I’m reviewing all six books in the Lost Fleet series by Jack Campbell because the stories all sort of blended together in my mind. As far as sci-fi goes, especially military sci-fi, the books are fairly short. I also got addicted to them in a way and binged on them for a few months straight.
So with that in mind, let me give you my thoughts…
This series is great. If you like fleet strategy in a faster-than light science fiction universe you can find no better series of books. It also has some of the most convincing space combat of any book series I’ve read.
The detriment of this series are the characters. John Geary is an interesting Captain/Admiral, but he’s also a stereotype. He’s the same grizzled sailor you’ve seen a thousand times in a reluctant command situation. I would say he has no flaws, but I think his weak skills with women might be one.
Speaking of that… the lack of characters means two romantic relationships spring up and flourish without any kind of watering or care. More care is given to the combat and strategy than the people involved, and don’t even get me started on the antagonists. Geary is always one step ahead of his antagonists, which gets old quickly. Problems spring up in a chapter and are addressed in that same chapter. It’s irritating.
Don’t get me wrong. This series is fantastic, and I burned through it in a few months of obsession. I just emphasize the lack of character because it feels like this universe (and author) has so much potential. The combat situations are well-thought out and realistic. The struggle of a changing military and a relic of the past is an interesting one, but squandered. I hope that the two spin off series have more development.