Top positive review
Wrap up on several problems, satisfactory realism, a few loose ends
Reviewed in the United States on September 24, 2017
This series remains more interesting than the new AI wars series. Even though I can tell the author is getting tired of it and would rather write the other one. The war scenario was almost believable given the consistent parameters the author has laid down over 7 books. And it was a war scenario, not a battle scenario, with the battles being mostly summarized as to basic positions, strategies, net losses and gains. I prefer it that way. Hard to make detailed battles using fantasy weapons meaningful.
I did not give it 5 stars because the author relaxes his character building, the super villain is just too cliche and easily fooled, and Trax Ti Ix is such a bumbler in this one. Not to mention his stereotyped superiors.
There is also a flaw in the destroyer race that feeds off of fear. They are predators, basically. Predators do not completely kill off their prey, because they would starve. These beings are too stupid to be an ancient and advanced race. Also, how did the builders figure out how to trick it? That was left unsaid and seems improbable. But the human characters are given satisfactory conclusions.
There is unfinished business with the New Men, though the score is evened with the Builder viewer device. And it always was more even than we realized since they cannot reproduce women. This seems contrived and unlikely. Another novel to reconcile the human race and explain the reproductive difficulty would finish the series nicely. Right now Heppner is the only one of the group of 20-odd authors I was following that is still putting out good books, the others seduced into meaningless serials by Amazons pay-by-the-page policy (with Kindle Unlimited). So maybe it is not entirely bad that Heppner is willing to end a series that has already gone 7 books.