UAV Book 1 Horizon’s Wake ****
by Lincoln Cole

Victor leads a mercenary for hire team with questionable morals and an eye on profits. Helen has recently joined, filling her dead sister’s spot, until she can figure out what actually happens. The details are a mystery.

Jack and Beck are drone pilots, living and working in isolation in a fake trailer park a half hour outside of Las Vegas. Boredom leads to a bit of hacking and an unauthorized night off.

Lyle is a software developer who discovered a back door into a program he developed for the government. His best friend Pete suddenly died and a mysterious woman takes him on the run.

I took off one star because I thought that for the amount of time we spend with the baddies, it would have been nice to learn why they are bad. This ensemble story uses the omniscient third person to show action from nearly every point of view. It was a great approach to get bits of backstory and show things that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. I also think it was difficult to know who the protagonist was since that bad guys carried equal weight. A theme of moral ambiguity also added a bit to the uncertainty. Getting a bit of story from someone’s point of view allows the reader access to the character’s inner workings, but to shift point of view so often can detract from deeply learning a character. 

I chose this same method, third person omniscient, for my first novel. I felt that I wanted to tell the story of a colony rather than the story of a person within the colony. I think doing so made it hard for some readers to connect. People like to see the world from a fresh point of view when the read. Perhaps that it why I feel critical about it. I received a free audible code for this book in exchange for an honest review.

The characters were not flat, by any stretch of the imagination. Each point of view was distinct and self-motivated within the larger story. Beck is my favorite character. Francis is the one I like to hate.

Don’t let my rant on POV keep you from an exciting tech thriller. There was plenty of action and intrigue and the myriad of characters all wove together nicely.  The end leaves a time little team of heroes ready to untangle the last loose thread, a plot hook dangling out there, begging for its sequel. 

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