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The Terran Union is engaged in a vast interstellar war against the Krag, ruthless aliens intent on exterminating humankind. In 2315, the wily Max Robichaux is given command of the USS Cumberland, a destroyer with state-of-the-art capabilities but a combat record so bad, she’s known as the “Cumberland Gap.” Capt. Robichaux’s first mission: to take his warship to the Free Cor The Terran Union is engaged in a vast interstellar war against the Krag, ruthless aliens intent on exterminating humankind. In 2315, the wily Max Robichaux is given command of the USS Cumberland, a destroyer with state-of-the-art capabilities but a combat record so bad, she’s known as the “Cumberland Gap.” Capt. Robichaux’s first mission: to take his warship to the Free Corridor, where the Krag have secretly been buying strategic materials, and to seize or destroy any ships carrying enemy cargo. Far from the fleet and under enforced radio silence, Max relies only on his determination and guile…and the support and friendship of his chief medical officer, the brilliant Dr. Sahin. Because even as he deals with the ship’s onboard problems and the stress of carrying out her risky assignment, Max and the doctor discover that the Cumberland and her misfit crew are all that stands in the way of a deadly Krag attack that threatens to end the war—and humanity—once and for all. A far-future story in the tradition of “ships of wood, men of iron” novels, To Honor You Call Us and the Man of War series combines the adventure of exploration, the excitement of war, and the dangers of the unknown through the eyes of a ship and her crew.


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The Terran Union is engaged in a vast interstellar war against the Krag, ruthless aliens intent on exterminating humankind. In 2315, the wily Max Robichaux is given command of the USS Cumberland, a destroyer with state-of-the-art capabilities but a combat record so bad, she’s known as the “Cumberland Gap.” Capt. Robichaux’s first mission: to take his warship to the Free Cor The Terran Union is engaged in a vast interstellar war against the Krag, ruthless aliens intent on exterminating humankind. In 2315, the wily Max Robichaux is given command of the USS Cumberland, a destroyer with state-of-the-art capabilities but a combat record so bad, she’s known as the “Cumberland Gap.” Capt. Robichaux’s first mission: to take his warship to the Free Corridor, where the Krag have secretly been buying strategic materials, and to seize or destroy any ships carrying enemy cargo. Far from the fleet and under enforced radio silence, Max relies only on his determination and guile…and the support and friendship of his chief medical officer, the brilliant Dr. Sahin. Because even as he deals with the ship’s onboard problems and the stress of carrying out her risky assignment, Max and the doctor discover that the Cumberland and her misfit crew are all that stands in the way of a deadly Krag attack that threatens to end the war—and humanity—once and for all. A far-future story in the tradition of “ships of wood, men of iron” novels, To Honor You Call Us and the Man of War series combines the adventure of exploration, the excitement of war, and the dangers of the unknown through the eyes of a ship and her crew.

30 review for To Honor You Call Us

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mike (the Paladin)

    This could be a slightly lengthy review so let me give a thumbnail for those who simply want to know if I like and recommend the book. Then I'll give a few details and impressions. Yes...I greatly like and recommend the book. Good military science fiction, military fiction, action and simply a good novel. It get's my highest recommendation. NOW, if you know my taste and my reviews then you know that means the emphasis is not on romance or a love story. Bottom line...there isn't one. Okay let me sa This could be a slightly lengthy review so let me give a thumbnail for those who simply want to know if I like and recommend the book. Then I'll give a few details and impressions. Yes...I greatly like and recommend the book. Good military science fiction, military fiction, action and simply a good novel. It get's my highest recommendation. NOW, if you know my taste and my reviews then you know that means the emphasis is not on romance or a love story. Bottom line...there isn't one. Okay let me say a little about the book, the story and why (I think) I like it. I wonder if some of this may not be related to the number of books I have read, even age related. I find more and more lately my reading is leaning farther away from nonfiction and message fiction. I have on my currently reading list right now 2 books that have failed to catch my interest. I keep laying them aside and just not picking them back up. I started another "space opera" and was so unimpressed that I put it back on my to be read list thinking I'd get to it later (it's the second in a series). I've also had a string of mediocre reads lately that I can only go about 3 stars for. I didn't dislike them, I even liked "parts of them". But as a whole they just didn't draw me in. This book will I suspect appeal to those of us with military backgrounds (especially Navy or Marine here I suspect [Curmudgeon] though I'm Army I got into it). I don't know why it is that often when in the military we "bellyache", complain and carry on yet then the positive side stays with us throughout our lives...but there it is. The characters in this book while not being laid out in long laborious detail are complete and you'll get to know them by their actions. The story (as I've said about other books I've liked) breaks out of the starting gate at breakneck speed and barely slows down to catch it's breath. Now I'm going to say something else but please read it to the end in case you don't particularly care for the books I'm about to compare this to. I've often read where reviewers compare military navy science fiction to the Hornblower novels. This one does bring much of the Hornblower "mythos" (if you will) into a futuristic setting. Now if you didn't like those books don't let that put you off. What I mean is that you see a junior officer having to perform in a very tough situation. This is a "space navy war" where ships are boarded with swords and cutlasses being used. AND there is a rational reason for it. The crews and officers share in prize money for captured ships. They have to deal with neutral worlds that won't take sides... (I know you're probably asking about why they would use swords and why not just have a self destruct for boarded ships. The book answers those questions...but if I told you, you would miss out on finding it out in the book. I wouldn't do that to you.) No...no spoilers here. I truly enjoyed this book. Am I shallow???? Maybe, but it's a good book and I burned straight through it. I give it my highest adventure/action recommendation... Enjoy.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mr. Matt

