Book Review of “On Basilisk Station”

honor

Cover art for David Weber’s “On Basilisk Station”.

In my continued effort to review Baen Publications, I’ve just finished reading the first novel in David Weber‘s “Honor Harrington” series On Basilisk Station.

It was kind of hard to get into. Weber has a tendency to lapse into long pages of dense exposition, which tends to put the reader into one person’s head (more often than not, Honor’s) than into the action.

However, if you can power through that, you finally get to a space opera laced with political intrigue, the dynamics of provincial planetary plotting, and then the climax of classic space battle.

Weber seems to have a background in military strategy, which shows in how he depicts martial activities, both in space and on the planet. However, there were times when life aboard Honor’s ship “Fearless” felt a little like “Star Trek.”

The one thing that would have made his book better would be to cut back on each character seemingly talking too much about themselves. Also, antagonists like Lord Pavel Young and the ultra-wealthy Klaus Hauptman weren’t as prominent or as formidable as I expected them to be based on how they were initially presented.

I really didn’t see the point of the alien Treecat “Nimitz,” since Honor’s relationship to him didn’t make much difference at any point in the story.

The conflict with her second-in-command Alistair McKeon seemed to drag on until finally some headway was made a little over halfway through the book.

Yet, while all that made the novel feel unbalanced and drag at times, when it finally got going, I found it almost impossible to put down.

So far, there are 14 books in this series, and I can only hope that “On Basilisk Station” is just the first of a terrific saga.

My four star review on Amazon.

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