Friday, June 15, 2012

Command Decision by Elizabeth Moon - review

Command Decision
Vatta's War #4
Elizabeth Moon
Science Fiction
After thoroughly enjoying Aunt Grace's sections in the last book, I was more than ready to read more of her. However, even though there are sections starring Grace, the main stars in Command Decision were Ky and Rafe. Stella and Toby play a large part also, but the novel seems to focus on Ky and her expanding fleet and allies and Rafe.

Rafe has grown concerned at the lack of communications from his family. Though he's been a bit of a black sheep, distanced from his father they had been keeping in touch and he has been doing some undercover industrial espionage type of work for his father and their company. ISC, a huge powerhouse that had a monopoly on systemm to system communications, is in huge trouble. Seems there has been trouble brewing for quite a while, trouble that Rafe is just beginning to find out about - the ansible outages of the previous novels are just the tip of the iceberg. And now it seems his father, mother and sister have disappeared. Rafe goes undercover to find out what happened to them.

In the meantime,Ky is going into battles with the pirates that have tried to destroy her family and other systems. Allies are coming forth. Unfortunately she's also finding out the limits to her own ships, ships that she thought were in good shape after the retrofitting she had spent so much on.

Stella continues to build the business back up in the new temporary headquarters, and Toby has refined the shipboard ansibles that they found on the ship Ky confiscated from her pirate uncle. Good stuff.

The series continues to get a bit more complex, the characters are multilayered and it's been great reading. However, parts of Moon's writing seems to remain a bit ....I can't think of the right word.  The villains read a bit predictable in their dialogue, the protagonists read just as predictably and typical for sexists...and yet, the rest of the book keeps me interested.   All the main characters are finding their beliefs and views challenged on more than one front. I'm looking forward to reading the final novel in the series. 


  1. One of my goals is to read more science fiction, but I'm nervous by how male dominated the genre is. I'm glad there's a woman author for me to look into!

    1. check out R.M. Meluch, Tanya Huff, Elizabeth Bear and Laura E Reeves - all of them have at least one series out for SciFi. There is also Bujold - she writes fantasy but also has a series of SciFi that also reads close to fantasty. I wish there were more women in SciFi also = a woman's perception comes through differently than a man's and I usually find I enjoy a woman's writing more than a male's.