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The Apocalypse Troll
David Weber
Baen Books, 312 pages

The Apocalypse Troll
David Weber
David Weber was born in Cleveland, Ohio. While at university, he studied History with interest in Political Science and English Literature. He now lives in Greensville, South Carolina.

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A review by Peter D. Tillman

As The Apocalypse Troll opens, 25th century humans have been at war with the alien Kanga for centuries. The Kanga are on the ropes; in desperation they send a battle group into Terra's past, to cut off the foe at the roots. BatDiv 92, Terran Navy is soon in hot pursuit. The two task forces virtually annihilate each other. Col. Ludmilla Leonovna shoots down the last Kanga ship -- with some help from the US Navy of 2007 -- but is herself shot down by the last cyborg Troll's fighter. She falls to Earth, and into the arms of USN Capt. Richard Aston -- "Take me to your leader", she said with a perfectly straight face.

The last Troll is at large, with 25th-century weapons and a bioengineered compulsion to waste humans. Ludmilla must convince 21st-century Earth of the terrible danger they face.

About here I got worried that David Weber was cloning S.M. Stirling's Drakon, but he deftly switches to Tom Clancy mode: a technical military-political procedural, but with a lighter touch and better-drawn characters than Clancy manages. Milla is demonstrating her sidearm:

« BIG flash-bang »
"What the hell is that thing? What d'you call it?"
"I'm afraid we call it a 'blaster'," she said apologetically...
It's all good, clean fun and brother, do those pages turn -- this one kept me up 'til 2 AM. Everything works here -- the people, the aliens, the future technology, the battles, the romance. I had a great time, and so will you.

The Apocalypse Troll is Weber's 18th published novel, but apparently was actually his first written, some 10 years ago. This would have been a very impressive first novel -- though I expect it's been revised in light of another decade of writing experience. With The Apocalypse Troll, he's firmly in the front ranks of military-SF authors. Fans of David Drake or Elizabeth Moon -- or Honor Harrington -- won't be disappointed. And I'm going to have to pay more attention to David Weber.

Copyright © 1999 by Peter D. Tillman

Pete Tillman has been reading SF for better than 40 years now. He reviews SF -- and other books -- for Usenet, "Under the Covers", Infinity-Plus, Dark Planet, and SF Site. He's a mineral exploration geologist based in Arizona. More of his reviews are posted at .

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