Shrouded Loyalties is an intriguing military science fiction journey that’s equal parts extreme action and family drama.
Connections between characters quickly become complicated, creating an underlying sense of panic as you try to figure out the motives of each player in this high stakes game. The writing is spot on, pairing expertly written action scenes with intense relationship drama between siblings, coworkers, and lovers.
The book goes far beyond the typical battle heavy feel of military science fiction, creating a character piece centered on a war that effects each of the protagonists deeply. The strained relationship between Blackwell and her brother creates much of the drama, tempting betrayals and surprising revelations left and right. They share a history of trauma along with an overwhelming curiosity about the work of their deceased parents. As this plot gets revealed, the tension builds to a breaking point. That tension fuels the overarching feeling of the book as you wait to see the fate of these characters and their world.
On the other hand, we get to see the inner thoughts and motivations of Holland, a spy embedded within the enemy’s military.
Holland’s connections to the other two protagonists creates unexpected drama as she skirts around her allegiances and the secrets she’s constantly protecting. She’s a fascinating character study, battling between allegiance to her country and allegiance to her lost family. She’s constantly evolving, proving she’s much more than a stock military character.
There’s definitely a large share of military conflict, spy thriller intensity, and mindblowing revelations that are hard to fathom. You’ll have to experience the thrills for yourself to get deeper into the plot. Overall, Shrouded Loyalties stands out above the rest thanks to the writer’s dedication to creating multifaceted characters whose lives go beyond the central conflict of the book. This aspect shows that war isn’t just about the fighting, but the people who must ultimately pick up the pieces and come to term with their actions.
By Reese Hogan
Published by Angry Robot
NOTE: I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.