Retribution

Records of the Argos: Book 2

Fiction - Science Fiction
Kindle Edition
Reviewed on 11/09/2022
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Stephanie Chapman for Readers' Favorite

Retribution, the second book in Michael J. Farlow’s Records of the Argos Series, opens with Captain Hall receiving orders from the Commodore. He is to present the Argos as a trading ship looking for agricultural machinery and obtain information about the planet Azel. While he is undercover, he is also to capture General Gurko and General Berzalius, both Arkons, to stand trial. Hall may not take part in military activities but leads his crew to Azel, where the first day of trading goes well and they are invited to dine with Major Drummond, who tells them to avoid the country named Volarix. After they finish dinner, strangers abduct crewmember Tiana. In pursuit of the kidnappers, Hall takes crewmember Sif, a former Arkon Red warrior, to assist. Tiana’s rescue and the back alley rumors Sif gathers prove that the Argos is in dangerous territory.

Michael J. Farlow gave this suspenseful science fiction story every element needed for a thrilling plot, starting with restrictions that could be difficult to keep. Hall has a loyal crew and treats them fairly. The Argos artificial intelligence system Wizzy made me laugh. I have never read a book where the ship had an attitude and made smart-aleck remarks. Sif’s answer to everything involved fighting, and there were times that I agreed with his approach. However, Hall had to follow orders. The twists in the book added suspense and sometimes I couldn’t figure out whether someone was an ally or an enemy. Retribution kept me glued to the pages with all the action. The ending provides the potential for a sequel involving the Argos and its crew. This book is perfect for fans of science-fiction stories full of conflict and colorful character personalities.

Bryone Peters

The crew aboard the spaceship Argos is on a mission to gather intel, find two fugitives and capture them to be put on trial for their misdeeds. Later, the crew receives new instructions - they can now intervene instead of taking notes. They can do what they know best and try to save USB, short for the Union of South Bonafria, and their allies, from a Volarix hostile takeover. However, the Volarix outnumber them in warships, gunboats, and sophisticated weaponry. The crew of the Argos has a plan. But will it be enough to complete their mission and save everyone? In Retribution: Records of the Argos by Michael J. Farlow, expect space-tech savvy, and intuitive and strategic manipulation of events at every step.

Wizzy, the AI for artificial intelligence aboard the Argos, was hands-down the best part of Retribution: Records of the Argos by Michael J. Farlow. If there is any reason to read this book, let it be Wizzy’s personality. The dialogue between the captain and the AI is most certainly entertaining. When Wizzy asked to be called CTO, short for Chief Thinking Officer, that was probably the funniest moment in the book. I also enjoyed relating to the memories of the captain and thinking back on the then-famous moments that none of the non-human crewmates could relate to. Michael J. Farlow understands surveillance, armory, and robotic intelligence since his descriptions of these mechanisms are apt but he harmoniously wraps them up in a plausible yet adventurous way.

Alma Boucher

In Retribution: Records of the Argos Book 2 by Michael J. Farlow, Captain Hall is ordered to an area where Azel is the only planet suitable to live on. His mission is to collect intelligence on Azel in general. The ship Argos is presented as a ship trading in agricultural machinery and the captain has an adequate supply of rare materials such as gold to use as payment. They must keep their eyes open for General Gurko, an Arko Red, and Berzalium, an Arkon Blue. These two are suspected of having been responsible for the disappearance of several ships in the area. The Tye Government and the Consortium want Gurko and Berzalium captured and returned for trial. AI is helping Captain Hall and his crew with collecting intelligence. AI uses a cartoon avatar of the young Albert Einstein when communicating with the crew.

The plot in Retribution by Michael J. Farlow is complicated and exciting. There was so much information, but it never felt like too much to remember. The story is fast-paced and full of action. There was so much happening that I could not put it down. I was just turning the pages as fast as I could to see what was going to happen next. I was on the edge of my seat all the time with the twists and turns. The suspense made the story very powerful. The characters were excellently developed and were described in such a way that I could see what they looked like. They worked together as a team and complemented each other. AI was my favorite character and is so witty. I felt as if I was part of the crew in this sci-fi world. I enjoyed reading the story and being part of this story.

Pikasho Deka

Retribution by Michael J. Farlow is a sci-fi space opera novel. The second book in the Records of the Argos series once again follows the crew of Consortium spaceship Argos, under the command of Captain Nick Hall, as they try to locate and capture the Arkon Red, General Gurko, and his underling, Berzalius. Nick and his crew must travel to the distant world of Azel to capture the two Arkons and take them to answer for their crimes and face trial on the planet of Tye. Disguising themselves as traders, the crew of Argos arrives on Azel, only to be embroiled in the political upheaval sweeping through the various continents of the planet. With the enemy equipped with an advanced plasma weapon, Nick must find a way to counter their superior forces and help the Alliance fight them off.

This is the second book I've read by author Michael J. Farlow, and I've come to the realization that he has a knack for crafting well-written space military tales that transport you to alien worlds that any sci-fi lover will relish. Retribution is an action-packed tale narrated in a first-person POV style through the view of the protagonist, Captain Nick Hall of the spaceship Argos. There is a genuine sense of camaraderie between Nick and his crew that makes you want to root for them in every scenario. Although I found all the characters likable, Wizzy was probably my personal favorite of the bunch. Overall, I very much enjoyed Retribution. Recommended to space opera fans and readers who love action-packed military thrillers.