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Nothing says "I Love You, Dear" like screaming lower back pain!

Sometimes Wrong but rarely in doubt!

01 December 2011

A Rising Thunder

David Weber
ISBN:  978-1451638066
Rating:  Buy, Hardcover Used

This really hurts me to say, but I didn't really like this book.  I freely admit I'm a fan of David Weber.  I own all his books, many in hardcover.  I started reading his works with On Basilisk Station in 1993 and I have been avidly devouring his books ever since.

I'm disappointed in this book on a couple of levels.  One it really seems to be a rehash of the last book in the Safehold series (How Firm a Foundation).  Ho hum, a small oligarchy is managing a large empire to their own corrupt benefit.  The carrying trade of the empire is mostly borne by a plucky rival with an edge in technology.   Which series am I describing?  It gets better though, a small kingdom expands into an empire.  I'll grant that the two series are not carbon copies of each other.  One series might be tangoing while the other is doing the rumba but they're both on the same dance floor dancing to the same tune.

The structure of the book disappointed me as well:  
  • The single naval battle is short and in the middle of the book and not really climatic.
  • The missile duels aren't lovingly detailed as is typical in the Honor Harrington series
  • We don't even meet Honor until chapter thirteen.
  • He wastes pages doing scenes of wormhole junctions closing that could have been better spent on action scenes.
I willing to give him a bit of a pass in that the focus of the Honorverse series has to shift from Honor since the series has become much more sweeping in scope than in the earlier books.  I hope that he will shift away from the similar themes that echo across both the latest books in the Safehold and Honorverse.  Different series from an author should be like exploring Thai food and Greek food, some of the same ingredients are there but the taste and preparation are unique to each.  Right now the recent Safehold and Honor books are like picking between hamburger and a cheeseburger, one might have an ingredient the other doesn't but they're both burgers.

I am excited to see that the next book in the Bahzell Bahnakson series is slated for release in July.

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