    In the somewhat distant future, the Terran Union is engaged in a desperate war against an alien foe, the Krag. The Union's goal is survival. The Krag's goal is exterminating every last human. A rising star, the newly promoted Capt. Robichaux is assigned to the the USS Cumberland and tasked to harass, interdict, destroy, and disrupt the shipping of the Krag in the sleepy interstellar regions of the war. Robichaux and his crew find themselves engaged in a pivotal engagement where they all that sta In the somewhat distant future, the Terran Union is engaged in a desperate war against an alien foe, the Krag. The Union's goal is survival. The Krag's goal is exterminating every last human. A rising star, the newly promoted Capt. Robichaux is assigned to the the USS Cumberland and tasked to harass, interdict, destroy, and disrupt the shipping of the Krag in the sleepy interstellar regions of the war. Robichaux and his crew find themselves engaged in a pivotal engagement where they all that stands between a dangerous new incursion by the Krag and the core human systems. There is much to like in this book. The space battles are great. The author did a good job of converting the age of sail to the ago of star ships and faster than light travel. The cat and mouse of the Cumberland stalking and being stalked made for some pretty tense moments. Additionally, the hand to hand combat in the occasional boarding engagement was pretty exciting as well. And the Krag make a great enemy that we can all enjoy blowing to hell and back. Unfortunately, there were some things in the book that also detracted from the experience. When I read, I like to lose myself in the story. There is nothing better than looking up from your book and realizing an hour and a half has just past - or staying up til three in the morning because you simply can't put the book down. That never happened with this book. There were some real zingers that broke my immersion in the author's story. The books need to hold together with a certain amount of logic. And this book failed that test for me. OK, the Krag are engaged in an acknowledged war of human extermination. As part of that war, they unleashed a terrible plague - the Gynophage. This disease left men largely unaffected, but had a 99% mortality among women. It spread like crazy and it was only through a Herculean effort that a vaccine was developed. Let's say that it killed 70% of all women and girls. This is part of the author's story and it fits. What doesn't fit is all the unaligned human worlds. I have a hard time understanding how these numerous unaligned worlds would remain unaligned when (a) the Krag have announced their determination to exterminate humanity, and (b) the Krag virus has just killed most of the women on human planets. Now maybe I could accept an oddball unaligned human state - but lots of them. No freaking way! I think that given points (a) and (b) above ALL the human planets would come together to fight the Krag. This is minor, but related to the Gynophage, I was surprised that there were no hints of homosexual relationships. Again, remember that conservatively speaking 70% of all women are dead. The remaining women are closely guarded and kept out of front line navy deployments. These men are at space for years at a time and even when they go planet side, there are simply no women. Surely homosexuality would be more accepted in this type of world. In this story there weren't even hints. I think the author missed a chance to make his story more authentic. The other main problem with the book was its predictability. Yes, of course, Robichaux is assigned to a problem ship. Of course he has to whip the crew and officers into shape. Of course he does it. Of course he stumbles upon a secret blitzkrieg plan that the Krag have hatched. Of course he thwarts it. The whole thing just very linear. I was expecting or hoping for some unexpected twist. It never materialized. Finally, there was just an awful lot of explaining going on in the book. The characters spend a great deal of time explaining things to one another so that I, as a reader, will know what is going on. I may be the exception, but as a reader I kind of like not knowing exactly what is going on. It is fun to figure it on my own without a character telling me. A certain amount of exposition is necessary, but I felt there was too much. Two and a half stars rounded down to two. This book was fun for space battles and kind of annoying for the rest of it. I wound up with something less than I had expected.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Holly Heisey

    I've read and love many books with the premise of Horatio Hornblower in space, but this one leans on the template of Aubrey/Maturin, which I loved! There's the same sense of character, but the friendship between Captain Max Robichaux and Dr. Ibrahim Sahin is both familiar and a thing of its own. There's a warmth here, the sense of a navy that relies heavily on the tradition of the Napoleonic British with a dash of Cold War submarine warfare, but done in such a way that it takes into account what I've read and love many books with the premise of Horatio Hornblower in space, but this one leans on the template of Aubrey/Maturin, which I loved! There's the same sense of character, but the friendship between Captain Max Robichaux and Dr. Ibrahim Sahin is both familiar and a thing of its own. There's a warmth here, the sense of a navy that relies heavily on the tradition of the Napoleonic British with a dash of Cold War submarine warfare, but done in such a way that it takes into account what it's trying to do and shows why things are the way they are. The fact that it holds to a future timeline, too, anchors it, and one of my favorite things about the book was the gleeful references to history and pop culture that made their way into this future navy. My favorite: if a man's threatened to be put out the airlock, they call it "to go dancing with the stars." The book is also very well written, with info parsed out in the same running fashion as Patrick O'Brian--good and technical, but not too info-dumpy. The pacing is brisk, but always anchored in character, and the characters are all wonderfully human, with plenty of demons to fight and overcome. The situation with the war with the Krag was dire, and painted in such a way that I wholeheartedly stood on the side of Max and his trouble-ship, the U.S.S. Cumberland. And of course, the space combat is realistic and superb! I listened to the audiobook, and the narrator Ray Chase was absolutely excellent. If you can get the audio version, do! Overall, a solid, surprising, and warmly human addition to my favorites of military SF.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Casey

