Home > Book Reviews > Review: Starship: Rebel by Mike Resnick

Review: Starship: Rebel by Mike Resnick

Mike Resnick’s penultimate book in his Starship series is Rebel.  In the previous books, Cole and the crewmembers of the Teddy R are somewhat fooling around, trying out different roles in the Inner Frontier.  In this book, he has to take a serious stance after his best friend and alien first officer, Forrice, is captured and then tortured by a captain of the Republic Navy.  This brutal treatment and the dawning realization that his Navy is preying on colony worlds, merchant ships, and business “men”, leads Captain Cole to begin building a larger fleet (from one ship to forty to over a thousand!).  Its mission: keep the Navy out of the Frontier worlds — let these worlds live in peace.

Rebel is a more grim book in tone than its predecessors.  Now there is a larger goal.  Now Cole must use his notoriety and charisma to enlist the aid of quasi-military, quasi-shady ships and crew to deny the Navy any foothold in the Frontier.

One quibble with the writing — and I suppose it might be more obvious with having listened to the audiobooks in quick succession — is the frequent recapping of prior events and re-using many of the same lines and gags.  For example, Resnick overuses the word “sardonic”, repeats Cole’s mantra that wars are not about being willing to die for a cause but making sure that the enemy dies for his, and re-uses some banter lines between Cole and his security chief a few too many times.

All-in-all, the pace remains furious and there are enough ship battles and moments of strategic insight to satisfy any fan of space opera.

The series:

  1. Mutiny
  2. Pirate
  3. Mercenary
  4. Rebel
  5. Flagship

4 out of 5 stars (finished March 6, 2011)


Currently reading:  Dark Fire by C.J. Sansom, Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris,  Darkspell by Katherine Kerr, & Starship:  Flagship by Mike Resnick


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