The Heart of Valour by Tanya Huff (A Confederation Novel #3)

Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr is a Confederation Marine's marine. Side-lined since her last mission, she jumped at the chance to go to Crucible - the Marine Corps training planet. While the exercise is underway, the drones begin acting aggressively, without regard to fail-safes or their programming. Kerr finds herself caught in a desperate fight to keep a platoon of Marine recruits alive...

This is the third book in The Confederation Series so, as usual, if you haven’t read the other two, Valour’s Choice and The Better Part of Valour, please go and read those books first as spoilers for these two books will follow.

In this Confederation novel, Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr, has been promoted to Gunnery Sergeant for her efforts in her last mission on Big Yellow. She has been rewarded by having to give talks and answering Q&A’s about the Silviss who have decided to join The Confederation. All she wants to do is get back to Sh’quo Company, so any excuse to see some action not related to her current dull duties will be a welcome diversion. So Torin Kerr accompanies a platoon training to become full marines on Crucible, as an observer and escort to Major Svensson and Doctor Sloan who are testing his field abilities after a major trauma.

As we have come to expect from Torin Kerr’s story this means that something is bound to go wrong as nothing is as simple as it seems when she is involved in a routine mission and this is no different. But this series continues to bring us into the politics of The Confederation - out of all the current three species fighting the war between The Confederation and The Others, none of them know why they are fighting. Is there a dark conspiracy at the heart of The Confederation, will Big Yellow hold the key to finding out, will we either find out who The Others are?

I am enjoying this series which is now at the half-way mark in the series. Torin Kerr is as strong as ever, still trying to make sure that whatever disaster befalls her she gets everyone home alive, even if that’s not always the case. She is continually resourceful when having to make tough calls. As usual she is surrounded by a strong cast of characters, most of whom may not appear in the next book, but will always be remembered by their ingenuity and the comic moments. Even better, Craig Ryder and Presit a Tur durValintrisy also make a reappearance in this book and their double act had me laughing out loud. Presit is still annoying as in the last book, but is more lovable for it. Craig is realising he may have to rely on other people. This story is going from strength to strength and I am continually amazed to see what Tanya Huff will come up with for Torin Kerr to deal with next.

The Heart of Valour by Tanya Huff
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Titan Books (7 Feb 2014)

9/10 Torin Kerr is as strong as ever, surrounded by a strong cast of characters.

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