongoing series all taking places at the same time ). The overall story arc doesn't advance much either but that wasn't a surprise as I believe it is the job of the First this is not a Harrington novel per say but more a Talbot Quadrant novel ( in the line of The Shadow of Saganami and its sequels). It fits within the current Harrington arc and we are retold events we have already been told 3 times in other books but this seems to be the current Weber paradigm( this is what happens when you have 3 ongoing series all taking places at the same time ). The overall story arc doesn't advance much either but that wasn't a surprise as I believe it is the job of the Harrington books to do this while the spin-off are supposed to describe the side action. That being said, when you ignore all those quirks ( and sadly they are becoming harder and harder to ignore) the book itself is pleasant to read and the action scenes still good. Basically it's still a book you devour but once you're done with it you look back and ask yourself "what just happened there?" and the answer really is " not much..." It gets a 3 stars because Mr Weber did manage to fool me enough to never consider dropping the book. But he better gets his stuff together and advance the overall story in the next Harrington ( which the last Harrington sadly failed to do) or else !

  4. 5 out of 5

    Elyse

    I have been a huge fan of the Honor series, but after Mission of Honor and this book I'm hanging it up. There is about 100 pages of stuff actually happening in a 439 page novel. The rest of it is endless discussion, dissection and contemplation of the stuff that happened. I just read what happened--I experienced it with the characters--I don't need two more scenes where it's all rehashed over coffee. Also entire segments of this book were lifted whole cloth from Mission of Honor. I'm pretty sure a I have been a huge fan of the Honor series, but after Mission of Honor and this book I'm hanging it up. There is about 100 pages of stuff actually happening in a 439 page novel. The rest of it is endless discussion, dissection and contemplation of the stuff that happened. I just read what happened--I experienced it with the characters--I don't need two more scenes where it's all rehashed over coffee. Also entire segments of this book were lifted whole cloth from Mission of Honor. I'm pretty sure an entire chapter was a verabtim copy of a chapter in the last book. I paid for a hardcover copy of a new book, not a cut a paste job from MOH. Honor is not in this book, BTW. Michelle Henke makes appearances but it's primarily about various guerilla groups fighting the Office of Frontier Security and the Solarian League. I care a lot about Honor, Hamish (I even named my parakeet Hamish), Nimitiz, Michelle, etc. I have invested an entire series worth of caring. I didn't get those characters here (except for Michelle a bit) and instead got vingettes of new characters that 1. were fairly repetitive (multiple groups fighting the same corruption) and 2. too short for me to connect emotionally with them. Also this book had a lot of errors in it. I kind of expect a book to be edited. There were grammatical mistakes that were obvious, and at one point, a character changed from MacKenzie to McKinsey and back. It was salt in the wound. I think this is my last foray into the Honorverse, which is sad because they started off so, so good.

  5. 5 out of 5

    ***Dave Hill

    SEP 2013 REVIEW Oh, look -- another Honor Harrington novel (says so, right on the cover, though properly speaking it's a Saganami Island / Talbott Quadrant novel) where the only presence of the series heroine is as someone that other people quote. Look, stupid and/or venal Solarian autocrats and security thugs and Frontier Navy officers who act like idiots and get their asses handed to them. Look, lots of people spending lots of time talking about lots of stuff that has happened, is happening, an SEP 2013 REVIEW Oh, look -- another Honor Harrington novel (says so, right on the cover, though properly speaking it's a Saganami Island / Talbott Quadrant novel) where the only presence of the series heroine is as someone that other people quote. Look, stupid and/or venal Solarian autocrats and security thugs and Frontier Navy officers who act like idiots and get their asses handed to them. Look, lots of people spending lots of time talking about lots of stuff that has happened, is happening, and might happen. Look, evil (but possibly sympathetic) Mesans and Mesan operatives beind dastardly and advancing cryptic plans that might actually get revealed several volumes into the future. Look, a huge cast of Mantie naval officers, once stars of their own stories but now extras in a cast of zillions, being noble and fearless and ruthless and white-hatted. Look, key chunks of the story occurring off-screen (presumably but not conclusively in spin-off novels), so that we roll up to a climax, and then discuss the aftermath of major events. So, yeah, business as usual in this mega-series. Which is unfortunate, because buried amidst the 400+ pages here are some gems, a bit of original writing, some minor character notes that were interesting, a soupcon of excitement. But it's all buried in Weber cranking out a lot of contractually-required pages in a series he seems to have lost interest in. The book's not helped by having been split up between this and the previous volume, A Rising Thunder, and some of the "gaps" in the story actually are at least partially filled there (that I had forgotten this, though, certainly speaks to some level of problem with how engaging the series is). Weber's Honorverse novels have been mentioned recently in articles about "book series that went too long. This installment does nothing to dispel that. It's not enough to make me want to not read any more -- yet -- but the urgent desire to dive in and pay the premium to read the book when its first published has long worn off.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Liviu

    read it in a go and need a reread at leisure but a few points: - length, yes very short; I discount DW's books to about 2/3 size due to repetitions and the info dumps (here there is a Detweiler chapter and other stuff that I think is just c/p from earlier work), so the book at about 420 pages felt like an under 300 page one, but those ~300 pages were really, really good, better than 4-500 pages from almost anyone else - lots of new beginnings and new characters which I actually like; gives one the read it in a go and need a reread at leisure but a few points: - length, yes very short; I discount DW's books to about 2/3 size due to repetitions and the info dumps (here there is a Detweiler chapter and other stuff that I think is just c/p from earlier work), so the book at about 420 pages felt like an under 300 page one, but those ~300 pages were really, really good, better than 4-500 pages from almost anyone else - lots of new beginnings and new characters which I actually like; gives one the idea of both how big the SL and its "protectorates" are and why the series will last another 10 novels or more and this is again a positive - lots of great moments both funny and sad; the desperate resistance movements and the "now we have stopped trying to get you to see reason and it's five minutes to abandon your ships or die" were highlights, but the most I enjoyed the last part with the two "rats" and their escape attempt(s) and the "Of course, at the moment I haven’t found anything that wasn’t your fault, but I’m sure if we keep looking long enough we’ll find someone else who screwed up almost as egregiously as you guys" which is another Weberian quote for the ages Another great quote was when they were asking Helen about the Mesan allegation that her father blew up Green Pines with a nuke (the book starts after the Crandall hammering, goes through Yawata, the revelations, Filareta and Beowulf and ends at a great TBC point somewhere around the end of ART) and after giving the usual reasons why she does not believe it, she ends with the "if he was in a city-killing mode..., trust me, the hole would’ve been a hell of a lot deeper!” Overall a very good series installment that will become even better when the next few books are released

