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Halo - The Fall of Reach - Eric Nylund - NEW Book

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Halo - The Fall of Reach - Eric Nylund -  NEW Book

Halo - The Fall of Reach - Eric Nylund - New Book

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The Fall of Reach takes place in the Halo universe and spans several decades, beginning in 2517 describing events up to 2552. In the Halo universe, travel faster than the speed of light is possible through slipspace, another dimension where special relativity does not apply. This has allowed humans to colonize hundreds of other planets which are controlled by the United Nations Space Command (UNSC). Feeling repressed by the UNSC's heavy-handed rule, some colonies revolt; fearing rebellion will tear the UNSC apart, military leaders approve the SPARTAN Project, a secret squad of super soldiers to quietly suppress rebellion.

The protagonist of The Fall of Reach is Master Chief, detailing his conscription and training while other characters who will later play a large role are introduced. Dr. Catherine Halsey, the creator of the SPARTAN Project is introduced alongside Jacob Keyes when he is a Lieutenant although by the end of the book he has been promoted to Captain. Franklin Mendez is the trainer of the Spartans teaching them their physical combat skills while an AI named Déjà teaches them military history and strategy. Cortana, Master Chief's AI companion through much of the series, is also present as Dr. Hasley's aide in the lead up to the Spartans' mission.

The novel opens with the civilian Dr. Catherine Halsey and Lieutenant Jacob Keyes traveling to meet John, a six-year-old boy. Dr. Halsey reveals to Keyes that John is one of 150 children who possess rare genetic markers making them suitable for conscription into the SPARTAN-II program, a secret experiment with the aim of creating super soldiers for the UNSC to quell rebellions.[6] Seventy-five of the children are kidnapped by operatives of the Office of Naval Intelligence and replaced by clones engineered to die of natural causes shortly after. From this point on, the recruits are known only by their first name and a three digit number. John-117 and the rest of the children are drilled and trained by Franklin Mendez and John demonstrates leadership of his fellow Spartans leading to his promotion to squad leader. In 2525, the Spartans undergo a series of surgical enhancements which turn them into highly efficient super soldiers at the cost of crippling or killing more than half of the original seventy-five. The Spartans are also equipped with powerful MJOLNIR battle armor, designed to respond as quickly as the soldier's thoughts. John-117 is given the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer. The Spartans are highly successful, but they experience a priority shift after a collective of alien races known as the Covenant begin obliterating human colonies, declaring humanity's destruction as the will of the gods. Mendez leaves the group to train the next generation of Spartans as John and his comrades first face the Covenant. By 2552, the war against the Covenant is going poorly. The technological superiority of the Covenant means that space battles heavily favor the Covenant, and the UNSC can only win engagements by suffering tremendous losses. To prevent the discovery of Earth or other human colonies, Vice Admiral Cole creates the "Cole Protocol", which forbids direct slipspace jumps to Earth and mandates the destruction of a ship before it can be captured by the Covenant. Jacob Keyes, now commander of the destroyer Iroquois, discovers four Covenant ships arriving at the Sigma Octanus System, and single-handedly destroys three of them; his heroics earn Keyes the rank of Captain. The Covenant proceed to overrun Sigma Octanus IV, searching for a mysterious ancient artifact. Despite a costly fight, the humans manage to repel the Covenant, and Keyes intercepts a coded Covenant transmission from the surface before the Covenant retreat. The Iroquois heads to Reach, unwittingly bringing a Covenant tracking device with it. Soon after, Keyes is given the command of the UNSC cruiser Pillar of Autumn for a secret mission; the Spartans are to capture one of the Covenant's religious leaders, a Prophet, and barter a truce. Dr. Halsey also introduces John to the artificial intelligence Cortana, who would assist the Spartans by residing in their MJOLNIR armor. Before the mission can begin, however, Reach is attacked by a massive Covenant fleet. John and Cortana reach the Pillar of Autumn, but most of the other Spartans are presumed killed as the Covenant vitrify the surface of Reach, turning the landmasses into glass. Cortana initiates a slipspace course based on the ancient glyphs intercepted by the Covenant at Sigma Octanus, the course takes them to a massive ringworld known as Halo, setting the stage for the events of Halo: Combat Evolved.

 

About the Author Eric Nylund

Eric S. Nylund (born 1964 in California) is an American novelist and professional technical writer. His wife, Syne Mitchell, is also a science fiction writer. He holds a B.Sc. in chemistry and an M.Sc. in chemical physics. He lives in North Bend, Washington. Nylund is the author of three novels set in the Halo universe: Halo: The Fall of Reach, Halo: First Strike and Halo: Ghosts of Onyx. Eric Nylund is employed as a writer for Microsoft Game Studios. His duties include the development of story bibles and other such fictional assets, the preparation of materials for marketing, and coordination with Microsoft localization, legal, and geopolitcal departments.

In the 1990s Eric Nylund was hired by Microsoft to help rewrite and edit portions of Microsoft's multi-media enyclopedia. Since then, Eric Nylund has written several novels based on Microsoft-published games, including the aforementioned Halo novels, and Crimson Skies, which was written collaboratively with Eric S. Trautmann. Eric Nylund has written many original novels as well, including Signal to Noise, A Signal Shattered and Dry Water.

 

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