I don't usually go in for military sci-fi so please excuse me if I am unfamiliar with its tropes.This book follows the military career of Bah'dur Das, a brilliant young boy enrolled in a military academy of sorts. He is incredibly bright and the narrative jumps back and forth between his time in service and his time at school.The first thing that struck me is that the main character is set up to be incredibly smart; intelligent to the point of alienation. This can be a dangerous character trait to write as it openly invites the ego of the writer to emerge. I was very pleasantly surprised with the humanity that Das is written with. He is separated by his mind and suffers for it. This childhood treatment is the real core of the story, slowly exposed as the narrative weaves in and out of the war he grows up to fight.This was a solid lead with only a few slow parts. The battle scenes are a bit wordy but I assume that comes with the territory of military fiction. Bah'dur's arc is more than enough to pull the reader through the slower passages. The only part that I wasn't satisfied with was the ending which just sort of wanders off. I will give that a partial pass as this is a common issue in science fiction and also because this is the first book in a series. I will be picking up the next installment.