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Vanguard (Ark Royal Book 7) by [Nuttall, Christopher]
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Vanguard (Ark Royal Book 7) Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Length: 388 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

The third trilogy in the hit ‘Ark Royal’ series begins now!

HMS Vanguard is the most powerful battleship ever to be commissioned by the Royal Navy, but she is not a happy ship. Her commanding officer is eccentric, rarely seen on the bridge; her former XO has deserted his post and her first middy is resentful because he hasn't been promoted as he deserves ...

But when a first contact mission goes badly wrong, HMS Vanguard and her crew are plunged into an interstellar war against a new and deadly alien threat.

And if they don’t make it back to friendly space in time, they will merely be the first to die in a new interstellar war.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1591 KB
  • Print Length: 388 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #61,198 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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Nuttall writes a great and entertaining book, and making it a series ensures both continuity of entertainment for us, his readers and ongoing income for him. A great outcome!
I make sure I read every one of his new books as they are released and am working my way through every one of his older ones.
I also love the way he produces books so rapidly. So often with series, many months or even years can go by before the next book is released and I loose the thread of the story. Keep them coming Christopher!
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This book was great on so many levels. We got some incredible fleet actions, where weapon mixes on each side made for a interesting space combat story. Along the way the problems with the patronage system was explored using both the captain and a middy. The universe building held together and the characters were believable. It will be interesting to see where this story goes next.
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Well, the above says it all, I would love to read the next book mate, your descriptions are spot on
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Whilst this is not a bad novel by putting it in the Ark Royal series it suffers badly from comparison with the earlier books. A stand alone novel, possibly it would be ok, just not my taste. As part of the Ark Royal series - frankly I find it tedious and boring and I gave up reading it.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.6 out of 5 stars 153 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good start for a third story arc in the Ark Royal series 16 February 2016
By Amazon Customer - Published on
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Vanguard starts a third story arc (or trilogy if you so prefer) in the Ark Royal series. The Ark Royal series is one of my favourite book series and this book gives me no reason to change my mind. Vanguard is a good piece of military science fiction with some of the classical ingredients that I happen to like quite a lot like a strong hero, a set of mysterious alien invaders and plenty of space action.

As usual our hero have more things to fight than “just” the big bad aliens. For instance an incompetent commanding officer and a few stereotypes about military bureaucracy and the you-cannot-touch-your-commanding-office-no-matter-how-much-damage-he-causes mentality among the upper echelons.

Apart from the introduction of the characters and setting up of the scenario the book pretty much takes off with a first contact scenario. I always like those. If you read the book blurb you know that this first contact does develop a few issues, as in things getting seriously [censored] up, interstellar war kind of [censored] up, and this time the old enemies, the Tadpoles, are on the same wrong end of the stick as the humans.

One thing, of many, that I liked with this book was that the ship our hero is stationed on is not a small stealthy one or a exploration ship or some other ship which can do little but sneak around. This time we are talking about the biggest and “baddest” piece of military hardware that the humans have produced so far. Ark Royal with all the new toys that the humans have developed. It is clobber time! Of course it would not be much of a start of a new story arc if the bad guys did not have some nasty toys themselves so both sides got to do some clobbering.

As usual with a book by Christopher Nuttall, there are plenty of interesting characters, the setup is quite good and it is a well done story in general. I do like our new hero and quite a few of the other characters around here. There were not really that many unlikable characters except for the incompetent commander of course.

The new aliens are, so far, quite a bit of a mystery which adds a bit to the suspense in the book. Needless to say they are somewhat prone to diplomacy by violence though.

The book ends in quite a bit of a cliffhanger. That is the part of the book that I was not overly thrilled about. Our hero has pretty much saved the day, or at least prevented a total disaster but of course the useless “politicians” and career seekers in the upper echelons of the military do not see it that way. I cannot say that it was much of a surprise cliffhanger though. The story pretty much built itself up to this part. Still, it gave a bit of an aaaarrrggghhh feeling.

