Valor’s Trial by Tanya Huff

I have really enjoyed all of the Valor books. This fourth book is just as good as the previous – proving that everyone is expendable, Torin is always going to get the short end of the stick, and never count the Gunnery Sergeant as dead until you see her body. The conclusion of this novel closes the story arc that began with the second novel dealing with the plastic alien life form.  Fortunately, it is not the last book in the series.

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Story: Torin is fighting a battle with her squad when her company is bombed. When she wakes up, she is in an underground prison alone. As she explores the caverns, she will find a complex group of tunnels in which prisoners from both sides of the war are kept.  Some of those prisoners will rise above the situation, some will fall horribly, but all soon realize that there is simply no way out. That is, until Kerr decides to fight back and Craig Ryder (with Presit’s help) refuses to believe she’s dead and goes after her.

There were a lot of interesting and complex dynamics going on in this book.  All of the book pretty much takes place underground without weapons or regular supplies.  Torrin first has to figure out her situation then she will have to overthrow mini dictatorships and save ally and enemy alike before they all destroy each other. There were quite a few twists and turns and I never knew where the story would go at any time.  Of course, at the same time Kerr is trying to figure out her prison, Ryder is trying to figure out if she’s dead – not accepting that the flattened area she had been fighting in had no biological residue. Having Craig try to reach her added a great dimension to the story since he brought along Presit – and any book with Presit is going to have that wonderful humor and banter.

This is going to be one of my favorite series. I have listened to all book on Audible and although I thought the narrator was a bit stiff in the beginning, I really warmed up to her narration by this book.

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