• Against All Odds

  • A Military Sci-Fi Series (Grimm's War, Book 1)
  • By: Jeffery H. Haskell
  • Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
  • Length: 13 hrs and 7 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (358 ratings)

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Against All Odds

By: Jeffery H. Haskell
Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
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Publisher's Summary

Wrong crew. Wrong ship. Right captain.

Idealistic navy Lieutenant Jacob Grimm just wanted to honor his mother's sacrifice in the last great war. When he's forced to return fire and destroy a squadron of ships to save his own, he thinks he's the hero....

Until they discover the ships are full of children.

Disgraced and denied promotion, Jacob's career is over. That is until the head of ONI needs a disposable officer to command a battered destroyer on the rim.

There's just one problem: Interceptor hasn't had a CO in months, and the ship is a mess. Worse, the system he's assigned to is corrupt and on the verge of all-out civil war with the Alliance.

However, no one told Jacob he was disposable.

Pirates, smugglers, and Caliphate spies complicate the situation, and one captain with an old ship can't enforce the law, let alone stop anyone.

The single greatest discovery of all time is about to change intergalactic politics forever. If Jacob doesn't find a way to succeed, then it won't just be the end of the Alliance, it will be the end of freedom for humanity.

From USA Today best-selling author Jeffery H. Haskell comes a military science-fiction epic in the tradition of Honor Harrington and Star Trek. If you love heroes and starships, you will love to stand with Commander Jacob T. Grimm against all odds. You're in the navy now!

©2022 Aethon Books (P)2022 Aethon Audio

What listeners say about Against All Odds

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Author clubs you with his cringe political views.

Aight, I know sci-fi is a common vehicle to discuss social issues and politics, and that's great. We've got all kinds of explorations of the topic, from comical novels the author took all too seriously like Troy, to serious novels the author took seriously like Red Rising, to more ambivalent explorations of all kinds of topics such as in The Expanse.

What I really can't abide, questionable viewpoints aside, is absolutely clubbing the reader over the head with your direct non-metaphorical beliefs, like I'm being lectured in a college class by a particularly shite professor who just wants you to believe what HE believes.

This book is absolutely chock full of such poorly veiled politics. Mainly that the author believes a few pretty weird right-wing conspiracy theories and just goes on and on and on about the evils of politicians defunding the military (not a thing that's ever happened in my lifetime certainly), and how the evil lying media is colluding with politicians to sell the country out to their enemies.


Who are those enemies? Well I'm glad you asked. It's Muslims, they're all Muslims. All the bad guys are Muslims, and all the Muslims are evil caricatures. I mean this book takes a hard racist right turn a bit into it and never lets off the gas.

This book is like some sort of power fantasy post-9/11 fever dream, but with Qanon conspiracy dogma baked on top.

16 people found this helpful

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Jacob Grimm is the hero we need!

This is one of the best books I’ve read in a LONG time. This is what it felt like when I read the first book of ExForce. This is ExForce without the annoying AI. This is like Galaxy’s Edge without the “special powers”. Grimm is like the love child of Kirk and Pickard, but smarter. Are you tired of “stupid MCs”? Here is a guy you can root for!

As soon as I was done, I preordered the hardcopy.
There were several times where I’d be listening and my wife would come in to check on me because I’d yelled, “Heck Yeah!” entirely too loudly.
I am fully invested in the future of Jacob Grimm. Mr. Jeff JH Haskell, you hit a home run with this one, sir! Wow.
Just, wow.
Peter Berkrot absolutely nails the performance! He definitely delivered on the tone. This, I can’t say enough good about this!

I probably going to listen to this one a couple of times.
I recommend this very highly!

