Lois McMaster Bujold
posted by Todd T @ 8:31 AM
I decided I had to read a Lois McMaster Bujold novel, to see what all the fuss is about. She's won several Hugos for novels in the Vorkosigan series, and her panels at cons are packed with fawning fans. I read THE WARRIOR'S APPRENTICE, and it's space opera in the romantic tradition all the way. Well rendered, no sloppiness even though the plot races headlong and some could be got away with. The characters are memorable in a sort of Errol Flynny way, including many of the lesser ones. Miles Vorkosigan, the son of a general in a militaristic society, handicapped since birth and thus unable to take his intended place in the military academy, uses cleverness and bold bluffing to stumble through a series of hairy escapades and wind up the admiral of a hodgepodge but intensely loyal mercenary force - a crime punishable by death back home. And his father's political enemies are using this to try to bring down their old adversary for good. Oh, and he has to sacrifice his beloved's hand (not literally, this isn't Orson Scott Card) for honor. Speaking of maiming, even though it's here alongside plenty of death, torture and blaster shootouts, plus emotional suffering, the tone somehow seems to remain light and unthreatening. OK but nothing to run out and grab.