This book got better as it went along. I almost put it down about a quarter of the way through. The dialogue at the beginning was a bit too much like TV sitcom banter for my liking. All the characters seemed to have the exact same sense of humor (based on reading his blog, decidedly Scalzi's humor). But things quickly turned around a third of the way through and it turned into a pretty darn good page-turner from that point onward. There is one scene in the book that was truly brilliant and it earned this book an extra star (the battle with the Covandu). I'm not running out tonight to pick up the next in the series, but I can see myself reading more stories set in this universe.