I am not sure it is really worth 4 or 3.5 stars, I will give it 4. I liked the book. Humans make a first contact with a race whose sole purpose of existence is to prove their superiority by wiping off all other life forms. I am simplifying things, but that is the general idea. Oh, and they have much superior technology. Can humans survive? The book has epic (and I do mean - epic) battles: in space and on planets. I really need to mention here the description and tension of space battles were among the very best I found in SF literature.
My only problem is: the main character in the book failed to make any positive impression from me. One more nitpick: why do humans lose more people in rescue operation than they actually rescue, and still consider such missions to be a great success?