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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cracking title in this series
For me, this series by Stephen Baxter is one that has not only given me a lot of reading pleasure but also taken me on a journey that has not only thrilled but enchanted me by taking one simple concept and expanding upon it. The writing as ever is wonderfully fresh, the characters within bringing the world to life and when added to the authors authorative writing style,...
Published 23 months ago by Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Iron winter
I had read Bronze Summer and thought that this book could not get much more depressing. Well, it's a close call.
I was interested to see how the alternative history caused by saving Doggerland from the rising sea at the end of the last Ice Age would play out in the final book. This is a long enough book that I was reading it over several evenings, and finally I just...
Published 4 months ago by Clare O'Beara


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Iron winter, 17 Feb 2014
By 
Clare O'Beara - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
I had read Bronze Summer and thought that this book could not get much more depressing. Well, it's a close call.
I was interested to see how the alternative history caused by saving Doggerland from the rising sea at the end of the last Ice Age would play out in the final book. This is a long enough book that I was reading it over several evenings, and finally I just decided to finish it one afternoon so I would not keep on being depressed while going to bed.

Bronze Summer gave us a Bronze Age with early iron workings, and the spread of potatoes across Europe. There was constant famine, warfare, plague, betrayal, sexual assault and murder.

In Iron Winter at least we were spared most of the violence against women. All the rest is there though. The people who have not managed to make glass, have yet managed to harness coal and steam to run railways across the continent and the giant Wall. I was sure that glass would be needed for gauges and so on to make steam engines that would not explode.
The setting is around our 1300s in which the Little Ice Age brought years without summer; it killed off the Danish inhabitants settling Greenland, leaving only the hunting Inuit people to subsist. Read Jane Smiley's 'The Greenlanders' for an excellent account. In Iron Winter however the ice, and glaciers, just keep on coming, so that a new Ice Age makes farming life impossible in Eurasia.
I was thinking, oh no, not the Hatti again. I didn't like them in the last book and didn't really want to read more about them.
We see various people in different situations, but few of them are sympathetic enough that we care what happens. Many seemed to be the same characters from the previous book. Names are often awkward and one scholar makes a journey to Cathay, accompanied by a Greenlander and a young man. The young man shows the best example of personal growth - others are just humbled by new uncertain situations and bow to survive. Or don't adapt much, and die.

This story will interest students of geopolitics, although I could not see why the Normans didn't exist and why the Romans didn't beat down Carthage. Vikings were raiding Ireland in the 1000s and settling its major river mouths. Ireland and Normans don't get a mention.

If the author had not chosen to tell such grinding tales and bring his world to an end, he could have been selling us cheerfully inventive alternate histories for many more books. I guess that was his choice, and I hope he chooses to write something more positive next time.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cracking title in this series, 21 Aug 2012
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
For me, this series by Stephen Baxter is one that has not only given me a lot of reading pleasure but also taken me on a journey that has not only thrilled but enchanted me by taking one simple concept and expanding upon it. The writing as ever is wonderfully fresh, the characters within bringing the world to life and when added to the authors authorative writing style, really helps bring it all to the fore.

Add to that great prose, a wonderful arc and of course pace that keeps it moving with the inclusion of climate changes to help bring a level of reality which all in makes this a series that I generated one hell of a ride from start to finish. Great stuff.
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4.0 out of 5 stars No Happy Endings, 27 April 2014
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Baxter's Northland trilogy ends uncomfortably with war and famine, massive population movement and desperate struggles for resources. Al an alternate 13th century version of what we in our world face over the next century or two. Then the ice returns.. Like I say. no happy endings.I can see why Baxter took Alldiss' "Heliconia" as his model !
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4.0 out of 5 stars Every bit as good as Bronze Summer was bad, 13 Aug 2013
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A. Szczepanek - See all my reviews
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Having been a fanatical Stephen Baxter fan for years. Really enjoyed Stone Spring and the alternate history based on the Wall. I found Bronze Summer the worst book Stephen Baxter as written and in my review of the book hoped that the final book would rebuild his excellent and thought provoking story telling. Thankfully Iron Winter does in fact do this. An excellent read with good threads between the characters. I was sad to get to the end f the book. Thanks for getting back on track
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4.0 out of 5 stars Complicated, 23 Jun 2013
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This follows on from Stone Spring and Bronze Summer. The story was a surprising view of alternative history, but I found the complex strands built up over the trilogy and large cast rather hard work for a leisure read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well written final part, 2 Jun 2013
This is the final book in the Northland saga.

The glaciers have returned, and the Northlanders world is being gripped by ice. Mass migration bring forth war between nations, and plague kills those that the cold does not get.

Rina and her children travel from Northland to warmer climes, and she finds there that the status she enjoyed is nothing no, and she works as a simple servant, her sone in the army, and her daughter offering care to the plague victims. Pyxaes, an uncle, is one of the sharpest minds of his generation, and he understands the reason why the ice has returned, and travels to the Khan of the Steppes to meet with other scholars to compare theories. He returns with a secret that can bring devastation, but also peace to the warring nations.

This is the most dramatic book in the series, and Baxter manages to convey the pain and suffering of once great nations as they battle over diminishing food sources. He has used advances in technology to give then steam power, and other details like the Roman empire still having some influence.

The thing that annoyed me slightly is the gaps between each of the previous books and this one. To me a sequence should have a link; I know that the wall is the common thing, but it would have been nice to know that people were linked as well.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Much better than the second novel in the series., 16 Jan 2013
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Less graphic violence, and far more intriguing. I particularly appreciated the ending that had a haunting echo of the Spanish arrival in the Americas, in our world.
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5.0 out of 5 stars iron winter, 30 Dec 2012
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It took me a while to get into this story - it is so unusual - but once I had read the first few chapters I was hooked ! I hope the following books are as good
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A 'Tour De Force' Conclusion, 25 Mar 2013
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J. Farrar - See all my reviews
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It is very rare for alternative-history storytellers to come up with something as brilliant as this. I can only imagine that Baxter has somehow 'stepped' into this subtly different time-line or channeled the narrative from someone already there! The rapid descent, over a handful of years, from a benign climate to a full-on ice age with snow and ice as far south as the Mediterranean, and the chaos it causes to worlwide civilisation, is told with insightfulness and measured tension. There is even a inconvenient message for today's Green movement.

As good as Aldiss at his best in the 'Helliconia' trilogy, I have no hesitation in giving 'Iron Winter' 5*
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Baxter, 11 Feb 2013
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I bought this for my wife who is a Stephen Baxter nut. I think that although she enjoys this series she would much prefer if he wrote more pure science fiction.
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Iron Winter (Northland Trilogy)
Iron Winter (Northland Trilogy) by Stephen Baxter (Hardcover - 5 Nov 2013)
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