  7. 5 out of 5

    Christopher

    Shadow of Freedom was not bad, but it should not be referred to as "Honor Harrington #14," since Honor Harrington was only mentioned a handful of times in the entire book and never made an appearance. Instead, it should be called "Michelle Henke #2, or #3," depending on how you count previous books where she had a major part. Or possibly, Honorverse spin-off #4, or some such. In any case, at least the Mesan Alignment is finally starting to be revealed a bit, and Manticore is finally starting to m Shadow of Freedom was not bad, but it should not be referred to as "Honor Harrington #14," since Honor Harrington was only mentioned a handful of times in the entire book and never made an appearance. Instead, it should be called "Michelle Henke #2, or #3," depending on how you count previous books where she had a major part. Or possibly, Honorverse spin-off #4, or some such. In any case, at least the Mesan Alignment is finally starting to be revealed a bit, and Manticore is finally starting to make headway against the titanic forces arrayed against it. Henke isn't bad as a "backup" Honor, and it makes decent reading. I usually rate Weber books much higher, but this whole story line is starting to drag on a bit, and he's been "Jordaning"--as in, what Robert Jordan was doing to HIS books, after falling in love with all his supporting cast and failing to focus on his main character--for the last few books. I HIGHLY encourage anyone who likes science fiction at all to read this series, but you can be excused for not reading the last couple of books in it, hehe.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    I feel like at this point my relationship with the Honor Harrington books is beginning to resemble my late 90s relationship with The Wheel of Time. I feel like I both dread and anticipate each new release. While the series never meanders in quite the way the middle books of Robert Jordan’s series do I still find a certain lack of satisfaction in each of Weber’s newer Honorverse novels. Over the course of each novel that sense of excitement and satisfaction waxes and wanes but the long(ish) gaps I feel like at this point my relationship with the Honor Harrington books is beginning to resemble my late 90s relationship with The Wheel of Time. I feel like I both dread and anticipate each new release. While the series never meanders in quite the way the middle books of Robert Jordan’s series do I still find a certain lack of satisfaction in each of Weber’s newer Honorverse novels. Over the course of each novel that sense of excitement and satisfaction waxes and wanes but the long(ish) gaps between novels makes what feels like a lack of forward momentum somewhat disheartening. The latest novel in the Honorverse, Shadow of Freedom, continues that trend. A Shadow of Freedom overlaps a bit chronologically with A Rising Thunder with the effects of the Oyster Bay attacks trickling out to the more distantly stationed Manticore fleet helmed by Michelle Henke. The novel focuses on the aftereffects of Manticore’s aggressive response to its being attacked on its home soil. These aftereffects unfurl on two fronts: the seizure of Manticoran Merchant ship and her crew, and the Mobius Liberation Front’s struggles against a Frontier Fleet backed regime. This latter part is the hardest to get into at first. Weber loves his conversation scenes whether it be in a political office or on the bridge of a ship the man loves to set his characters scheming and planning. This is all well and good when those characters are ones the reader is familiar with and when those discussions represent an aspect of the novel with which the reader has a previous emotional attachment. Whether its Baroness Medusa discussing the ramifications of Oyster Bay for the Talbott Quadrant, or Michelle Henke discussing with her officers or subordinates the tactics and strategies of her fleet these conversations represent an important and enjoyable aspect of any Weber book. However, these types of scenes are far less interesting when they represent new aspects of the series. Such is the case when it comes to the introduction of Mobius Liberation Front. Introduced early in the novel, and touched upon frequently as things proceed that initially introduction felt to me like a huge hurdle. David Weber is something of a master planner when it comes to the big picture so surmounting that hurdle has a nice payoff in the end but it was slow going getting through these section when what I really wanted were the characters I was more familiar with. As I have stated in past reviews the “series” nature of the Honorverse has grown increasingly complex. Including the main series and any other ancillary titles Shadow of Freedom marks the 26th book in the Honorverse and the 14th novel in the series main sequence. As has been the case in the later novels Shadow of Freedom while taking place as part of the core series relies heavily on titles that took place outside the main Honor Harrington titles. Confused yet? I know I am. What I’m trying to say is that the Honorverse is huge and complex and the David Weber has been carefully interweaving elements of this shared world for quite some time. It feels like many of those elements are now being distilled and focused towards what feels like will be one big, epic confrontation. It also makes this series almost impervious, that is to say completely opaque, to new readers. I’m sure some intrepid readers are willing to play the catch-up game but I pity anyone who saw this title on the shelf and picked it up on a whim; it would make almost no sense. I don’t expect each new book in a series to be immediately accessible to new readers but I would think it would be in both the publisher’s and author’s best interest to find a way to bring new readers into even long running series (the comic industry has been doing this for years from alternate universes, rebooted #1s, etc.). Regardless, I felt that Shadow of Freedom offered some major insight into the massive fight that the Star Empire will have on its hands; a fight I am eagerly waiting to witness.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Roberta

    Weber is getting too caught up in his metaplot to really develop time to a book plot, characterization, and solid elements of telling a story. There are so many characters that it is hard to keep track of all of them, and every scene has a different point of view. I wish he would pick three or four POV characters and stick to them. One good thing he continues to do is get into the minds of his villains. He doesn't create cookie cutter anything. He has true to life characters but do we really need Weber is getting too caught up in his metaplot to really develop time to a book plot, characterization, and solid elements of telling a story. There are so many characters that it is hard to keep track of all of them, and every scene has a different point of view. I wish he would pick three or four POV characters and stick to them. One good thing he continues to do is get into the minds of his villains. He doesn't create cookie cutter anything. He has true to life characters but do we really need to know about a junior officer's POV in a story just because they interact with the main plot at one point? So that being said, the Manties are being set up by the Mesans. This book shows us whether not they succeed. The main character if there is one is Michelle Henke and the villains are the Solarians in the rim and the Mesans. We meet quite a few local players who are fighting against Solarian overlordship and they are all sympathetic while some of the newly introduced Solarian characters are vile and disgusting. It is a good enough story. I like the overarching plot, but the boring space battles with info dumps about how many missiles at what speed and how far away along with the Manties overwhelming superiority and the vast arrogance and stupidity of the Solarians render the end of the battle a foregone conclusion. What keeps me continuing is the intrigue is fascinating and his characters are interesting. Weber really should take a look at his earlier novels to see how to unfold a good plot. The action is very slow and not a lot is accomplished in a 600 or so page novel.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ben