    H. Paul Honsinger's To Honor You Call Us is on the softer side of Military SF. Rat-faced aliens religiously motivated and determined to exterminate humans play the role of villain. The stage is the stars, and the stars teem with alien life. Some species resemble catfish; others appear to mirror carnivorous teddy bears. The year is 2315. Rough and tumble Max Robichaux is promoted to Captain, and the story follows his journey into deep space to fight the dreaded rat-faced Krag. In this era of FTL ( H. Paul Honsinger's To Honor You Call Us is on the softer side of Military SF. Rat-faced aliens religiously motivated and determined to exterminate humans play the role of villain. The stage is the stars, and the stars teem with alien life. Some species resemble catfish; others appear to mirror carnivorous teddy bears. The year is 2315. Rough and tumble Max Robichaux is promoted to Captain, and the story follows his journey into deep space to fight the dreaded rat-faced Krag. In this era of FTL (Faster Than Light) space jumps, pulse cannons, and universal interspecies translators, we also encounter boarding parties, cutlasses, traditional firearms, beer and liquor rations, and battle-axes. I struggled with this book. None of the characters are engaging, the dialogue is clunky unoiled exposition, and pretty much the entire book is written in the passive voice. Honsinger overloads his prose with anachronistic stumbling blocks jarring the reader from the 2315 present-day. I didn't want to at first, but I was willing to accept sword wielding boarding parties in space. I drew the line at the ships commissary selling t-shirts (all sizes), ball caps, pins, coffee mugs, pillowcases, pendants, charm bracelets, polo shirts, shotglasses, workout shorts, throw pillows, Christmas tree ornaments, etc. When I encounter a character saying, "Maybe Santa Claus will come by in his sleigh and act as a missile decoy," I stop and scratch my noggin. The year is 2315, what character drops this antiquated holiday reference? And why does a character observe, "The sounds reminded Max of a child playing with his oatmeal by using a drinking straw to make bubbles." Is there really still straws and oatmeal in 2315? Don't get me wrong, I like oatmeal, but I've never used a straw with it before. The struggle lies in Honsinger's earnest desire for his story to be taken seriously. If this had been presented as a farce, a jape upon the genre of Military SF like the film Galaxy Quest poked good-naturedly at its contemporary counterparts, I could have better rolled with the punches. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Honsinger's incessant desire to drop knowledge in the form of military history on the reader is tiring, and does nothing to advance the story. When it's all said and done, this reads like fanfic, poorly written fanfic. I listened to the audiobook. Ray Chase is the narrator, and damned if he didn't make this book better. Since To Honor You Call Us is the first in the Man of War series, I fully expect Honsinger's writing to improve as the story continues. And while I do feel burned by this book, I might be willing to pick up the next volume, in time, if Honsinger figures out what he is writing, drops the passive voice, and commits to more intensive revision.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Vicii

    I read the first half of this book quickly and then paused whilst I read a "book club read". I can't deny that I read the second half just as quickly but not so much because I wanted to find out what happened. The was lots of suspense and it was written in a very military way but nothing seemed to go wrong. It was just too convenient that everything seemed to work out and the end of the back just seemed to be the final nail in the coffin for me, when congratulated on how well they had done. It wa I read the first half of this book quickly and then paused whilst I read a "book club read". I can't deny that I read the second half just as quickly but not so much because I wanted to find out what happened. The was lots of suspense and it was written in a very military way but nothing seemed to go wrong. It was just too convenient that everything seemed to work out and the end of the back just seemed to be the final nail in the coffin for me, when congratulated on how well they had done. It was kind of like one of the Hollywood movies that has to explain what happened just in case you didn't get it. Well I read the whole book, so I got it and didn't need it re-iterating. Probably somewhere between 2.5 - 3 stars

  6. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Rose

    Patrick O'Brien in Space The first book in the series, the reader is thrust into an intergalactic war with a rat like species. There are battles, mutiny, and interspecies politics. If you like Honor Harrington or the Lost Fleet series you'll enjoy this series.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jorge Ramos

    In some ways i consider these series of books to be a guilty pleasure of mine. they are in essence formulaic, a great homage to one of the best series of books about naval warfare ever written: The Master & Commander series and yet the latter didn't quite captivate as such. This is the same broad concept of adventure in a sci fi setting. It shouldn't be that special, yet, for me, it is. Every couple of years I reread the series (and hopefully now that the author has recovered from illness we wil In some ways i consider these series of books to be a guilty pleasure of mine. they are in essence formulaic, a great homage to one of the best series of books about naval warfare ever written: The Master & Commander series and yet the latter didn't quite captivate as such. This is the same broad concept of adventure in a sci fi setting. It shouldn't be that special, yet, for me, it is. Every couple of years I reread the series (and hopefully now that the author has recovered from illness we will have many more adventures from Robicheaux and Sahin), and I just cannot stop reading them until I finish every single book available. And that is exactly what my father does every couple of years with Patric O'Brian. I love the world, the characters, the non sensical chatter about imaginary systems and subsystems on space ships that make everithing believable and most of all love the characters that are fighting for the survival of the human race. A masterfully crafted sci fi space opera adventure. Give it a try if it sounds like your cup of tea, I think you will not be disappointed.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Keith

    Wow, I must say I am impressed. After reading a lot of mediocre Space Opera over the past few years, I have finally found another series I actually like. Excellent series so far. The smaller scale of the books felt a lot more like early Honor Harrington, with only a few ships and small scale diplomacy against a larger backdrop, but without the "single ship charging into the unknown and getting into and out of all sorts of trouble" that I have come to hate. The series is told from the perspectiv Wow, I must say I am impressed. After reading a lot of mediocre Space Opera over the past few years, I have finally found another series I actually like. Excellent series so far. The smaller scale of the books felt a lot more like early Honor Harrington, with only a few ships and small scale diplomacy against a larger backdrop, but without the "single ship charging into the unknown and getting into and out of all sorts of trouble" that I have come to hate. The series is told from the perspective of the commander of a smallish space faring military vessel, including interactions with his senior staff and crew. The cast of recurring characters is relatively small and easy to remember, and the characters are actually adults, not testosterone addled kids getting in over their head doing stupid shit like Odyssey One (Into the Black) or Aurora: CV-01. The future is dark - there is a war on - but it is not dystopian or post apocolyptic like Marines or The Empire's Corps. It lacks the large scale plots and PoV shifts of David Weber's Honor Harrington series On Basilisk Station, which makes it a much easier read, more like Dauntless or On Silver Wings, both of which are series I enjoyed. It is no where near as dry as Lost Fleet, however. There is a distinct lack of women in these books, as it is based on the archetype "Ships of Wood, Men of Steel" model, but the lack is explained early on and in a way that bemoans the lack of women in the fleet - and emphasizes the genocidal nature of the alien threat. In some ways this feels little different that many military books written by men, where the women often come across as very masculine, like Honor Harrington or Sorilla or Tanya Desjani. I look forward to book 3. Definitely recommend this if you like military sci fi told from a naval perspective.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lukas Lovas

