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Valor's Child

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Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. Jiden's parents barely scrape out a living on the dry, dusty world of Century. Jiden wants more for herself and she is ready to step into a bright future, one which may lead her far from the frontier world of her birth. She has no dreams of following in the footsteps of her military fami Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. Jiden's parents barely scrape out a living on the dry, dusty world of Century. Jiden wants more for herself and she is ready to step into a bright future, one which may lead her far from the frontier world of her birth. She has no dreams of following in the footsteps of her military family's heritage, no desire to live a life of hardship. She's just got one obstacle in the path to her dreams: five months of military school. She'll be away from her friends, subjected to long hours and a crushing work load. She'll learn to shoot, to fight... and how to kill. Jiden will need every skill she's learned, because her family's enemies have put her in their sights. She's going to have to rise to the challenges in order to survive. She soon learns that her dreams might not be as good as she imagined. With her life on the line, Jiden will need to fall back on the skills she learned and prove that she's a child of valor.


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Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. Jiden's parents barely scrape out a living on the dry, dusty world of Century. Jiden wants more for herself and she is ready to step into a bright future, one which may lead her far from the frontier world of her birth. She has no dreams of following in the footsteps of her military fami Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. Jiden's parents barely scrape out a living on the dry, dusty world of Century. Jiden wants more for herself and she is ready to step into a bright future, one which may lead her far from the frontier world of her birth. She has no dreams of following in the footsteps of her military family's heritage, no desire to live a life of hardship. She's just got one obstacle in the path to her dreams: five months of military school. She'll be away from her friends, subjected to long hours and a crushing work load. She'll learn to shoot, to fight... and how to kill. Jiden will need every skill she's learned, because her family's enemies have put her in their sights. She's going to have to rise to the challenges in order to survive. She soon learns that her dreams might not be as good as she imagined. With her life on the line, Jiden will need to fall back on the skills she learned and prove that she's a child of valor.

30 review for Valor's Child

  1. 5 out of 5

    Pat Patterson

    Jiden is almost 17 in Earth years, and on the lonely planet where she finds her home, it's time for her to leave home, and go off to the equivalent of work or college. Nobody majors in Music History on her world; they are fighting too hard to stay alive. Mom and Dad want her to go to college. Jiden wants to get a plum internship with Champion Industries, where her not-quite-boyfriend Tony is placed. Of course, in Tony's case, it was a foregone; his grandfather is THE Mr. Champion. Dilemma: Champio Jiden is almost 17 in Earth years, and on the lonely planet where she finds her home, it's time for her to leave home, and go off to the equivalent of work or college. Nobody majors in Music History on her world; they are fighting too hard to stay alive. Mom and Dad want her to go to college. Jiden wants to get a plum internship with Champion Industries, where her not-quite-boyfriend Tony is placed. Of course, in Tony's case, it was a foregone; his grandfather is THE Mr. Champion. Dilemma: Champion wants applicants to apply ONLY to their program; Jiden has promised her parents she will apply to two other colleges, so: she forges her mother's signature on the Champion application. Parents hit the ceiling. And they ship her off to her grandmother. NOT the sweet cookie-baking grandmother; no, she goes off to the ADMIRAL grandmother, who is in command of the Military Academy. And that's how Jiden spends her summer vacation. I LOVE these stories. I love military sci-fi in general, but specifically, I have deep, deep affection for the stories of basic training. Doesn't matter if its Heinlein, or Hooten, Buettner or Torgerson: there is a grinding similarity between what THEY went through, and what I went through. If you are one of the fortunate who through some nasty bad luck or nasty bad choices found yourself at some Reception Station with your hair scraped off and needles being jack-hammered into your arms, then you will share the visceral experience: yes; it was like that. If you have NOT had that experience; I don't know. Maybe. I think plenty of non-vets liked Starship Troopers. But, hey: I DID that. I PAID for the memories. And not even if I could be nineteen years old again would I go through that a second time. There is a LOT of backstory here, that some of the characters know about, but others don't. Jiden doesn't know ANYTHING. Her roommate does, however, including the fact that their families have histories with each other. But nobody will tell her anything! They all say, it isn't their story to tell. Well, maybe so; that culture may be close-mouthed. She sure handles the ambiguity better than I would. Three periods to training: equipment issue and orientation; a combat field problem called 'Grinder; extensive classroom presentation. All of that has to be crammed into four months, and that's one of the not-believable aspects of the book. I'm gonna pass it by, though, because this is a prep school experience. However, unless I utterly read it wrong, the troops are dumped into the intense combat experience of the Grinder after: EIGHT DAYS. Sorry, that idea hits the wall. However, the story is so well told, the entire thing, that I just suspended disbelief, and kept reading. Yes, the story is that good. He probably could have gotten away with other stuff, as well, but he didn't try. So much more I could say! I will not, however, because you need to read it for yourself. Just keep in mind that the plot lines left hanging are on purpose, because the sequel is on the way.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Keith

    Engaging coming of age story with a female protagonist on a colony world in the future. Elements of this book reminded me of a variety of series, including Harry Potter, Starship Troopers and Honor Harrington. The initially self absorbed, self pitying MC lies to Mommy and Daddy, and is punished by being sent to a military prep school by Grandma. The direction she goes from there was not quite what I expected, but was definitely worth the read. The plot development is a little slow, some the tea Engaging coming of age story with a female protagonist on a colony world in the future. Elements of this book reminded me of a variety of series, including Harry Potter, Starship Troopers and Honor Harrington. The initially self absorbed, self pitying MC lies to Mommy and Daddy, and is punished by being sent to a military prep school by Grandma. The direction she goes from there was not quite what I expected, but was definitely worth the read. The plot development is a little slow, some the teasers in the first 2 books are still teasers, and the backstory / worldbuilding is sparse, but in a way that leaves me wanting more. The following is spoilered because it gives away some back story, but is mostly Meta (view spoiler)[ What I did not realize until halfway through book 2, is that this planet was colonized by Mormons. There a references in book 1 to "missionary ships" and going to chapel on Sundays, with the Protestants and Catholics having different services from the main one, with no real explanation. It was not until some of the names of the colony founders were given, and I saw names like Brigham, that I figured it out. This book is set on a hot, arid, fresh water poor, planet - more Great Basin / Utah than Arrakis. There is a focus on community, banding together to survive on a hostile world, self sufficiency, military service, and other things that make more sense when you realize they are set on a secularized / multicultural arid colony world that was first settled by Mormons. It also explains a number of "Americanisms" such as the discussion of the Miltary's oath being to the constitution rather than the government. Elements of these discussions in the military academy reminded me of Starship Troopers, but much less heavy handed. (hide spoiler)]

  3. 4 out of 5

    Glenn Murphy

    Spriggs seems to have borrowed heavily from Harry Potter and Divergent, but the future universe of planetary colonies he creates is unique and interesting. Jiden Armstrong is a naive and unprepared student at a military school she had never dreamed of attending. She is mostly ignorant of her family’s history at the school and in the service, and has to learn to navigate school rivalries and old family feuds, while trying to keep up with her classes, and avoid being killed. The plucky, think-outs Spriggs seems to have borrowed heavily from Harry Potter and Divergent, but the future universe of planetary colonies he creates is unique and interesting. Jiden Armstrong is a naive and unprepared student at a military school she had never dreamed of attending. She is mostly ignorant of her family’s history at the school and in the service, and has to learn to navigate school rivalries and old family feuds, while trying to keep up with her classes, and avoid being killed. The plucky, think-outside-the-box misfits are now the “Sand Dragon” section instead of House Gryffindor, and their do-anything-to-win, ethically challenged, bullying rivals are the “Ogre” section instead of House Slytherin. Scores are kept, and are far more important than the pride and bragging rights house competition in the Potter series. The events of the story only hint at a larger plot that will span all of the books in the series. This book sometimes feels more like a military recruitment propaganda piece than a sci-fi story (service is almost portrayed as the only honorable calling to aspire to, and civilians are mostly clueless, lazy, selfish, and don’t know how much they need to be protected by the selfless men and women of the armed services), but I’m hoping that the alien archeology dig that Jiden’s parents work at and the cybernetic implants that are barely hinted at will play are larger role in future books of the series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    Good coming of age story The story focuses on a teen's development from an intelligent but self centered child to a young adult that is willing to sacrifice for others. Left waiting for more. Good coming of age story The story focuses on a teen's development from an intelligent but self centered child to a young adult that is willing to sacrifice for others. Left waiting for more.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    Very good young adult space academy 4.5 stars I am interested in seeing where this series ends up. It is a good young adult novel. Ending was a bit rushed, but overall look forward to the sequel.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Konrad

    An enjoyable Military Acadamy story, which caught me and kept my attention, though it did feel a bit like a recruitment brochure at times. Also, the post Acadamy part of the story felt a bit rushed and could have done with a bit more meat to build up the suspense.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Hilton mather

    Surprisingly good I went into this book thinking it wasn't going to be that great but I decided to give it a try, I'd also never heard of the author. I was pleasantly surprised. Well written, good character development and a great tempo. Totally going to read the next one. Surprisingly good I went into this book thinking it wasn't going to be that great but I decided to give it a try, I'd also never heard of the author. I was pleasantly surprised. Well written, good character development and a great tempo. Totally going to read the next one.

