Review of Tour of the Merrimack Book 2: Wolf Star by R. M. Meluch

It is always with anticipation and a bit of worry I open the second book in a series where I loved the first book. Will it be as good as the first one? Will it be more of the same? It’s not often an author succeeds in resetting the world and start over in an alternative timeline. Yes, we return to square one with the story, with the characters reset, but us knowing what happened to them at the end of the last book. Rebeca M. Meluch bring us another mesmerizing tale of warriors, Romans, Americans, star ships and relentless aliens.

Title: Wolf Star
Author: R. M. Meluch
Cover art: Romas Kukalis
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: DAW (January 2, 2007)
Genre: Military Science Fiction
Series: Tour of the Merrimack 1
Order: DAW | Amazon US, UK | B&N | Sfbok

The U.S. Merrimack was the finest battleship in Earth’s fleet, able to withstand the best the Palatine Empire could throw at them. Only her sister ship, the Monitor, was her equal. So when the Palatine forces secretly captured Monitor, Merrimack’s security was compromised-and that was just the opening salvo of a whole new stage of war between Palatine and Earth.

A time paradox was created towards the end of The Myriad and the Universe protected itself, reseting to a different timeline with slightly different reality. Rom didn’t die here either, and they did break free from Earth just like before. But here the Hive hasn’t attacked. The Palantire Empire and Earth are at war. The plot: USS Merrimack is on a deep strike mission into Roman territory to find their new Slingshot facility and destroy it. Slingshot technology allows a ship to instantly skip space between slingshot and catcher stations possibly bypassing hundreds of light years held by the enemy. Earth have the technology and have been using it to bypass the Romans and expand towards the center of our galaxy.

Unknown to them their sister ship USS Monitor have been captured by the Romans and they are now herded into a trap.  The space battles here are just as good as in The Myriad but different when they are human to human. Much is about warriors facing warriors.

Captain Ferragut plays  a major role in this novel too. Agustus is missing to a large extent since USS Merrimack doesn’t have a Roman Liaison Officer here. He is here though, just fighting for the other side. I think I am not alone in hoping for more Ferragut Agustus interaction in the coming books, that was a good part I enjoyed with the first book.

Calli Carmel is one of the main characters here, and her daring exploits as an undercover Roman is tense and funny. Kerry Blue and Cowboy’s story takes another twist in this installment of the Merrimack universe, still entertaining. Colonel Steele is still carrying the torch for Kerry and causing all kinds of merriment to the reader. Even the Captain is on the brink of indulging in relations. I am in awe of Rebeca’s ability to recreate the same characters but with a different history and still make them as good as in the first book. Only thing I miss is Agustus but I expect him to be back in book three.

If you thought the Hive was gone, you thought wrong, before it is all over they will be back and the Merrimack’s luck will turn, and turn, and turn many times before the magnificent finale.

You could call Wolf Star an entertaining do over of The Myriad and I liked the Myriad a lot. The Time paradox resets the world and the reader gets to explore the same charming characters’ alternative history once again before going where they never gone before.

Wolf Star is another great space opera by R. M. Meluch with fantastic characters and epic combat scenes. It made me happy to read the story and I am even happier now when I have the two next books in the series. Happy reading!