    I must admit, I liked the book. It's a unique book in several ways. Those ways might be good, or bad depending on your preference. First of all...the book has no true downs. Usually, you have some ups and some downs. The hero (or heroes) are tested, and you learn that they are awesome, but have yet a long way to go. In this book, we are basically told everything is bad except for this guy, who will fix everything...and that's exactly what happens. It's a nice change, and surprising in it's own r I must admit, I liked the book. It's a unique book in several ways. Those ways might be good, or bad depending on your preference. First of all...the book has no true downs. Usually, you have some ups and some downs. The hero (or heroes) are tested, and you learn that they are awesome, but have yet a long way to go. In this book, we are basically told everything is bad except for this guy, who will fix everything...and that's exactly what happens. It's a nice change, and surprising in it's own right, that all his plans worked and nothing went arbitrarily bad just for the sake of making things interesting...it sort of made you more expectant, always waiting for the fall from which he could rise again, stronger and more awesome than before....it's not often that you come across a plot written this way, and I enjoyed the novelty. The second unique thing about this book is it's outlook on space battles. We got used to the Star trek and Star wars way of looking at things. The omni sensors, that told you everything that was going on, the red and blue marked ships to separate friend from foe...this book portrays the space battle very similiarly to what a battle of the submarines looks like. Yes, you could use sensors, but that would give away your position....and just because you know something is out there doesn't mean you can identify it correctly at a glance. So this deals a lot with questions like "what is that ship?" "what size is it?" "did they see us?" "how can we hide from them, but keep them in our sights?" ....this is just so much more realistic than the usual way...and so, it's quite refresing. To summarize, the characters are strong and smart. The narrative is good and often humorous. All in all...I enjoyed this book a lot :)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Eric Allen

    Yeah, I'm four chapter ruling this one. I have a rule that if a book can't interest me within four chapters, there's plenty of others out there that can, and I shouldn't waste my time with one that can't. I can usually sit down and enjoy the most terrible of Military Sci-fi, but this one just isn't doing it for me. Most of all, it's just really, really boring, and all of the characters are just so bland and lacking anything resembling personality. And there's so much made up military jargon, and Yeah, I'm four chapter ruling this one. I have a rule that if a book can't interest me within four chapters, there's plenty of others out there that can, and I shouldn't waste my time with one that can't. I can usually sit down and enjoy the most terrible of Military Sci-fi, but this one just isn't doing it for me. Most of all, it's just really, really boring, and all of the characters are just so bland and lacking anything resembling personality. And there's so much made up military jargon, and acronyms that the author either doesn't explain at all, or spends way to much time explaining. Here's an idea, save yourself the need to explain, as well as saving the reader the head-scratching over trying to figure it out, and work the jargon into the story in such away that the meaning is apparent. There are literally PARAGRAPHS of this book that are made up of nothing but nonsense words and acronyms that are not explained until pages later. You want to take me out of the story, entire paragraphs of meaningless gibberish is a pretty good way right there. If you're looking for some good military sci-fi and Amazon keeps pushing this one on you like it's the freaking holy grail, don't give in to temptation, and skip it. If you like well written sci-fi with strong characters, pick up Terms of Enlistment by Marko Kloos instead, I've recommended that one to quite a few people, and not had a complaint yet.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Gerwyn

    There's nothing like bad sci-fi to remind you a) just how hard it is to write sci-fi and b) just how good good sci-fi is. This book isn't just bad sci-fi; it's highfalutin, overblown prose makes it a really terrible book to read. Not to mention that you'd be quite happy to blow the supposed hero out of an airlock within the first few pages.

  12. 5 out of 5

    C.P. Cabaniss

    *I received a copy of this novel through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.* This review can also be found on my blog: www.courtneysreads.blogspot.com While it took me quite a while to finish this novel it was by no means due to a lack of interest. I was hooked from the first page. The prologue was brilliant. This novel is set in the year 2315 where Earth, along with its allies, is fighting a war against the Krag-an alien race set on the destruction of humankind. The main events of the st *I received a copy of this novel through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.* This review can also be found on my blog: www.courtneysreads.blogspot.com While it took me quite a while to finish this novel it was by no means due to a lack of interest. I was hooked from the first page. The prologue was brilliant. This novel is set in the year 2315 where Earth, along with its allies, is fighting a war against the Krag-an alien race set on the destruction of humankind. The main events of the story take place aboard the USS Cumberland, a destroyer in the Union Space Navy. The Cumberland is up against tough odds, particularly considering the majority of its crew has little battle experience and are used to abuse from the commanding officers. One of the best things about this novel is the characters and the relationships that we see beginning to develop. Max, the young and impulsive captain, has a tormented past that leaves him haunted but he's very good at hiding his demons. Abrahim Sahin, the chief medical officer, is articulate, brilliant, clueless, and observant all in good measure. The combination is quite endearing. The friendship that begins to develop between these two characters was beautifully depicted and I hope that it continues to be explored and developed throughout the rest of the series. Some of the other characters that I particularly enjoyed were Brown, the chief engineer, who was hilarious. I was always laughing during his portions of the novel. He always had something funny to say that lightened the novel perfectly. Garcia, Max's second in command, was also a favorite. There were others I really enjoyed. The entire crew of the Cumberland really made this novel for me, even those I didn't particularly enjoy. The naval information was fascinating. At times there was too much information dumped on the reader that could have been more broken up and spread out, but it was all relevant and informative. Even when the explanations became lengthy it was still nice to have the information presented, rather than the author assuming that you understand all of the naval jargon and such. The glossary of terms at the end was also a nice addition. I used it to refresh myself on some of the terms and sayings. It was very informative. The main downfall of this novel for me was the action scenes. These scenes could be cleaned up and polished a bit to improve the overall flow. At times it almost became too descriptive and was more telling rather than showing what was happening. This caused me to lose the story in the details a few times. I'm really glad that I decided to read this novel. I've had little experience with science fiction in the past, but that I have read has impressed me and this novel will join that list. I am very excited to start the second installment and see where Max takes his crew next.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Per Gunnar

