Jason Hough introduced the space elevator in The Darwin Elevator. In the fifth book of the Dire Earth Cycle, crews from two different ships, one with a crew from the original trilogy, and one who left centuries later, have met up on the Creators' world. At the end of book 4, Injection Burn, they are stranded after their ship is destroyed. In Escape Velocity, they have to figure out how they will survive and return to earth.
Hough builds an amazing picture of the Creators' world. Some of the characters have ended up on the surface, where the effects of the plague still linger after centuries. Some end up in orbit, where a series of space elevators and space stations house the Scipio's base for invading other worlds. Some end up on a moon, where they learn what happened to a previous mission from earth.
I love the way the three strands come together, not randomly, but by design. As in the rest of the books in the series, Hough is strong on details and heavy on the action. The humans, whose creative thinking and adaptability are the reason they were even send on this mission, have to adjust and adapt in their fight against an enemy that is overwhelming in number and, in many ways, technologically more advanced.
The Dire Earth Cycle has been fun to read, and Escape Velocity brings it to a satisfying conclusion. Whether or not Mr. Hough continues with Dire Earth, I will definitely be looking forward to whatever else he writes.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the complimentary electronic review copy!