Guardian of the Night
Baen, Feb 7 2012, $13.00
In 2075 for two months the USX Chief Seattle tracks a Sceeve ship the Power of Heaven. As the SIGINT, Petty Officer Second Class Melinda Japps monitors the enigmatic enemy odor broadcasts of the “Poet” and sends recordings and reports back to headquarters. Japps figures out how to convert the encoded smells into lights. From there she interprets the pattern in which the Poet is pleading with the humans for help while Power of Heaven political officer Transel seeks the traitor.
Captain Sub-receptor Arid Ricimer commands the Guardian of Night. He grieves the deaths of his beloved family killed by his side. An honorable officer who fought bravely with the kinetic energy weapons that devastated the earth, Ricimer decides enough treachery from those in his supposed side’s comfort zone. He chooses to defect with his ship, crew and a weapon of mass destruction. His former Sceeve fleet mates pursue him with orders to kill while the former enemy navy and civilian leaders consider him and his ship as a Trojan Horse needing to be eliminated. Only Japps thinks otherwise.
This is an exciting extremely complex (thank Mr. Daniels for a needed glossary) futuristic science fiction military-political thriller. The storyline is fast-paced from the moment Japps begins to translate the Poet’s odor language and never slows down until a final confrontation. Filled with political intrigue on both sides and mindful of Tom Clancy’s The Hunt for Red October, fans will enjoy the challenges to earth and Sceeve by the Guardian of Night.