Admiral by Sean Danker #Review

Admiral by Sean Danker #ReviewAdmiral by Sean Danker

Series: #1 Evagardian
Genres: Romantic Suspense, Sci-Fi Romance
Published by Small Publisher on May 3, 2016
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
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four-half-stars      one-flame

Never doubt the influence of a well-written review.  Two of my favorite book review blogs- Caffeinated Reader and Christy Loves Books reviewed this book and I immediately decided that I had to read it.

A sci-fi thriller set in the future and taking place on a remote and hostile planet during a war between space empires.  From the moment, the anonymous main character opens his eyes to a desperate and confusing situation to the last word on the last page, I didn’t want to put it down.  I am happy to see that this is the first book in an ongoing series and after experiencing the writing, plot, setting, and character development I will eagerly await the next installment.

As I said, the story opens with the character known only as the Admiral being roused from deep sleep in his sleeper by a frantic trio of new military recruits who have also only just awakened to a disturbing mystery.  They are on board a ship of enemy design that they aren’t even supposed to be on, the crew of the ship is missing and the clues to what happened are confusing and disturbing at best.  The admiral sees their suspicion of him, but also their need for his skills in helping them survive until rescue.  But then their situation grows even more critical and desperate as they learn the truth about the planet turning the story into a harrowing survival adventure even while they try to find the truth of their mysterious marooning.

The story was a superbly written piece.  The author grabs the reader from the first sentence and begins trickling the truth in small doses that leave the reader craving each little clue.  The description of the world and the setting are not stingy, but happily not handled in an info dump, but explained and revealed organically as the story progresses.  I enjoyed the blend of military thriller, sci-fi adventure, fiction, and just a wee hint of romantic interest.

It’s an interesting situation as it has only one narrator, the Admiral- who never actually gets named.  This is on purpose.  He tells the story, but the reader is meant to always wonder what he is revealing, but equally, what he is concealing.  The other three, military recruits just out of the Evagardian Empire’s academy were supposed to be taken the Empress’ flag ship to start their careers.  One is a science medical officer, one is a tech officer, and one is for diplomatic work.  All are capable just untried.  The lieutenant is openly suspicious and hostile, but she follows orders, the tech guy is content to take orders and is brilliant at what he does, and the ensign is something of an enigma in herself as she is the only one to trust him explicitly and looks at him with knowing eyes that makes him wonder what exactly she knows.  All work together using their strengths to investigate and survive.  Connections forge so that they felt like a well-oiled team in the end.

And that leads me to the plotting and pacing.  This one had a nice steady pace that had atmosphere and foreshadowing so that transitions into action sequences could come on gradually or startle the reader into heartpounding excitement.  I loved all the twists and turns this book took.  Just when I thought it couldn’t get more intense or nailbiting; it would.

The focus was most definitely on the thriller and survival aspects, but there was a nice little slow build of something between the Admiral and the Ensign when they connected between deadly situations.  Their shared kiss was brief and things were left open.  I’m romantic enough to see some more of them together in the next installment.  They were a pretty good team (within the whole of the team).  I liked the way she is a strong, cool, skilled military officer and he respects that about her.  I liked that he encouraged her to follow her dreams and be herself, but she was also good for him in that she let him find some peace and took as much pressure as she could off of him.  Good pair, there.

In the end, I was smugly pleased with myself that I had figured out the truth about the admiral even if the surrounding situation and some of the reasons for the predicament had escaped me.

Those who enjoy sci-fi thrillers will definitely want to give this one a go.

Mary @ Dark Thoughts my music choice came from exploring some of those death rock bands you had in your video a while back.  Haha!  Still creeps me out. But this one was tamer for a wussie like me.  😉

Challenges Met:

Romance Roundabout #203 Sci-Fi
New To Me #83 author/series
Books N Tunes #28 Nox Aurea’s Distant Stars

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • I enjoyed this story too. I listened to the audiobook. I thought that the narrator did a great job telling this story. Great review.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • This would make a good dramatic one for audio telling. I look forward to book two. 🙂

  • Oooo, futuristic sci-fi suspense! I’d never seen this book before. It’s too bad there is only a kiss! I hope there is more romance in the next book(s). 😉 Great review, Sophia!

    Have a lovely week. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    • Haha, yep, the romance is a minor element with the sci-fi front and center. Maybe that will do better as the series progresses.

      You have a good week, too, Alyssa!

  • *happy dance* and thanks for your sweet words. We adore you too! I had fun with this and love the music!

    • Haha! I just had to do it. I wouldn’t have tried for it without your reviews. 🙂

      Oh yes, the music kept going through my mind when I was reading this one.

  • Oh I agree, that does sound like a good book.

    • Hope you get the chance, Mary. I think you’d get a kick out of this one. 🙂

  • Whoop! Glad you enjoyed this. Totally agree with what you said.

    • You guys hooked me in and I had to give it a go. 😉

  • I just put it on my Kindle wish list as I want to see if the price goes down a bit. I vaguely remember reading a review awhile back, must have been Kimberly’s. This one sound very good! Thanks!

    • Oh yep, probably hers. She hooked me in, too. 🙂 Hope you like it when you get the chance. Maybe it will pop up at your library, too.

  • Ha! And now with you review as well, it becomes obvious to me that I am going to enjoy Admiral as well, Sophia! So adding this to my TBR !

    • We all tempt each other, I think. Haha! Hope you get the chance, Lexxie! It’s a pretty good one for sci-fi genre.

  • That really shows the power a well written review has! I’ve seen some good reviews for this one around as well. It does sound exciting with the creepy set-up and how it’s both a mystery and has survival elements as well.The way the story is told with only one narrator who doesn’t tell you everything sounds very intriguing. Just not sure if the thriller aspect would work for me, but it does sound like a good book. And that’s great you figured out part of the truth about the admiral. Great review Sophia, you sure made me curious about this one.

    • It was very exciting. I don’t want to steer you wrong, but I think you could handle the thriller aspect of it (I’m a scaredy cat and I did okay), but maybe it will be at your local library and you can check it out so you don’t have to take a chance with your book money if it’s too much.