Science fiction and fantasy
Dawn of Destiny
by Lee Stephen
Remington isn't your usual soldier. He has a strong belief in God's purpose for him, and in his destiny. Early on in the story he distinguishes himself in combat, showing leadership and quick thinking that gets him out of trouble. It's just as well, because there's a lot of fighting going on.
When Scott isn't facing various shades of alien menace he has to contend with the hostility and jealousy of other soldiers at the cold Siberian base of Novisibirsk. Although the station is theoretically a part of EDEN, the Earth Defense Network, it's staffed largely by ex-Nightmen under the iron rule of General Thoor. The Nightmen are a law unto themselves, whilst Thoor seems to have been born without the chromosome for mercy.
Dawn of Destiny has several over-macho characters. Thoor is the most over-the-top of these, right down to his scars and flowing black bad guy cloak, he's more of a caricature than a rounded character. He dresses like a cross between Darth Vader and someone out of Warhammer 40 000.
Although Scott and his army friends are a lot more believable, the plot is much less so. Everything revolves around Scott. After his first combat situation he gets gushing praise from his superiors, followed by the most unlikely and ego-massaging press conference ever given. Some things just seem to fall into his lap too easily.
Dawn of Destiny is dedicated "to God", and religion is a dominant theme. Scott is the kind of person who prays regularly, and his faith doesn't appear to be affected a great deal by the death and mayhem that surrounds him. Although this Christianity isn't presented in a preachy manner, it's a little bit in-your-face.
This novel has a pleasingly quick pace. It will appeal most to fans of action who like their heroes clean-cut and their aliens terrifying. Hopefully the sequel, Outlaw Trigger, will flesh out some of the characters, and bring extra dimensions to a plot that is currently on the thin side.
If you like this, try:Trading in Danger by Elizabeth Moon
The first in the Vatta's War series.
Star Wars Episode III : Revenge of the Sith by George Lucas
Darth Vader rises, and everything goes pear-shaped for the Jedi.
Review © Ros Jackson
Read more about Lee Stephen