Five by Five

Five by Five

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Five short novels by five masters of military science fiction.

It's a war out there.

In these pulse-pounding tales, the best (or worst) soldiers in the galaxy are pitted against powerful aliens on distant battlefields. Never before published stories about monsters, deadly combat tech, treachery, and honor:

Big Plush by Aaron Allston (a novella from the Action Figures series)--The Dollgangers, artificial people made in mankind's image, take up arms in a desperate bid to win their freedom.

Comrades in Arms by Kevin J. Anderson--A damaged cyborg soldier and an enemy alien fighter turn their backs on the war and try to escape. But the human and alien governments can't tolerate the two deserters working together, so they join forces to hunt them down.

Shores of the Infinite by Loren L. Coleman (a novella from the ICAS File series)--Separated from command & control, Combat Assault Suit troopers force a beachhead to liberate a new planet from the cyborg threat.

The Black Ship by B.V. Larson (a mech novella from the Imperium Series)--A human settlement on the deadliest planet ever colonized clings to life ... but today new invaders are coming down from the stars.

Out There by Michael A. Stackpole--The Qian have discovered humanity and welcomed them into their star-spanning empire. The benefits they offer humanity are many, and they don't want much in return: just the best human pilots available to take apart a most diabolical enemy.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940015585995
Publisher: WordFire Press
Publication date: 10/11/2012
Series: Five By Five , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 1,011,863
File size: 695 KB

About the Author

Aaron Allston, Kevin J. Anderson, Loren L. Coleman, B.V. Larson, Michael A. Stackpole

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Five by Five 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Skuldren More than 1 year ago
Five By Five is a sci-fi anthology by Aaron Allston, Kevin J. Anderson, Loren L. Coleman, B.V. Larson, and Michael A. Stackpole. Each author contributes one story and together they form a nice eBook packed with action, adventure, and wonderful stories. For this review I’ll cover each story, but not necessarily in the order they appear in the book. In this case, I’m saving the best for last. First up is “Shores of the Infinite” by Loren L. Coleman. Coleman is not an author I’m familiar with, and this tale is part of The ICAS Files, a series of short stories set in a universe created by Coleman. In the story, readers are introduced to a battle on a far off planet called Rho VII. It’s a place where cyborgs wage war against humans, harvesting them for spare parts. The narrative of the story follows two characters. One of them is Sgt. Marcos Rajas who leads his unit of ICAS troopers into battle against the cybies. It’s through this character that readers get introduced to the technology of the universe. The other character is Tevin, a member of local street gang, and now a survivor. He’s struggling to help out other survivors as well dealing with his own deteriorating situation. While the story is creative, and I really liked the idea of cyborgs harvesting humans for spare parts, there are a few flaws with the story which made it the weakest of the five. Thankfully the other stories more than made up for it. Next up is “Out There” by Michael A. Stackpole. For X-Wing fans, this is one story you might want to check out. Mike sets up a galaxy where an alien race named the Qian have reached out to Earth for help in a war against the Zsytzii. A group of starfighter pilots are formed called the Star Tigers. This group of ace pilots get thrown into their first foray of combat and Stackpole slips into prose that’s very reminiscent of the good old X-Wing stories with lots of space combat and dogfights. Instead of X-Wings there are Shrikes, and instead of Wedge there is Captain Greg Allen and Colonel Nick Clark. Woven into the story is a layer of politics and mystery. Captain Allen is the son of the President, but also a person whose recovering from a traumatic injury and possibly not quite himself. Then there is the Qian who harbor intentions that no one is really sure about. While the story lays out some of these ideas and included a full fledged dogfight, it’s very much a setup for a larger story that I hope Stackpole will fully develop. It’s an intriguing story and I’d love to read more. B.V. Larson’s “The Black Ship” was a surprising jewel in the anthology. Like Coleman, Larson is an author I’m unfamiliar with and I didn’t know what to expect. In his story of pain and triumph, he lays out two separate narratives that later crash together with devastating consequences. On one hand there’s an experimental ship crewed by Mechs. The Mechs are synthetic beings who utilize human brains. The captain of the black ship (as it has no name) is a little unstable and has a habit of terminating his chief engineer for a new one. He utilizes a disconnector device that can shut down any Mech, taking them offline so he can then remove their brain and replace it with a new one. The ship keeps a stockpile of brains on hand in case replacements are needed. The engineer is the primary character in this thread of the story, and it is through their eyes that we experience their fear of being disconnected and struggling to fulfill the wishes of a insane captain
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago