Reviewed by Erin Eymard.
The final novel wraps up the journey of John Raimey, who, thirty-five years before, became the first bionic soldier ever deployed in the field. He is a giant, a Tank Major, fourteen feet tall and with enough power in his fists to level buildings. He is a legend of war, cursed with a fate where everyone he touches - even in love - dies.
Evan Lindo, the father of bionics, now rules the world through his most ingenious creation, The Northern Star. But a war in the Middle East has triggered events that lead to Raimey. And a secret has been unveiled that sets Raimey on one last mission before he finds his place in Hell.
Mike Gullickson's The Northern Star: The End is the perfect ending to his The Northern Star trilogy. It brings the series and your favorite characters to satisfying conclusions. I read the book in three days but kept putting writing a review aside because nothing I wrote seemed to do justice to Gullickson's story.
One of the things that I always loved about Gullickson's writing is that he makes you care about his characters. You become invested in them and find yourself rooting for them (even the ones on the 'wrong' side). His storytelling is witty, real, and heart wrenching at the same time. You truly come to care about characters in this series, whether they are with you from page one of The Beginning or if you just met them in this book. Their journeys engage you. Their triumphs excite you. Their failures move you.
The characters in this trilogy are, with three exceptions, various shades of gray when it comes to morality. And while the majority of this book follows John Raimey and Mike Glass, both men who have done bad things by following orders but are nonetheless sympathetic characters. They are just vehicles bringing the reader to the true heart of the struggle between the characters of Vanessa, Evan, and Justin.
Vanessa represents the maiden, mother, and crone character. We first see her as a child losing her parents; then we see her as a mother, of sorts, to the world; and finally we see her as the aged goddess who wishes to save the world. Evan's evolution takes him from brilliant scientist to power hungry genius and then monster. His story is one of how absolute power corrupts absolutely. And finally there is Justin, the Sleeper King, whose story proves that sometimes you just can't escape your destiny.
The whole series is a science fiction masterpiece that will make the reader evaluate our current paths in regards to technology and the internet. Great read! Will read again!
For more information on The Northern Star series, please visit the author's website.