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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Captain Vopatril's Alliance by Lois McMaster Bujold

Captain Vorpatril's Alliance (Vorkosigan Saga, #15)Captain Vorpatril's Alliance by Lois McMaster Bujold

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Jacket Blurb:  Captain Vorpatril is happy with his relatively uneventful bachelor’s life as a staff officer to a Barrayaran admiral, assigned to the planet Komarr, far from the Byzantine court politics of his home system. 

This content existence is shattered when an old friend in Barrayaran intelligence asks Ivan to protect an attractive young woman, who may be on the hit list of a criminal syndicate. Ivan’s chivalrous nature takes over, and it seems danger and adventure have once more found Captain Vorpatril.

Tej Arqua and her half-sister and servant Rish are fleeing the violent overthrow of their clan on the free-for-all planet of Jackson’s Whole.  Now it seems Tej may possess a hidden secret of which even she may not be aware. It’s a secret that could corrupt the heart of a highly regarded Barayarran family and provide the final advantage to the thugs who seek to overthrow Tej’s homeworld.  But none of Tej’s formidable adversaries have counted on Ivan Vorpatril.  For behind Ivan’s facade of wry and self-effacing humor lies a true and cunning protector who will never leave a distressed lady in the lurch–up to and including making the ultimate sacrifice to keep her from harm.

2013 Hugo Novel Nominee

A light space romance that was about 100 pages too long.

Bujold's books tend to be dialog driven, with just enough description to give you an idea of how people look in their snazzy uniforms and an impression of the city or space station they are living on.  My complaint with dialog driven books is there are often not enough cues as to whom is talking and I have to go back and carefully do the he said/he said only to find out there was a she said added in.

The main cast of characters in this one seemed to alternate acting like the High-born adults they were and teenagers who were allowed off the space station for the first time in their lives.  A dichotomy of ones rank and place in the world, then behaving in a manner that was incongruous with that rank of birth.

And of course, all the Vorkosigan favorites are trotted out at one point or another.

Ultimately, not a favorite, but I enjoyed it as the light entertainment it offers, lots of fun, witty comments throughout the book.  A good book to read in an airport or at the beach as it can be easily picked up and put down, especially if you are already familiar with Bujold's Vorkosigan world. 

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