So many books, so little time
It was great to see Ivan come into his own. He's always been a favorite of mine as I read and/or listened to other parts of the series. At long last, he takes center stage. We get to revisit other well-known series characters as well.
Grover Gardner knows these characters well. It's hard to pick just one favorite.
I wish I had the time to listen through in one setting. I found myself grabbing opportunities to hear just a little more and a little more.
This would NOT be the place to begin an acquaintance with the Vorkosigan series. Treat yourself to reading them in order first. Much of my enjoyment depended on the knowing the back story and revisiting earlier acquainances.
A book with out Miles... I couldn't imagine another entire book in the Vorkosigan series without Miles or any other Vorkosigan in it. Ethan of Athos was an enjoyable book and it felt like it fit in the series..but it didn't have the same sizzle to it. A whole book full of "that idiot Ivan!" as he is coined by many family members and friends when his easy going and under achieving habits get in the way of rapidly developing events, seemed like a huge risk.
Well it is brilliant. Totally brilliant and it ins't just the absence of MIles or the example of Miles that spurs Ivan on. All the earlier flashes of charm, bravery, intelligence and honor all coalesce perfectly throughout the book as Ivan becomes a fully realized character and his own man.
Seriously i am awed by the author and can't wait for the next book. If Grover Gardner narrates it too? Heaven! :)
I recommend this series, the Vorkosigan Saga, to anyone who likes a bit of light space opera, sprinkled with believable romance. The characters, even the minor ones, are well fleshed out and, well, the sort of people I'd like to know.
This novel is about one of those minor characters, Ivan Vorpatril, cousin to the central character of most of the series. In earlier novels, he was portrayed as a confirmed bachelor, assiduously avoiding his mother's attempts to marry him off. A quintessential playboy. At the same time, he was a sad figure, at times, clearly looking for something he couldn't find and probably couldn't identify, and drowning his sorrows in wine. Here, he becomes the centerpiece of the story, and inadvertantly finds exactly what he needs, though it takes him quite awhile to realise it. That's ok, though, as there's plenty of fun along the way!
While I am a bigger fan of Bujold's fantasy I have enjoyed the Vorkosagean saga. Especially the earlier stories before Miles "settle' down. This was a nice story that kept my attention and paced fairly well. Ivan gets fleshed out and the glimpses of Miles and some of the other characters we have become familiar with was entertaining. This is not science fiction that dwells on the large issues of human existence as so much of the best science fiction does. But I like a good story, and I like to be entertained by stories that shows humankind does make it past our Earthbound existence. The plot here was feasible, the good guys likable, the love interest at least interesting. A nice listen as I drive around plying my trade.
This is a classic Miles Vorkosigan story but follows Ivan Vorpatril (he cousin). Would think these stories would start getting old but I find myself excited every time a new one comes out.
No spoilers here other than I think that Bujold decided to dedicate an entire book to torturing Miles' cousin/best friend/frequent victim, Ivan Vorpatril.
This may not be the best of the Vorkosigan books, but it was a lot of fun. Many parts had me laughing aloud. It is fun seeing many of the usual characters from a different perspective. Heck, the capitol city's most infamous landmark is good for a laugh.
Grover Gardiner does his usual great job.
Listen to this book if you like Bujold in snarky mode.
The continual in-jokes referring to events in previous books of the series
The story line sort of suited Ivan... a bit bland on first appraisal but with lots of not so obvious depth
A bit more light hearted than some of the other books in the series - very entertaining
Ivan is on his own in this book, out of Miles's shadow and forced to play a highly political hand. Now we learn the motivation behind the "Ivan, you idiot" remarks - Ivan never was an idiot, he just played one quite skillfully. It served him well and kept him alive until now ...
This book doesn't quite stand up to the best Bujold ("A Civil Campaign", "Mirror Dance", "Memory", "Barrayar", some of my favorite books of all time), and it has the feeling of a series finale because all the loose ends not tied up in "Cryoburn" (which chronologically follows this one) seem to be addressed here. On the other hand, any time spent in the Vor universe is golden. I hope we haven't seen the last of Miles and Ivan.
A really enjoyable addition to the Miles' series, although focusing on Vorpatril - enables his true character to shine. Highly listenable!
Grover Gardner continues to provide stellar performances - always enjoy his books.
All of Bujold's Vor books are favorites. This one rates right up near the top among this series.
Throughout the time line we have seen an dieing emperor arrange the heroic death of his own son and the adoption of his grandson. This child emperor is raised as part of a noble family that includes Ivan Vorpatril who would be technically in the line of succession anyway.
Ivan has been a secondary protagonist and sometimes a plot driving victim. Now he comes into his own. The previous main character, Miles, is winding down his career in Covert Ops and as special investigator for the Empire. Raising Ivan to prime status gives the stories a place to go.
This is a space going sci fi book but it is more of a romantic comedy. You could easily swap spaceships for horse drawn coaches and planets for continents with out changing the story a bit.
While on his military duty station he is invited to meet an off worlder woman. This invitation comes from am acquaintance in the intelligent branch. Ivan has a reputation for getting on well with the ladies. This seems like a win win until Ivan is ambushed shot by the woman's servant and companion. He is tied to a chair in the middle of their apartment living room over night and so is the first to see the kidnap team break in, coming for the women. Oh it gets much more complicated, trust me.
Like all Bujold's books this one is written with humor and a genuine love of the main characters. Your heart will ache for Ivan and his, he hopes, soul mate.