    This is a book that I stumbled on via various recommendations on Goodreads & Kindle. I am glad I did pick it up. It is a great book. Just my cup of tea. It is a very enjoyable space adventure about two main, rather heroic, characters that quickly form a bond and proceed to, not only get the USS Cumberland back in shape, but also to save The Terran Union. At least temporarily since this is just the first book in what I hope fill be a reasonably long series. The book is very well written and you re This is a book that I stumbled on via various recommendations on Goodreads & Kindle. I am glad I did pick it up. It is a great book. Just my cup of tea. It is a very enjoyable space adventure about two main, rather heroic, characters that quickly form a bond and proceed to, not only get the USS Cumberland back in shape, but also to save The Terran Union. At least temporarily since this is just the first book in what I hope fill be a reasonably long series. The book is very well written and you really come to like the various characters, at least the ones that are meant to be likable. The science is quite acceptable. I was a bit put off at the start when they started to make combat with cutlasses and such archaic instruments. It reminded me about Tour of the Merrimack, a series which I read because I wanted to finish what I started but was never really very impressed by. It did not turn out to be as bad as I thought though and the space combat is quite well done. Sometimes the book can be quite humorous, often due to the way the author word things but also due to the friendly bantering and bickering between the various characters. It is written for an adult audience and there is none of this nonsensical replacing of certain words that a soldier on the front-lines would utter from time to time. That kind of language is sparingly used though and mostly the author is demonstrating his skills in using the language instead. I noticed that someone had written review giving the book a one-star rating on Kindle claiming that the author is struggling with his sentence structure. That review is blatantly false and nothing but trolling as far as I am concerned. This book is really a great adventure story in the same style as the old sailing ship adventure stories. I loosely refer to Master & Commander in the title but you can probably find quite a few other examples. I was planning to dig into another book by Christopher Nuttall after I had read this one but I am afraid that I got so immersed in this series that I just have to read the second book in the series right away so, sorry Mr. Nuttall, yours have to wait a wee bit longer. I just have to see where this series goes now.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Online Eccentric Librarian

    More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ I love a good old fashioned military sci fi but it's the space opera subgenre that I truly enjoy. This book by Paul Honsinger, previously self published, is now getting a glossy release with a great cover. Although the book is decently written, I have to admit I did not find myself engaged by the characters. Dialogue seems to always be presented, rather than spoken, and it ended up making the characters feel either pom More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ I love a good old fashioned military sci fi but it's the space opera subgenre that I truly enjoy. This book by Paul Honsinger, previously self published, is now getting a glossy release with a great cover. Although the book is decently written, I have to admit I did not find myself engaged by the characters. Dialogue seems to always be presented, rather than spoken, and it ended up making the characters feel either pompous or smug. I listened to the Audible version as well as reading the print and I can't pinpoint whether it was the narrator's way of tapering off sentences to an emotional low or simply stilted dialogue. But in the end, I just didn't believe any of the characters are real people. Robichaux was a bit too perfect - always coming up with the perfect solutions to any situation, alien or otherwise. I believe the author wanted to present a flawed character forged through a crucible of horrific experiences. But I'd have to have seen, rather than be constantly told in speech after speech, of that pathos. And therein was a lot of the problem for me - we get a lot of tell but very little show as to the nature of the characters. Even the narrator was having trouble making the dialogue sound believable. Plot: Captain Robichaux lost his first command in a horrific way and now finds himself captaining a grossly mismanaged ship with serious issues. He will have to pull it together as an alien species is bent on human genocide. For it will turn out that their ship may be all that stands between the aliens and Earth. Robichaux, we're told, is suitably flawed - suffering from PTSD, having to overcome the obstacles of his new captaincy, and with only his ship's doctor for a friend. Those who have read Patrick O'Brien's Age of Sail series will recognize these archetype characters immediately (or, at least, Star Trek interaction between Kirk and Bones). Most of the book is Robichaux fixing the issues with his new crew. As such, there's not much action until near the end: just events, speeches, crew mutiny, speeches, drug problems, speeches, introspection, speeches....and more speeches. I felt like every sentence someone spoke had to end with an exclamation mark. There are no women whatsoever - we are told the aliens created a virus that wiped them out. Even at social functions, there are no women nor do any of the men really think of loved ones/parents/etc. I can't think that leaving part of the human race at home because of gender when there is a war to annihilate your species is going on is the smartest move - if you lose, the women bite it anyway. But it is thematic with the Master and Commander feel of the book, harkening to the days when women were considered bad luck on a ship. One thing that really did bother me were the countless references to late 20th century space/sci fi - I think Grissom was mentioned, what, 5 times? Star Trek 7 or 8, and a lot of the terms derived from pop culture. That felt odd considering the space/sci fi of the first part of the century not really being noted - from Verne to Buck Rogers. Clearly, the author is a child of the 60s and 70s but the character Robichaux isn't - and why would any of his crew get those random historical references? It would be sort of like referencing generals of the Crimean war if you lived in the 1920s. As well, there would be many many more cultural icons to draw from in the coming several centuries before this story takes place - but no reference to anything else except 60s and 70s NASA/Sci Fi. This may seem nitpicky but it kept pulling me out of the story and was starting to feel far too gratuitous and wink wink. Military sci fi authors each bring something special to the table for their successful series. CJ Cherryh and her psychology, Campbell's Lost Fleet and likeable characters, even another formerly self published but now published author Currie and his down to Earth motley assortment of simple folk. What I feel Honsinger brings is a more formal, stilted, old fashioned type of navy at sea a la Nelson and Hornblower. So if you like characters that don't speak, but instead Project with a capitol "P", then this likely will be a series you'll enjoy. But for me, it just didn't engage me and I just didn't like or get behind any single character in the book. I didn't dislike them - I just found them annoying and somewhat pompous. At this point, I'm not sure if I want to continue with the series. Reading the writer's haranguing of reviewers who didn't highly rate the book in the Amazon review comments sections was disappointing and quite off putting (personal attacks, "if you don't like it, go write your own novel!", "this person is a shill working for another sci fi author trying to discredit me!"). It's just not something that makes me want to support the book with sales or even recommend.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laz the Sailor

