Review The Quantum War by Derek Künsken

I’ve followed Derek Künsken’s Quantum Evolution series ever since coming across a reference to him on a website last year. And needless to say, I haven’t been disappointed one bit, as Künsken’s first two offerings, The Quantum Magician and The Quantum Garden transported me back to the days of my youth, when I regularly emptied the library of every pure science fiction book on the shelves.

And here, in this third book of the series, I was glad to find myself time traveling again.

Here’s the blurb:

*************

The war rages onward and the Union’s premier fighter pilots, the Homo Eridanus, start encountering deadly resistance from strange pilots on the Congregate side. Among wreckage, they find that new Congregate pilots are, in fact, Homo Quantus, with strange wiring and AI connections.

At the same time, the Puppets come to the Union with offers of an alliance for a dangerous price: the rescue of the geneticist Antonio Del Casal who is a captive on Venus, with over a hundred
Homo Quantus.

Only one person might be able to break through the Congregate defenses at Venus, and he’s a con man.

*************

So, what do we get?

A hard splash of reality. That’s what!

In a sci-fi novel? Oh yes.

The previous novels cleverly sowed the seeds for what we read in The Quantum War: And it’s a profound truth. That for all their expansive lebensraum, humanity is a petty, conniving, divisive little speck in the cosmic scheme of things. Instead of embracing change and those opportunities that offer a massive leap forward in their evolutionary and technological development, they prefer to hang on to what they’ve got. And not only jealously guard it, but systematically eradicate anything that might threaten their fragile sense of self. And as far as the Congregate are concerned, the Homo Quantus are a clear and present threat. One that must be dealt with at all costs.

Now, I’ll leave it to Künsken to reveal how THAT particular conundrum will be dealt with. But what I can say is that his story grabs you by the throat and punches so hard it’ll leave a hole in your throat. It’s fast; it’s furious; and is as frustratingly flammable as it is fulfilling. But you never lose your place. Instead, you’re swept along by a delightfully brutal portrayal of the reality of war,  especially those conflicts instigated by bigger, coldhearted bullies who seek to impose their will on those about them. War isn’t clean, and it certainly isn’t pretty. And there are always casualties that you wish could have been spared.

I really enjoyed it and tipped my cap to the manner in which Künsken brought things to a fitting conclusion. Go on. Treat yourself to the Quantum Evolution series. I can assure you, it will advance your thinking in ways you never thought possible.

 

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