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A Just Determination

A Just Determination

4.5 4
by John G. Hemry

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First in a "superior military SF" (Booklist) series that follows a young officer who must fight to see justice done.

Fresh from the Academy, Ensign Paul Sinclair has been assigned to the warship USS Michaelson, whose mission is to stop any foreign vessels from violating U.S. sovereign space.

When Captain Peter Wakeman mistakenly destroys


First in a "superior military SF" (Booklist) series that follows a young officer who must fight to see justice done.

Fresh from the Academy, Ensign Paul Sinclair has been assigned to the warship USS Michaelson, whose mission is to stop any foreign vessels from violating U.S. sovereign space.

When Captain Peter Wakeman mistakenly destroys a civilian science ship perceived as hostile, Sinclair must testify against Wakeman at a court-martial hearing. But Sinclair believes that the severity of the charges against the captain are unjust--and becomes a witness for the defense...

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
Retired Navy officer and author of the popular military science fiction novels Stark's War, Stark's Command, and Stark's Crusade, John G. Hemry begins a markedly more cerebral series with A Just Determination.

Ensign Paul Sinclair is fresh out of the Naval Academy and assigned to the USS Michaelson as the ship's lone legal officer. The warship's mission is to patrol a very large volume of space, enforcing the U.S. claim on valuable transit routes and mineral rich asteroids.

When a South Asian Alliance ship trespasses into U.S. territory and runs from the Michaelson when approached, Captain Pete Wakeman decides to try and catch the intruding vessel before it leaves U.S. space. Wakeman's attempts at communication with the mysterious ship go unanswered, and when he fires a warning shot across the ship's bow, the ship changes its course and begins heading right for the Michaelson. Although the Alliance ship has no visible weapons, Wakeman takes no chances and fires on the ship, destroying it and everyone aboard.

When the Michaelson is ordered to return to port and the captain is court-martialed, young Sinclair must decide whether to keep quiet like everyone else or stand up for what he believes in -- a decision that could ruin his career as well as Wakeman's.

Like other popular military science fiction veterans such as David Drake and John Ringo, Hemry knows what he is talking about. This author has the right stuff -- top-notch military sci fi. Paul Goat Allen

From the Publisher
Praise for A Just Determination

"Hemry is the real thing . . . thrilling excitement on every page." --Capt. David E. Meadows, USN, author of the Dark Pacific series

"Superior military SF . . . Recalls nothing so much as The Caine Mutiny in space, and it attains the same high level of achievement." --Booklist

"Paul Sinclair is exactly the kind of guy you want to serve with, and exactly the kind of reluctant hero that great series are made from." --SFRevu

"John Hemry, a writer who relies on his own naval experience for verisimilitude in his storytelling, gives SF it own JAG with this intelligent and engrossing legal drama . . . Worthwhile and provocative." --SF Reviews

"A remarkably impressive work . . . This is military science fiction at its best." --Rambles

"Hemry explores gallantry, honor, duty, and patriotism--as well as their opposites--in a book where both the court scenes and the space-chase scenes are page-turners." --Steve Miller, coauthor of the Liaden Universe (R) novels

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Paul Sinclair Series , #1
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Sales rank:
File size:
1000 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

John G. Hemry is a retired naval officer who graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis before serving with the surface fleet and in a variety of other assignments. He is the author of the Paul Sinclair series and the Stark’s War series. As Jack Campbell, he is the New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Fleet series, The Lost Stars series, and Pillars of Reality series. He lives with his indomitable wife and three children in Maryland.

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A Just Determination 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Ryanxia More than 1 year ago
This book is different from my usual, high action, mostly descriptive with not quite as much dialog. This book is dialog rich and overall good descriptive qualities. Futuristic but without a lot of technical fabrications that can sometimes enrich a novel OR make you lose focus. This novel is all about the characters and of course legalality.

OldFogey More than 1 year ago
This appears to be the first volume in what may to be a brand new series for Hemry. Unlike the “Black Jack” series (written as Jack Campbell), the only military action in this book is almost incidental beyond establishing a situation for a sort of morality play. Character development is adequate, as in the “Black Jack” series, and seems for Paul Sinclair to be the direction in which the series may well go. Sinclair is at least established as a young man of principle by the end of this episode. He does not seem to be headed toward becoming an action hero. Hemry is still working in the scifi space opera context, but this feels like a rather different direction from good old Black Jack. I shall be very interested to see where Hemry goes with this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
harstan More than 1 year ago
Ensign Paul Sinclair reports to duty on the USS Michaelson, a warship assigned to 'protect' a vast space sector from enemies. The ship's XO Herdez appoints him an assortment of duties to include the only legal officer on board as he once attended an entry-level class........................... Not long afterward, as Paul still struggles to get his legs, Herdez assigns him to provide her a legal opinion of the higher headquarters' operation instructions and rules of engagement assigned to the ship. Paul realizes they are vague, but still does his best to interpret the acceptable levels of commitment. Soon he finds himself in a career-threatening situation when he must defend his ship's Captain Wakeman in the wake of the destruction of a civilian research vessel. Worse he violates the first rule of deep space service by starting to fall in love with crew member Ensign Jen Shen................... JUST DETERMINATION is a strong space ship legal thriller that provides incredible insight into life on an outer space vessel as if John G. Henry served on one (probably similar to submarine duty). The story line insures the audience understands the pressure on the crew not only due to the vastness of space, the length of time, but also the interpretation of what is acceptable encounter behavior. Though there is some action sequences, fans of tales focused on the relationships within a military science fiction will want to trek to the stars with Paul.................... Harriet Klausner