    This is not the 14th volume in the Honor Harrington series. Honor does not appear in it all, even as a cameo role. The cover art does not accurately reflect the characters present in the story. This IS the 3rd installment in the Saganami sub-series which began with The Shadow of Saganami and details the Manticoran involvement with the Talbot Cluster and activities of Admiral Gold Peak on that front. Chronologically it runs from February 1922 PD (Post Diaspora) to August 1922 PD and follows on fro This is not the 14th volume in the Honor Harrington series. Honor does not appear in it all, even as a cameo role. The cover art does not accurately reflect the characters present in the story. This IS the 3rd installment in the Saganami sub-series which began with The Shadow of Saganami and details the Manticoran involvement with the Talbot Cluster and activities of Admiral Gold Peak on that front. Chronologically it runs from February 1922 PD (Post Diaspora) to August 1922 PD and follows on from A Storm from the Shadows, and largely seems to run chronologically parallel to the events described in A Rising Thunder which are mentioned with a certain amount of time delay for news to pass across interstellar space (so do not read this book before Rising Thunder if you do not what the major events to be revealed), and some time after the events described in Torch of Freedom. On the one hand, what this leads to a certain amount of repetition of some events, or little scattered scenes which give us a slight bit of new insight into the situation as seen in a different location, or through different eyes. On the other, it feels a bit of a let down and it is easy to get a bit of a 'nothing much really happens' feeling with this novel. We are introduced to a slew of new minor characters scattered across a handful of worlds (in a similar kind of vein as Shadow of Saganami and Storm from the Shadows did for us with the various planets and personages which were introduced to in the Talbot Cluster, but here we mostly left with a very unresolved feeling. There really is not very much in the way of any major action in this book, and it seems to be clearly setting things up for a much more major event in a later novel - quite possibly another in the Saganami series, but it also does a fair amount of groundwork for events to unfold back with the main story arc and Honor Harrington and the unravelling Solarian League situation. Weber appears to be approaching the end of this huge series (by which I mean, he may be done in another ten books - we've seen nineteen so far, not including anthologies or young adult novels), and with the general plot coming together we are faced with less isolated incidents and more of a complete tapestry - which makes it difficult to divide books into singular entities which work as complete stories on their own. Shadow of Freedom very much fails to work as a self contained story; it really is just very much a period of slow development before something else happens. Sadly, Weber rather misses the opportunities he took with the last two books in this series to work on some of the new generation of characters he had focused on previously, such as Helen Zilwicki and Abigail Hearns, who while get small roles, are far from the main focus. Fans of the Honorverse will be happy enough to read this for the additional insight into events on the other side of the Lynx Wormhole, but should not really expect very much else from it. Despite being a good thirty-six chapters, it felt like only half a book (or at best two-thirds of one). While I cannot give this a high star rating, it did do the job of leaving me wanting more, and I shall be looking forward to the continuing story. As a final note, this is the first novel I have read in Kindle format, using my Paperwhite. Many years ago, I got a CD-Rom with a hard copy of War of Honor (I think it was), and it had the whole of Weber's back catalogue from the Honorverse including some short stories. At the time, I tried reading one of them on the PC and found it a horrible experience, but I was impressed that Weber was so willing to make his works available in e-format. It feels somewhat fitting that this is the first e-book for me to read, and I was pleased that while the story itself did not wow me, the reading experience was really nice and I was able to enjoy Weber's writing as much as I did in paper format.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Gallandro_83

    OK so I feel the need to justify my rating. I think overall I would rate the book at about 2 to 2.5 if it was on its own but since the novel is supposed to be part of the main series I have to rate it lower. Like other reviewers have stated the book has about 20% that is recap or cut from previous novels and does nothing to move the story along that right there is a warning sign for me. Also this book just like the previous two starts off at about the same time . I'm don't mind when an author show OK so I feel the need to justify my rating. I think overall I would rate the book at about 2 to 2.5 if it was on its own but since the novel is supposed to be part of the main series I have to rate it lower. Like other reviewers have stated the book has about 20% that is recap or cut from previous novels and does nothing to move the story along that right there is a warning sign for me. Also this book just like the previous two starts off at about the same time . I'm don't mind when an author showcases a different front from a large war. The qualification to that is that the front needs to do something interesting. This book has us starting out almost where Mission of Honor began and ending about the same as A Rising Thunder. If your going to cover the same time period as has already been written then there better be quite a bit of story that helps move along the series. As far as I can tell this book doesn't do that. We see a slight bump in the war against the League but the villainous characters become useless and will never be seen again. My biggest problem is with the Mesan Alignment and there plans to showcase the Manties in a bad diplomatic light. We know this by the cover and its implied in the first chapter and yet despite this it never gets resolved. We see no big outrage or plan and nothing comes of it. Additionally we are given all these small side cast characters on all the rebel planets that are likely to be minor at best in any other book yet who take up 60% of the novel anyway when you add it to the 20% that is from previous works it leaves only 20% of the novel dealing with secondary characters from the main series and they don't end up doing anything that contributes materially for the wars against either villain. In the end this book is part of a epic series and its main job is to move the story along IMHO it fails to meet this main point. The writing is OK and the new characters are somewhat cliche but fit with the universe as written. To me it just felt that the story was almost a fan piece and a decent editor could have blurbed the story as a whole in a chapter or two in the next novel. gallandro

  12. 4 out of 5

    Camilo Emiliano Rosas Echeverria

    The book has more or less the same pace of A Rising Thunder, which means that it follows numerous storylines which don't really matter, presents at least two bold and condemned Resistance movements, a phalanx of brave and bold Manticoran officers, and corrupt and sneaky Solarian ones. Manticorans always win, Sollies always lose, sometimes fighting, sometimes not. Nothing else happens. Seriously: you can read A Rising Thunder, just assume "and things go on like this" and simply skip this book. Me The book has more or less the same pace of A Rising Thunder, which means that it follows numerous storylines which don't really matter, presents at least two bold and condemned Resistance movements, a phalanx of brave and bold Manticoran officers, and corrupt and sneaky Solarian ones. Manticorans always win, Sollies always lose, sometimes fighting, sometimes not. Nothing else happens. Seriously: you can read A Rising Thunder, just assume "and things go on like this" and simply skip this book. Mesan characters appear if I'm not mistaken in TWO whopping scenes and do absolutely nothing. Not only it doesn't advance the main story-line, but it's actually a boring read: characters are hard to distinguish from each other, and the same plot we already saw in ART is repeated over and over. Heroes come, bad guys get wiped out in seconds or surrender, everyone cheers. I expected much much better from David Weber; I'm profoundly disgusted by this book, and I'll wait for reviews instead of outright buying the next one as soon as it comes out as I've always done.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Davie

