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D. G. Pratt

Colorado, USA | Member Since 2008

ratings
221
REVIEWS
2
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
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HELPFUL VOTES
5

  • Cetaganda: A Miles Vorkosigan Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1192)
    Performance
    (558)
    Story
    (567)

    When the Cetagandan empress dies, Miles Vorkosigan and his cousin Ivan are sent to Cetaganda for her funeral as diplomatic representatives of Barrayar. Upon arrival, the two men are inexplicably attacked by a servant of the late empress. When the same servant turns up dead the next day, Miles and Ivan find themselves in the middle of a mystery.

    Bronwyn Soell says: "Miles and Ivan on a mission!"
    "Lot of Fun"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been working my way through the Vorkosigan series and loved Bujold's humor and lighter touch in Cetaganda. High points for me were when Miles first meets the gorgeous genetically engineered Haut-lady Rian and is badly smitten (of course) and his second interview with the Cetagandan security colonel in the presence of the Barayaran imp-sec officer, who realizes just how much Miles hasn't told him about what's going on. It is very funny stuff.

    In this book the only two characters from the earlier novels are Miles and his cousin Ivan. So far as the series is concerned, in this book one learns a whole lot about Cetagandan society and culture. In the earlier books they were just the somewhat mysterious expansionist enemy, although Barayar and Cetaganda are currently at peace.

    For those interested in listening to/reading the novels in the series in chronological order I believe it goes this way:


    1) Shards of Honor,
    2) Barayar,
    (these two books concern Cordelia Naismith and Aral Vorkosigan, parents of Miles Vorkosigan)

    3) The Warrior's Apprentice,
    4) Short Story: ???The Mountains of Mourning??? (short story is contained in "Borders of Infinity"),
    5) The Vor Game,
    6) Cetaganda,
    7) Ethan of Athos,
    8) Short Story: ???Labyrinth??? ("Borders of Infinity"),
    9) Short Story: ???The Borders of Infinity???,
    10) Brothers in Arms,
    11) Mirror Dance,
    12) Memory,
    13) Komarr,
    14) A Civil Campaign,
    15) Novella: ???Winterfair Gifts???,
    16) Diplomatic Immunity,
    17) Cryoburn.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Trickster's Choice

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Tamora Pierce
    • Narrated By Trini Alvarado
    Overall
    (412)
    Performance
    (176)
    Story
    (179)

    Tamora Pierce brings readers another Tortall adventure! Alianne is the teenage daughter of the famed Alanna, the first lady knight in Tortall. Young Aly follows in the quieter footsteps of her father, however, delighting in the art of spying. When she is captured and sold as a slave to an exiled royal family in the faraway Copper Islands, it is this skill that makes a difference in a world filled with political intrigue, murderous conspiracy, and warring gods.

    Benjamin says: "STOP! WAIT!"
    "A heroine with pluck and spirit"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I first came across Tamora Pierce via her "lady knight" series "Protector of the Small" and enjoyed the heroine Keladry, with her secret patron Alanna the Lioness. I then filled in the story with the Lioness and Wildmage books intended for young children. But it wasn't until I read "Trickster's Choice" that I became a Pierce fan: the book instantly became a favorite and was my first purchase when I joined Audible.com. It did not disappoint: Trini Alvarado does a superb job with the narration and dialog, five stars all the way!

    This book concerns the daughter of Alanna the Lioness and George Cooper, secret spymaster of Tortall. Sixteen year old Alianne (Aly) learned spycraft at her father's knee but has a troubled relationship with her famous mother, the King's Champion, who is often away at the wars. When circumstances cause Aly to be plucked from home and dropped into the intrigues of a foreign kingdom and culture, thanks to the meddling of the "Trickster" god Kyprioth, she must use all her skill and savvy to survive, thrive, and protect those around her. In addition to Aly, the book is filled with compelling, well-developed characters. But it is simple in style, as opposed to beautiful literature: the story is the attraction, not language artistry.

    As heroines go, I find it hard to top the "Trickster's Choice". She was a character I wanted to root for from early on and didn't disappoint. And I think that one would have to have a hard heart not to tear up a bit when Aly encounters her father near the end of the book, no matter how many times one has read/listened to it. Those who enjoy this book will certainly want to continue with "Trickster's Queen" to find out how the story ends. (Hint: no, the Trickster's Queen isn't Aly...)

    My impression is that Tamora Pierce has been gradually writing for older readers as her series progress and this book seems intended for teens and, perhaps, fairly mature tweens (as is her Beka Cooper "Terrier, Bloodhound, Mastiff" series). Themes include slavery, racism, revolution, and deadly political intrigue. For the record: I am not part of Pierce's target readership since I am an older male not a young female. But I enjoy books with strong female protagonists and this book has one of the best.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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