The Last Colony returns to the tale of John Perry and Jane Sagan, both now retired from the military and living on a colony world with their adopted daughter.

Asked to lead a new and experimental colony, and ready for a change of scene, John and Jane accept.  However, as soon as the colonists arrive at their new home, it becomes clear that the entire colony is a political pawn.  Angry at being manipulated, and with the colony under constant threat of destruction, John and Jane have to unravel and thwart the plans of both the Colonial Union and a galaxy wide organisation of aliens.

Scalzi’s characterisation and dialogue are brilliant: Jane’s heritage (she was bred to be a perfect solider) is evident in almost every exchange she has, while John’s sarcastic humour enlivens what could be dull political manoeuvring.  Their evident love and support for each other and their daughter is refreshing (I’m more used to finding books with dys- rather than functional families) and I thought the ending was beautifully apt.

I highly recommend this book, particularly to people who don’t normally like science fiction or have never tried scifi before.

Other books I have reviewed by John Scalzi: Old Man’s War, The Ghost Brigades, Sagan’s Diary