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Kris Longknife, #2

Mike Shepherd brings more of the intrepid princess's exploits to life in Kris Longknife: Daring. Following her adventures with the Iteeche and the discoveries made with her last voyage, Kris elects to go looking in unexplored space for the beings that might be responsible for the disappearances of the Iteeche ships. Unfortunately for her, her plans for a discreet scouting mission with a few small ships that can travel quickly and take a peek at distant regions of space unobtrusively is undermined. Accompanied by battleships from several former enemy factions, including the Greenwalds, Kris starts a voyage that becomes more and more complicated as she also juggles representatives of the Helvitican Confederacy, the Musashi, and the Iteeche themselves. The voyage of discovery allows the various players to get to know each other somewhat better but becomes marred by violence as it becomes apparent that politics have not remained in known space and assassination attempts are still a very real danger. A horrendous discovery increase the tension amongst the allies and the discovery of even more aliens causes Kris to re-evaluate her theories of protocol for first contact. The question becomes whether Kris will survive long enough to return to convey her discoveries and how they will be received?

An entertaining chapter in the ongoing space adventures of a worthy descendant of the Longknife family. Kris' constant self-recriminations as she is faced with the tough decisions that any commander must come to terms with are leavened by the interactions that she has with those around her, including her constant companion, Nelly the computer. A little more depth is given to some of the secondary characters but the primary focus is on the action and there is definitely a lot of action. Some of the repercussions of the decisions made are disappointing to a reader who likes her happy endings but are necessary for the reminder of the costs of war. An exciting tale that primes the reader for the next tale which will undoubtedly be filled with even more difficult decisions for the charismatic princess given that it is currently titled, "Furious"!

Book Blurb for Daring

Lieutenant Commander Kris Longknife leads a reconnaissance mission of the vast uncharted regions of space. No one, least of all Kris, expects to find a hostile alien starship. Now, she must determine the extent of the alien threat-and whether to start an interstellar war...

Night Owl Reviews Sep, 2011 4.50