lucked out on this one – was in a used bookstore in Norfolk and came across a block of Ark Royal books, five of the first six, missing the initial copy. Looked like a good series – and self-published too, it seemed – so I bought them. Well, my sister bought them for me, a nice gesture. But I read them.
The first book of the Ark Royal series takes place, I dunno, 200 years in the future? Man has reached the stars via tramlines but nations (and navies) still exist. And Ark Royal, an outdated English carrier seventy years old and only preserved from the scrappers because it serves as a museum of sorts, is still floating over earth. The Royal Navy has decided to use it as a dumping ground for its troublesome officers and men, including its Commodore, drunken Theodore Smith. But then aliens come broiling out of the unknown, picking off a few colonies. When an international fleet sails against them, the modern lightweight ships and picked off easily. Now, with Earth’s navies in disarray, Ark Royal has to be pressed into service again.
This story was really good and strongly reminded me of Space Battleship Yamato, where a nearly-defeated Earth must rely on the ancient Yamato to be refitted for space. Just like the Yamato, the Ark Royal survives because of its outdated (yet thick) armor which blunts the aliens attacks and allows its starfighters and shipboard weapons to make hash out of the seemingly unstoppable aliens. It’s a great sea tale about a captain with personal problems, a grasping XO, a raw crew, and waves of aliens. It was great fun and I’m glad I picked up the first of the series to get my voyage into this new world correctly started.
It’s worth a look. You can find it on Amazon if you aren’t lucky in bookstores. Christopher Nuttall is the man you want to see about this. Good luck and good reading. We’re all counting on you.