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I’m trying to remember a book I read about 4 years ago (though I'm sure it was older). It was military sci-fi portraying humanity’s war with a species of bird-like aliens that were rather martial in nature and had a fondness for swords.

I don't remember too much, except that the aliens used red interior lighting in their ships, the shield systems on starships used a series of interconnecting nodes, and in the end humanity and the aliens ended up creating an alliance against a far greater threat in the form of a telepathic insectile race which invades their sector of space in the following books.

  • Humans and birds against a telepathic enemy sounds like the series "The Damned" by Alan Dean Foster. But, the humans and birds never fought each other, and the Amplitur (the telepathic bad guys) are described as "squidlike." – JRE Jun 11 '18 at 5:30
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I think you might mean The Uplift War, by David Brin. The Earthlings, humans and genetically modified chimps, fight the Gubru, which are an authoritarian avian race who invade the planet Garth.

  • This came to my mind also. One of the more memorable details was that the Gubru spoke in triplicate -- every verb was a set of three related terms that helped set meaning. (She wrote - posted - contributed this comment.) – arp Jun 12 '18 at 5:27
  • I do remember that trilogy and enjoyed it, but thats not what Im trying to remember – Joseph Carlson Jun 12 '18 at 6:21
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This could be The Stars at War, but there are two elements that do not match.

  • Humans at war with aliens: yes, with the Orion felinoids.
  • Humans become allies with previous enemies: yes.
  • Bird-like aliens: yes, (half of) the Star Union of Crucis.
  • Bug-like telepathic monsters: the aptly named Bugs.
  • The shield systems on starships used a series of interconnecting nodes: yes

But if I remember correctly the humans were never at war with the Union of Crucis, and it was the Orions that had a penchant for bladed weapons (and teeth, and claws); the Crucians are never described during a melee fight (they're excellent space fighter pilots).

Also, I do not remember the interior lighting in any ship featuring in the books' series.

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Empire from the Ashes by David Weber. I don't remember bird-like aliens, but there were certainly insectile enemies.

  • The Achuultani were similar to centaurs. – LSerni Jun 11 '18 at 17:58

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