Book Review: Come and Take Them II

CK is the second to review Come and Take Them, by Tom Kratman.

Tom Kratman’s Come and Take Them is an exciting continuation of his
Carreraverse series, and lays some interesting foundations for future
series developments. While it is possible to enjoy CATT on it’s own
merits, I recommend that readers read the rest of the series first, as I
will explain further into the review.

Prose: 7/10  Competently done,
describes the action clearly concisely and with verisimilitude. There are
no particular passages that stand out as literary masterpieces. I
believe that this is a deliberate stylistic choice as the main concern
of the novel is to tell the story, and especially with this series,
convey the ideas therein. Since this novel is as much a polemic as a
story, and the author personally hates too clever by half literary
pretension, the prose is deliberately stripped down. Of particular value
is the description of combat, and it’s vagaries. Our society has fewer
and fewer people familiar with just how dangerous modern combat can be,
and far too many x box warriors who think a SEAL team can kill anything.
In it’s own way, the stripped down, economical use of language portrays
the difficulties combat more effectively by focusing on the
Plot: 6/10  Above average, especially for
military technothriller/ military scifi. Things go wrong, the Good Guys
are not infallible, and the Bad Guys aren’t totally incompetent.
Mistakes are made on both sides, for understandable reasons. The
Balboans fail to anticipate an obvious antagonists’ attempt to seize
power, starting the war they wished to avoid. While things go generally
the way they want, serious errors are made that could have disastrous
repercussions. The Taurans, despite being arrogant, vain, and encumbered
by a sclerotic bureaucracy, are brave, tough and competent. and are
able to inflict serious damage on their adversaries. The twists and
somewhat telegraphed, and there are no major surprises, but it doesn’t
bog down anywhere, and enjoyable throughout.
Characters 8/10  Perhaps the author’s
strongest suit as a writer is the ability to create believable,
fallible characters. Every major character is complex, with
understandable motivations, emotions, and actions that flow logically
from those motivations. Each character also has strengths as well as
flaws. For instance, Raul Parilla the President of Balboa, is personally
brave, honest, and loyal, yet can be indecisive and overly cautious.
Admiral Wallenstein is sexually perverse, vain, and yet determined,
capable and politically savvy. No one side has a lock on virtue, or on
vice, and the conflict is heightened by the wholly believable goals and
motivations of the characters.
Ideas 7/10  Perhaps the least ideological
book the author has published, the Ideas developed earlier in the series
are worked out here in a more straight forward action oriented manner.
For instance the heavily ideological Amazon Legion was nearly all
polemic, and the action covered there in brief is treated with more
detail in this book. This however is still a Kratman book, and ideas are
always behind the scenes somewhere. Readers of VP do not need to be
told that our elites are perverse, vain, totalitarian, and humorless,
but others might yet have faith in them. Come and Take Them demolishes
that Faith rather effectively. The individual soldiers of Taurus are
portrayed in an almost wholly favorable light, brave, resourceful, and
tough. The leadership of Taurus, The Federated States, the Old Earth
Peace Fleet, and Balboas neighbors have none of the virtues associated
with maintaining civilization. This I think is the key to understanding
the whole series, and why I believe that this book and the associated
series are must reads for anyone interested in preserving civilization.
I rated the novel as 28/40, very good, but not a
Great Book. Why do I believe this series is a must read for all
civilized people? Simple, Tom Kratman is not primarily a novelist, he is
a pro civilizational polemicist whose chosen medium is novels. After
all Heinlein and Rand did more for libertarianism than any economics
text by Rothbard, despite Rothbard’s superior intellectual rigor.
Stories are the best way to reach the average person, and are far more
enjoyable than political tracts to read, so Tom tells stories.
Tom predicted US losses in the Middle East years ago, because we
refused to recognize the nature of our enemy and act accordingly. In A
Desert Called Peace
and Carnifex, Tom show what an actual winning
strategy would look like, and shows further why our present elite are
unable to execute such a strategy for purely ideological reasons. In
addition, the decadence, sexual perversion, disloyalty, and arrogance of
our bankster-political elite are on display throughout the series. Tom
shows some familiarity with taboo topics such as HBD and the SMP which
is refreshing.  
I don’t know if Tom is familiar with the Anon Conservative, but
these books are a textbook of how to perform an amygdala hijack of
leftist rabbits. Read negative Amazon reviews of Amazon Legion or Watch on the Rhine. Leftists
literally can’t comprehend the book, engage with the ideas, or even
begin to refute them. For instance through the whole series, some
opposition soldiers are portrayed as brave, loyal and deserving of
respect, even if their leaders aren’t. The Iraqi and Jihadis analogues
are treated with more respect than the liberal progressive in the
analogous US and EU, and they deserve it. 
This of course terrifies rabbits because they themselves are
neither brave or loyal, and if the wolves they depend upon to protect
them, feed them, keep them warm and make thier stuff ever have enough,
they are going to die, and they know it. Note that competence while
desired, is not necessarily required to be worthy of in group loyalty.
For instance, the legion takes care of the totally disabled and their
families, at considerable expense, because they are members of the
legion. The purely transactional relationships of the elite are shown to
be ultimately hollow and worthless, as are our current rabbits promises
and relationships. If you value civilization and want to preserve it,
you can do yourself a favor and read the Carrera Series, or anything
else by Tom Kratman.