Monday, September 24, 2012

Book Review: C.R.O.W.


     This story is told from the first person perspective of a fresh-faced recruit to the drop ship infantry, the future equivalent of the airborne infantry. The author is a veteran of the British infantry and it shows. Every page drips with authenticity (quite an accomplishment for a sci-fi novel).

     Richards' prose isn't polished as other works, but it shouldn't be. The present form preserves the grit, gristle, and overall hardship of war. Refinement would probably take away from its gruff believability. The equipment, technology, and tactics are well thought out and explained without interrupting the narrative. Small details like the main character wondering why drop pods can deliver troops to a planet's surface from orbiting spacecraft but can't keep its passengers cool will be familiar to anyone that's ever been in an armored vehicle in the summer. And in the future, the chow still sucks. Some things never change. An account written by one of Alexander's men would likely have similar observations. This book captures the timeless elements of soldiering.

     A great read.

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