The Hidden Family (Merchant Princes) Hardcover – 24 Jun 2005
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Praise for" The Family Trade: ""At last, a story in which a character from our world is plunged into another, and doesn't act like a complete idiot. Miriam Beckstein is sharp-witted enough not to waste time trying to pretend that she can avoid the dilemmas that have been forced on her, while being human enough to let her emotions guide her into risky territory. . .Stross not only creates an alternate world that is fascinating and original, he even does the unheard of, for a fantasist: His depiction of our world is deep and real . . . Science fiction is in good hands with Charles Stross here to lead the new generation."--Orson Scott Card""The Family Trade" is an inventive, irreverent, and delightful romp into an alternate world where business is simultaneously low and high tech, and where romance, murder, marriage, and business are hopelessly intertwined -- and deadly."-L. E. Modesitt, Jr.
'entertaining and diverting...a fresh and novel approach to an otherwise well-worn genre.'
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
In a direct continuation from "The Family Trade" (the novel starts a few weeks after the previous book's conclusion), Miriam continues her plans to lever herself some power within her recently discovered family whilst making sense of the ever twisting Family politics. And more importatly, figure out what and who the mysterious are that tried to assassinate her previously.
The Hidden Family draws together several plot strings first presented in book 1, revealing a little more of the history, custom, politics and future of the clans - all the while setting up more questions and plots for the future, as well as throwing in several big suprises to keep you on your toes!
This book is a step again better than book 1 (though really they should be one big novel) and if you read them on after another, you can really see the thought that has gone into the history of the alternate worlds.
A 4.576 stars if I could get that picky!
This is highly inventive writing, with a tightly-woven plot that twists and turns, then doubles back just when you think that things are heading a particular direction. He uses the whole canvas available to him.
Our protagonist is a seemingly tough lady journalist with scientific training, I found that she grows on you as her underlying vulnerabilities and qualities are coloured in.
The character development is gradual but well fleshed-out in the main players - some of the supporting cast is more mysteriously depicted, but this can turn out to be necessary in the subsequent books. All is not entirely as it seems.
There is nothing predictable here, at least for me!
I am now on the fourth book, loved them all, and this one is a favourite, having started the series her.
Recommended for those who enjoy action-driven SF that explores alternative worlds with a retro flavour. Worth trying one of the books to see if you like it, since there is more of the same, and the pace never flags.
I loved it! Hope you do too.
Miriam the former journalist has world-walked into a less advanced version of America and people have tried to kill her for her involvement with a sponging aristocratic family that she didn't know she had. In this book she world-walks into another alternate version of America, somewhat more industrialised but running on coal like in 'The Two Georges'. I found it hard to believe that nobody had ever experimented with designs before on the medallions that allow them to travel. And who would not bring back solar panels and copper pipes from our world to wire and plumb their draughty castle? We also see no obvious sources of power such as windmills and watermills. Anyway, people continue trying to kill our heroine as she sets up a business selling patents and subversive ideas.
For a determined bright woman, it's a fine story, but Miriam doesn't come across as particularly feminine and she has a filthy mouth. In other words, a man in drag. At one point the mother she didn't know she had reappears and the way this is done just felt forced, as though the author had changed his mind and used a character who already was written in from the previous book. Maybe not.
I still note that Stross doesn't know how to use colons. He follows a colon with a capital letter. This is incorrect. It's also very annoying.
Having just bought a kindle and still in bed when I finished this book I immediately purchased the 2nd instalment.
Again absolutly enthralling, I am hooked totally on this series, but eventually went a purchased "real books" for
the final three of the series as the Kindle editions were so overpriced saving myself £5
I have now ditched the kindle and purchased a Barnes and Noble NOOK ereader which allows me to download free library books
so Bye Bye Amazon/Kindles rip off. I will save a fortune now.
Great series. But unsure if the odd "ending or conclusion of this series" is due to Stross leaving him the option to run with more books in this series or just he ran out of a better ending>?The Hidden Family (Merchant Princes)
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Charles Stross is a great writer. His high tech books engross and entertain. His take on Cthulu in the Laundry series is unique and amazing. Read morePublished on 20 May 2013 by Robert
I too am a big fan of Charles Stross, but I think that this book and the first in the 'Family' series should have been one book. Read morePublished on 12 April 2012 by Garry Speight
This is the second half of what sould have been a single novel, and it shows. The explanation of mercantilism which was badly needed at the end of the first book is at the... Read morePublished on 1 Nov. 2010 by Robert Brenchley
I've enjoyed other books by Charles Stross, and I looked on Amazon to see which of the Merchant Princes titles had received the best reviews. Read morePublished on 26 May 2010 by John Fletcher
Carrying on from where the first book in the series left off, this is really the second half of the story that the previous volume started. Read morePublished on 25 July 2009 by D. R. Cantrell