Blood in the Water (Destroyermen #11)

Blood in the Water Book Cover Blood in the Water
Destroyermen
Taylor Anderson
Sci-fi
Roc
June 14, 2016
Paperback
448

Taylor Anderson’s enthralling New York Times bestselling series of alternate history continues as game-changing revelations upend the Grand Alliance in a potentially cataclysmic war.

Ever since the USS Walker came from another world war to defy the terrifying Grik and diabolical Dominion, Matt Reddy and his crew have given their all to protect the oppressed Lemurians. But with the Walker in desperate need of repairs just as the Grik’s First General is poised to strike, Reddy is desperate.

With more enemies than ever before arrayed against them, the crew of the Walker needs new allies. That means combing the lethal wilds of Madagascar to find the Lemurians’ fabled ancestors, as well as the enigmatic dwellers east of the Pass of Fire. But what Reddy’s crew unearths may be more than they can handle—discoveries so shattering they could tilt the balance of the war in either direction.

But Reddy’s greatest adversary is from his past: a madman named Kurokawa whose single-minded mission of revenge will shake the Alliance to its core and raise the stakes to the most personal and terrifying levels Reddy has ever faced.

 

A lot of the Destroyermen series focuses on a classic good vs. evil plot. Humans and Lemurians good, Grik bad. Once other humans got introduced, namely the Dominion and now also the League, that starts to get muddled. Here it gets muddled even further as the Grik start changing. One of their key traits, at the beginning, was that they don’t innovate. They can steal ideas, but their society is largely an unchanging one. And we’re seeing that start to change.

This is the first time in a long time, maybe ever, the Grik can’t just curb stomp their enemy through sheer numbers. Most of their leaders who tried to stick to the old ways have died for that decision. So, some of the ones who are left realize that if they don’t adapt, they die. Really, what’s saving them right now is the Lemurians triggering their invasion long before they’re ready for it. And it’s not like this is the only enemy the Alliance is dealing with.

The battle in Central America rages on against the Holy Dominion. It’s by no means the key focus right now due to everything ramping up with the Grik. But it is still an ongoing thing. On top of that, the mysterious League of Tripoli is increasingly interfering in both theaters of war. Enemies continue to surround the Alliance and, as history will tell you, fighting a war on multiple fronts is challenging at best.

But through it all, the Destroyermen series remains solid. The plot’s still moving, characters are still developing (Silva’s actually learning to make plans now), and there’s plenty of action. And the worldbuilding, can’t forget the worldbuilding. Even this late in the series, Taylor Anderson continues to add more people and cultures that make his world feel like a living, breathing thing. And that’s always fantastic.

August 15, 2021

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