  8. 4 out of 5

    John Hibdon

    Very good book. Very good and we'll written. Enjoyed it a lot. Recommend it to anyone one old enough to understand the hidden thoughts. Very good book. Very good and we'll written. Enjoyed it a lot. Recommend it to anyone one old enough to understand the hidden thoughts.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Tim

    A nice Military SciFI YA novel with gripping characters and story line. Hard to put down.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Thor Aegir

    Beautifully done. The characters are well defined, the story is compelling, the cuts are well though. I'm remembered of my first Honor Harrington read. Bravo Beautifully done. The characters are well defined, the story is compelling, the cuts are well though. I'm remembered of my first Honor Harrington read. Bravo

  11. 5 out of 5

    Eric Green

    Eh, you could file off the serial numbers and it would be any number of misfit-kid-goes-to-military-academy-and-becomes-a-super-warrior wish fulfillment novels. That said, it's done pretty well. The main character is appealing enough as are the most important ancillary characters, and it's clear that the author understands the military and why the military trains the way it trains. You won't find many of the miscues that are typical of this sort of YA novel where an author who is ignorant of the Eh, you could file off the serial numbers and it would be any number of misfit-kid-goes-to-military-academy-and-becomes-a-super-warrior wish fulfillment novels. That said, it's done pretty well. The main character is appealing enough as are the most important ancillary characters, and it's clear that the author understands the military and why the military trains the way it trains. You won't find many of the miscues that are typical of this sort of YA novel where an author who is ignorant of the military goofs things up entirely. Still, there just isn't much "there" there. This series has been written before, many, many times before, by any number of writers of military science fiction. The fact that it's done relatively well still doesn't elevate it above the rest of its genre, and still doesn't change the fact that the misfit kid usually *doesn't* end up being top of her class at a military academy -- that's not how it works in real life. The guys who come out on top are a lot of things, but misfits aren't one of them -- they're team players with leadership skills honed through years of practice. Oh yeah, the bad guys are pretty much telegraphed from the start of the novel. Only an idiot can't figure out that they're up to no good, and the supposedly smart protagonist can't? Nah. Not gonna. Still, if you are looking for entertainment with a strong (if flawed) female lead this will definitely do the job. It was entertaining enough for me to read the whole series anyhow...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I really enjoyed this story as I feel that the author hit the nail on the head with the whole basic training scenario. The main character is young, annoying, and figures she knows everything. Not atypical for a teenager. In a brief stint in the Reserves in my youth I can remember having some of the exact same thoughts and feelings as the protagonist does. I really identified with that part of the story but also delighted in the science fiction flavor of it. I'm looking forward to the next one an I really enjoyed this story as I feel that the author hit the nail on the head with the whole basic training scenario. The main character is young, annoying, and figures she knows everything. Not atypical for a teenager. In a brief stint in the Reserves in my youth I can remember having some of the exact same thoughts and feelings as the protagonist does. I really identified with that part of the story but also delighted in the science fiction flavor of it. I'm looking forward to the next one and finding out more about the history and family connections of the main character.

  13. 5 out of 5

    TSN ☮

    3.5 stars

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    Good YA first of a series! A fast paced rite of passage, good development of mc, complex personal and political issues. Looking forward to the series : )!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Volpot

    4 stars. While it was a fairly typical "coming of age" story of a girl in an academy-style environment, it was pretty well-written, had good characterization, and was an overall enjoyable read. 4 stars. While it was a fairly typical "coming of age" story of a girl in an academy-style environment, it was pretty well-written, had good characterization, and was an overall enjoyable read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    James Conley

    Its pretty obvious the author of this book attended an Academy based on how things are referenced

  17. 5 out of 5

    Langley

    I always love a good military space opera and this series was fun. Good female protagonist, overpowered but not perfect, who works her way up.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Michael Gray

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

  20. 4 out of 5

    ALEXANDER WASILIEW

  21. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

  22. 5 out of 5

    Pat Cummings

  23. 5 out of 5

    Whare

  24. 5 out of 5

    uz

  25. 4 out of 5

    MKenfield21

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

  27. 4 out of 5

    Maurycy

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nessah Ray

  29. 4 out of 5

    John Darling

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ove

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