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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
True Allegiance is the third book in the Halberd Series by John J. Spearman. Previously, Halberd and the Commonwealth faced the threat of the Rodinan Federation as they made attempts to take over. This time, the story opens with Jonah still recuperating, lying in a stasis pod in a medically-induced coma while his body slowly heals. As negotiations between the Rodinan government and the Commonwealth on ending their seven-year war begin, the latter faces a new threat - the Chinese have been demonstrating a return to dominance in overall economic strength. They have been lagging behind the Commonwealth and the Rodinans since the colonization of interplanetary space. They have been a highly interested bystander during the seven-year war between the Commonwealth and the Rodinans, and both have been weakened enough for China to see an opportunity.
Overall, True Allegiance is a smart piece of work. Although the novel is not heavy on action, it manages to pull off its illustration of what takes place during the crucial moments when heads come together in formulating solutions, and decision-making is what helps drive the story. Is it predictable? This is another strong part of John J. Spearman’s story, as it doesn’t pressure itself to pull its punches in the end. It does have its stirring moments, and it is thought-provoking in the sense that the political scenarios presented are something that you may or may not disagree with. If you are looking for a more laid-back science fiction adventure that is replete with political commentaries and the distant direction of global affairs, then this book is for you.