DAW. (Lightship Chronicles, Bk. 1). Feb. 2015. 400p. ISBN 9780756409968. $24.95; ebk. ISBN 9780698161689. SF
Peter Cochrane is disappointed when an emergency pulls him off what was supposed to be his first lightship posting to a new job on the HMS Impulse. The role comes with a promotion, but a hostile new captain from a rival culture and an attractive but prickly executive officer are just two early obstacles Peter must face. When they try to investigate the site where the Impulse was attacked by a strange hyperdimensional pulse wave, Peter and the crew are dragged into a diplomatic quagmire and a military mystery.
VERDICT Debut author Bara sets a few too many pieces on his space opera chessboard with opposing military powers, quasi-religious historical orders, and remnants of imperial civilizations and ancient founders left offstage. The characters are shallow (especially inexplicable babe-magnet Peter), the plot is both overly complicated in places and suddenly paper thin, and Bara appears to believe that if he keeps the action fast enough readers won't notice that his story doesn't make any sense.
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