The sixth Honor Harrington anthology is out with relevant stories from an all-star cast of authors. Beginnings: Worlds of Honor 6 stars authors David Weber in two stories, Star Wars phenomenon Timothy Zahn, Charles Gannon, and Joelle Presby.
The collection of short stories focuses on turning points of plot lines in the massive Honorverse. One story comes from before humanity leaves our solar system, a second deals with how Honor’s parents came together, the story of Honor’s adoption is a treat, and Timothy Zahn’s story of now-lieutenant Travis Uriah Long’s first serious space battle during the rise of Manticore’s modern navy.
I have been openly critical of David Weber’s increasingly-glacial pace in his recent novels, though I thoroughly enjoy his military sci-fi universe. Short stories seem to be an effective antidote to Weber’s pacing disability, and none of the other authors share his shortcomings.
So the moderately priced collection carries almost all of the entertainment value of the fictional universe without most of the drawbacks. The anthology hits almost all of the highlights of the expanded mythology. Romance is there, along with deep history, space battles, some political maneuvering, the ongoing friction between Beowulf and Mesa’s slavers, treecat and human interaction, and a pervasive tone of honor, dedication, and morality. The final short story does a credible job portraying the potential abuses and underlying honor of my favorite alien theocracy: Grayson.
There is little more to say without spoiling something. I highly recommend the series to one and all.