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Author Topic: Winter Duty (Book 8 of the Vampire Earth Series) (EE Knight) (RoC)  (Read 5729 times)
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« on: November 09, 2009, 01:44:50 AM »



Once again full disclosure, EE Knight is a friend. That said, I met the man through the admiration of his work. So I was a fan first and I think that's important to my integrity as a reviewer. And yes I have an ad for the series on the site but I'm actually using it as a placeholder until the store is operational. No money has changed hands and I'm happy to give some small amount of free advertising to me friend.

First off; if you haven't read any of the series I want you to stop what you are doing and get to reading. You are eight books behind with only eight months until number nine comes out (the author has told many people that the series should run into the area of 14 or so books).

"Vampire Earth" is a series relating to a dystopian future in which mankind has not only been enslaved but replaced at the top of the food chain by a ravenous alien race who does not crave our blood, but perhaps our very souls.

The Kurians softened us up with a global pandemic and natural disasters which reduced the human population of Earth by about eighty five percent. Then they struck. Bringing genetic monstrosities of their own design they quickly conquered what little resistance there was and then a land rush to establish small kingdoms began. The quarrellous Kurians divided us up, fenced in their area and, through the use of their Reapers, began to consume mankind.

Kurians, being weak and cowardly use a genetically created horror that resembles a legendary vampire to consume their victims. Psychically connected to these creatures they consume the "aura" at the same time the Reaper kills a human and subsists on the blood of its' victim.

The series is the story of David Valentine and his part in the war to free humanity.

Valentine is a member of a special caste of warriors called "Hunters." Another alien race, related to and at war with the Kurians, have enhanced humans through genetic manipulation to fight this war against their common enemy. .

The author always tries to make each book stand on its own, but unlike previous entries "Winter Duty" is very much a sequel to last years' "Fall With Honor." You could read "Winter Duty" on its own but I wouldn't recommend it.

David Valentine is now a Wolf, a Cat and a Bear. All three caste animals from the Southern Command area Hunters. He has become the ultimate warrior. But he is a soldier without an army and a man without a nation. In his younger days this bothered him tremendously. His ideals shattered he wondered why he should even fight the Kurians. His fellow man has abused him, labeled him a criminal and in the process of petty infighting and short sighted selfishness, nearly destroyed one of their greatest weapons. The alien "Lifeweavers" who gave him his powers use the humans to fight the Kur.

But Valentine has decided to fight on: for his own reasons.

In "Winter Duty" the shattered remnants of the operation from the previous book are consolidating and licking their wounds. Expecting a counterattack the humans of Fort Seng are surprised to find the Quisling forces of the Kur retreating from the combat theater.

Then a threat of total annihilation is issued and once again David Valentine must find a way to do the impossible with almost no support.

One of the things I really liked about this book and the last one is that they are starting to read a bit like war documentaries. As if the person telling the story is a historian relating what is past.

If you like science fiction, military science fiction or even history you will probably enjoy this series. The characters are vivid, the stories complex and exciting and the writing exceptional. EE Knight has a particular flair for describing the places, geographically speaking, where his stories take place. Each chapter begins with the kind of description you might expect to find in a travel book you might read if you planning on visiting Hell. 
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