I read this book about 12-Apr-2016. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 2014. This note was last modified Saturday, 16-Apr-2016 19:54:33 PDT.
This is book 6 of the "Honorverse" series.
This note contains spoilers for the book.
By David Weber and Eric Flint. Third book in the "Torch" side-series that has taken over the Honor Harrington story-line. If I had to guess I'd say "real collaboration" rather than a Flint book with Weber's name added to boost sales; Flint is too big to waste his time that way.
This is a long one; on remarkably flimsy paper (though not rough). Including a complex sub-plot involving the Beowolf Biological Screen Corps using a a super-secret new technology on people from Manticore and Haven who are going to Mesa, which turns out to have no relevance whatsoever. Besides, Victor Cachat being the man he is, they end up telling everybody on Mesa exactly who they really are right away anyway. A little editing, guys!
On Mesa, the top idiots (those deep inside "the onion" of the Mesan Alignment) are withdrawing from Mesa, leaving no trace. Well, except for the large number of stupid people clearly in positions over their heads. As part of the plot they engineer a series of disasters and fake terrorist attacks to kill tens of thousands of people, hiding those who disappeared and anybody they killed along the way. Did I mention these are the bad guys?
Zilwicky and Cachat, and friends (including Thandy Palane) go to Mesa again to try to find out what's going on, because they know enough to know it's crazy and not enough to know about the "Houdini" escape plan. Cachat, as usual, overturns the plan 5 minutes after touching ground, and again every half hour thereafter.
They end up in partnership with a crime boss in one of the worse "seccy" areas (descendants of freed slaves; a mistake the Mesans stopped making some time ago), and work out a plan to hold off the police and planetary army for long enough for the Manticoran navy to arrive and shut everything down.