    Combine Longknife, Harrington, Scalzi, and a little bit of Nathan Lowell's Quarter Share, remove all of the women, and start a big war, and you've got this book/series. And those are all good things (except maybe the lack of women). A solid mix of tactics, tension, politics, and creative solutions. Somewhat predictable if you are well-versed in this genre, but still well written. I will read the other books in the series.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    This is the first military sci-fi/space opera book I have read (I listened to the audiobook) and I was surprised at how much I liked it. The influence of the seafaring novels was there (Aubrey/Maturin, Hornblower, etc.) and I really liked that. I liked the historical references and thought the characters were well-developed. There were a few spots that were a bit over-the-top for me, but overall I really enjoyed it. I have the next book in the series on audio, and look forward to it.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mentat

    Great, ship to ship combat, ground assaults, navy crews, fighting an epic war that spans hunreds of star systems. good tech, good military lingo, very convincing

  18. 5 out of 5

    Glen Robinson

    Honsinger joins the short list of military sci-fi authors that I think not only can write in an entertaining way, but come across as actually knowing what they are talking about. Set 300 years in the future, To Honor begins a series that follows the experiences of Max Robichaux, a battle-tested 28-year-old lieutenant, then lieutenant commander, who inherits command of a new destroyer in the Union forces caught in a war with the Krag, a rat-like race who are intent on destroying the fleet, captur Honsinger joins the short list of military sci-fi authors that I think not only can write in an entertaining way, but come across as actually knowing what they are talking about. Set 300 years in the future, To Honor begins a series that follows the experiences of Max Robichaux, a battle-tested 28-year-old lieutenant, then lieutenant commander, who inherits command of a new destroyer in the Union forces caught in a war with the Krag, a rat-like race who are intent on destroying the fleet, capturing every human-held planet and killing every human. Robichaux learns that being in command, something he has always longed for, isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. His predecessor, a captain compared to Queeg in The Caine Mutiny, has brow-beaten the soul out of his crew while not preparing them for the combat they will inevitably face. With the help of a ideosyncratic staff doctor that comes aboard when Robichaux does, the new captain addresses mutiny, drug addiction, and a host of other problems that comes with the new ship. The combat scenes are great, as expected. But what I enjoyed most was the reality of day-to-day problems of dealing with a demoralized, drug-addled, mutinous crew. I was impressed–especially since this is a first novel–that the author brought a richness into the story that made you believe that he may have just stepped off a star destroyer in the 24th century. The dialogue is realistic, the description is full without slowing the action down, and the pace is fun. Probably the only wrinkle I saw in the story was in Robichaux himself. He’s too perfect. Here’s a 28-year-old new Lt. Commander, fresh into command, who seems to have all the answers. I expected some self doubt, some hesitation, even some missteps, but I didn’t find that. In addition, Robichaux’s characterization begins in the first few chapters, but seems to disappear later when other characters are introduced. In fact, Robichaux’s character remains somewhat flat as he is surrounded by other, more colorful characters. But in the end, it was a thoroughly enjoyable book. It was about the same length as the last book I reviewed, but while the first one took me about a month to complete, I finished this one in two days. That’s says a great deal about how much I enjoyed it.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jo (Mixed Book Bag)

    To Honor You Call Us is a must read for any Military Science Fiction fan. Honsinger takes some familiar themes and gives them a new twist. To Honor You Call Us starts with our hero, Max Robichaux, leading a successful raid against the enemy and ending up the senior officer left alive on his spaceship making him the acting Captain. Fast forward another chapter and Max is given command of the Cumberland, a problem ship that when faced with action against the enemy was noted to come, see and run. Ce To Honor You Call Us is a must read for any Military Science Fiction fan. Honsinger takes some familiar themes and gives them a new twist. To Honor You Call Us starts with our hero, Max Robichaux, leading a successful raid against the enemy and ending up the senior officer left alive on his spaceship making him the acting Captain. Fast forward another chapter and Max is given command of the Cumberland, a problem ship that when faced with action against the enemy was noted to come, see and run. Certainly a theme that has been used before. What makes this a good read is that after that the book develops its own voice and becomes a unique story. There is great world building worked into the story and plot. Part of the world building is done with information dumps but they are kept to a paragraph or two and do not run pages and pages. I also like the explanation of why there were no women on the ships and how they felt it was a loss to the Navy that they were no long part of the space going service. The characters are interesting and very well developed. Expect the unexpected from some of the characters. The roles they play are flexible and unique adding to the depth of the story line. Then there are the aliens. Look for a big surprise about the enemy about 2/3 of the way through the book. The plot is set up for a series. Max and crew are successful at their mission but their mission is only a small part of the war. That leaves the ending up in the air with a lot of room for the action in the next book. I liked the writing. As I said there were some information dumps but not enough to interfere with the flow of the story and all had information that was needed. I found it very easy to read and keep up. The writing was very much in an active voice and kept my attention throughout the book. Pick up To Honor You Call Us for an enjoyable read. Book Two, For Honor We Stand, is already out in one addition and will be released again by 47 North on March 11, 2014.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    This is just bad. I love military sci-fi, but I had to choke this one down. It reads like wish-fulfillment fan fiction. The main character is the greatest Captain ever known to man. He knows everything in the universe that anyone could possibly know. He's an extremely junior officer, but has seen more combat than anyone. He knows how to fight hand-to-hand. He knows obscure information about alien races. Basically, he could run the entire ship with no problems. In his first command he already kno This is just bad. I love military sci-fi, but I had to choke this one down. It reads like wish-fulfillment fan fiction. The main character is the greatest Captain ever known to man. He knows everything in the universe that anyone could possibly know. He's an extremely junior officer, but has seen more combat than anyone. He knows how to fight hand-to-hand. He knows obscure information about alien races. Basically, he could run the entire ship with no problems. In his first command he already knows exactly how every situation should be handled. He makes exactly one mistake in the entire book that is immediately recognized and corrected. He turns a horrible ship environment into the best ship crew in the fleet in three weeks. In a nutshell, the most boring character, ever. I really wish that a few chapters into the book that he had died in some kind of accident and then the young officer that had the drug habit had to take over command. Now THAT would've been interesting. The doctor character is just as bad. This author really wanted to write an Aubrey/Maturin story... in space! Then there's the anachronisms. It's supposedly the year 2315, and yet they are constantly making 20th century references to World War 2, the Apollo project astronauts, etc. It was extremely distracting. Ugh, I should just stop. This book was terrible.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    Strictly speaking I should probably rate this only a 3 or 3 1/2 star book but I'm putting it up to 4 stars because I really enjoyed it. The author clearly has a passion for Navies, past and present, real and imaginary. There is a wealth of detail on how the Navy in his world operates, possibly an over-abundance for some people. However, I'm a sucker for books where the author clearly enjoys their subject matter, hence the 4 stars. There was plenty of techno-babble to satisfy my inner engineer, pl Strictly speaking I should probably rate this only a 3 or 3 1/2 star book but I'm putting it up to 4 stars because I really enjoyed it. The author clearly has a passion for Navies, past and present, real and imaginary. There is a wealth of detail on how the Navy in his world operates, possibly an over-abundance for some people. However, I'm a sucker for books where the author clearly enjoys their subject matter, hence the 4 stars. There was plenty of techno-babble to satisfy my inner engineer, plenty of strategy and tactics but also a good examination of how to lead and motivate people. In short, this was Aubrey and Maturin in space and a lot of fun.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Joanna Chaplin

