Category Archives: anomaly/nexus

Book Review: 1636: The Devil’s Opera by Eric Flint and David Carrico

Baen
510 pp.

1636: The Devil’s Opera involves the use of music as propaganda. (This is actually more interesting than the first line would indicate.) With Emperor Gustavus Adolphus non compos mentis and with Chancellor Oxenstierna attempting to take over the government, it suddenly becomes very important to make sure Magdeburg, the capitol city of the USE remains prominent in the minds of the populace. It’s decided that the best way to do this is with an opera showing support for the emperor. Various people are assembled to make this happen, including Marla Linder and her company of downtime musical partners. (Marla also decides to sing a song from Les Miserables which has some dangerous political sentiments guaranteed to ruffle the feathers of the nobility.) Continue reading

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Filed under alternate history, anomaly/nexus, David Carrico, Eric Flint, Review: Book, science fiction

Book Review: Phoenix Rising by Ryk E. Spoor

Baen
387 pp.

Phoenix Rising has the same bright, slightly goofy feel of an extremely *shonen anime. I may or may not mean that in a good way. The world building is mostly “dashes of Tolkien, squibs of that really awesome roleplaying game the writer was in.” This is a book of bits and pieces that don’t always come together but manages to be fairly entertaining once you embrace the goofy shonen ridiculousness. Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, fantasy, non-earth, Review: Book, Ryk E. Spoor

Book Review: 1636: The Kremlin Games by Eric Flint, Gorg Huff & Paula Goodlett

BAEN
408 pp.

The events of The Kremlin Games actually stretches between 1631 (the arrival of Grantville in Germany) and 1636. Our main protagonist is Bernie Zeppi, a former auto mechanic who is not quite sure what to do with himself in the strange new world that is the 17th Century. He gets hired as a technology consultant by a Russian noble who has been sent by the czar to investigate Grantville. Russia of the 17th Century is about two centuries behind the rest of Europe, and Bernie is kind of the bargain basement version of a consultant but is the best Russian rubles can buy. Continue reading

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Filed under alternate history, anomaly/nexus, Eric Flint, Gorg Huff, Paula Goodlett, Review: Book, science fiction

Book Review: The Given Sacrifice, by S.M. Stirling

ROC
369 pp.

The Given Sacrifice brings the Rudi Mackenzie arc of the series to a close as Rudi and his allies close in on the Church Universal and Triumphant. The narrative covers the last battles with the Cutters, skating over the eventual defeat, and introduces characters that may become important in later books. The last few chapters cover the early years of Rudi’s daughter Orlaith and Rudi’s final battle. (I am not sure this counts as a spoiler since it has been pretty heavily implied that Rudi has a relatively short shelf life.) Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, apocalyptic, Review: Book, S.M. Stirling, science fiction

Review: The Long War by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter

Harper
417 pp.

I am not entirely sure whether or not I liked The Long War. At least, it didn’t hold the same level of interest for me that The Long Earth did. The story begins when the death of a troll attempting to protect her child and snowballs into a conflict between Datum Earth and the various colonies, which are beginning to have thoughts of independence. What we have here is a perfect storm of civil rights and state rights as Datum Earth attempts to maintain control and the various colonies attempt to break free of the control. Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, science fiction, Stephen Baxter, Terry Pratchett

Book Review: 1635: The Papal Stakes by Eric Flint and Charles E. Gannon

Baen

654 pp.

The Papal Stakes is mostly about various attempts to rescue Frank Stone and his wife. It is also about pope Urban trying to decide whether he wants to accept the help of the USE. In addition, we have a great deal of debate on whether or not Grantville is part of some vast plot conceived by Satan. (The debate is not very interesting or exciting however.) Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, Eric Flint, Review: Book, science fiction

Book Review: Lord of Mountains by S.M. Stirling

Roc
326 pp.

One thing I will say right off about Lord of Mountains; at least it does not jump around all over the place the way Tears of the Sun did. (Do not worry the layout is not the only good thing about the book. I just really hated the way the last book had been set up.) This book mostly focuses on the first major battle of the war and the politicking afterward. Then the book trails off into pseudo-mystical Arthurian legendry as Rudi and Mathilde have a crowning ceremony and vigil during which they have a dream quest where they talk to their ancestors and descendants. Continue reading

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Filed under anomaly/nexus, apocalyptic, fantasy elements, Review: Book, S.M. Stirling, science fiction