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Raymond's Reviews #186

Finishing off the February 1992 releases and starting on March...

%T The Deed of Paksenarrion
%A Elizabeth Moon
%I Baen
%D February 1992
%O trade paperback, US$12.00
%P 1024
%G ISBN 0-671-72104-6

This is first for Baen --- a big, handsome trade paperback reprint of one of the more successful fantasy trilogies of the last five years. If you like fantasy and you missed Sheepfarmer's Daughter, Divided Allegiance and Oath Of Gold first time around, do yourself a favor and pick up this edition. You'll enjoy it.

%T In the Hall of the Dragon King
%A Stephen R. Lawhead
%I Avon
%D March 1992
%O paperback, 370 pp, US$4.99
%G ISBN 0-380-71629-1

Unless you're a really hard-core fantasy junkie, who compulsively reads every sword-and-sorcery novel published, avoid In the Hall of the Dragon King, the first book of Stephen Lawhead's new series. To anyone but a fantasy-fanatic, there is nothing of interest here; the plot is standard, and every page is crammed with hordes of cliches rising to overcome the reader like the zombified warriors his necromancer villain sends against the protagonists. Cliched language, abounding in leaden phrases such as "the tattered remains of their once-proud armies," help make what would merely be a boring novel nearly unreadable. [CCO]

%T Cybernetic Jungle
%A S. N. Lewitt
%I Ace
%D March 1992
%O paperback, US$4.50
%P 262
%G ISBN 0-441-02257-X

The rather bleak and predictable plot of this book isn't quite rescued by the unusual cultural milieu in which it's set (the slums of a future Brasilia). The samba music and capoeira references aside, the whole is too much like her last outing, Blind Justice (RR#120). A streetfighter and a disaffected child of privilege fall in something like love one Carnival night and conspire to spike the plutocrats' guns. The rest is boring.

%T Crusade
%A David Weber
%A Steve White
%I Baen
%D March 1992
%O paperback, US$4.99
%P 426
%G ISBN 0-671-72111-9

The author of Mutineer's Moon (RR#154) utters yet another grand galumphing space-opera. This is the kind of book for which describing the plot and characters is silly; they're just excuses to frame lots of gaudy space-battle scenes and hardware blowing up in all directions. If you like that sort of thing (as I for one do), you'll enjoy this. If not, avoid this book as you would the plague.

Up to Eric's Home Page To Index Thu Mar 26 21:07:14 EST 1992

Eric S. Raymond <esr@snark.thyrsus.com>