Home Novels/Books [Book Review] Baen Books: ‘Tyger Burning’ by T.C. McCarthy

[Book Review] Baen Books: ‘Tyger Burning’ by T.C. McCarthy

by April Carvelli
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Tyger Burning by TC McCarthyHumanity had just begun its first tentative steps towards conquering the Solar System when the aliens came and took it all away. Then they disappeared, leaving only wreckage in their wake. They have given us 100 years to get ready for the next phase of their invasion. They expect us to fight fair. But if one man can learn to control his combat implants, humanity might just have a hope for a free future . .

Maung is used to being hunted. As the last “dream warrior,” a Burmese military unit whose brains are more machine than grey matter, everyone wants him dead—punished for the multiple atrocities his unit committed during war.

But when an alien race makes its presence known on Earth and threatens to annihilate mankind, it gives Maung a chance to escape. Maung abandons his family on Earth to hide in the farthest reaches of the Solar System. There he finds love, his fellow Burmese countrymen exiled to labor on a prison asteroid, and the horrors of a war long since finished.

Maung also discovers a secret weapon system—one lost for almost a generation and which may help his people redeem themselves while at the same time saving the human race. War will come. But with Maung’s discoveries and 100 years to prepare, maybe the Earth can be ready . . .

The description of Tyger Burning is rather average, however the opening chapter sucked me right in.

Humans are running supply lines for Sommen war effort. These “no names” work for the Sommen merchants and are considered the lowest of the low and treated like dirt, but there is hope for them. After a certain amount of runs they can become a merchant, treated (almost) as an equal to the Sommen, or they can return to earth. Lev is one of those humans, and when his time comes he decides to return to Earth. He is the first that chose to return home. As a reward, the Sommen give him technology, maps, wealth, and information to share with Earth. He is also given a warning – Humans have proven themselves worthy warriors and the Sommen will return in a century to wage war.

Unfortunately, that is end of Lev with only a vague brief mention of the human who returned. This is technically a prologue that encompasses the first paragraph of the book description.

We then move onto what seems to be a totally unrelated story on Earth.

Maung misses Burma and the life he had there with his wife and son, but he was on the losing side of a war with the American and can’t return. He is the last of his kind, a living weapon who has taken his surviving family into hiding and works as a day laborer in the slums. Life is livable until he makes a mistake and the enemy becomes aware of him.

To protect his family he must leave them behind and flee the planet. From here is gets confusing.

After the first chapter, I moved on figuring that I would encounter the original storyline further on and it would all meld together. It didn’t take me long to realize that the first chapter really should have been labeled as a prologue.

The second storyline was interesting and managed to hold my interest, until 2/3 of the way through. The believability of the characters, situations, and storylines started to fall apart. The last few chapters were actually a struggle to read.

Overall, there are some interesting dialogues and theories, but the whole story feels like a mash-up of several small stories with plot holes big enough to ram a Sommen freighter through.

I rate this 3 out of 5 Stars.

PopCultHQ Rating - 3 Stars

PopCultHQ Rating – 3 Stars

Written by: T.C. McCarthy

Cover Art by Dominic Harman


How we rate our Books

Published by Baen Books

1 = We finished the book with effort

2 = Readable, but more fluff than substance

3 = Good

4 = Pretty Good and worth passing on to your friends

5 = We couldn’t put the book down

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