We have probably all heard about the video game release of Halo 4; how it has sold over $200 million on the first day and how it has been created by 343 Industries instead of by Bungie. I’m a Halo fan. I marvel at Halo’s amazing game-play graphics and intense FPS action; but I also honour the Halo books, their compelling storylines and character developments. I first began reading the Halo series two years ago and it has since been my favourite book series by far. Among the seven Halo books, my favourite is Halo: First Strike, by Eric Nylund.
Here’s a brief introduction to the novel: It is set in the year 2552 and humanity has been fighting a long losing war against a powerful alien race called the Covenant, whose goal is to ruthlessly exterminate all humans from the universe.
Halo: First Strike is the third book in the original Halo trilogy. After reading the first two books, I knew that it would be nearly impossible for humans to survive against the alien Covenant. However, I was still very curious in wanting to know how the Halo storyline would progress. During my first time reading First Strike, I was immersed by the scope of the plot. Every word holds an important meaning, crucial for understanding and appreciating the story. The words on the pages form pictures in my mind. I can see every detail, from the decorations embroidering a battleship to the stars and medals covering a uniform, every action, from falling bullets to flying missiles, and every event, from a rupture in the space-time continuum to the construction of a new weapon, unfold before my eyes as if it were a movie. Sometimes, I concentrate on a single page for great lapses of time, absorbing the way the words flow into my mind.
Lying at the heart of Halo: First Strike is a deep message focused upon the issue of morality, the willingness to act selflessly, and the power of a magnanimous self-sacrifice. It is a story based on perseverance and determination, how the weak can overcome the powerful and how even the impossible can be achieved by sheer willpower and hard work. First Strike depicts more than just a battle between humanity and aliens; it depicts an epic struggle between life and death, the glorious uprising of human morality, and, ultimately, the need to persevere. Halo: First Strike teaches us a lesson: we must persist to achieve our objectives even when all the odds are against us…because in the end, we will succeed.
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If you are intrigued by how the novel has concluded, you can rest assured knowing that humans have managed to defeat the alien Covenant.