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Korval's Game: Plan B / I Dare (Liaden Universe) Paperback – 17 May 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Baen Books (17 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439134391
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439134399
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 4.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 624,138 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Sharon Lee and Steve Miller live in the rolling hills of Central Maine with two insistent muses in the form of cats and a large cast of characters. The husband-and-wife team's collaborative work in science fiction and fantasy include twelve novels and numerous short stories in their award-winning Liaden Universe(R). In addition to their collaborative work, Steve has seen short stories, nonfiction, and reviews published under his name, while Sharon has seen published short stories, newspaper pieces, and two mystery novels. Steve was the founding curator of the University of Maryland's Kuhn Library Science Fiction Research Collection and a former Nebula juror. For five years, Sharon served the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, consecutively as Executive Director, Vice President and President. Sharon's interests include music, seashores and pine cones. Steve also enjoys music, plays tournament chess, and collects cat whiskers.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By humanitysdarkerside VINE VOICE on 28 Feb. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The "Agent Gambit" was my introduction to the Liaden Universe - a successful one. Korval's Game contains the two books "Plan B" and "I Dare". In the two previous books ValCon and Miri met up. They saved each other several times and Miri helped ValCon on his run from the Department of the Interior - the "bad guys".

In Plan B they are still on the run. At the same time ValCon wishes to introduce Miri to her clan - Clan Erob. Of course, while they are there, the Yxtrang decide to conquer the planet and ValCon and Miri have to help save the day. Help arrives from an unexpected corner, help that is essential to victory.

In I Dare, ValCon and Miri go after the Department. That means that ValCon and Miri have to take the mantle of leaders of the clan. At the same time the DoI try to lure one of ValCon's cousins into working for them. That makes it necessary for cousin PatRin to run. He ends up in in own set of trouble, having to rise to the occasion.

The books were fun to read. The 4 points were given because the books were difficult to put down. As a rule, I prefer books where the language flows from one sentence to another - a talent I envy. That is this book's strength. It draws me into it and makes me want to stay.

It was predictable. I think that might be the only thing I really hold against these books. At the same time, I've found that truly unpredictable books are far between. Maybe that comes from reading so much - the only curse I guess.

Having said that, tension and humor were present all the way through. This is space opera at its better.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 42 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
A Pleasure to Re-Read 5 May 2011
By Barb - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Copies of "I Dare" were very hard to come by, and even hard to obtain through inter-library loan, so I was thrilled to receive Korval's Game, which includes both Plan B and I Dare. The writing still works, and the inter-weaving of story lines across so many books shows some great plotting. Re-reading both of these books sets the stage for the old Korval stories to merge cleanly with the Saltation/Fledgling series to a culmination of both in the forthcoming Ghost Ship. Bravo! And Bravo to Baen for finally making some older treasures once again available. Given how hard the older Liaden novels were to find, I'm glad to now have the full set residing on my bookshelf.

One quibble: Why do the artists for the Lee/Miller books always manage to introduce some weirdness into figures on the cover? Balance of Trade features Norn ven'Deelin with absurdly short arms, and another figure whose head looks badly photoshopped jutting ahead of his body, and Korval's Game features Miri Roberston - war-hardened mercenary -- with a poochy tummy hanging out.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Korval Strikes Back 1 May 2011
By Arthur W. Jordin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Korval's Game (2011) is the third SF omnibus edition in the Liaden Universe series, following The Agent Gambit. It contains Plan B and I Dare. The initial omnibus in this sequence is The Dragon Variation.

Plan B (1998) is the fourth SF novel in this series, but it is something like the seventh by internal chronology. It is a direct sequel to Carpe Diem.

In this story, Shan has contacted Val Con and learned about the Department of Interior. They decided to meet on Lytaxin. Then Shan and Priscilla took the Dutiful Passage away from Liad and converted it into a battleship.

Val Con and Miri take the DoI ship away from the Interdicted World. The DoI Commander of Agents watches the tracking device on the ship leave orbit and travel to Waymart. Later the trace disappears from his screen.

Val Con and Miri head toward Lytaxin. That world is the home of Clan Erob, a close ally of Korval. On the way, Miri gets a gene test and discovers that she can use sleep learning without harm.

They land on Lytaxin shortly after the end of a civil war. Val Con introduces Miri as a scion of Clan Erob. The Erob delm is doubtful at first, but another gene test convinces her that Miri is from her clan.

Clan Erob questions Miri about her mother and grandmother. Miri finds that her grandmother had been a daughter of the House who had fled from her home. Miri guessed that her grandmother had crashed on Surebleak and raised her child there.

Miri searches out Jason among the mercenaries readying for departure from the planet. Jason offers her a commission in the Gyrfalks. When he learns that she is now a pilot and that Val Con is a Liaden Scout Commander, he raises the offer for both of them. Miri sadly refuses the offers.

Then the Yxtrang 14th Conquest Corps invades Lytaxin. They are very surprised when a Liaden Scout ship destroys the planes attacking the Erob House. Nelirikk No-Troop intervenes to draw attention to the Scout vessel. His general punishes the former Explorer by sending him out with defective equipment to scout the Liaden and Terran forces.