    Fourteenth in the Honor Harrington David Weber considers Shadow of Freedom to be the fifth story in the Honorverse military science fiction series, which is an offshoot from the main Honor Harrington series. Although, I do have to question why it's considered an Honor Harrington. It seems to fit better within the Talbott Honorverse instead. And, yep, it's actually thirty-ninth in the Honorverse and third in the Saganami Island subseries. My Take Yup, it's a short one, LOL. This is a combination bri Fourteenth in the Honor Harrington David Weber considers Shadow of Freedom to be the fifth story in the Honorverse military science fiction series, which is an offshoot from the main Honor Harrington series. Although, I do have to question why it's considered an Honor Harrington. It seems to fit better within the Talbott Honorverse instead. And, yep, it's actually thirty-ninth in the Honorverse and third in the Saganami Island subseries. My Take Yup, it's a short one, LOL. This is a combination bridge and tidy-up as Weber provides us with a ton of worries, state-sanctioned terrorism, and a determined Mike, Admiral Gold Peak. She's the kind of person we need more of throughout every aspect of life. A person willing to do what's right whatever it may cost her. Although, I am rather confused as to why Mike plans to take on the Mesan Alignment when the Manticoran Navy is so incredibly low on ammunition. Don't try to make sense of the mess of planets and their rebels. It's just too many acronyms to try and keep track of. It's hard enough getting the hang of which planets the good versus bad guys belong to as there are too many with too many crazy names. The constant you will pick up on throughout is how incredibly corrupt the Office of Frontier Security and the Solarians are. It's just disgusting how they rape and pillage planet after planet. Unfortunately the Mesan Alignment almost makes them look good. How scary is that? I do love the Manties' cockiness, especially since they have the technological advantage of the arrogant, yet corrupt, Sollies, who are always so shocked and surprised. It's rather funny listening in to the Sollies calling the Manties stupidly cocky and arrogant with the Manties saying the exact same thing about them. You can't help but cheer as the Manties take 'em out. It does make me wonder when the other shoe will drop! And, after Yawata Crossing, I am so hoping it doesn't! The Story The incident at Green Pines which the Mesans are claiming was a nuclear strike by Anton Zilwicki is still fresh as is the Solarian Navy's defeat at Talbott by Gold Peak. Even worse, the Yawata Strike---the Mesan's Oyster Bay plan---which totally destroyed Yawata Crossing and the Manticoran Empire's ability to manufacture ammunition is also fresh. Very few yet know of Admiral Filareta's defeat in Manticore space (see A Rising Thunder , HH 13). And Gold Peak is taking 'em to the mattresses. The Characters The Royal Manitcoran Navy Vice Admiral (soon to be Admiral) Gloria Michelle Samantha Evelyn Henke, Countess Gold Peak, and commanding officer, Tenth Fleet, a.k.a., Mike, is one of Duchess Harrington's best friends, fourth in line to the throne, and Empress Elizabeth's cousin. And a very determined woman. Chris Billingsley is her chief of staff. Dicey is the huge Maine coon cat who haunts Mike's cabin. Master Sergeant Massimiliano "Miliano" Cognasso has a treecat, Alfredo, who helps out. Captain Cindy Lecter, Michael Oversteegen, Vice Admiral Aploloniá Munming is the commander of Battle Squadron 16, and Rear Admiral Mickaël Ruddick are with Gold Peak. Commodore Jacob Zavala is heading to Saltash due to irregularities with Manticoran merchant vessels. Lieutenant Commander George Auerbach is his chief of staff, Lieutenant Commander Alice Gabrowski is his operations officer, and Lieutenant Abhijat Wilson is the com officer. His squadron includes: HMS Kay with Commander Rochelle Goulard, Lieutenant Commander Jasmine Carver, and Lieutenant Samuel Turner; HMS Gaheris' with Lieutenant Commander Rützel; HMS Gawain with Captain Morgan; HMS Tristram has Captain Naomi Kaplan and Lieutenant Abigail Hearns is aboard with her bodyguard, Lieutenant Mateo Gutierrez. Talbott Station Is still reeling from the massive defeat dealt to the SLNS by Admiral Gold Peak's Tenth Fleet. Baroness Medusa governs. Gregor O'Shaughnessy. Admiral Augustus Khumalo is aboard the HMS Hercules with Captain Loretta Shoupe as his chief of staff and Commander Ambrose Chandler is his staff intelligence officer. Lieutenant Gervais Winton Erwin Neville Archer, a.k.a., Gwen, is one of Helen's friends. Ensign Helen Zilwicki is Sir Aivars Terekhov's flag lieutenant and the notorious Anton Zilwicki's daughter. He'll be heading to Mobius with Commander Tom Pope, Commander Stilt Lewis who is in charge of nailing down the brutal imagery, and Lieutenant Atalante Montella. I do love what Aivars does to Yucel! Tillerman Vice Admiral Theodore Bennington commands the other half of Tenth Fleet. The Pine Green escapees include: Meanwhile, Anton Zilwicki, Yana Tretiakovna, and Victor Cachat are almost at the end of their escape from Pine Greens with Dr. Herlander Simões, a Mesan physicist with extremely valuable information. Jack McBryde was the Mesan security officer who got them out before he covered their escape quite explosively. Frank Gillich and June Mattes are both Beowulf Biological Survey Corps and extremely capable. Montana Stephen Westman raises incredibly good beef and he's already been played by Firebrand. So he's suspicious when Mr. Ankenbrandt shows up. Planetary systems include: Loomis Frinkelo Osborne is an advisor (for the Office of Frontier Security (OFS)) to President Ailsa MacMinn. Secretary Senga MacQuarie runs Loomis System Unified Public Safety Force (UPS). Vice-President Tyler MacCrimmon is the real power. What's left of King Tavis' family are the MacRorys, specifically, Mánas. Nyatui Zagorski is the System Manager, and he'd expected a bigger role with bigger plums. He's clearcutting the prize planetary resource. Lieutenant Commander Sharon Tanner is SLNS and irritated with UPS' overuse of KEW weapons. Missile Tech 1/c George Chasnikov is a brilliant tech who will never get promoted. Captain Francine Venelli and Commander Diadoro are Tanner's superiors under Dubroskaya. The Loomis rebels include Erin MacFadzean who organized a legal political party that the powers-that-be decided to take out; Tammas MacPhee (Erin's hoping he died and was not taken prisoner, oh well); Tad Ogilvy; Innis MacLay is willing to lay down his life to take out as many Uppies as possible especially after they murdered his family; Megan MacLean was supposed to get off-planet with the cipher; Jamie Kirbishly; and, Tobias MacGill is the cell leader in Haimer. Seraphim System President Jacqueline McCready keeps General Tillman O'Sullivan and the Seraphim System Security Police well greased and more. The OFS interstellars are Krestor Interstellar and Mendoza of Córdoba, and they have destroyed all the small businesses in Seraphim. Indiana Graham, a.k.a., Talisman, and his sister, Mackenzie, a.k.a., Magpie, are meeting a man they think is a Manticoran agent, Firebrand. In reality, he's Damian Harahap. Their father, Bruce Graham, is in a maximum security prison after he was forced off his land. Leonard Silvowitz, a.k.a., Saratoga, no longer operates his commercial farming operation, but he can hide containers of weapons. Saltash OFS takes 35% of the gross in licensing fees. Governor Damiá Dueñas gets some really stupid ideas and is stubborner'n dirt. It's mind blowing how quickly every single SLNS or planetary official scrambles to cover their ass and put everyone else's in a sling. Lieutenant Governor Cicely Tiilikainen is against his plans. Maxence Kodou is Dueñas' secretary. Captain Valentine MacNaughtan is with the Saltash Space Service and he's in charge of Shona Station where the Manticoran merchant crews are being held. Commander Tad Rankeillor is his executive officer, Lieutenant Bridie MacWilliams, and Lieutenant Eardsidh MacGeechan, Bridie's second-in-command, make their own plans to survive what's coming. Major John Pole is in command of the Solarian Gendarmerie intervention battalion OFS (a license for thugs and leg breakers to hurt people). Captain Kristofferson is considered expendable. One of the squads is commanded by Sergeant Clinton Abernathy. Vice Admiral Oxana Dubroskaya is the SLNS CO in the area commanding Battlecruiser Squadron 491; her ship is SLNS Vanquisher. Captain Ham Seung commands the SLNS Inexorable. Captain Borden McGillicudy commands the SLNS Paladin. Captain Myau is in charge of the destroyers that are still intact. Swallow System President Rosa Shuman knocked off her husband Donnie when he got too greedy. General Felicia Karaxis commands the Swallow System Army and the security forces. The OFS interstellar is the Tallulah Corporation headed up by Alton Parkman. Jerome Luther heads up the Nixon Foundation team investigating human rights abuses. The Allenby clan is the thorn in their side with Floyd Allenby. Ever since they were stupid enough to kill Floyd's wife, Dr. Sandra Allenby. Sharon's brother, Vincent Frugoni, is a former first sergeant in the Solarian Marine Corps with 27 years of battle experience. Simon Allenby is Floyd's grandfather and still winning duels at 91. Jason MacGruder is Floyd's second cousin, and he may be a gloomy gus, but he's totally on Floyd's side. They think the Manties are going to support them, too. Mobius President Svein Lombroso likes to name things after himself. Angelika Xydis is the local OFS rep. General Olivia Yardley is the thuggish CO of the Presidential Guard; General Friedmann Mátyás commands the Mobius Secret Police. Colonel Tyler Braddock's careful position at the back doesn't do him much good. The OFS interstellar is Trifecta Corporation with Georgina Guernicke in charge. Her second-in-command is Christianos Frolov with a seeming conflict. Commander Tremont Watson is in command of the SLNS Oceanus with Lieutenant Branston Shang who is the comm officer and Lieutenant Commander Hiroshi Hammond is the tactical officer. The rebels are Michael Breitbach, chairman of the Mobius Liberation Front; Kayleigh Blanchard is a senior lieutenant and Michael's heir apparent; Kazuyoshi Brewseter lost his entire family in the May Riots so he has nothing to lose; and, Yolanda Summers is the new messenger to the Manties from the MLF. Meyers Prime Minister Thomas Montivew officially rules for King Lawrence IX; Yeargin Kowalski is a local businessman and banker; Helen Sanderson will become the new head of the new Royal Police; and, Janice Hannover is forced into the attorney general position. Commissioner Lorcan Verrochio is Xydis' superior and in charge of the Madras Sector. Brigadier Francisca Yucel is in charge of security. Vice Commissioner Junyan Hongbo only thought he was escaping. The SLNS Edgehill is Commodore Francis Thurgood's flagship. Captain Sadako Merriman is a Frontier Fleet officer and a senior naval intelligence specialist as well as Thurgood's lover. Captain Hideoshi Wayne is Thurgood's chief of staff. The OFS interstellars are Brindle Star, Ltd. of Hirochi with Saverio Palgani as manager and Newman & Sons with Theophilia Kasomoulis. The Mesan Alignment Albrecht Detweiler heads up this super secret organization of genetically manufactured people which has stayed secret for hundreds of years. Benjamin is his oldest son and informing him of Zilwicki and Cachat's escape and their prize. The Solarians The SLNS is the Solaris Navy, what we think of as Earth. They're major league bad guys, corrupt to the hilt. Although, the Mesan Alignment are the baddest of the bad. Admiral Margaux Bordelon is the senior surviving officer and therefore in command of her fellow SLNS prisoners after their defeat at Talbott. The Cover and Title There are more treecats on the cover than there are in the story! It's a collage of terror with worried people seated around a table display that shows a mock battle between spaceships while Admiral Gold Peak and Cossagno's treecat, Alfredo, looks over her shoulder. The title summarizes the latest Mesan plot, for it's a Shadow of Freedom that's offered to a number of independent planets.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Launian

