TITLE: Black Star Renegades
AUTHOR: Michael Moreci
GENRE: Science Fiction, Space Opera
PUBLISHER: St. Martin’s Press
PUBLICATION DATE: 2nd January 2018
MY RATING: 4/5
“Cade Sura holds the future of the galaxy in his hands: the ultimate weapon that will bring total peace. He didn’t ask for it, he doesn’t want it, and there’s no worse choice to wield it in all of space, but if he doesn’t, everyone’s totally screwed. The evil Praxis kingdom is on the cusp of having every star system under its control, and if that happens, there’ll be no contesting their cruel reign. Especially if its fanatical overlord, Ga Halle, manages to capture Cade and snag the all-powerful weapon for herself.
Cade can’t hide from Praxis, and he can’t run from the destiny that’s been shoved into his hands. So he only has one option:
He has to fight.
Cade’s not going to let destiny send him on a suicide run, though. With some help from his friends—rebels and scoundrels alike—Cade’s going to use this weapon to chart a new destiny for the galaxy, and for himself. He just has to do so before everyone around him discovers that he’s a complete and total fraud.
Thoughts and Opinions
Declaring a book to be a ‘love letter’ to one of the most beloved pieces of popular culture could be seen as somewhat of a risk. While such a strategy would almost certainly increase the book’s readership, it would also undoubtedly place it under much more intense levels of scrutiny. After all, people can get very sensitive about these kinds of things.
Having been a huge Star Wars since I first saw A New Hope at Christmas 1992, I was extremely excited when I heard about Michael Moreci’s Black Star Renegades and some of the favourable comparisons with Star Wars that it was receiving. Just to illustrate this point, here is an excerpt from the book’s description on Amazon;
Blending the space operatics of Star Wars and the swagger of Guardians of the Galaxy, Black Star Renegades is a galaxy hopping adventure that blasts its way from seedy spacer bars to sacred temples guarded by deadly creatures.
Now, to be perfectly clear, Black Star Renegades is a fantastic book in its own right. Moreci has created a rich and vibrant galaxy full of fantastic planets, alien races, and technology that captivated my imagination. I want to hear about the history of the Krell (“an ancient and nearly extinct race that came from some quadrant of the galaxy that was either lost or unreachable”), learn more about the terrorists freedom fighters known as ‘The Rising Suns’, and I absolutely want to find out more about Praxis and its people.
Perhaps one of the biggest reasons for Black Star’s success is that has been written as a celebration of epic space adventures. Like other genre ‘celebration’ novels (Ready Player One by Ernest Cline springs to mind) it doesn’t take itself too seriously and, as a result, we get to enjoy a fast-paced adventure featuring dynamic and animated characters. Bearing this in mind, I would be inclined to refer to this as a ‘popcorn’ book, in that it is likely to be enjoyed by readers who might usually avoid a genre such as science fiction. Indeed, I don’t know if anyone has bought the movie rights to the series, but I’m sure they would make great films. In the meantime, get yourself a copy, find yourself a comfy chair, and enjoy the journey.