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review 2017-07-11 17:46
“A Peace Divided – Peacekeeper #2” by Tanya Huff
A Peace Divided - Tanya Huff

“A Peace Divided” follows on directly from “An Ancient Peace”, making it the seventh Torin Kerr book. If you haven’t read the others, don’t start here. Give yourself a treat and read “Valor’s Choice” and come back here when you’ve caught up

 

Torin Kerr isn’t a Gunnery Sergeant in the Confederation Marines, fighting a war against the Primacy any more. The war is over. Primacy are no longer the enemy, if they ever really were.

 

Now Torin’s life is much more complicated. She leads a Peace Keeper Strike Force, dealing with violent people churning through civilian space in the wake of an unexpected peace. Torin’s not a soldier anymore. Winning  now involved more than getting in, killing the enemy and getting her people home. Now she has to uphold the law and make sure as few people as possible, on either side, die while she’s doing it.

 

“A Peace Divided”  is full of action. Itopens with a firefight between Torrin’s Peace Keeper Strike Team and a heavily-armed gun-runners and swiftly moves on to a mission to rescue Federation scientists being held hostage by mercenaries. Both situations illustrate the shift in the context of Torin’s violence from fighting a war to keeping the peace.

 

The book moves beyond the action to reflect on its causes as Torrin asks herself why the Strike Force is necessary and what should really be done about the veteran soldiers, damaged in the war and displaced in the peace, who spread violence and whether she and her people are being manipulated.

 

Torin is still the heart of this book and it was good to spend more time in her company but I liked the fact that we saw large parts of the story from the point of view of other, usually alien, characters. We shared the experience of a young human mercenary, caught up in violence he doesn’t approve of but can’t walk away from, an elder race scientist who struggles even to imagine violence, until her colleagues fall victim to it and she has to decide whether to fight or die and a pair of Cray coming to terms with marriage and the vulnerability it brings.

 

I admired Tanya Huff’s skill in presenting the large number of alien species in this book, without confusing me or diluting the identities of the species. I liked her ability to show the species as very different from one another and yet showing that they are still more likely to be bound together by their occupational roles (scientist, soldier) than by their genetics.

 

The “Humans First” organization (who have now lost the annoying apostrophe) are used  not just to demonstrate the power of bigotry and hate but to show that the issues that feed that hatred are real and tosuggest that the people who fund the hate have a darker, more personal agenda.

 

What made “A Peace Divided” compelling was that it kept fusing simple explanations..  The complexity isn’t added just to enrich the puzzle, it’s there because life is like that.

 

The appeal of Torin’s mantra of getting her people home safe  is that it gives her the certainty needed to act decisiviely but she is aware that it filters out the bigger picture. Now she’s having to confront that there is no officer to frame the bigger picture for her and recognises that she will have to form that picture for herself and her people.

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review 2017-07-07 22:22
Review of Being Nixon by Evan Thomas
Being Nixon: A Man Divided - Evan Thomas

A solid biography of President Richard Nixon - my first book about this particular President.  I think the book itself and the writing were strong.  I had a hard time getting through it because I really couldn't warm up to Richard Nixon the person.  Reading through his life story, particularly his Presidency, had me feeling bad for him as a flawed personal character.  He could never, right up until the end, get out of his own way.  Reading through many of his decisions and the difficulties with Watergate, I couldn't help but think of the parallels between Nixon and our current President.  That may have been a a bit of my personal bias influencing these thoughts, but I could easily see many similarities.  

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url 2017-06-07 13:05
90+ new releases in book series this week
White Trash Zombie Unchained - Diana Rowland
Only Skein Deep - Maggie Sefton
Moonbreaker - Simon R. Green
Indecent Exposure - Stuart Woods
An Unnatural Vice (Sins of the Cities) - KJ Charles
A Scandal in Battersea - Mercedes Lackey
A Peace Divided - Tanya Huff
Inked Expressions - Carrie Ann Ryan
The Kill Society - Richard Kadrey
Tyrant's Throne - Sebastien de Castell

See the fictfact new release calendar at https://www.fictfact.com/BookReleaseCalendar for full list.

Source: www.fictfact.com/BookReleaseCalendar
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review 2017-05-28 20:09
Divided City
Divided City - Theresa Breslin

The kind of street his parents had warned him never to be in. The kind of street where your footsteps echoed loud, too loud – because there was no one else about. From either side the dark openings of the tenement building mawed at him. It was the beginning of May and fairly light at this time in the evening. But even so . . . Graham glanced around. The sky was densely overcast and shadows were gathering. He shouldn’t have lingered so long after football training.

I'm sure this book has salient points to deliver about football, hooliganism, hatred of the unknown - whether it be religion, culture, or anything else -, the background of the Orange Order, and I'm sure that this would make an interesting read for a football fan in their early teens. At least, I guess there may be a way to connect to the football aspect of it - even if the footie talk is mostly limited to the two Glaswegian teams in the early 2000s.

 

I'm glad I read this, but I am feeling rather "meh" about it. At least, I can now delete it from my kindle (not that I know how it got there in the first place...).

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review 2017-05-21 15:17
Book Review: Every Kingdom Divided
Every Kingdom Divided - Stephen Kozeniewski

*I read this book for my own enjoyment.

When Jack receives a text from his fiancee asking for help, Jack is determined to transverse the divided country and dangerous lands to come to her aid. From California to the far East coast he goes, crossing battle lines in America's civil war.

We get two stories in this book. Where Jack is currently as he tells his story of why and how he got here. Each chapter is one of the two places, keeping the feel as though he's in the moment. It's easy to follow as he does have a lead in at the end of current chapters to let us know he's returning to the story.

This world is crazy divided! So many issues in America. The country is divided by these issues and at war with itself. Everyone's beliefs have come to strong points and they will stand by them. We see these strong differences as Jack travels across the country and lives through each place. This story was written and published over a year ago, but it's something that strongly relates to the many different beliefs in our country, something that makes us strong but could easily divide us as well - like it does here.

The different divisions of America have their own slang to go with their beliefs. At times the slang slowed me a tad as I was reading, making me think on what the words meant again. Thankfully Stephen has a glossary for the words at the beginning. I suggest taking a glance over these so you are aware going in. I did and it helped place the words. But eventually I came to read the words and keep going, aware they were slang and what they meant.

When the book started, I was curious to see how Jack would get away from the firing squad. Then I grew curious of what Jack tells he's come across on his way to help his fiancee, and what trouble she was in. As his travels start, I became interested in the world that was new yet old. There were small curiosities that I wanted to know more about, like the woman that decided to travel with him. In the sections where Jack is currently I was lead to wonder if Jack's really telling a tall tale or if it was all true. I wasn't sure, and wanted to find that out too. And I learn all these things.

Jack's story shows how he's grown to become friends with people in two of the three fighting fractions in America. These three shouldn't be friends, they are of the different divisions of the world, but they are. They've risen above the lines of Red, Blue, or White and beliefs that are strong to become more. We see it through what they live through and their actions to help each other.

Thinking on the three friends, I really like the moral that is portrayed here. There is a reason behind the story and something to think on. A feel that all can be friends no matter beliefs, as long as you are willing. Something wonderful about this book, through all these characters live through and the moral you pick up on in the end, there is a lightness to the story that makes the traveling Jack's done seem as though it's a story to keep him safe from the firing squad. There is a ease at which the characters converse that keeps the story light.

This journey all fits together in the last few chapters. How all the people Jack meet on his journey are connected in the world. We learn why Jack is here. And does Jack finally find Lara?

For me this was a light, fun read that had more depth to it than I realized until the end. It was enjoyable.

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