8 people found this helpful

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One of the best Mil Sci-Fi books of the year

Against All Odds follows Lt Jacob Grimm, who at the start of the book, is a bright, up and coming Lieutenant, who makes a difficult decision whilst he is the Duty Officer of his starship during a combat situation, taking on what appears to be several pirate vessels that attack the convoy he is a part of. Grimm’s actions save not only his own ship, but those of the other ships, however, when they board one of the captured pirate vessels, it is full of dead children. The four ships used in the attack had been piloted by children as a terrorist attack and for propaganda.
Grimm of course is used as a political scapegoat, even though he did nothing wrong, due to the uproar over the situation that occurred. Most of the rest of the bridge crew either resigned or some, due to guilt, took their own lives (and it is here, that I should point out that this book has some very intense, powerful and graphic scenes of violence and abuse. It could be a trigger for some people, and it is most definitely an adults only book). Grimm, however, even with some wonderful nicknames due to his surname, would not give up, mainly due to the memory of his Mother, a former Master Chief who died under heroic circumstances. He is unfortunately only a Lt, and unless he makes Lt Commander, he will be mustered from the Navy.
Grimm continues on working, trying to work through the past, and just move on, and when it comes to the next promotion round, he is suddenly ordered to the Zuckabar system, and given a promotion to Lt Commander and put in command of a Destroyer – the Interceptor.
The Interceptor is a mess though, having been left in dock for nearly 3mths due to a missing part, and a dead CO, the crew’s morale is terrible, the ship is in disrepair and falling to bits as it has not been cared for, and of course, everyone knows who he is and his reputation.
As Grimm starts to try and put the ship and the crew back together however, he sets in motion a complex chain of events that will not only put him and his crew in danger, but the lives of everyone on the station, and multiple other ships and people as well.
Against All Odds starts with this intense opening scene, and then slows to introduce its main character, before launching into a series of fast paced, combat-intense, gritty and powerful sequences that seem to only get more powerful as each one unfolds. Just as you think things couldn’t get anymore captivating and enthralling, another event will unfold and you won’t be able to put the book down until you have found out what is going to happen.
The character work in this book is exceptional, Grimm has so much depth to him, as the scapegoat for a crisis that was not his fault, but at the same time, still feeling the guilt over killing all those children – even though it was at the risk of his life, and the life of hundreds of others. His emotional and psychological state are intensely realistic, powerful and gritty, as instead of losing control, he focuses using his mother’s memory to keep him balanced.
There are multiple other characters in this book (and I am not going to give spoilers), but they are all just extraordinary. There are some intensely powerful and graphic scenes in this book, and how the characters deal with them is handled very well. There is a good understanding of the psychological damage some things can do to a person.
The other really outstanding aspect of this book is the world-building, the science and combat sequences, which were all done exceptionally well, and brought the story to life around the characters. It is vitally important in this sort of book that not only the science, but especially the combat is done well, and from the very first space combat, to the first of what is a brutal combat sequence with the marines (and is just intense, you feel like you are there with shots flying around you), Haskell does an extraordinary job describing these sequences.
Against All Odds is one of those books that you pick up, and realise that once you start reading, you won’t be putting it down for a while. (I suggest the Audiobook, at least you can walk around listening to it!). As the story starts to unfold, and moves from one intrigue to the next, intense combat, startling outcomes, and captivating storylines, you will be hooked on the tale of Jacob Grimm. This is easily one of the best Mil Sci-Fi books I have read all year, if not Sci-Fi books, it is one that is an absolute must read.
Peter Berkot is outstanding as the Narrator, with a clear concise voice that is easy to understand, Berkot does a wonderful range of both Male and Female voices that are distinctly different, so that you can differentiate between the characters. Just as important, Berkot not only creates individual characters, he also conveys the emotional state of each of his characters so that you understand how they are feeling at that time, whether happy, sad, angry or tired? It creates this extra dimension for the characters and the storytelling and really adds to the overall Narration for the audiobook.
Berkot does a brilliant job, and this is easily one of those times where it is much better listening to the Audiobook as you get so much more out of it as the Narration was so good!! Brilliant!!

5 people found this helpful

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A love letter to fellow service members

I’ve read military sci-fi since the early 90s. This book is among the finest in its class that I’ve encountered. TEven though set in space, it is thoroughly grounded with a modern military vibe. The story believably portrays the day-to-day life of a futuristic warship crew, taking time to develop the characters and their relationships. The action scenes grip all the more for this treatment. As an Army officer, I found myself thinking time and again how I might have handled each situation the crew did. Bravo to Jeffery for keeping my interest start to finish despite my notoriously short attention span.

2 people found this helpful

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By far one of the best space/navy books…Period!