    If I could, I'd give this book a 3.7 rating, but since that's not possible (yet)... Just a warning, thos: this is going to contain spoilers, so if you haven't read the book yet, please close the window. Yes, it's a great continuation from A Rising Thunder (although, if you ask me, it's better suited as the 3rd book on the Saganami Series), with a lot of sweet twists and a lot of my favorite characters (Dicey rocks, btw, and even if Scotty's missing), but there're some things that are simply bad a If I could, I'd give this book a 3.7 rating, but since that's not possible (yet)... Just a warning, thos: this is going to contain spoilers, so if you haven't read the book yet, please close the window. Yes, it's a great continuation from A Rising Thunder (although, if you ask me, it's better suited as the 3rd book on the Saganami Series), with a lot of sweet twists and a lot of my favorite characters (Dicey rocks, btw, and even if Scotty's missing), but there're some things that are simply bad about it. First and foremost, the lack of ANY apperance by Honor on this book, even after we get past the point where David ended ART. Second, and in line with that, is the fact that we get to read some things for the second (or even the third!) time. I mean, do we really need the repetition of the scene where Albert finds out Victor and Anton are still alive? And not content with that, David balantly changed the dialogs on it! Same thing with the scene where they find out about Eloise's trip. Third, we get a lot of players introduced to us in a very short amount of time (less than 50% of the book), and you never really develop a sense of recongnition for any of them. Yes, Firebrand was stirring restlessness along the Protectorates, and they were trying to blame Manticore of being two-faced, but did we really need to read essentialy the same thing three times to get the point across? Mobius would've been enough, but then we get so many chapters of the SAME THING happening on Seraphim (don't even remember it that's the right name), even tho we know Mike's just going to send support the same way she did the first time. It was different on the first 10 or so books, where every apperance by a new character was tied to something that affected directly on the politics or the strategy of Manticore. Here, it just seems like space-taking repetition to me, and even tho I hope I'm wrong, I can't shake the feeling that they'll just won't matter in the end. Anyways, this is a really good book, even with those flaws, and I hope it gets shuffled onto the Saganami Series lists instead of the Honor Harrington Series, because that's where it belongs. As for what happens next, I guess it's everyone's guess, since by the end of the book we learn thing that hadn't even been hinted at on the previous books. Oh, and I simply loved Terekov's performance in this book.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Matt

