Chapter By Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.
In the last chapter of Robotech, Terry and Misa made contact with the Starchildren, hoping to use them in Shimada’s insane ploy to make friends with the only enemy in the three wars that would never work on. Meanwhile, Dana finally got to ask Wolff about her family as Louie was in a position to foil Wolff’s plan to get back to Admirals Hunter and the REF.
It seems we’re at that part of the book where it’s getting tougher for me to come up with anything to write. I don’t want to spoil too much, and yet any flavor text about the stories and Robotech as a saga is starting to run out. That means these intros get shorter as we push forward into the next chapter. In total there are eighteen chapters and an epilogue, giving us seven full chapters and said epilogue before we move on to the next book. So let’s see what happens in this one.
Three segments in this one instead of two. The first brings us back to the Shimadas and Louie pretty much spilling the beans on Wolff’s deception. Good going, Louie? It wasn’t to help Dana since the suggestion to have Dana help get the Homeward Bound away from Earth before the Invid show up comes as a result of the conversation. With the ship apparently fully capable of foldspace, Shimada opts to ditch the Starchildren rather than have them take the ship. Granted this does allow Dana to get the refugees home later if that’s where the story goes but it also means the Starchildren themselves are kind of superfluous to these events unless they become another antagonist, and I’m not sure we need one with the power struggle between the government and the military as well as the Shimada clan being involved. Just have Louie learn what Wolff’s up to, and then come up with Dana and the refugees. It just feels like an unnecessary addition now, considering how long it took them to even be part of the story.
The second just shows that the GMP has a spy in the Starchildren’s ranks and about the plan to take the ship, with a mention of a benefactor but our spy conveniently (to the story) wanting more money to tell them who. Fredricks isn’t planning to pay up as it doesn’t matter. Apparently they want the ship as well, but Louie did remember to lie to them about the ship’s ability to fold. I get the impression that they are also considering Dana for whatever their plan is. This may work out for her after all.
Speaking of Dana, she attends Wolff’s talk to the surviving military (that hasn’t gone AWOL) about ways to deal with the Invid. This section mostly seems to exist to explain the differences between the various shows used for the original Robotech and the stuff created for The Sentinels. It explains why the Regis isn’t using some of the mecha the Regent used in the local group, why the mecha used in the third war wasn’t used in the second (basically Leonard was so against the RDF in favor of the Southern Cross, so I guess they are two separate military groups, that he opted to use his own mecha because he was a dope), and tying Dana’s vision to the “Awareness”, which I don’t think has come up in my comic reviews but after some research is tied to Haydon IV. Also for some reason Wolff kisses Dana, and earlier in the segment Dana had thought about being attracted to Wolff, which I know is not going to end well for anybody. I do wonder if this leads to Wolff also opting to get Dana, her team, and the Tirolians to Tirol?
Overall I’m not sure about this chapter. It invalidated the existence of one of the factions and mostly just ensures they’ll be trouble later. It does give us a chance to save the refugees, who are continuing to die off, but it seems to be forming a Dana/Wolff romance which is a bad idea for both parties. Where does this all lead and how much damage will there be? Be sure to see chapter 13, the next chapter in the odyssey of Robotech.