I’m a sucker for modern naval warfare. Take that into space, toss in a bit of espionage, and you’ve pretty much got me hooked. I say “pretty much” because even a great storyline can fall short if the author can’t rise to the challenge. And in the case of an audiobook, if the narrator can’t deliver the ebb and flow of the story, while bringing the characters to life, even a great book can fall flat! Against All Odds started strong, kept me guessing, and nailed it at every turn. This book was like The Hunt for Red October, crossed with DDG-151 of The Last Ship, meets Star Trek. My only disappointment… As of today’s date, there’s no book two yet!

2 people found this helpful

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great story line, can't wait to listen to more

my first listen to Jeffery H. Haskell, I really enjoyed this book. I am looking forward to more in this series. Also my first listen to Peter Berkots narration, excellent narration.

2 people found this helpful

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Space Fleet on steroids!!

This has to be one of the best books I’ve listened to in quite awhile! This is space fleet with hard science mixed just right. An absolutely come from behind character who faces challenge after challenge and somehow seems to pull it off at the last second. Think James T Kirk but with accurate science descriptions and just non stop action. The universe was well fleshed out in the beginning leaving you wondering who’s bad, who’s good. I truly was on the edge of my seat! Don’t miss this! The first adventure of LT Jacob Grimm and his stalwart crew. Now I’m counting the days till book 2.

2 people found this helpful

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Awesomely authentic military sci-fi

Against All Odds by Jeffery T. Haskell stands tall. Definitely the best mil sci-fi I’ve read this year. Haven’t seen anything this good since Edge of Valor (Josh Hayes) or Legionnaire (Anspach - Cole). If Haskell keeps writing like this, he will be a major player in the genre. Peter Berkrot smashed the audiobook narration. I thoroughly enjoyed his performance.

2 people found this helpful

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Wonderful book! I ❤ every minute of it...

What a wonderful Space Opera. Against all Odds is a fast paced full out adventure! It is guaranteed to keep you on the edge-of-your-seat throughout the entire book! This is the story of how Jacob Grimm's first military action, and what should've been his triumph became his shame, and why he was reassigned to a broken down ship. A political posting in order to make him a scapegoat, just in case everything went to hell! The politicians would have their sox-puppet in place, so they could play out the blame game. However Jacob Grimm had other plans. He was determined to serve out his remaining time in the military, to the best of his ability and with dignity! And boyo, believe me when I say, all the odds were against him!!!
Despite the military aspect, this really reminded me of Nathan Lowell's work in the Solar Clipper series. It even has pirates! But mostly it really reminded me of the main character, of Ishmael Wang as he steps onto the Agamemnon for the first time, the worst ship in the fleet, and then has to work hard wrestling his crew into shape! And the similarities don't stop there! but I'm going to, you'll just hafta grab book!
And man, Peter Berkrot's narration is exemplary!

2 people found this helpful

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Against All Odds

Not my usual genre but I really loved this action-packed military Sci-Fi book. I'll be picking up to read other Jeffery Haskell's books while anxiously awaiting the next addition of the Grimm's War series. Peter Berkrot's narration was spot on.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Richard C
  • 05-08-22

As far as series starters go, fantastic start

There are books that once you are into the plot and you start looking at the time left counting down - you wonder what book could possibly follow this one. This is one of those books.

Great story and well constructed and easy to follow.

Narrator is fantastic and was great to listen to and keep track of of the various characters.

The only niggle - I'd kinda hope that in 900 years that we'd be above such clique of Muslims etc. It also gets a little coldwar dated on the same principles.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Simon GL
  • 05-26-22

Where's book two?

I wasn't sure what to make of the blurb when I read this but gave it a go. Talk about a win for me! The book is great, it moves at a pace and is non-stop action without being too far fetched. I struggled to put the book down (well, press stop anyway) once I got into it. There are some good twists and turns and some obvious ones which distract from others in a good way. There are some great humorous bits in the book as well which makes for a great listen.

Highly recommended and can't wait for the next book. Narrator is also new to me, but I really like the way they done the book.

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  • Jennifer Deeley
  • 05-11-22

Great story

A really enjoyable story with a lot of action and the performance was great

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  • Jonathan Griffin
  • 04-28-22

One of the best books in a while

Gripping story with excellent pacing. Couldn't stop listening until the end. Can't wait for book 2.