    Problems: 1. Honor Harrington (the main character of the series) is only mentioned in this book, never was she a player, or even indirectly involved. 2. ALL of the action scenes where skipped! Each time the story would lead up to a battle then jump to the aftermath - mostly the politics of the story. I did not get this book to read the a story of space drama politics. David Weber, the author, seems to be making the same mistake the Robert Jordan made with the Wheel of Time. The story is branching Problems: 1. Honor Harrington (the main character of the series) is only mentioned in this book, never was she a player, or even indirectly involved. 2. ALL of the action scenes where skipped! Each time the story would lead up to a battle then jump to the aftermath - mostly the politics of the story. I did not get this book to read the a story of space drama politics. David Weber, the author, seems to be making the same mistake the Robert Jordan made with the Wheel of Time. The story is branching to much and he is introducing to much or driving too deeply into the politics of the story. Give me just enough and stop there. I like a good intrigue, deep stories of spies and subterfuge and the game of politics. I love that the Honor Harrington series salt and pepper with it, but I don't want it to be the primary focus of the story. That is not what drew me to these books and it will push me away. Prior to the Shadow of Freedom, there was enough of that to get me drawn into the conflicts. This one had me shouting enough already! Over all it was a good story. By it's self I may of loved it. Preconditioned with the other book, it left me wondering if I will continue reading the series.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    100 pages in. Lots of talking, almost nothing happening, and no sign of any treecats. Flipping through the next hundred pages, still no sign of treecats, even though the last book insinuated that they're becoming very... involved... now. The cover matches that expectation. But generally, things that have happened in previous book(s) have not yet happened in this book. Is this like the Wheel of Time book in which very little happened other than shifts from perspective to perspective to see how al 100 pages in. Lots of talking, almost nothing happening, and no sign of any treecats. Flipping through the next hundred pages, still no sign of treecats, even though the last book insinuated that they're becoming very... involved... now. The cover matches that expectation. But generally, things that have happened in previous book(s) have not yet happened in this book. Is this like the Wheel of Time book in which very little happened other than shifts from perspective to perspective to see how all the major players reacted to Rand and Nynaeve's badassery? Except Weber is splitting his across multiple volumes?? At one point in this first hundred pages, a scene seemed so familiar, I had to go check to make sure I hadn't already read this book. Nope. It's the new one. I see another commenter says that Weber copy/pasted three entire chapters word for word from a previous book. Really????? Yawn. I'm very bored. Putting this down until the next release is imminent. IF it looks like something interesting is forthcoming in the next release. I want to see how this story resolves. The stage is set up for serious epicness. Bring it! Please!!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ted

    I said I would not be buying any more DW books, and I haven't. This one was sitting in the bookstore and finished it there . . . surprisingly quickly. Most of the pages did little to move the story along and a quick skim was all you needed. I did buy two other books partly becauise I felt guilty reading one there in the store, but after gliding though this one so easily, I couldn't see paying for it. The issue seems to be that DW can't seem to get things moving again. While I love the Honorverse I said I would not be buying any more DW books, and I haven't. This one was sitting in the bookstore and finished it there . . . surprisingly quickly. Most of the pages did little to move the story along and a quick skim was all you needed. I did buy two other books partly becauise I felt guilty reading one there in the store, but after gliding though this one so easily, I couldn't see paying for it. The issue seems to be that DW can't seem to get things moving again. While I love the Honorverse books, the last several make it feel as if a trilogy has been stretched into multiple books for not real reason. In my opinion Mission of Honor, Shadow of Freedom, Caldron of Ghosts could have, and should have been, one volume and a ton of unnecessary minutiae could have been stripped out. His Safehold and Bhzell series are in the same boat. Not only will I not buy another, but I will have to be very bored to pick up another in the bookstore or library. DW's run his course for me, I am unhappy to say.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kyle

    I don't get it. Is this the 14th book in the Honor Harrington series or the 3rd book in the Saganami Island series? Audible and wikipedia both list it as being both. Honor's not in it and all it really does is shuffle through what was going on in the background of the 12th book of the Honor Harrington series. I've got to say, I'm getting a bit sick of retreading this same ground, since book 13 already wound the clock back to fill in details. Book 13 and Shadow of Freedom lift whole conversations I don't get it. Is this the 14th book in the Honor Harrington series or the 3rd book in the Saganami Island series? Audible and wikipedia both list it as being both. Honor's not in it and all it really does is shuffle through what was going on in the background of the 12th book of the Honor Harrington series. I've got to say, I'm getting a bit sick of retreading this same ground, since book 13 already wound the clock back to fill in details. Book 13 and Shadow of Freedom lift whole conversations from book 12, and (unless I'm just getting having deja vu from walking this same path again and again) I'm pretty sure Shadow of Freedom lifts big chunks, verbatim, from book 13. At this point, I'm ready to set Honor Harrington aside and read Twilight. I know I probably won't like it but at least I haven't read it twice before.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kurt

    Numerous portions of the book are copied word-for-word from previous novels in the series, with at most a page added to the previous section to form a chapter. It seems almost as if David Weber took sections of his previous books merely to pad out the book and make it seem to be a long work. There is inconsistent timing in the sections, with sections containing events months, or even years prior to the events in the immediately preceding section. That would work if the sections were following on Numerous portions of the book are copied word-for-word from previous novels in the series, with at most a page added to the previous section to form a chapter. It seems almost as if David Weber took sections of his previous books merely to pad out the book and make it seem to be a long work. There is inconsistent timing in the sections, with sections containing events months, or even years prior to the events in the immediately preceding section. That would work if the sections were following only one character, but since they are following numerous ones, it failed to mesh together. Has David Weber failed to avail himself of the services of any editors? Because if he had used one, the editor self-evidently carried out only a perfunctory effort on his work.

  20. 5 out of 5

    The Pirate Ghost (Formerly known as the Curmudgeon)

    It's from the Honorverse, if you are reading it, then it is likely you know what your should expect. It has the same senes of humor and vague and convoluted historical references. It has the same war ships and intergalacted players. New characters that are not "fleshed out" as well as the old ones but, they grow on you... in a good way. If you haven't read any of Weber's Honor-verse books, don't start wit this one. (They all start with Honor Harington). The short stories in the "Worlds of Honor" It's from the Honorverse, if you are reading it, then it is likely you know what your should expect. It has the same senes of humor and vague and convoluted historical references. It has the same war ships and intergalacted players. New characters that are not "fleshed out" as well as the old ones but, they grow on you... in a good way. If you haven't read any of Weber's Honor-verse books, don't start wit this one. (They all start with Honor Harington). The short stories in the "Worlds of Honor" Anthologies are a great place for an introduction. THat said. Meh.. 4 stars. Better than average, as all of theis group are, but not greater than average. I liked it, but then, it I've read a butt-ton of em. Enjoy. It's recommended, but no surprises.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rich Van Ollefen

