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The Prince of Sparta (Falkenberg's Legion) Paperback – 9 Sep 1993

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Paperback, 9 Sep 1993
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Product details

  • Paperback: 383 pages
  • Publisher: Baen Books (9 Sept. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1555940056
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555940058
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 10.4 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,180,895 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Meadows VINE VOICE on 24 Aug. 2001
Format: Paperback
Pournelle,always an excllent sci fi writer (the masterful "Falkenbers Legion, for example) teams up with another military pro, S.M. Stirling, to continue to create this ravishing tale, a sort of prologue to the seminal "Mote in Gods Eye"
The style of the piece is typically down and dirty. The characters aren't special people, or heroes. They're just people for whom fighting and killing is an occupation - they do what they have to, which happens to be heroical. Some of the mercenary edge has come off the prose dince "Go Tell the Spartans" but this is perfectly in line with character development from the previous book.
One flaw is that while the text can be read a sa stand alone, its hardly advisable; the back story from "Go tell the Spartans" is almost necessary, not to mention the prevous two books in the series. However, once you get past that flaw (hopefully by reading the other books) this is an excellent addition to the genre. Thecharacters are complex, well motivated and can be identified with - their essential humanity is visible, whichever side of the war they are on. Indeed, both sides all too often appear to be in the grey area, rather than "Good" or "bad" though the reader is led to be more sympathetic to one side. The military setpieces are incredible and will leave the reader turning pages fast enough to get paper cuts, which makes the overall work extremely good.
Buy it. But buy the other three in the series first. Then buy it. Its really, really, really good.
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Format: Paperback
I'm a big fan of Harry, Clancy and Ian Slater but I fancied a change so I gave this a go and wasn't dissapointed. Although its set in the future it isn't too far fetched and the reader can still relate to the characters, scenarios and weapons systems used. if you fancy war with a space age twist you should enjoy this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The only think I dont like about this book is that I cant find a sequel. It was very hard to put this book down towards the end. The characters are developed to the point where I wanted things to turn out well for them. I really hope the authors collaborate and come up with a direct sequel to the "Prince of Sparta" timeline. If there is a direct sequel please share that information.

Very enjoyable read.
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By Steve Delamore on 3 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a keen follower of the series it was good to be able to fill in more of the background to its development. Good pace and very addictive.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 15 reviews
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Among the best in military science fiction. 10 Jun. 1997
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book exemplifies the best characteristics in military science fiction. A severe problem with
some military science fiction stems from the tendency to favor military techno-details over any other factors in story telling such as plot, characterization, and internal coherence.
The best of the writers working in the military sci fi sub genre write good stories whether they are military in flavor or not. Robert Heinlein, David Drake, S.M. Stirling, H. Beam Piper, Keith Laumer, and Jerry Pournelle have written good stories that someone can sit up nights finishing, that have characters that we become interested in as to their actions and fates, and that are, for the most part, correct and cohesive in details.
What is the ultimate test of good military sci fi? If any person in high school or college can read the book with the same interest (horrified or morbid as it may be) as a veteran of military service (Maybe I should have included, Tom Clancy's more recent offerings as military sci fi, but not necessarily good military sci fi stories).
Prince of Sparta, with a cast of characters ranging from opposing political leaders to the Legion commanders and the working rank and file of the Legion, Royal Spartan Infantry, and Helots to the cameo glimpses of ordinary citizens, works as a story. The characters of Prince Lysander, Maj. Generals Owensford and Slater, Caldwell Whitlock, Skida Thibodeau, Dion Croser, Geoffrey Niles, Sergeant Miscowsky, Cornet Talkins, Juanita Fuller, Von Reuther, Major Sastri, and others are, if a bit stereotyped, what makes reading this book interesting. The actions and interactions of these
characters under well plotted and well written stress situations mirror sadly that of what real people have done in real life.
To enjoy this book, which is the third or fourth in a slowly more cohesive series and which is the best of them so far in reading enjoyment, you need not be a right wing conservative or interested in the military though enough details historical and technical are given for extra interest. You just have to enjoy a good adventure story that has tension and action in plenty.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Is this all? 1 Dec. 2003
By W Boudville - Published on
Format: Paperback
Not bad. It is not just a purely war story. There is extra flesh on those bones, where we have a good description of the social struggles that parallel and drive the armed conflict. Some of the characters may indeed seem more real than others. It may well be that the authors spent more time expanding out some and just cursory attention to others.
If you end up liking this book, the biggest problem may be that there are no sequels. In this future history of Pournelle's, he and his co-authors have done little in recent years. Perhaps it is because it posits as its starting point the CoDominium - an alliance between the US and the USSR. Since the latter imploded, this future history has become alternate future history. Maybe that is perceived by Pournelle or the publisher to have negative impact on future sales?
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
A little better 10 Aug. 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Compared to the previous volume in this series ('Go_tell_the_Spartans') this one has more life in it. It does not confine itself to mechanically putting the Falkenberg characters through their paces and expounding US military dogma. This extra readability comes at the cost of continuity of the storyline and military credibility, but would seem to be worth it.
Any fan of the 42nd that persevered through 'Go_tell_the_Spartans' will wholeheartily welcome this one.
The end of the Codominion, the beginning of the Empire. 12 July 2012
By Doug Dandridge - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have always enjoyed the Codominion books by Jerry Pournelle that precede the Mote in God's Eye by Pournelle and Niven. Pournelle is the expert on military history, and it shows in his writing about gritty battle scenes. I think he was a little off in his timeline, as I really don't think we would spread that quickly even with a working interstellar drive. But since it hasn't happened I can't say for sure. But the stories of people displaced to other planets, other suns, different gravity fields, read true. A very enjoyable tale of Sparta, the planet destined to become the capital of Empire, and the trials and tribulations of an insurgency campaign as told from both sides.
top notch pournelle 7 Oct. 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
hardly a glitch. seldom implausible. very entertaining read. I love it that when reading pournelles villains one I find myself routing for them even as I realize they are villains
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