Disclaimer: Please, note that English is not my first language. I apologize in advance because I know there could be some mistakes in the text below. I’m trying to improve it, thanks.
In a previous post in this blog I was excited about the preceding work by Ian Sales, the four great stories included in The Apollo Quartet (sorry, this one is only in Spanish). In the present case my impressions have been somewhat different: A Prospect of War is a very distinct work, in my opinion it is a challenge for the author because it is his first novel, and if we also consider that is part of a trilogy, this challenge could be also qualified as a tour de force.
A conspiracy threatens the throne of His Imperial Highness Willim IX by the mysterious enemy called The Serpent. A renegade battlecruiser, Vengeful; among his crew Commander Rinharte and Lieutenant Kordelasz are entrusted with a dangerous mission in Tanabria Station. Meanwhile, on the planet Darrus, Lady Finesz, from the Office of the Procurator Imperial, finds a plot that exceeds the apparently routine mission entrusted by his superiors. Finally, Casimir Ormuz, a young crew member from a data freighter conceals a great secret. Some events will lead those characters to a journey through different planets, while the threat of a civil war looms over the galactic empire.
The book is 650 pages long, divided in sixty-eight chapters. A Prospect of War is a novel that takes its time but I have never found boring, since it allows me to enjoy their chivalrous dialogue and the detailed planetary descriptions, as commented below. However, I consider that the development of the plot shows some flaws such as the evolution of the character Casimir Ormuz, or the lack of definition about The Serpent.
About the characters, I must say that generally they may look somewhat rigid with all that militaristic stuff, although I do not think this is a key issue because they are also those who are not easily forgotten. Specially, in the case of Casimir Ormuz, the more developed character, for some reason I has not found his evolution throughout the novel entirely plausible. Besides that, no more objections: I consider the novel is well conceived and better written.