    First read May 28th 2014: Great fun. I love the references and the wordplay most of the characters engage in. The worldbuilding is a little bit cookie-cutter. I'm troubled that the author decided to include the Gynophage rather than have female characters other than one or two background characters. Second read: Jan 13 2016. When the third book came out, I found that I wanted to reread books one and two, because I had retained shockingly little of the plot. I'm not sure why because it's totally First read May 28th 2014: Great fun. I love the references and the wordplay most of the characters engage in. The worldbuilding is a little bit cookie-cutter. I'm troubled that the author decided to include the Gynophage rather than have female characters other than one or two background characters. Second read: Jan 13 2016. When the third book came out, I found that I wanted to reread books one and two, because I had retained shockingly little of the plot. I'm not sure why because it's totally enjoyable with a tone and violence level exactly where I want my space military scifi.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Nico

    4,5* A gripping military sifi book, that feels like a mix between the Lost Fleet Series by jack Campbell and Das Boot. With a lot of thrilling battle scenes, great worldbuilding and okay character development. You get your stereotypical characters for this genre, but as it's heavily plot driven, you can overlook this weakness and enjoy the rest. I just hope we get to see at least one female character in the following books, even though the author quite cleverly circumvented to use any through a pl 4,5* A gripping military sifi book, that feels like a mix between the Lost Fleet Series by jack Campbell and Das Boot. With a lot of thrilling battle scenes, great worldbuilding and okay character development. You get your stereotypical characters for this genre, but as it's heavily plot driven, you can overlook this weakness and enjoy the rest. I just hope we get to see at least one female character in the following books, even though the author quite cleverly circumvented to use any through a plot trick.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Patricia

    I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review. Well, now that is out of the way, let me say that I loved this book. It's a mix of Horatio Hornblower, Jack Aubrey, and Honor Harrington with a dash of Star Trek. Great action, characters you grow to love, just a really awesome read. I am really looking forward to reading the next book. H. Paul Honsinger has been added to the list of my favorite authors.

  25. 5 out of 5

    M. Spencer

    Man of War Series...... Excellent tale interstellar with humans losing for more than 30 years. It is also the story of courage, honor, brotherhood and the redemption found in competent leadership and example. Great story with great meaning. Read the first two books of the trilogy, you'll be glad you did.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Adam Collings

    A very satisfying story of an underdog crew forced to pull together under the command of a new captain. Feels a little like Star Trek, but in a grittier war-ravaged universe. Thrilling climax. I recommend this book and will be returning to the series.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kati

    Don't expect much action from this book, rather it's a tale of how Max becomes the leader he was always destined to be. And how he turns a motley bunch of people into a proper crew that any skipper could be proud of.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Dee Wy

    Kept me on my toes and very engaged. Loved the characters and all the action of the space war. Looking forward to the second book.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Paul G

