Years ago, I found myself writing a lot of complex hypertext software on very slow computers. Compilation took minutes – too little time to take up a fresh task, and too long to stare at the screen. Griffin’s Brotherhood of War series, found at the library across the street, worked well for this; engaging, episodic books that lend themselves to reading in short snatches and that have enough narrative coherence to keep the reader engaged, yet not so much excitement as to distract from the work at hand.
Returning now, I found the book just as enjoyable as I remembered. In many ways, this is a rough draft for Griffin’s later series, The Corps, which swaps out the Army for the Marines. Indeed, at the end of The Corps, we even visit some of the locations where The Captains gets started. There’s lots to dislike in Griffin of course, especially his belief that inherited wealth lends one inherent nobility, but these books aren’t meant to be taken seriously. They’re meant to be fun, and they are.