I have embarked on the Old Man’s War series, and this is the second volume. The first was Old Man’s War, which I discussed here. This is not exactly a sequel, because none of the characters appear in it except one, in a totally different story arc, so although there is a connection, they can be read in either order, more or less.
The first volume explained in depth the concept behind the Old Men soldiers, see my earlier post on that volume. This one features a scientist who goes mad when his little daughter is killed in a station take over by a hostile species, and because his superior had not allowed him to bring her with him to his current duty, which is why she was killed on that other station, he blames the commander and the Colonial Defense Forces for everything, has found a way to save a person’s consciousness, has recorded his and saved it, then created an illegal and secret clone of himself, which he killed in a manner that appeared as suicide, so everything thinks he has died.
But! Of course, he has not, and has escaped to a far planet in service of the aliens in a deal to give them consciousness or a soul, which they do not possess, in exchange for their cooperating with two other usually enemies to make war on the Colonial Defense Forces and wipe them out.
But the powers that be have come to the conclusion that that dead scientist is not the real scientist and that he is still alive. So using the technology to build Special Forces soldiers by using dead people’s dna, they make one specifically so that can implant the scientist’s copy of his consciousness into it, hoping it will BE the scientist or enough so they can find out where he is.
The consciousness doesn’t take, so the guy is integrated into Special Forces as a soldier, but gradually the memories etc begin to emerge, and he has the consciousness of both.
Pretty nifty, right? So anyway, there is lots of space opera-y action and whatnot as they figure they know where he is and determine to go extract him. Turns out, the young daughter of the scientist was not killed but abducted by the aliens to get the scientist to do the work for them to get them consciousness.
Maybe just this side of hokey, plot-wise, but a lot of interesting concepts about genetics, genetic engineering, consciousness, etc., that made it a fun read.