‘It’ll be far better for him that I find him before,’ she paused for effect, ‘certain other practitioners of my profession.’
First impressions were mixed. For the first two chapters I wasn’t grounded in the world. I didn’t know what was happening, feeling displacement, and chapter introductions only confused me more. Things got better and better, not long after. Basically, what we’re dealing with here is not any Thieves’ Guild urban fantasy. This is sexy spy stuff in space with gadgets, physical training programs, intelligence departments, assassinations, and secret packages. Imagine James Bond mixed with Ender’s Game. The action was non-stop, and every chapter was essential. Before reading Residual Belligerence I wouldn’t have imagined such a novel was possible to write.
My one criticism is that I wanted to see Hil, main character and top agent, to be in good condition so we could see what he was capable of when he was on top form. How would it have been different? I realise part of the point of the story was that he was left in the dark about what was happening and he was injured, which could explain why he was helpless throughout; it certainly added to my stress reading because I was concerned for his welfare, being so invested in the story. The roof comes down on him a few times, in style, and only other characters’ expertise keeps him in the loop. Maybe CG Hatton will cover this in one of her sequels, which are serious options on my to-read list.