"The Drysine Legacy" carries straight of from "Renegade" but manages to crank up the complexity and broaden the scope of the story to include even more aliens and to get deeper into the AI threat.
Like its predecessor, it's a long book but the pages fly by and the story never drags. I always wanted to know what would happen next.
I felt that this book was less character driven than the last one. The intricacies of the plot dominate the book and drive most of the action. Yet the characters DO continue to develop and their relationships shift in realistic ways.
The action scenes (and there are many of them) are outstanding: easy to visualise, massive in scale and very fast moving.
I particularly enjoyed getting to see various aliens in the story develop so that I understood more about their point of view and their motivation. In some ways, I found it easier to empathise with the aliens than I did to get inside the heads of the Marines.
The AI in the story is well imagined and avoids the clichés and simplifications that picture AIs as just big computers who are scarily smarter than us. This AI has a strong personality that is hard ignore and impossible to second guess. In some ways that's much scarier than Skynet. I found myself liking "her" and then realised that I had no way of knowing if I was just being conned. Which is exactly the dillema for the human crew.
This is well written space opera on a massibe scale that continues to deliver excitement and action as well as big ideas and intriguing characters.