The Avatari are a merciless race of aliens on a crusade to destroy life on every planet. It’s not the planets themselves these aliens destroy, but all kinds of life on them, leaving the planets in ruins and practically uninhabitable. While the Unified Authority and the Enlisted Man’s Empire are at war with each other – humans against clones – they also are in a mutual battle against these aliens. The Japanese fleet that has an army of Navy SEALs are also on a mission to stop the aliens and all are in a fight to save the people on the planet the aliens have targeted for destruction.
Do clones have souls? It’s a question scientists and philosophers may spend years debating. It is also a question pondered by Wayson Harris, a Marine who happens to be a clone, in Steven L. Kent’s latest novel, The Clone Redemption, the seventh book in his Clone Wars series. By all appearances, Wayson acts and talks like a regular human (called “natural borns”), except that as a soldier who came into the world at the age of 21 and already prepared to fight, he, like many of his fellow soldiers, is equipped with a fighter gene that takes Wayson’s “fight or flight” reflex to the nth level. He automatically turns into a raging killing machine once this gene is activated, and when he is this way, any normal thoughts about common sense, morals and sense of humanity are nonexistent. He turns into a machine bent on self-preservation, which ironically enough is one factor considered when many debate if something has a soul or not.
I have not read the other Clone Wars novels but this novel still held my attention from first page to last. It helped that the author included a timeline of events leading up to the current story as well as the characters sharing information about past events. This story is a “soldier’s story,” as the soldiers talk and act like the grunts that they are. It’s also filled with action scenes that are expertly written in a way that was easy for me to visualize as I read them. Additionally, some of these scenes were so intense, I was actually gripping the book, flipping through pages and holding my breath as I read through them wondering what would happen in the end. There are also moments in the story that had me laughing or cheering the soldiers on.
The Clone Redemption was an awesome sci-fi story to read and it got me interested in checking out the other books in this series. Even though the author has no experience in the military, he wrote his characters and story so well, as if readers are in the trenches fighting the bad guys right alongside the other soldiers. This is a story I enjoyed and would be willing to read again just to relive an alternate world of space wars, clone life and the quest to save humans from an alien invasion.
Earth, 2516 A.D.: The Unified Authority has spread human colonies across the Milky Way, keeping strict order with a powerful military made up almost entirely of clones. But now the clones have formed their own empire, and they aim to keep it...no matter who they must defeat.