    "Master and Commander" story in space! As a fan of military SF, I devoured all three Man of War books in six days, and the story still resonates with me weeks later. Three things really stood out for me. Firstly: this trilogy was immensely satisfying as a tribute to honorable leadership. Captain Robichaux may seem Mary Sue to some, but I believe that is part of the point: great leaders are simultaneously clear-headed and compassionate, aggressive and thoughtful, disciplined and fluid. As he posse "Master and Commander" story in space! As a fan of military SF, I devoured all three Man of War books in six days, and the story still resonates with me weeks later. Three things really stood out for me. Firstly: this trilogy was immensely satisfying as a tribute to honorable leadership. Captain Robichaux may seem Mary Sue to some, but I believe that is part of the point: great leaders are simultaneously clear-headed and compassionate, aggressive and thoughtful, disciplined and fluid. As he possesses all of the above, Robichaux's character may seem more mythos than protagonist, but there are indeed living breathing naval captains like Robichaux. [sidebar example: go google for 'Mike Abrashoff - Becoming the Best Ship in the US Navy'. I was lucky enough to see Cpt. Abrashoff in person at a conference, and I was moved by his recounting of how he turned a dysfunctional shipboard culture into a psychologically-healthy high-performing team. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndHvS...] Secondly: I think all three Man of War novels delivered engaging space combat without bogging down in the boring minutiae of Newtonian physics and hyperspace infodumps. (I suggest that Jack Campbell's 'Lost Fleet' is the industry benchmark for convincing space naval combat, with Man of War being perhaps two full notches less physics-y) Thirdly: beyond the honorable leadership and convincing space tactics, it was the textured relationship between Robichaux and Dr. Sahin that really made this story memorable for me. Their brotherly affection and mutual respect truly raised the emotional stakes of reading these three books, and invested me in following the story through. I did find three detractors in this series. There were no women characters, which disappointed me. I think Robichaux's character could have been given more angst and self-doubt to increase the emotional stakes even more. And the biggest detractor of all: the trio of books ended in a cliffhanger, with book 4 being delayed since 2016. Grrr! Overall, this Man of War series is excellent. I absolutely recommend all 3 books to anyone who likes military science fiction and space combat. I also think that this is a great entry point into military SF for non-fans, because the story is infused with great character dynamics and emotional payoffs. Definitely google 'Capt Mike Abrashoff' for a real-life exemplar of Captain Robichaux in the US Navy. Five stars out of five. I look forward to H. Paul Honsinger's fourth book! _____________ FYI: these are my benchmarks for choosing military scifi books: -Lost Fleet series, Jack Campbell (space combat) -Spiral Wars series, Joel Shepherd (space and marine combat) -Poor Man's Fight series, Elliott Kay (space and infantry combat) -Frontlines series, Marko Kloos (space and infantry combat) -Contact Front series, Rick Partlow (infantry mech combat) -Expeditionary Force, Craig Alanson (space and marine combat) -Empire of Man series, David Weber and John Ringo (infantry combat) -Posleen War series, John Ringo (infantry and artillery combat) -Looking Glass series, John Ringo (infantry combat) -Honor Harrington series, David Weber (space combat) -Man of War series, H Paul Honsinger (space combat)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    While my first love is fantasy I have also grown to love military science fiction. I constantly look forward to the latest Honor Harrington novel from David Weber or Lost Fleet novel from Jack Campbell. When it comes to my military science fiction I tend to enjoy those that most strongly resemble naval warfare novels though instead of sailing the sea the ships sail between the stars. It’s a bit odd since I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have the patience to read say a C. S. Forester novel, but set tha While my first love is fantasy I have also grown to love military science fiction. I constantly look forward to the latest Honor Harrington novel from David Weber or Lost Fleet novel from Jack Campbell. When it comes to my military science fiction I tend to enjoy those that most strongly resemble naval warfare novels though instead of sailing the sea the ships sail between the stars. It’s a bit odd since I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have the patience to read say a C. S. Forester novel, but set that thing in space and suddenly I’m all in. With the advent of self-publishing there has been something of a resurgence in military science fiction with authors like Ryk Brown, Evan Currie, B. V. Larson, Thomas DePrima, Ian Douglas, not to mention countless others leading a new charge of self-published military science fiction. The relatively low cost of entry in the self-publishing world has many of those authors already having released upwards of 10 novel each over the last six years or so. With Amazon’s introduction of its 47North imprint some of these authors are getting mainstream paperback releases, and some even getting high-production audiobooks from major audiobook publishers like Tantor and Brilliance. H. Paul Honsinger, while not as prolific in terms of output as some the aforementioned authors, has created a taught and exciting series called Man of War. The first title, To Honor You Call Us was originally released for Kindle (and via CreateSpace) in 2012 and was recently re-released via 47North (paperback) and Brilliance (audio) in 2014. To Honor You Call Us, sees brash young Captain Max Robichaux, taking command of the Terran Union destroyer USS Cumberland, a problem ship with a poor record. The Terran Union is at war with the Krag, who see the extermination of humanity as a religious necessity. Honsinger, paints the Krag as an uncompromising foe willing to go to extreme lengths to exterminate humanity from the universe. Readers, are told that early on in the war the Krag released a virulent gynophage on the human populace which ravaged the female population. This is important to note as there are almost no women in the entirety of the series since, as a result of the plague, women are no longer allowed to serve in the Navy; they are too precious to risk in combat. There is definitely some discomfort with this aspect of the novel since we don’t really know how women are treated or how they live their lives. In fact you could probably write a who novel just on the social, political, and emotional impact of a bioweapon designed to take out the female population. However, Honsinger really relegates this to the background and while it’s important to Robichaux’s history (he watched his mother and sister die, then his father slip away into depression) it doesn’t legitimately impact the events of the novel directly. Max, short for Maxine, Robichaux is in interesting character. Honisnger reveals his history in slowly and while he doesn’t talk to much about previous military assignments you do learn that Robichaux has experienced significant trauma and that he suffers from PTSD. Robichaux is from a world settled by Cajuns and his conversations with the Cumberland’s cajun chief helmsman provide a nice touch of character and help ground the novel with a sense of familiarity. Early in the novel Robichaux and the Cumberland are assigned a new Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Ibrahim Sahin, and the two begin a close friendship. The relationship between Robichaux and Sahin is an important part of the novel and helps provides insight into both of these character’s personalities that wouldn’t normally be present in the day to day ship board activities. Robichaux’s psychological state is extraordinarily important to the story of the Cumberland as the ship was previously under the command of an obsessive compulsive captain who micro-managed his crew. Like its new captain the crew of Cumberland is nearly to buckling under the psychological strain of its former commander. The parallel between Robichaux’s need to fix his new ship (with compassion where possible) and his growing cognizance (thanks to his friendship with Sahin) of his own issues. To Honor You Call Us, is a bit of an homage to the Age of Sail. In addition to hearkening back to a host of science fiction authors others have drawn comparisons Patrick O’Brian and C. S. Forester in the tone of the novel. My familiarity with the Age of Sail is more through film and television than fiction but it is definitely an apt comparison; Robichaux even evidences a fondness for Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance. Like in many military sci-fi stories involving naval warfare there is a very deliberate pace when it comes to the ship to ship combat. To Honor You Call Us sticks to its guns when describing combat in the vastness of space easily balancing the amount of time it takes with the level of tension it causes. I found Honsinger’s description of the Cumberland using its stealth systems to sneak up a ship interesting from a technical standpoint and rife with a welcome degree of tension. Over the course of the novel Honsinger reveals just enough about the war, and the state of affairs in the military, to make the Cumberland’s mission feel important but not like the entire war effort hinges on its outcome; he easily captures the notion that the Cumberland is part of a greater whole. To Honor You Call Us is an amazingly accomplished debut novel from an up and coming author. The problems are few and minor. While Honsinger has a tendency to lean on the technical, he has a clear handle on his lead characters and has invested his narrative with a personal story as well as grand one. If you are graving something new and exciting in the world of military science fiction, particularly if you enjoy the work of Jack Campbell and David Weber, you should definitely give To Honor You Call Us a shot. The second novel For Honor We Stand is out now with a third, Brothers in Valor, due out later this year. This book was a definite surprise and I look forward to see what H. Paul Honsinger and the “crafty” Maxine Robichaux have up their sleeves.

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