What fiction I read in 2007

In rough chronological order, with capsule reviews. I don’t think I’ve missed any, but it is possible that I have.

If you look through the list (behind the cut), you’ll see I read mostly Baen books nowadays. There’s a simple explanation: Baen is (almost) the only publisher that does real e-books, and I tend to avoid the inconvenience of paper books where I can. Still, there’s about a hundred titles on the list.

John Ringo – Emerald Sea; Against the Tide; East of the Sun, West of the Moon
I had started reading the Council Wars series in December, and finished in January. I found it entertaining and interesting reading, with the usual Ringo caveat about his politics.

David Weber – On Armageddon Reef
Weber delivers his usual story of huge political and social changes brought on by technological innovation, sprinkled liberally with sail-powered ships and a strong female (or is it male?) lead. I sometimes wonder when I will get tired of Weber, but it hasn’t happened yet. It probably has to do with the fact that Weber makes me care deeply for his characters, each and every time. The forthcoming sequel is on my must-buy list.

John Ringo and Travis S. Taylor – Von Neumann’s War
Ringo with a scientist. What more can one hope for in the genre of science fiction adventure?

Travis S. Taylor – Warp Speed; The Quantum Connection
I went and checked what else Taylor had written. This is a series about the introduction of faster-than-light drive to a contemporary world. The first book is the stronger one, a nice tale of inventing the FTL drive; the second one tickles my taste for romance (in the obsolete sense of the world) but is too close to being Star Trek (as in, what are the limits and costs of the technology?).

David Weber and Linda Evans – Hell’s Gate; Hell Hath No Fury
My earlier comments about Weber applies, though there aren’t that many sail-powered ships here. The violent collision of a fantasy world with a science-fiction world is an interesting premise, one that I haven’t run into before (but doubtless has been done before by somebody). One thing I never figured out: who is the scorned woman in the second book? (Warning: these two books are an integral whole and the first book won’t stand alone very well.)

David Weber – Oath of Swords; Sword Brother; War God’s Own; Wind Rider’s Oath
Weber fantasy. Enough said.

David Weber – In Fury Born
See my earlier comments of Weber. I never read the original version (Path of the Fury), so I didn’t experience any great fury regarding the fattening of that book, which I have read other people rant about.

Eric Flint and Dave Freer – Pyramid Scheme; Pyramid Power
Short version: modern people have trouble with mythical gods. Good reads both of them.

Stoney Compton – Russian Amerika
A nice first novel, an alternative history where Alaska was never sold.

John Dalmas – Fanglith
A not very strong YA story about children trying to follow their parents to safety.

David Weber – The Excalibur Alternative
David Drake – Ranks of Bronze
I could not finish either of these related novels. The Drake original became repetitive and did not have enough appeal for to continue, and the Weber sequel (which I started first but set aside to check the original) didn’t appeal after that experience.

Christopher Anvil (edited by Eric Flint) – Pandora’s Legions; Interstellar Patrol; Interstellar Patrol II: The Federation of Humanity
It is interesting to read American SF classics, to get the flavor of stories gone by in the past. I read SF voraciously as a teenager, but it was mostly what had been translated to Finnish, starting with Clarke, Asimov and Stanislaw Lem (the three greats, as far as I was concerned). Now I get to see what American readers basically take as given. These are all good stories except for Cantor’s War, which is just bad math.

Eric Flint and K. D. Wentworth – The Course of the Empire
A much better retelling of Anvil’s Pandora’s Planet.

Eric Flint – The Philosophical Strangler
Cute comedy but too deep humor for me. Finished it with great effort, mainly because I like Flint’s other stuff rather well.

Eric Filnt and David Weber – 1634: The Baltic War
The much-awaited sequel to 1633. I am a fan of the series, and this book kicked the big series-wide story arc forward quite a bit.

John Lambshead – Lucy’s Blade
It was interesting.

Sharon Lee and Steve Miller – the Liaden series
See the review.

Sharon Lee – Barnburner; Gunshy
Okay whodunits.

John Ringo and Travis S. Taylor – Vorpal Blade; Manxome Foe
See my earlier comments on Ringo and Taylor. I was not redshirted in these books (but I believe I still am on Ringo’s redshirt list).

