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Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen by Lois…
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It's a good read, very heavy on the characters. Told from the alternating perspectives of Cordelia and Admiral Jole and their blossoming romance after the death of their mutual love Aral. Miles has a fairly small part in this (he doesn't show up until halfway through the book), but he's still Miles. One thing I find interesting about this series is how it started out as a fairly traditional space opera with plenty of ships swooping about with blasters going pow-pow-boy noise. And now we're here, with practically a Jane Austen novel. Still good. ( )
1 vote Jon_Hansen | Apr 2, 2017 |
Having read the eARC in two sittings (as work and sleep are necessary evils), I can say this is a very nice addition to the Vorkosigan series.

Unlike the rest of the series, which are variously space opera, detective stories, social comedy, etc, this one is a romance - if one has to categorise it. In that it is about the relationship between two people. Of course, since it's a Bujold, it's about other things too.

As a romance, it's interesting because the protagonists are not the standard young, naive romance fare - they're older, wiser, and with a whole lot of past and baggage that has to be either hauled around or jettisoned. It makes for a different sort of story.

This is a book that, on first reading, is a book about Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan - and the Naismith part should certainly not be forgotten - and how she decides to live her life after the death of Aral Vorkosigan.

But otherwise, I think this book is about elephants.

The first sort of elephant is the Bujold-elephant, as referred to in [b:Memory|1141957|Memory (Vorkosigan Saga, #10)|Lois McMaster Bujold|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1181358710s/1141957.jpg|3036720]. What is a person's heart's desire, and what will they do to get it? What will they give up? What have they already given up? How will they even identify it?

The second kind of elephant is the one that the six blind men were asked to describe, and variously decided that an elephant resembled a rope, a tree, a fan, a snake, a wall and a pipe. Who we think a person is, is necessarily dependent on what we know about them. And who knows the whole truth about someone else? And what happens when you discover something about someone you thought you knew that requires you to change your opinion of what and who they are, and what their place is in your world?

This is a book which repays thinking; it is by no means the most exciting of the Vorkosigan books, but I think it might be the one with the most layers. ( )
1 vote T_K_Elliott | Mar 12, 2017 |
A gentle romance, showing that older people can still fall in love. Very little happens in this book in the way of large scale events. We see the planet of Sergyar developing and extending its settlements, but this isn't a story about big events, it's about how people face grief and its aftermath and also about family.

I think my only real quibble is that it may be perfectly possible to start a family in old age, but those parents may find it really tough by the time those children are teenagers and the parents are significantly older than they are now. ( )
  JudithProctor | Jan 10, 2017 |
A few years after Aral's death, Cordelia starts to feel herself again -- as does Oliver Jole, former aide to Aral and the man who inherited his Admiralship and duties on Sergyar, and who knew them both well.

I found this book awfully... fannish, for lack of a better word. Bujold (who I sense may be getting tired of this series, the poor dear, though the rest of us still can't stop eating it up) finds a character in the margins of the existing books, writes him essentially from scratch in this book as a Original Character, deftly incorporates a strange, previously-unhinted-at, and sexually-boundary-pushing plot device through squinting at the edges of the existing canon and weaving the retcon thoroughly in, and then sets us loose on what is in effect a slow-growing love story, with the plot primarily serving the purpose of feeding fans more time with the characters. Though this is not my favorite style of fic and this book may become one of my least favorites in the series for that reason, it's quite fascinating to watch the unfolding of an author ficcing her own universe in classic style....

I love how the characters are aging with me, and how Bujold's vocabulary here goes no-holds-barred -- I was surprised by new words much more than usual in this work. And although I appreciate the frenetic early Miles, there is something about the many observations on age in this book that resonate with me, and I expect will resonate more and more as I continue down my life's journey.

I'm also sensing a theme of April-December romance now, having been bothered by it in The Sharing Knife and surprised but accepting in Falling Free and Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen. I am getting the impression that age differences in romance may one of those recurring authorial themes -- albeit an authorial pet theme that Bujold has handled with a relatively light hand compared to some fellows -- and it makes me curious to learn more about her personal story.

I'd recommend this book for fans, but not further. For me, there was not a ton to fall in love with here, and for those who do fall in love, this book feels quite different from the rest of this series to me (though, and this is hard for me to judge, perhaps it is more in line with some of the fantasy that Bujold has been recently producing). ( )
1 vote pammab | Jan 5, 2017 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lois McMaster Bujoldprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gardner, GroverNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miller, RonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Russo, CarolCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Seeley, DaveIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In memory of Dr. Martha Bartter
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It was a good day on the military transfer station orbiting the planet Sergyar.
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Three years after her famous husband’s death, Cordelia Vorkosigan, widowed Vicereine of Sergyar, stands ready to spin her life in a new direction. Oliver Jole, Admiral, Sergyar Fleet, finds himself caught up in her web of plans in ways he’d never imagined, bringing him to an unexpected crossroads in his career.

Meanwhile, Miles Vorkosigan, one of Emperor Gregor’s key investigators, this time dispatches himself on a mission of inquiry, into a mystery he never anticipated – his own mother.

Plans, wills, and expectations collide in this sparkling science-fiction social comedy, as the impact of galactic technology on the range of the possible changes all the old rules, and Miles learns that not only is the future not what he expects, neither is the past. [retrieved 8/4/2016 from Amazon.com]
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