I just finished this book today. I noticed one reviewer said it was darker and did not have a good ending. Hmmm I guess real life continues in the future. The future is indeed dark, hopeless and depressing for millions. So many good people struggle to eat, get clean eater, fight off disease, have trouble providing for their families, face huge obstacles, are oppressed by governments that should be their servants and are in so many kinds of pain. But they carry on each in their own way... some in good ways... some... well not so good.
What makes this book so good is that the authors understand this (maybe not as I do) but well enough. They have created a future where the one element that cannot change is human nature. And that nature alone can create many stories. Stories with great action, drama, intensity, pain and incredible goodness combined with fantastic technologies yet to be discovered on worlds we are not... yet. That people (or in this book some aliens) can do good... or choose evil. And however we choose the choice is always ours.
And of course - like any good space opera - it entertains, keeps us guessing and in this case does so in style and leaves the reader (well this reader) breathless and wanting more. It takes a vivid imagination, intelligence and creativity as well as love for the story to do that and draw the reader into that experience. Cole and Anspach do that and more.
Folks if you haven't read both books in the Galaxy's Edge do yourself a favor and do so. And look for what's beyond the story... and what you may see is what might be in your soul.