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|Print List Price:||£6.10|
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Brothers in Arms (Vorkosigan Saga Book 8) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 338 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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The SF setting is far future, with spaceships, wormholes, and a network of human planets in conflict with each other. Miles Vorkosigan is from Barrayar, a planet that spent centuries isolated and developing a militaristic culture, but eagerly embraced new technology when it was redisovered. Miles is a hyperactive crippled overachiever, who on Barrayar is denigrated as a mutant and seen as a political liability for his influential father. In earlier books, he fled Barrayar and in an improbable series of events ended up masquerading as "Admiral Naismith", acquiring a powerful mercenary fleet in the process. Miles tries to balance his two lives, and this conflict drives much of the series.
In Brothers in Arms, Miles and his Fleet arrive at Earth to refit, and Miles has to take up his Barrayar identity again. He quickly finds it difficult to juggle two secret identities, especially when he's not sure which one he wants to be. The plot sees him confronted with consequences from his own heritage, and from his chosen dual life, and forces him to start thinking how, or if, to merge them.
Miles is a classic character: energetic, funny, and emotional. McMaster Bujold writes with a light touch, and there's plenty of humour to be had from the characters, although it's not a comedy by any stretch of the imagination. The plot moves with pace and verve, and the action-packed conclusion is thrilling. "Brothers in Arms" is excellent, but for the full effect you will want to have read the series from the start.
In this, the sixth (or seventh) of the series, Miles Naismith, leader of the Dendarii Mercenaries, comes to Earth to repair his ships and rest his crews after a hard mission. In his alter ego, Miles Vorkosigan, a lowly ranking lieutenant but also an aristocrat, he reports to the Embassy of his home world and is soon in trouble, trying to juggle his various identities, a desperate shortage of cash, a love life, vengeful enemies, and a fake double - and that is just for starters.
Highly recommended for people who like their books and characters samrt, with a sense of humour and the ridiculous...
The characters also have problems, and it is their problems which drive the plot. Well, in the beginning, anyway. The plot soon takes on a life of its own. The plot of this book, like its main character, gets by on forward momentum. It rushes, breathless and headlong, from the start to the finish, developing the most incredible twists in its path along the way. The pace is frenetic; the story never stops to rest. It carries you along, helpless, in its wake, and it is one wild ride. I read this novel cover to cover for the fun of finding out what could possibly happen next and for the enjoyment of Bujold's subtle (and not-so-subtle!) humor.
BROTHERS IN ARMS works on several levels. It is both a fun piece of escapism and a work of deep insight, as is all of Bujold's writing. I highly recommend it.
The plot sees Miles and Elli Quinn arrive on Earth, where Miles finds himself posted to the local Barrayaran embassy, putting a severe crimp on his attempts to secure payment for the Dendari, as well as bringing him into conflict with an uptight intelligence officer. However, that's merely the start of his problems, as an elaborate plan is put into action that threatens not only Miles's life, but Barrayar itself...
As always, Bujold excels at the characterisation of her cast; highlights this time around include the changing relationship between Miles and Quinn, as well as his interactions with the new character. I can't say who the latter is, as a big part of enjoying the book is the surprise plot twists. It's become a cliche to suggest that a new addition will change a book series FOREVER, but in this case it's not an exaggeration.
So, Bujold does it again. There are few writers that manage even a tenth of the invention she continues to show in the Miles books, and if you're enjoying the series so far, this is an unmissable installment.
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