This week I decided to review To Do or Die by Mike Shepherd aka Mike Moscoe. It’s the fourth and latest book in the Jump Universe series, though there are many other books out, or coming soon in the same setting but occurring decades later. When To Do or Die begins the cruiser Patton is being dispatched to the planet Savannah. Officially the Patton’s mission is to transport reinforcements for the guard unit at the planet’s embassy, and to provide protection for a Senate fact-finding committee en route to the planet to observe upcoming elections. Unofficially, Ruth Torden, a civilian attached to the vessel’s now farming section, is also being sent to investigate the possibility that Savannah is linked to a syndicate of drug dealers, pirates, and slavers which the Patton battled in the second book of the series. It doesn’t take long to discover that the current leader of the world maintains power by terrorizing the population, and to locate the drug development center that Ruth was sent to find. This leads to a variety of battles ranging from fistfights with corrupt cops, to running battles with tanks through the capital city, and a desperate mission to prevent Savannah’s army from flooding the capital.
I give this book a 7 out of 10. The story is well written, and many of the parts concerning the investigations on Savannah are interesting, if disturbing at times, and the ground battles were very enjoyable. But while the ground battles aren’t bad I feel that the author does his best work in his space battle sequences, There were no space engagements in this book and unlike the previous book I can think of at least two places where a space battle would have fit perfectly into the story.