Thanks for posting your review. I'm a third of the way through and don't see why every third chapter is a scene from the beginning of Aliens, which just seems like filler. At this point, the only people who are going to read these novels know the entire damn movie by heart. I understand interspersing the film's events into the narrative, but only if the juxtaposition offered something new, like Burke conniving and giggling maniacally to himself in his (comically dated 80's) office or Hicks revving up his vintage Trans-Am in a barn somewhere before getting the call to report for duty.
I don't intend to be entirely negative, because I agree with the 7/10 rating. Mr. Golden has a gift for imbuing his characters with depth while maintaining a brisk narrative pacing. The birth of Newt was something I wouldn't think we need to see as fans, but after reading the passage found it moving. One major gripe though: in Golden's timeline Newt is six years old, which means she either skipped a grade to earn that 2nd Grade citizenship award or someone didn't do their homework.
Also, one passage that stood out, and I'm paraphrasing: "He didn't earn the Galactic Cross just to deal with corporate stooges". A space setting doesn't necessitate placing a space prefix before everything. Did Brackett earn the Cosmic Bronze Star as well? I assume that the military, being stubbornly traditional, would still retain the medal names we have today.