I didn't think it was that bad... It wasn't an Ender's Game, but it wasn't horrible in my opinion... I did think that the dialogue was a little flat, but the idea behind the novel seemed possible and was interesting enough to keep me reading. I liked the sequel too, as I enjoyed the plot just as much. However there are a lot of flaws with the books I didn't like, most notably...
SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS (highlight below)
Rube dying so quickly (I liked him...)
Both novels ending so abruptly
How Averall (spelling?) Torrent seemed to be an afterthought in the second book. "Hey, I forgot that this guy is bad!!! Let's put in a paragraph here, there, and a short chapter here... Who cares if the ending isn't climatic?!?! Not me!"
About Torrent, I don't think he was the after thought. I think that was the point. With everything going on , Torrent wouldn't want you to think of him. You are supposed to be focused on the raid and all while he plays the deep game. Then he pops back up when he is ready and everything is set for him to take over. If that is indeed what he is going to do. He may be on the up and up. The book is deliciously vague on that idea.