Dark Run (Keiko#1) – Mike Brooks

The Keiko is a ship of smugglers, soldiers of fortune and adventurers, travelling Earth’s colony planets searching for the next job. And nobody talks about their past.

But when a face from Captain Ichabod Drift’s former life send them on a run to Old Earth, all the rules change.

Trust will be broken, and blood will be spilled…

Before my wife gave me the first Keiko book a few years ago, I would have passed these books by in the shops never knowing what they would contain. I will forever be in her debt for introducing me to the crew. She knows me very well.

This was a re-read. Milou gave me the third book in this series for Valentine’s earlier this year and I thought I would read the first two before venturing into the last one seeing as I have not blogged about it yet. I hope I do the books justice. I should also say that I am a bit all rose tinted glassy about this one, it chechecked all my interest boxes. I will try explain as I go along.

Before I get into what I liked about this book, even on my second Run, I would like to share what my original thoughts were on GR:

“Dear mr Brooks, I enjoyed this read, I couldnt give a shit what the people’s histories consisted of or how it all came together. There was enough wit to keep me entertained. Drift’s crew consists out of people from diverse nationalities. Book is set in the future, yet they visit ‘Old Earth’ on their ‘Dark Run’. What more can be said without giving away too much? To me this was a comical warhammer novel where actual swearing occured instead of ‘by the gods!’ Or ‘ Emperror, save us!’ Good job mr Brooks. I am looking forward to Dark Sky. Thank you Milou Breedveld for my sinterklaas present. I love you.”

Aaaawh, wasn’t I sweet? That review was written before I started this blog. Even on GR I did not want to give spoilers away, where GR already spoils a shit tonne of some books by telling a reader what they are in for. Its like the movies these days, you get the whole picture in the length of that first trailer, I hate it, but I am trailing of… My review also says most of what I was thinking of the book , but with some changes.

The thing about Dark Run was that I believe Mike had already fleshed out his universe pretty well. It was rich in history that was explained as you went with the story. I loved that it did not drag it along. The crew were diverse, Mike even wrote an appology in the back of the book towards the Mauori people in case he got stuff wrong. I can respect that. Appart from that you have Spanish, Dutch and Chinese to name but a few of the crew and I believe Mike corresponded with quite a few people to try get the cultures to feel real, which they did in my opinnion. So, to correct myself I should give a shit as to the backgrounds of the people, but again, it only surfaced when it was relevant to the story and I find it exellently executed.

A big part of Dark Run was about people’s pasts, which we learn, even in real life, that we can’t Run from it, no matter how Dark a place we try to hide it. It will almost always bite you in the ass some how. This theme fit well with the crew of Keiko, but rule nr 1 is that you are not forced too talk about it unless you want to.

Dark Run was compared to something called Firefly, which I never read, saw or heard about before so I can’t talk about that part of what most other people know about. I will say this tho, I dont believe you have to know Firefly to enjoy this book.

The setting was in the future, in space, but Earth was still alive and we get to visit a few places. In this case it was Amsterdam, which I have learned to know now thanks to my visits to The Netherlands in the last few years. Other countries also played a part. Africa was present, Russia was mentioned and plays a bigger part in the second book, to name but a few.

The part where I said it was like a lighter take on a Warhammer novel was also at a time I did not even know Brooks was going to be turning out books for Black Library, then I saw This…!!!! As far as I know he is writing a few short stories for them now.

I believe I have said all I wanted to about Dark Run. I gave it 5 out of 5 on GR and I am looking forward to re-reading Dark Sky and finding out what the crew are up too in Dark Deeds. I recommend it to people who like Sci-fi, this book has also been said to be some sort of Space Western, I just think it is a lot of fun and an easy read, even on the first time.

Have you read this yet? Is it something you would be interested in? Let me know in the comments.

Have a good day.

18 thoughts on “Dark Run (Keiko#1) – Mike Brooks

  1. Your mention of Firefly definitely piqued my interest. I really enjoyed that show 🙂
    I’ll probably hang off until you’ve reviewed all 3 books, just to make sure it is only a trilogy. If it turns out to be an ongoing series, I’ll definitely be waiting to add these to my tbr…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So far I believe it ends at 3 with a few short stories here and there. We will see. Book two was just as great for me I can say that now. Its going to be a while before I read that. We are still waiting to hear when i can join Milou back in the Netherlands.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. hehe well assuming it’s the Joss Wheadon show- unless there’s a book I didn’t know about. I definitely recommend the tv show though (it was cancelled, so there’s only a small number of episodes and a movie that finishes off the story)

        Liked by 1 person

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