    I was pretty disappointed in this book. I expected more of Honor herself, as opposed to NONE, and given that the last book didn't do much to advance the storyline, I expected more from this one. Which I didn't get. It was, for all intents and purposes, a chapter in the overall story. The overall pacing of the the books is getting slower and slower. I don't really look forward to the next book. I was pretty disappointed in this book. I expected more of Honor herself, as opposed to NONE, and given that the last book didn't do much to advance the storyline, I expected more from this one. Which I didn't get. It was, for all intents and purposes, a chapter in the overall story. The overall pacing of the the books is getting slower and slower. I don't really look forward to the next book.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lenora

    The Honor Harrington series keeps getting better and better. As always, David Weber managed to keep me on the edge of my seat at the end of the book. I know a new Worlds of Honor anthology is going to be published in July. Who knows when the next book will be released? Anticipation...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mallory

    *shakes fist at sky in protest against the cruel world* Damn you, David Weber! Every time you release a new book, I tear right through it and have to wait for the next one!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    2018 re-read. Many intriguing plots!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Martin

    This eighteenth book in the Honor Harrington series stars Michelle Henke, cousin of the Empress of the Manticoran Empire and fourth in line for the throne. Mike has forged a career in the Manticoran Navy and is currently Admiral in command of the 10th Fleet. Mike is out on the sharp point of the spear. The time period of this book seems to be concurrent with A RISING THUNDER which actually stars Honor Harrington. Communication is fast in this vast interstellar world but that still means that the This eighteenth book in the Honor Harrington series stars Michelle Henke, cousin of the Empress of the Manticoran Empire and fourth in line for the throne. Mike has forged a career in the Manticoran Navy and is currently Admiral in command of the 10th Fleet. Mike is out on the sharp point of the spear. The time period of this book seems to be concurrent with A RISING THUNDER which actually stars Honor Harrington. Communication is fast in this vast interstellar world but that still means that they are weeks late in getting the word from back home. That leaves Mike needing to make decisions without guidance from her government. And Mike has lots of decisions to make. The Solarian League, old and corrupt, is losing its grip on its planetary protectorates. The Office of Frontier Security has devolved into an organization that takes over planets and bleeds them of everything useful at the hands of their corporate partners. Needless to say, many revolutionary groups are rising up on these planets. Manticore's secret enemy, the Mesan Alignment, is taking advantage of this situation by offering help in the Manticoran name. Their thought is that a little investment now in advanced weapons will pay off in bad publicity later when the Maniticoran aid they are promising doesn't show up. Weber is writing a world that is getting increasingly black and white. The Solarian League, the Office of Frontier Security, and the puppet governments they support are all bad. They are stupid, venal, greedy, and have no respect for the lives of the citizens of the planets they have conquered. The Manticorans are good and stand for right, truth, and justice. The Mesan Alignment has a deep seated plan and is busy manipulating the Solarian League, the Manticorans, and everyone else in the vast universe. They will do anything to support their future goals. Hundred of thousands of civilian deaths can be written off as collateral damage. But their secrecy is disappearing. More and more of those in the know are coming to believe that the Mesan Alignment exists and are focusing their attention on it. The Honor Harrington series is a huge epic adventure. I will admit that I do a lot of skimming when pages are devoted to space battles and weapons development. I am interested in the people and what they do and think. The story is told from multiple viewpoints and from multiple locations in the vast Honorverse. I have no idea how Weber keeps track! I am always eager for the next Honorverse book and always enjoy getting lost in the adventure.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Scott Holstad

    In a word: disappointing. In another word: lame. Frankly, this book sucked. I have given every Honor Harrington book except one five stars, but this barely deserves two. And I feel betrayed. First of all, as I was finishing Honor #13 not too long ago, I was reading reviews of it and a number of them mentioned Shadow of Freedom as being Honor #14, so I immediately ordered it. Lots of people referred to it as Honor #14. People reviewing THIS book -- Shadow of Freedom -- even refer to it as Honor # In a word: disappointing. In another word: lame. Frankly, this book sucked. I have given every Honor Harrington book except one five stars, but this barely deserves two. And I feel betrayed. First of all, as I was finishing Honor #13 not too long ago, I was reading reviews of it and a number of them mentioned Shadow of Freedom as being Honor #14, so I immediately ordered it. Lots of people referred to it as Honor #14. People reviewing THIS book -- Shadow of Freedom -- even refer to it as Honor #14. But it's not. At all. All Honor books come with the words "an Honor Harrington novel," or something to that effect, on the cover. This book says it's part of the "Honorverse." And when I listed it in Goodreads, it comes up as Saganami #3, an Honor sub-series that I haven't read, one of at least two such sub-series'. So, imagine my shock when Honor herself doesn't even appear in this book at all! She's quoted a couple of times, I guess to make it an Honor-related book, but she's nowhere to be found. Indeed, only one main character from the Honor series is in this book -- Michelle Henke, who has her fleet in the Talbot Quadrant on the edges of the Solarian League. And this book is about her adventures, and the adventures of "independent" world rebels trying to throw off the yoke of Solarian sponsored oppression. The thing that makes it tricky is they're contacted and given weapons by an agent who claims to represent Manticore, so they naturally assume the Manticorian Navy will come to their aid, all of them. However, he's a Mesan Alliance agent and is trying to screw Manticore. There are a couple of mildly interesting scenes in the book, but it's a short book and not too much happens, aside from the usual ungodly amounts of dialogue Weber throws into his books cause he's apparently paid by the word count. He likes to double his books' lengths by going dialogue-heavy. All that said, as others have pointed out, the truly damning thing about this book is that at least two chapters are literal total cut and paste chapters from previous Honor books, and that's unforgivable. Weber doesn't even have the decency to try and mix them up just a little; he holds his readers in that much disdain. What an asshole. Honestly, Weber can write awesome stories and great battle scenes, but I've decided that he must be a royal asshole as a person and I truly don't like him at all, even as I eagerly await all of his new Honor and Safehold novels. And I hate myself for it. This book is most definitely NOT recommended.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Per Gunnar

    The book in itself is not a bad book but then David Weber generally does not write really “bad” books. At least I cannot remember having read one. However, I quite frankly feel cheated by this book. I have waited eagerly for quite a while to get my hands on a new Honor Harrington book and when I finally do…there is no Honor Harrington in it!!! Yes the story takes place within the main story arc of the Honor Harrington novels but it does not really advance the story in any major way. A good chunk The book in itself is not a bad book but then David Weber generally does not write really “bad” books. At least I cannot remember having read one. However, I quite frankly feel cheated by this book. I have waited eagerly for quite a while to get my hands on a new Honor Harrington book and when I finally do…there is no Honor Harrington in it!!! Yes the story takes place within the main story arc of the Honor Harrington novels but it does not really advance the story in any major way. A good chunk of the book is taken by a minor skirmish that, from the main perspective, can be said to be a side story and nothing more. Also, as is, unfortunately, now a common trait of the works of David Weber that a lot of the book is spent on talk, talk, talk between different parties. This is a shame since he is really better than most in writing actual space battles. Actually, the before mentioned minor skirmish is probably the most fun part of the entire book to read. As I mentioned above the book is not really bad. Quite to the contrary it is a quite good book although I would have preferred a bit less talking, especially since most of the talking is about politics and such despicable activities, and more of the actual action parts. It is however totally mismatched against my expectations. In particular, the fact that it is presented as an Honor Harrington novel and then Honor Harrington herself is not really in it is just…not right. I could perhaps have accepted that if the book actually advanced the story in any significant way but that it does not. I am indeed somewhat disappointed with this book.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sable

