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A Novel with Three Codas.
Hugo Award 2013, Locus Award nominee 2013.
From the bestselling, award-winning author of Old Man’s War, a novel that answers the question: What happens when all the expendable ensigns on the exploring starship start comparing notes?
Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the more to be assigned to the ship’s Xenobiology laboratory.
Life couldn’t be better... until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.
Not surprisingly, a great deal of energy belowdecks is expended on avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission. Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is... and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives.
This book won the Hugo? For some reason, I expect books that win prizes like that to be something mindblowing. Guess what: this wasn't. Hannu Rajaniemi's book was, for example, even if I only understood half of it.
So this was something of a funny adventure / metastory, somewhat likable characters, easy to read, but I didn't find it to be anything special. Old man's war had ideas and it was a better book imho.