Cliffhanger or no cliffhanger, this is a good story and the book has set the stage for what I hope will be another enjoyable story arc from Christopher Nuttall. I do hope that the nonsense in the cliffhanger ending gets sorted expediently early on in the next book so that we can get on with the “real” story.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Author Can Do Better 1 February 2017
By Charles Hess - Published on
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If you like British navy stories, this is for you. However, it is full of anachronisms and other foolishness to make it difficult to slog through. For instance, the author is apparently obsessed by taking showers on space ships. It is described countless times. In fact, it is mentioned more often than eating on a space ship. For some reason, Royal Marines in the untold distant future still use hand grenades, helicopters and tanks. Why not chariots and pikes? The military engagements are foolish. Starfighters attack kilometer long battleships and are routinely decimated... that is too light since decimated means 10% losses. No, these brave souls suffer 30% to 100% casualties and yet the admirals still launch them to their hopeless deaths. The ultimate folly of the series is the assumption that nations have independent space fleets and colonies around the local region of the galaxy... How British! There is no economic benefit of colonies even on earth in the 21st Century; what possible reason would their be for colonies light-years away. Trade goods? Clearly not since anything useful enough to be manufactured could be manufactured by any advanced society. Spices? perhaps, but surely that could not be a basis of interstellar trade. So, people might want to start over in a new world to get away from the crushing bureaucracies of socialized earth, but they would certainly rebel against that same bureaucracy reaching out to control them after they move.
Ironically, I do not hate the books in this series. There are flashes of interpersonal relationships that ring true. There are moments when the reader is transported into an advanced technology based machine. But alien races based on Foxes and Cows!?! Really? Was this inspired by a walk in the British countryside or what? Aliens with these characteristics would certainly never progress beyond base survival on their worlds, let alone developing interstellar starships for the purpose of..... I guess fighting with the previously described alien society based on Tadpoles swimming around mindless in an alien ocean. Even more absurd that.
I much prefer the author's previous series, the Empire's Corps, which had a darker, more realistic edge to it. Alas, he as apparently lost interest in it and has become obsessed with this pulp.
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate test for the toughest battleship from earth 1 May 2017
By Mike Nemeth - Published on
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"Vanguard," the seventh in the Ark Royal series and the first in its own trilogy, chronicles the new generation of battleship created by the British Navy. The design incorporates all the lessons learned in the war with the alien Tadpoles and later with the upstart Indians. It's heavily armored, filled with redundancies and has more propulsion and weapons systems that any previous ship in the fleet. Author Christopher Nuttall starts the tale off with Susan Onarina being assigned to the ship as its second in command, or executive officer. She is a last-minute replacement for her predecessor, who didn't return from leave either having bailed or killed. Nuttall never addresses that mystery. Susan finds herself in a difficult situation. The ship's captain is a schmuck, a complete hand's off clown. He's either suffering from some sort of disfunction, or he just doesn't care. He let his second do everything, and that's why the guy may have deserted. Susan realizes this will immediately get her in trouble. She knows she should report that her captain is incapable of command. But that would likely ruin her career. So she keeps quiet and tries to find out as much as she can. Having a loser captain would be no problem if it weren't a Nuttall story. But this guy always has a series conflict in his books. He's just building to the inevitable. I won't say what happens, but it's intense. Vanguard gets its share of action and only Susan can save the best of the Royal Navy from certain destruction. Nuttall increases the stakes in this latest Ark Royal universe tale. He introduces an enemy that threatens the fragile peace humankind has worked so hard to forge. The story travels into an entirely new direction, rife with opportunity for future stories.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling plot and improved writing 11 February 2016
By James Hemphill - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read both of the two prior Ark Royal trilogies, and bought this first of Nutall's planned third trilogy right after release. Like the prior books, the action is varied and exciting. A few chapters into the book, I realized how transparent Nuttall's writing has become. His words serve the story and do not distract. I mean this entirely as a compliment. Nuttall has grown from a journeyman author of moderate skill, who created an absorbing fictional universe, to a solid literary craftsman, able to create believable, sympathetic characters. Kudos. Can't wait for his next book.

I give four stars not as a complaint, but simply because I reserve five stars for true classics: Dune, Moon is a Harsh Mistress, etc.
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Vanguard 17 September 2016
By Greenman - Published on
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I have liked the Ark Royal from the beginning. Admiral Smith had some tough times on the old Ark Royal and with himself but came out a hero and forced the Tadpoles to the table. The first 3 books were great.

I didn't like the second 3 books as much but in many ways I blame myself, as an American, for not fully understanding the Indian vs English issues. It can be said that there are deep rooted issues today, and likely into the future between these two cultures. Not taking sides....just saying.

The Vanguard books are more like the original Ark Royal ones. Mankind is faced with a new alien threat but these new aliens are much more aggressive than the Tadpoles. This first book was great and I am already on the second one. It was good to be reacquainted with old friends, like Prince Henry, Georgina Fitzwillams, and Susan Ocarina. I liked the side story of Georgina and the First Middy. As a former military person, it can take a lot of effort to earn the respect of your peers. A good read.