Jake’s Last Mission is a very short, fun, light read. Don’t expect convoluted plotting and high tension. It reads like the final book of a long running series, where the reader is already familiar with the world, and where wrapping up the main characters’ arcs takes precedence over the plot. It is like the first ever episode you watch of a space opera series on TV is the last ever episode. As far as I can make out, this is not the case, though there are other books set in this world.
The book begins with two spaceships in a standoff which quickly degenerates into a pitched battle. The book’s hero, one of the captains, Jake Kavaliro, is called to account for his actions by the Mugdaran Emperor. Jake is a likable character despite his belligerent tendencies, and his charming personality holds the book together.
There are lot of coined words. Several are explained in notes (which worked for me). Others are explained in appendices, but I only discovered this when I got to the end of the book.
The book could really do with more description, particularly at the start. I found it hard to visualise what a Mugdaran or a Sweytzian looked like.
Kristark’s Coronation is a bonus piece. It isn’t really a short story. It feels like a piece that was edited out of the main story. For me, it neither added to nor subtracted from Jake’s Last Mission.
I received a copy of the book for an honest review.