4. SECRET OF THE LEGION
Slaves of the Star
The Star has been killing her slowly. I wanted to destroy it at first, but she wouldn’t let me. It’s the future, she said. She’s right — but I don’t care. I only want to save those I love — and they’re in the past.
The Star can help me, but it’s a two-edged sword. It may destroy us, but it’s not evil. It’s completely neutral. It’s mankind that is evil, not the Star.
Destroy the Star? No. The Star can help me — and those I love. Am I evil? I don’t know. But I’ve already made my choice.
Secret of the Legion is the fourth book of a six part series that follows trooper Thinker's adventures in the service of the people of ConFree. Other titles in the series include Soldier of the Legion, March of the Legion, Slave of the Legion, Cross of the Legion, and Curse of the Legion.
Excerpt from Barnes & Noble
Book Four of this exceptional series has one of the best first chapters I've ever read in a book of any genre. Thomas takes us into the grim life of a man without a past. This is a broken man who has been psyched and rehabbed, a scarred man who is slow and dull-witted, living in a bug infested cube, washing dishes in a filthy futuristic dive. The man knows he has a bio-engineered arm. He knows horrific nightmares hold a secret to his past but can't think straight enough to translate the messages. The mirror reveals the face of a dark angel with the hard body of a warrior. Until the day his past kicks in the door of his wretched cube, the reader doesn't realize that this lost shell of a man is Beta Three, aka Wester, aka Thinker, once an immortal soldier of the Legion. Why Thinker has been spared elimination by his captors is a mystery.
The remaining members of his Beta Unit have tracked down and rescued Thinker for a reason. They need him whole and functional again to lead a mission that will impact the entire known universe. Painstakingly, over time, Thinker's memories are retrieved, but his warrior spirit is gone. He has no thirst for war or vengeance and hopes to leave the Legion and resume life with his wife Moontouch and son Stormdawn. But a peaceful, idyllic life is not in Thinker's future. The Omnis threaten Moontouch's planet and the galaxy and, as always, only the Legion stands between them and annihilation.
Tara has a plan to save their universe and destroy the Omnis once and for all. Her devoted companion, Gildron, is in possession of an ancient icon — known as "the star" — that provides endless streams of knowledge. With the star's knowledge as her guide, a prototypical starship capable of starlaunching into alternative universes is built. The ship launches Tara and the remaining members of the Beta Unit into a fossil universe where stars and planets are either dead or dying. She promises Thinker that if he leads the Legion on this mission through Omni territory, and if they survive, they will take the starship back in time to rescue members of the Unit who died in the Mound, during their last battle with the Omnis. And if that second leg of their mission is successful, Tara promises that Thinker can retire from the Legion.
As in every book of this series, the battles are so realistic my heart pounded. I feared for every character in each battle. I feared this would be the last of Thinker and the Beta Unit. These characters have become like old friends to me. The writing style is exciting. Thomas brings his futuristic world to life, believably. I'm relieved to report that this is NOT the end to Thinker. In many ways, this is my favorite book in the series so far. Highly recommended.
— Review by Laurel Johnson of Midwest Book Review
"Secret of the Legion series has been a fun read all the way through! I actually enjoy the fact that the author doesn't go into detail about the weapons. It allows the reader to form their own mental picture of the capabilities. More please!"
— Lori Saphira (amazon.com)
SECRET OF THE LEGION is book four in Marshall Thomas’s futuristic LEGION series. This time, Beta Three, called Thinker, finds himself washed of his memories, his past, and his passion. Once a warrior, he is now a dishwasher with no vision beyond the daily drudgery he now faces. Although reminders of his old life make him wonder about his past, he has no idea who he really is until he is rescued by the remaining members of his unit. As his memories return, he desires only to return to his wife and child. But his old comrades have a mission and they need Beta Three to help them achieve victory. In return for his help, he will be able to retire from The Legion and go home to his family.
As in his previous novels, Thomas’s characters have a level of depth and intensity that move this story way beyond a sci-fi thriller, creating a compelling novel that will appeal to all readers. One other aspect that must be mentioned is the "world" Thomas has created. It is fascinating — intriguing in its intricacies. More than a simple frame around the picture — it is part of the overall masterpiece and worth noting. SECRET OF THE LEGION is highly recommended.
— Review by author Nancy Mehl