The Myriad (2004)

The U.S.S. Merrimack is hard on the tail of the hive, universal omnivores that threaten to devour all forms of life, when they find something incredible inside a globular cluster.

The first thing I noticed was a very strong Star Trek vibe. I might be completely wrong here, but Romans in space, the Dicplacer technology, the LEN diplomats (completely inapt the whole lot), all that brought back memories. It’s also an unabashed attempt at writing an old-school space opera/military SF mix, with only some slight concessions to the cutting edge of modern SF, with the Roman patterner Augustus.

The writing style is completely different from other books I read by Meluch, very energetic, fast paced, nearly some sort of stream of consciousness writing. Which brings me to the weakest point of the book, which I think is deliberate. The characters feel kind of shallow, but to tell the truth I think it’s more that Meluch tried to create characters whose attitude might be modern but whose complexity of personality (or lack of) could have come from old pulp SF.

Which I found a little bit grating, but this didn’t stopped me from enjoying the rest of the package, which is an insanely fast paced adventure that doesn’t take itself too seriously, but still packs a big whollop of fun and entertainment.