I have just finished reading the fourth book in “Honorverse” series by David Weber. It is entitled “Field of Dishonor” and takes place directly in the aftermath of the “Short victorious war”. I have a special place in my heart for Harrington series. I am fully aware that it will never take a place in the SF hall of fame and Weber's creation is far below the pinnacles of Science Fiction literature such as works of William Gibson's, Neil Stephenson, Asimov, Heinlein et cetera. Yet, I feel such a sheer joy and excitement while reading about brave captain's exploits that I cannot stop myself from picking up consecutive books in the series. The whole cycle tells a story of Honor Harrington, a woman serving in Royal Manticoran Navy as a captain of space warships. She is a larger than life figure – a genius strategist, brave leader, loved by her soldiers, an honest person among scheming politicos and admirals. In a way she reminds me Paul Atreides from Frank Herbert's “Dune” - there is no way such a virtuous person could possibly exists, yet if she did people would sacrifice a lot for her – as they do in these books. She opposes villainous, colorful enemies such as Pavel Young – corrupt nobleman that disregards other humans as toys to be played with and discarded when used, as well as numerous enemies of her kingdom's archenemy – The People's Republic of Haven. The setting is rich in both political intrigue and spectacular battles, full of interesting characters and societies. It is not exactly my favorite type of science fiction – it does not deal with social consequences of technological development. It does, on the other hand, use few scientifically impossible concepts to create a believable basis for a setting and then rigorously sticks to it. So yeah, FTL works, and the drives have a weird side effect that enables return to XVIII-XIX century naval tactics to the cosmic field of battle – but this scientific impossibility is a small price to pay for such a nifty setting. It is a series that will be a pure pleasure for people interested in military, less so for the rest of people. I myself was never particularly interested in war stories but I cannot help but enjoy adventures of Harrington. As a side effect – Harrington's seems to me to be the most awesome female character I ever read about – in the “She kicks ass on the massive scale” sense of awesome, so I guess it makes me a bit less of a male chauvinistic pig with every book I read, which can only be a good thing.
If you are not afraid of high adventure in space – read David Weber!