Meanwhile, Nova has declared Plan B and the Korval clan disappears from Liad. Only Anthora -- the dramliza -- is left behind to guard Jelaza Kazone. The Commander of Agents sends a team to attack her.

I Dare (1998) is the sixth SF novel in this series, but it is something like the eighth by internal chronology. It is a direct sequel to Plan B.

In this story, Pat Rin is accidently left behind on Liad. He gets an offer of assistance from Natesa, a Sector Judge of the Juntavas. Then he is approached by DoI agents.

The DoI team forcibly escorts them to an abandoned warehouse. The agent informs Pat Rin that he is the only survivor of Clan Korval. He offers the Clan Ring as proof.

Rin knows that the ring is a fake, but is worried about his kin. He shoots the agent and guard. When he and his pilot Cheever venture out to face the rest of the team, they find Natesa and the Juntavas have already taken care of them.

Natesa leaves the planet with Pat Rin and Cheever. The Juntavas have modified the ship ID so that DoI will not be able to track them. After a stop to buy goods, they travel to Surebleak.

The planet is near several minor trade routes, but is not visited very often due to its reputation. Surebleak is cold and the social structure is violent and unfriendly. Pat Rin has a plan to use the planet for Balance against DoI.

Pat Rin opens a rug store in Boss Moran's territory. When the Boss' second-hand man comes by to collect the monthly Insurance payment, Pat Rin refuses in a polite way. So the Boss and several guards drop by the next morning.

Afterward, Pat Rin is the new Boss. He lets the second-hand man go, but allows the surviving guards to stay. Then he checks out the Boss' house. He not impressed.

Meanwhile, Miri and Val Con are in the infirmary. Miri is in a bed, but Val Con is being treated by the autodoc. Sheather believes that the medical equipment is not synchronized with their life forces.

Edger demonstrates Clutch turtle healing songs by healing Shan's knee. So Shan turns off the medical equipment attached to Miri and leaves her with Sheather. He then accompanies Edger to the autodoc.

Miri is healed quite easily, but Val Con is in much worse shape. Shan guides Edger in singing the scout well. They leave Val Con sleeping peacefully on a cot.

Nelirikk Explorer brings two other Yxtrang to take oath with Miri. She is still in the infirmary, so Daav takes temporary oaths for the Clan. Then they wait for Miri to recover.

On the Dutiful Passage, Ren Zel is promoted to First Mate, but he is having strange dreams. After one such dream, he wakens to find a cat whisker of his bed. He takes the whisker to the ship librarian and she recognizes it. But she will not tell him any particulars.

These stories are full of action and strangeness. They end the story arc started with Agent of Change. The last novel also ties into the Fledgling trilogy. The next omnibus will be the prequels to this series: The Crystal Variation.

Highly recommended for Lee & Miller fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of interstellar travel, covert conflict, and competent agents. Read and enjoy!

-Arthur W. Jordin
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
A satisfying conclusion to 'Agent of Change' and 'Carpe Diem' 3 May 2011
By D. A. Boulter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Korval's Game (Liaden) contains the two novels 'Plan B' and 'I Dare', which complete the story arc begun in The Agent Gambit (The Liaden Universe) containing 'Agent of Change' and 'Carpe Diem. If you haven't read the first two, go there before diving into 'Korval's Game'.

'Plan B' and 'I Dare' continue the saga of Val Con and Miri while adding in the others of the Korval Clan in their fight against against those who wish Korval destroyed. The characters are well drawn and sympathetic; the writing engrossing and entertaining.

Together, Steve Miller & Sharon Lee have created a detailed universe in which they play, gleefully drawing the reader into their machinations and the twists and turns of the Liaden Universe. I've read all four of these novels several times and still enjoy going back to revisit old acquaintances from time to time.

I find it difficult to write this review without including spoilers from the first books. Nevertheless, I highly recommend Korval's Game once you've read The Agent Gambit: Agent of Change / Carpe Diem. If you HAVE read 'Agent of Change' and 'Carpe Diem', you won't need my recommendation to continue.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Finally they are available to all 30 Jun. 2011
By Barry Hackner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Sharon and Steve are incredibly fine writers who have never had the too mass exposure they deserve. Their Liaden Universe series is brilliant, but unless you discovered them from a very small (now bankrupt publisher) (Meisha Merlin) you probably have never encountered them. FINALLY they have a real publisher who is reprinting all their great books. Google them to fine there entire bibliography. Luckily I have them all and as there is less and less HARD Science Fiction being published (I refuse to use the word Sfi Fi!) having a new source of great books, with brillliant charters, plots and intelligent writing is rare. Grab them all and get on their mailing list. You will truly not be disappointed.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The magic goes on!! 6 Aug. 2011
By Shelley Rains - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After so many years, this marvelous book picks right up where the authors left off, and makes a wonderfully satisfying read. I got the book, started reading it about 6 in the evening, and finished at 2:30 in the morning. I could not put it down. It is on its umpteenth reading, in only a week. I already have the next book in the series in my cart. Clan Korval does not disappoint, and Miri grows into a phenomenally competent and interesting person, more than suitable to lead the maverick Clan Korval. Look out universe!! And the ending of this chapter of the Korval saga has such an unexpected twist - if you want to know more then buy and enjoy the book!
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