    This novel has received a lot of mixed reviews. But I personally really enjoyed it! Okay, here's the thing: if you came here looking for Honor Harrington, you've come barking up the wrong tree. She's not here, man. People quote her from time to time and refer to the things she's done and has been doing. On the other hand, if you're looking for space opera... man oh man, you are not going to be disappointed! Michelle Henke, who just handed the Solarian League the most humiliating defeat in their his This novel has received a lot of mixed reviews. But I personally really enjoyed it! Okay, here's the thing: if you came here looking for Honor Harrington, you've come barking up the wrong tree. She's not here, man. People quote her from time to time and refer to the things she's done and has been doing. On the other hand, if you're looking for space opera... man oh man, you are not going to be disappointed! Michelle Henke, who just handed the Solarian League the most humiliating defeat in their history, is confused when one of the leaders of a planetary resistance movement in the Verge tells her they need that promised Manticoran Navy support right now. Nobody in Manticore has heard anything about this. But the Mesan Alignment, the conspiracy of genetic supermen Nazis who have been sucker-punching Manticore and Haven both for the past several books, has been hatching a Byzantine plan to pretend to be Manticoran agents provocateur, encouraging resistance movements against the Solarian League's Frontier Security on planets that are being "assisted" by them (thank you for the scathing critique of American Imperialism, Mr. Weber.) And then they will fail to provide Navy assistance at a critical moment (because of course, the Manticoran Navy has promised no such thing) and no one will trust Manticore ever again. In the meantime, the Solarian League is blustering and puffing and threatening Manticore with more and more violence, dancing around the declaration of war. They seem chronically stupid - and certainly, the Manticoran characters don't help, as they lament how stupid the Sollies seem to be - but in fact, the Sollies are faced with the same dilemma of the British at the outbreak of the First World War. They have been the supreme masters of the waves for so long, they haven't yet realized that technology has taken a completely different turn and they have been left behind. And with information having to travel over such a huge distance, sometimes they don't get the memo until its too late. Granted, there are a plethora of Sollie assholes throwing themselves at Manticore. It would boggle belief, except that it is to be remembered that the Mesan Alignment are seeking these people out to throw at Manticore deliberately. Mike (Michelle) Henke has been tasked with defending the Talbott Quadrant, a recently-annexed confederation within the new Star Empire of Manticore. But if she doesn't do something about these rebellions who are expecting Manticoran aid, all outside support for Manticore will collapse. So she does. And the solution is brilliant. The two biggest complaints I've heard about this book are 1) that Weber has repeated whole passages from other books, and 2) that we follow "a bunch of minor characters who don't matter and sub-stories that have nothing to do with the main plot." Let me address those criticisms, because they seem legit, when you take the book on its own (hence, the four, and not five-star rating,) but as a writer, I don't think they're fair. I don't think people understand what it is that Weber is trying to do. In the first case, the repeated passages: yes, that's a thing. But I contend, as I have for some time, that the problem here is that the novel is insufficient to the task Weber has before him, and unfortunately, we don't have a better medium yet (or at least, not one anyone would read: serials would have covered this just fine, but nobody wants to read serials). This is a huge, overarching epic story. It's too big for one book, or even one series (this one is told over three different series: Honor Harrington, Saganami Island, and Wages of Sin.) So in some cases, certain scenes are part of two, or even all three, of the series. If you're reading the series separately, you need that information, so he has no choice but to repeat them! If you've read it before, just skip or skim over it and stop whining about it, is my suggestion. In the second, the "minor characters with stories that don't matter to the overall plot": first, you're wrong. Those characters are all going to be around for the next few books. Sorry if that's a spoiler, but they are. Second, their stories only don't matter if you don't care about the tragedies going on in the rest of the universe as a result of the troubles the Mesan Alignment are creating. It boggles my brain how everyone can praise George R.R. Martin for A Song of Ice and Fire as being "a grand epic!" and being all excited about how wonderful and broad the world he's created is, and how cool it is that he tells the stories of the common folks as well as the lords of the land, and here Weber is, doing exactly the same thing, and people are whining about it. This is a deliberate subversion of the "heroic space opera" where a superman solves everyone's problems just by existing, because they're so much better than everyone else. This is an uncomfortably fascist element of heroic science fiction, and Weber rejects it. The future of his universe is shaped not just by the great and powerful, but also missile techs, bodyguards, common soldiers, spies, politicians, and even desperate poor people. Just adapt to the fact that Honor Harrington is one character in a broad universe of characters who all have their own stories and own realities. Sorry that you were expecting "the tales of superhero Honor Harrington," but that's not what this is. Get used to it. Anyway, this book had me on the edge of my seat. I loved it. After the past couple of books, I felt like I did when Daenarys sailed north to fight the White Walkers with John Snow in Game of Thrones. HELL YEAH! So I guess I'd have to say that this book is not to be read without the context of the rest of the series. But if you like vast vistas of space opera, this is a real winner. I've started my True Chronological Reading of the Last 10 Honorverse Books, as I said I would in the last couple of Honorverse reviews I did. You can check it out at the link above!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Riley

    Terrible. Gave up part way through. I very much liked the Honor Harrington series, and didn't notice this is a "Honorverse novel" There was way too much detail of people and politics and places, with nothing of interest to keep me reading. Terrible. Gave up part way through. I very much liked the Honor Harrington series, and didn't notice this is a "Honorverse novel" There was way too much detail of people and politics and places, with nothing of interest to keep me reading.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Anthony Patten

    I put this book down, which is a rare event. No matter how bad it gets, I don't just stop. I slog through, sometimes reading the most mindless drivel. But this book infuriated me. This is NOT a spoiler: David Weber actually includes parts of previous books in this one. There is no warning, and no justification. I was furious. There were other, lesser problems, but none so grand as this one. If you're going to start a new plot arc, start one. Never copy/paste. I expect this garbage from televisio I put this book down, which is a rare event. No matter how bad it gets, I don't just stop. I slog through, sometimes reading the most mindless drivel. But this book infuriated me. This is NOT a spoiler: David Weber actually includes parts of previous books in this one. There is no warning, and no justification. I was furious. There were other, lesser problems, but none so grand as this one. If you're going to start a new plot arc, start one. Never copy/paste. I expect this garbage from television, but not from one of my favorite authors. Time to go back to Basilisk Station and pine for better times. ...I still had to give two starts to Honor, though.

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