Catherine Asaro – Sunrise Alley; Alpha
Nice near-future cybernetics tales.

Mark Van Name – One Jump Ahead
Nice.

Jerry Pournelle (partially with Larry Niven) – the CoDominium series, including A Mote in God’s Eye
See the review.

Eric Flint and Victoria DeMarce – 1634: The Bavarian Crisis
Love this book, though it’s slow going in the beginning. As remarked earlier, I am a fan of this series.

John Ringo and Julie Cochrane – Sister Time
I am a fan of Ringo’s Posleen series, and this one is a nice addition. I haven’t had the stomach to reread any of the series, and I’ve stayed away from the Kratman stuff. It would be interesting to reread Cally’s War and see if I still agree with my earlier review, but I don’t know if I am able. Sister Time certainly doesn’t deserve similar comments.

Travis S. Taylor – One Day on Mars
I lost interest about one third in, too many characters so I don’t get to care about any of them. I still think I might give it another chance one of these days and see if it picks up its pieces later on.

Holly Lisle – Fire in the Mist
Loved it. Hated there not being more books in Webscriptions in this series.

Wen Spencer – Tinker; Wolf Who Rules
Elves and modern technology. Oh my. Much recommended; anxiously waiting for more.

David Drake – The Northworld Trilogy
Heavy going, lost interest way before the end.

David Drake – When the Tide Rises
A nice Leary+Mundy story. Loved the brief appearance of Captain Ringo; was he a payback for David Krake in Princess of Wands?

Jan Guillou – Arnin perintö (Swedish original Arvet efter Arn)
I loved the prequels, but this was the second time I tried to read this one and got bored with it halfway in.

N. M. Browne – Warriors of Alavna; Warriors of Camlann
The author participates in rec.arts.sf.composition, and I wanted to see what she had written (plus a possible snippet from a potential sequel to these books hooked me in). Liked the books, and ordered more by the same author.

N. M. Browne – Hunted
An okay tale of a girl trapped in the body of a fox in another world.

N. M. Browne – Basilisk
A fun story about a divided city.

N. M. Browne – A Spellgrinder’s Apprentice
Loved this one.

A. Bertram Chandler – The Road to the Rim; To Prime the Pump; The Hard Way Up; Spartan Planet; The Broken Cycle; The Inheritors; The Big Black Mark; The Far Traveler; Star Courier; To Keep the Ship; Matilda’s Step ChildrenStar Loot; The Anarch Lords; The Last Amazon; The Wild Ones; Catch the Star Winds; Into the Alternate Universe; Contraband From Otherspace; Gateway to Never; The Rim Gods; Alternate Orbits; The Dark Dimensions; The Way Back
I’ve described the Grimes series (the story-chronologically early stories, at least) as Star Trek done right. I stand by that assessment, and recommend the full series.

Robert A. Heinlein – Expanded Universe
Fairly interesting, though it’s more nonfiction than fiction.

Eric Flint (ed.) – Ring of Fire II
See my earlier comments on this series.

Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle – Oath of Fealty
An interesting read, still timely and relevant. It takes about 1/3rd of the book to get to the critical event (and the earlier chapters were close to boring me out), but it’s well worth reading.

Sharon Lee and Steve Miller – Duainfey
It starts out as if it were a rather boring romance, but ends, after several twists, somewhere quite different and much more interesting, and promises more, to be delivered in a future volume. I was ready to quit before the first twist arrived, but I am glad that I didn’t. The story is very much Volume One of a bigger story.

Randall Garrett – Lord Darcy
Recommended to me by a friend. Loved what I read of it, but put it down between stories when other books with higher priority came up and haven’t yet resumed.

Esther Friesner (ed.) – Chicks and chained males
Some good, some not so good, none bad.

3 thoughts on “What fiction I read in 2007

  1. I too am axiously waiting for the next three Manticore books (I’m told we might get the SoS sequel late this year).

    I note there are lots of mistakes in the titles and author names. I don’t think I’ll go fix them, but feel free to point them out in the comments.

  2. Don’t see anyone because of my crappy english :-)

    Btw lack of translated books from honorverce cause me to digg hard into literary English.
    Another reason to learn english even more deeper – linux on the desktop :-)

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