More reading

Here are two more:

3) The Protector’s War, S.M. Stirling – I had read this one a while back, but wanted to re-read the series as I say that a new book was out. Unfortunately the library sent me this one (2 in the series), the next one and then the new book… while the original book (Dies the Fire) has yet to arrive. And I have no patience, lol. Fortunately I remembered things well enough to pick this one up and run with it.

S.M. Stirling is one of the the best writers of alternate history fantasy out there. Andre Norton and Rosemary Edghill’s Carolus Rex series is also one of my faves, as is Eric Flint’s Ring of Fire (isn’t that a hot sauce? LOL) series. I am not really sure if folks like Charles de Lint or Laurell Hamilton would fit in a ‘alternate history’ classification; I think of them as ‘urban fantasy’. Really, the lines between those two classifications are very bleary. So I guess my definition is that if it is something that happens in the past (even if just 2000, as in this series case) that makes things spin off in a different tangent, well that is alternate history. If it is vampires, fairies and other supernatural beings doing stuff in modern, mostly-urban settings then it is urban fantasy. Just don’t ask me what happens in situations where in the past, vampires, fairies and other supernatural beings come out and make things spin off in a different tangent… haven’t figured out a classification for that yet, LOL.

Still, this trilogy is a great example of what a truly gifted writer can do: take the current world, change one thing and create a new world that is as believable as the one we currently live in (is this one real or is it just aliens playing marbles… you decide). Other than the whole ‘all the good guys are always so darn good’ thing (which every writer does to some extent), reading this I can almost smell the woodsmoke, and see see all those kilts flapping…

Despite its title this is more of a set-up to the war between the Bearkillers/Mackenzies and the Portland Protective Association, than the actual war. It is like watching the chess pieces being moved about the board; setting up for the final moves. Sorry, I don’t play chess so will have to leave that analogy at that…

4) Meeting at Corvallis, S.M. Stirling. Yep, you guessed it… the final book of the trilogy. Where the war that was foretold finally gets to happen. And once again, Stirling does a wonderful job of creating characters that catch your attention. Here, for example, creates a character that you just can’t wait to get killed… and turns said person into someone you not only feel for, you add to your list of ‘good guys’. Or at least I did… if you are reading those books I leave it to you to figure out who I mean.

When the final clash comes it comes in a way that, honestly, I sort of expected considering the characters involved. But that does nothing to detract from the tension of the story. Excellent work!

Okay, off the read The Sunrise Lands (another in this series… new!) now…

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