Required Reading

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Monday, May 27, 2019

The Mage-Fire War by L.E. Modesitt, Jr.


This book follows the Outcasts of Order.   Beltur and Jessyla have taken up residency in Haven by grace of the Duchess.  They are expected to bring order (pun intended) to Haven, a lawless and seemingly ungovernable community.  

Modesitt writes a great story.   In this book he shows how determination and wit can overcome brawn and witlessness, impulsiveness and rancor.   Beltur and company must find a way to overcome daunting odds to defeat the Duke’s troops and protect their community.

Modesitt spins a plausible tale while showing that karma really can bite you in the butt.

I am a Modesitt fan and I loved this book.




This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Friday, May 17, 2019

To Clear Away the Shadows by David Drake

To Clear Away the Shadows by David Drake
This is another book in the RCN series.   Cinnabar and the Alliance are currently not fighting.   A recommissioned cruiser, the Far Traveller is tasked with surveying.  

This seemed like more of a collection of short stories than a novel.  There was little continuity to events as they happened.   However, the premise of a star ship visiting different environments does lead to a lack of continuity.  The search for the Archaic Spacefarers is the primary theme for continuity and that is tenuous at best.

The discovery of artifacts could have been pursued and led to a more interesting plot.  Harry Harper was a likable character who demonstrated a bit of a lack of self-confidence.  Rick, on the other hand, seemed confident in all areas including womanizing.   I would have liked to seen Joss given a bigger part in overall events.


The book was okay.  

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

The Gordian Protocol by David Weber and Jacob Holo


The note that this is a standalone novel makes me wonder if that is in response to the backlash of the multiverse series that Weber stopped several years ago without  bringing it to any conclusion.  I know I was highly annoyed that I read three books that just stopped with no wrap up.   I read on several forums others who were also frustrated.   This book makes it clear that it is a stand alone regardless of the fact the way it ends sets up a logical sequel at least it was wrapped up.   Enough ranting, this book deals with a multiverse and time travel.  The last couple of books I read by Weber were wordy and not a lot of action so I will attribute the success of this book to Holo.  There is plenty of action and excitement with a solid but knotty plot.

I enjoyed the paradoxes and the settling of same with regards to time travel.   I also appreciated the sentiment regarding the dangers of unbridled bureaucracy.  The characters were often amusing and I liked the way AI was portrayed.   In particular the hurt feelings on the part of the time machine.

This was an entertaining book and I recommend it. 


This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Vintage 1954 by Antoine Laurain

This was a sleeper.  I was pretty sure I wouldn’t like it and SURPRISE, I did! In 1954 there was a plethora of UFO sightings.   A small town in France was one location where UFO’s were seen.   Pierre Chauveau is ostracized by his neighbors for his claims to have seen a UFO, then he disappears.

I will say if you like science fiction you will enjoy the book.   I can’t say more without revealing too much of the plot.  Keep in mind it is a very short book so even a brief plot reveal may ruin it for you.

There are interesting characters with generational aspects.


I enjoyed the book. 

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.