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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rewriting History in the Indian Subcontinent
David Drake has mined the Belisarius story more than once under other names. Now he uses Belisarius by name in an alternative history novel.
I was entralled by how various technologies are entertwined in a story about philosophy and war and what is "right". You are never in doubt about who will win, it is just a question of how hard the victory will be...
Published on 12 Sept. 1998

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars A good fun read
This has all the flaws and all the strengths of its prequel, with one rather glaring addition. In the first book, there were a few hints, but they could be ignored, that there was some ridiculous time-travelling technological intervention going on. But now that has been made very clear, and I don't like it. It seems cheap and tacky. The fictional world actually made more...
Published on 14 May 2011 by D. R. Cantrell


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rewriting History in the Indian Subcontinent, 12 Sept. 1998
By A Customer
David Drake has mined the Belisarius story more than once under other names. Now he uses Belisarius by name in an alternative history novel.
I was entralled by how various technologies are entertwined in a story about philosophy and war and what is "right". You are never in doubt about who will win, it is just a question of how hard the victory will be fought.
This is the first time I have ever seen someone show an example of the difference between fighting a war from a strategic view as opposed to a tactical view.
The book is flawed only in the lack of character development. You see what the characters DO, but why they think what they are doing is correct is not examined.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Belisarius in India, 11 Jan. 2013
By 
Arch Stanton (Nottingham, UK) - See all my reviews
I gotta say this feels more like a fantasy series than a scifi one. The typical fantasy tropes are here: the noble warrior prince, the superb general, the supremely evil overlord, unkillable warriors. A whole LOT of unkillable warriors... There is little in the way of battles too as Belisarius is only scouting out the situation. Which means that this book is taken up with plot and character development. And characters have never been this series' strong point. Sure they're fun, but you'd never mistake them for real people. They're caricatures of characters. And everything works out a lot too easily. But still, if you want realism read a history book. This one does what it sets out to do: entertain. And it pays out in droves.

The series claims to be written by David Drake and Eric Flint, but what that really means is that Drake wrote an outline and detailed battle synopsis while Flint fleshed the story out and actually wrote it. I find that both writers have their own annoying quirks, but I think that most of Drake's (with the exception of the superhuman tactical genius) are obscured here. Flint's flaws as a fantasy writer seem to be worse when he has no set reality holding him back (like he did in the excellent Ring of Fire novels). Since this one feels more like fantasy than the others I'd say they're at their most obvious here. I never really felt that these were Romans and Indians but ott Romanish and Indianish fantasy characters. Take that for what you will.

This book is a sequel to An Oblique Approach, but I'd be amiss if I didn't mention that the entire series has been released in s better edition. Aside from the free ebooks available at the Baen website, they've released the series as a trilogy with two books to each volume. Belisarius I: Thunder at Dawn contains this book and the previous one, Belisarius II: Storm at Noontide the middle two, and Belisarius III: The Flames of Sunset the final ones. I'd recommend buying them that way since these books really work better in twos than on their own. The first two books take place in Rome/India, the second two in Persia, and the final two in India. A clear division.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Variations on a theme, an excellent alt-history., 23 July 1998
By A Customer
Belisarius is one of histories great might have beens. The last Procouncil of Rome, a military leader of great genius, as an old man he lead an untrained army to destroy an invasion of barbarians. He almost united the Roman Empire, almost.
What if.... David Drake wrote that he presented S. M. Stirling with an essay on the life of Belisarius, the series "The General" resulted. If Mr. Drake did the same with Mr. Flint, than this series would be the variation on that theme.
Happily, Mr. Flint proves to be an an excellent writer, not the same writter as M. Stirling, but his own. Stirling's strength is his physical presents. You can see his story. Mr Flint's strength is his feel, you can feel his story.
The one great weakness is that while Theodora, and, to a lesser degree, Antonia, have personalities with strengths and weaknesses, the other characters, including Belisarious, are one dimentional, few doubts, no fears, to perfect.
The story itself is! a rousing yarn, filled with action, a touch of philosophy, and an emerging conflict between the idea of "the All" versus "The One", the individual of society.
I look foward with anticipation for the next installment.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A good fun read, 14 May 2011
By 
D. R. Cantrell (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This has all the flaws and all the strengths of its prequel, with one rather glaring addition. In the first book, there were a few hints, but they could be ignored, that there was some ridiculous time-travelling technological intervention going on. But now that has been made very clear, and I don't like it. It seems cheap and tacky. The fictional world actually made more sense when it could be seen as the good guys being guided by God against a Satanic foe.

It's still a good read, mind, and I still recommend it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars in the heart of darkness, 28 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: In the Heart of Darkness (Belisarius Saga Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
I found the story easy to follow and with the kindle I was able to access the book in a higher font as I am visually impaired
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5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT, 15 May 2014
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This review is from: In the Heart of Darkness (Belisarius Saga Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
Gripping read from start to end,couldnt put it down, would recommend it to anyone,please add it to your wishlist,go out and get it now
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5.0 out of 5 stars a grab you by the balls tale, 13 Nov. 2013
By 
Mr. R. S. Anderson "bookworm" (bucks england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: In the Heart of Darkness (Belisarius Saga Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
An absolute delight. well constructed characters, surprising twists and the idea of an alternative history is really
intriguing. Thank you Eric
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced military sciFi, 24 July 1998
By A Customer
This is the second book in the set. It moves along quickly with some interesting characters. The book is similar in form to others I have read by Drake. I will be buying the next one in this series when it comes out.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Drake and Flint a Winning Combination, 15 Aug. 1998
By A Customer
Drake once again establishes himself as a consumate story teller; and, along with Flint begin to rival Harry Turtledove in the this new alternate history epic set in Byzantine Rome.I have tried in vain to identify which writer is actively telling the story outside of the battle scenes (Drake of course must take precedence for these)and would truly like a chapter by chapter lexicon of the each writer's contributuion. This book is well crafted in all respects and imminently entertaining; lets have the next novel in the series as soon as possible.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars, 25 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: In the Heart of Darkness (Belisarius Saga Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
so so
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