Over the course of a few hours, Corta Helio, the family firm that supplies the Helium 3 that fuels the fusion reactors of Earth, has been attacked and shattered. Its principal habitat is a desolate vacuum, its important people are dead or are scattered and in hiding, and the other great families are picking over the remains. And, by the way, the great countries of Earth are concerned about that Helium 3.
As was the case in Frank Herbert’s Dune, of which McDonald’s unfolding Luna opus reminds me, the fall of a great house on the Moon is the beginning of more than it’s the end of because, for each of the big players, the assets of Corta Helio are too valuable to allow to fall into the hands of another player, and the remaining Cortas are desperate enough to take some big risks.
McDonald continues doing what he does well–throwing interesting characters into dangerous situations in societies and situations based on reasonable extrapolations from current technological and societal trends.
For a person who’s interested in space flight and emerging technologies, this series is unending entertainment and thought-provoking speculation. McDonald seems to have done his research on libertarian ideas on how to organize a society without a government, 3D printing, orbital mechanics, current thinking on how living on the Moon might work, and … cake baking.