The evil alien Ghast along with the religious fanatics the Republic of Eden have invaded Urn, the principle planet of the Didcot system and the main supplier of tea to the British Empire. Without tea the British will lose their moral fibre and the Ghast will wipe them aside.
The Hyrax, recently self-proclaimed ruler of Urn, is completely out of control, trying to impose totally unrealistic laws that result in the tea crop workers rebelling. With this rebellion Smith and his superiors plan to re-take Urn, but first they must recruit allies.
Smith and the crew now head back to Suruk's home planet within the Didcot system to recruit his family to help win the battle of Urn. But all is not as they hope and Suruk's family are more interested in seeing him go to law school rather than beheading his enemies.
Will the battle be won? Will Suruk convince his family to help? And more importantly, will the tea still flow?
Space Captain Smith was one of the highlights of the year for me, a really funny and gripping story that was a complete blast from cover to cover. God Emperor of Didcot had high expectations to meet and had to deliver everything Space Captain Smith did. I am very glad to say that it delivered everything I hoped for and more.
The characters are just as much fun this time and the new ones fit in perfectly. The dialogue is witty, enjoyable and never drags on, even during the duller moments (of which there are very few). The bad guys are great and in such a way that is perhaps even more entertaining than the good guys, at least some of the time!
Another of the highlights are the nods Toby Frost gives to other classics of the genre, each putting a smile on my face. A particular favourite is the Aresians, which are a very solid nod to War of the Worlds. Much like Space Captain Smith, you'll have to read this to fully appreciate just how good it is. Another must-read.