Book Review: A Call to Duty by Weber and Zahn (4 Stars)

A Call to Duty

by David Weber and Timothy Zahn

3.5 to 4 out of 5 stars

A new series in the Honorverse, slated to be released next week.  We find ourselves back before Manticore knew it had a major wormhole, back before it had any spaceship building industry and soon after a Plague that wiped out much of its nascent population.  One of our protagonists is Travis Long, who enlists in the RMN (Royal Manticore Navy) while his supposed friends rob a neighboring jewelry store.  Travis acquires a couple of monikers during basic training that reflect upon his always by the book philosophy with respect to rules and regulations.  The political climate on Manticore has a faction of the civilian government clambering to dismantle the Navy and/or replace it with a Coast Guard like service that patrols the local system and protects merchants and miners from pirates.  The action ramps up when Manticore sends representatives to a Haven sponsored military surplus spaceship sale.  Pirates (or what we are led to believe are pirates initially) masquerading as legitimate buyers attempt a heist of their own on a much grander scale than Travis’ juvenile delinquent buddies.

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And the Winner Is . . .

Honor Harrington

The poll closed Saturday midnight and, despite close voting, Honor edged out Harry.  In mid-August, Beyond Reality will commence their third series group read.  Join us in the Honorverse next month!

Read Stefan’s introductory post for more information.

Honor v. Harry (Not the Harry Your Thinking Of)


The Beyond Reality group at GoodReads posted a run-off poll this week to decide our next series group read, pitting space opera legend Honor Harrington, created by David Weber, against urban fantasy gumshoe wizard Harry Dresden (no, he’s not a graduate of Hogwarts and doesn’t have a lightning bolt scar on his forehead), created by local Kansas Citian Jim Butcher.

The Honor Harrington series barely hangs onto a narrow lead by her fingernails over the Dresden Files in this last day of voting.  Both series offer a full year’s worth of reading with a dozen novels published in each (assuming we read one book a month).

So if you’ve been looking for an excuse to read either one of these series, come join the party!  Cast your vote before the stroke of midnight tomorrow.

Beyond Reality Series Selection Poll

SERIES DISCUSSION: This run-off poll decides which series will be the topic of our third Beyond Reality Series Discussion!