Space war trouper Douglas (Deep Time, 2015, etc.) pilots a new alien-warfare series into furious action powered by intriguing speculation.
A few decades after humans encountered the vast, multispecies galactic civilization known as the Coadunation, Lord Commander Grayson St. Clair commands an enormous vessel comprising a warship and two enormous habitats with a population of over a million scientists, diplomats, soldiers, robots, and AIs. The Coadunation, it seems, need Earth’s help with their war against the mysterious Denial, a development about which St. Clair has profound reservations. Dutifully the humans follow their alien guides to Sagittarius A*, the gigantic black hole at the center of the galaxy where lies the alien HQ. They arrive to find Harmony totally destroyed; debris strikes the ship, knocking the star drive offline and leaving them trapped in the black hole’s immense gravity. The ship’s civilian authority, Lord Director Günter Adler, who disapproves of military control, demands the formation of a civilian administration. St. Clair ignores him. Suddenly the ship pops out of the black hole; St. Clair, appalled, discovers that 4 billion years have elapsed, with the Andromeda galaxy colliding with the Milky Way. Far, far worse, they’re attacked by incomprehensible brain-sucking, space-warping aliens who appear to be composed of dark matter. Douglas backs up his military space opera with some advanced scientific speculation. What's annoying is the way he pauses the action to insert background minilectures, a recurrent flaw longtime fans will recognize. And don’t expect any real characters: the closest we get is Newton, the AI that runs the ship. Just go with the razzle-dazzle factor driving the thrills, tension, and excitement.
Not Douglas' finest opening statement, but fans should be engrossed enough to come back for more.