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Komarr (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) by Lois…
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Komarr (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (original 1998; edition 1999)

by Lois McMaster Bujold

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Member:mathgirl40
Title:Komarr (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures)
Authors:Lois McMaster Bujold
Info:Baen (1999), Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:****1/2
Tags:science fiction

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Komarr by Lois McMaster Bujold (1998)

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Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
To really appreciate this book, you need to have read some of the preceding books in the series. However, you can still enjoy it on its own.

In this book, we meet Ekaterin Vorsoisson, unhappy wife of Etienne Vorsoisson, a Barrayaran administrator on conquered Komarr. It's her apartment where Imperial Auditor Miles Vorkosigan comes to stay (with her uncle, Imperial Auditor Professor Vorthys) when investigating the origins of a planetary disaster: was it accident, incompetence - or sabotage?

Interestingly, in this book, Ekaterin is the main point-of-view character. In most of the other Vorkosigan Saga books, this is Miles, so this represents a change. But the change works extremely well. Not only do we get to see Miles as strangers see him, but we get the point of view of someone who does not routinely move in the same rarefied social, political and military circles as Miles. Ekaterin grew up in a provincial town; she has followed the socially-acceptable life path for a young Vor girl (wife and mother) but it has not brought her happiness. Now we get to see not only how the 'other half' lives, but also how Ekaterin reacts to Miles' famous forward momentum and you-can-do-anything-and-the-universe-had-better-get-out-the-way attitide.

As usual with Bujold's books, all of her characters are living beings. She manages to write people so that even the ones you never meet - who are only referred to in one line spoken by a walk-on character - seem to conjure up a whole image and personality. Bujold delights in the ridiculous, but she can be serious too, often by stealth. We meet Ekaterin's husband, a lonely, frightened man whose loneliness and fear are all his own fault, or the fault of his clinging to increasingly outmoded social mores. We get to see the effect of this self-destructiveness not only on Etienne himself, but also on his wife and son. We meet Komarrans, too. The inhabitants of a conquered planet, we meet the ones who have accepted the conquest and the ones who have not, and their different ways of dealing with the fact that their once-independent planet is now part of the empire ruled by the people they once dropped in the mire by allowing an invasion fleet through their wormhole. Along the way, Bujold manages to give us a whistle-stop tour of several important issues, but we also get hilarious scenes such as Miles' and Ekaterin's disastrous shopping trip.

This is one of my favourite books in the Vorkosigan Saga, and I've read it many times. There's enough social commentary in there to satisfy the intellect, but enough sheer fun that you always feel better after you've read it. ( )
  T_K_Elliott | Mar 12, 2017 |
Following directly upon the events of 'Memory,' 'Komarr' still functions as a stand-alone novel.

And... I liked it even better than 'Memory.' The plot felt more original, and it just has a really well-structured, exciting story, backed up by well-rounded, believable characters and a vivid, consistent setting.

Miles Vorkosigan is sent, in his role as Imperial Auditor to the still-somewhat-rebellious subject planet of Komarr to investigate a space accident (or, possibly, act of sabotage) that may seriously impact Komarr's terraforming project.

He accepts the hospitality of his colleague's niece, whose husband happens to be an administrator in that terraforming project. Unfortunately, the husband's also a shiftless jerk, and his and Ekaterin's marriage is on the verge of falling apart.

As layers of plots and motivations unravel, you'll find yourself staying up late to finish... well, at least I did! ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
Second time reading, I was able to savor Ekaterin's character more thoroughly. Thank you Lois for another hugely entertaining and thoughtful book. ( )
  2wonderY | Aug 31, 2015 |
In his new role as Imperial Auditor, Miles is sent to Komarr to investigate an accident. Not very popular there (his father is called The Butcher of Komarr, however unjustified), he soon finds much more than he ever bargained for.

Why can't all books be written this well? Bujold takes a subject I am not much interested in (scifi, future) and makes it one of my absolute favorite series to read. I think this is because she nails characters and dialog, and also moral dilemmas. Miles is a bit impetuous in love, but then, isn't he in everything? ( )
  MrsLee | Aug 8, 2015 |
What a marvelously fun and exciting entry in the Vorkosigan series! I couldn't stop listening to Grover Gardner's excellent narration but did read along a fair amount. So glad to see Miles happily launched on his new career after losing the Dendarii mercenary fleet in the previous book. And a new love interest too! I hope that this one works out for him. ( )
  leslie.98 | Jun 21, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lois McMaster Bujoldprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gambino, FredCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gardner, GroverNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ruddell, GaryCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Russo, CarolCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
First words
The last gleaming sliver of Komarr's true-sun melted out of sight beyond the low hills on the western horizon.
Quotations
Miles: Fortunately for my credit, from the outside most people can't tell the rapid exploitation of a belatedly recognized opportunity from deep-laid planning.
Aim high. You may still miss the target but at least you won't shoot your foot off.
Her late husband had called her Kat. A pet name. A little name. As if he hadn't time to pronounce the whole thing, or wish to be bothered...But Ekaterin was light on the teeth and the tip of the tongue, yet elegant and dignified and entirely worth an extra second of, of anyone's time.
Tien's antilegacy clouded the glimmerings of the new future she ached to claim for herself. She imagined a bird, released from ten years in a cage, told she could fly free - as soon as these lead weights were attached to her feet.
This bird's going to get there if she has to walk every step.
(Miles, encouraging Nikki to return to school)
"It's not as daunting the second time. I wished later I could have started with the second time. But the only way to get to the second time is to do the first time. Seems paradoxical, that the fastest way to get to easy is through the hard. In this case, I can't spare you an ImpSec agent to check out your school for antimutant activity."
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Miles Vorkosigan arrives on the Barrayaran colony planet Komarr to investigate the destruction of a freighter which has crashed into the orbital mirror display - a mechanism vital to the planet's long-term terraforming programme. Miles's emperor, Gregor, is about to marry a Komarran princess, and relations between the empire and its possession must remain smooth.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0671578081, Mass Market Paperback)

Lois McMaster Bujold comes through again with another sharp Miles Vorkosigan novel. Komarr can be read as a standalone, though it is part of a whole series. (Komarr brings the total to 16 books!) Miles is a hugely popular character with fans--and they won't be disappointed with his latest adventure.

The planet Komarr is undergoing centuries-long terraforming when one of the orbiting mirrors crucial to the effort is smashed by an off-course ship. Miles Vorkosigan is sent to Komarr to investigate the incident; once there, he becomes embroiled in political and scientific battles. To make matters worse, the name Vorkosigan is anathema on Komarr. But our intrepid hero can't be put down easily. While trying to save Komarr, he manages... maybe... to find true love at last! Bujold's original and intelligent blend of politics, science, and cliffhanging-good space opera makes this book a satisfying adventure and a charming romance. --Therese Littleton

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:27 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Agent Miles Vorkosigan investigates terrorism and financial speculation on the planet Komarr. The story is told through the eyes of Ekaterin, the unhappily married wife of a government official with whom Vorkosigan falls in love.

(summary from another edition)

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