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Sheepfarmer's Daughter by Elizabeth Moon

Sheepfarmer's Daughter

by Elizabeth Moon

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English (31)  Swedish (3)  All languages (34)
Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
This is largely a medieval military novel, following the recruit Paksenarrion though training and into campaigns where she distinguishes herself both in her own efforts and in the strangeness of the co-incidence around her. While it seems that a lot of time is spent on repetitive detail, I've read this enough times to realize the wizardry of Elizabeth Moon's transitions from detail to narrative so that the less adventurous parts seem to have dragged on when in fact they've been substantially compacted. ( )
  quondame | Oct 30, 2018 |
OMG I can't believe I found this book! And the other two in the series! I have been wanting to read these after I fell in love with Elizabeth Moon's world in her follow-up series, and I happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Here we see Paksenarrion, a paladin in the later books and barely seen, from her brave running from home to becoming a seasoned veteran. Her observations are quite detailed, both from the shoes she wears to her inner fears, and events happen even in her training camp that shape her abilities.

The one part that dragged was the very many detailed battles, the ones that happen as her Cohort is in pursuit of Siniava. Up to that point, the events and characters are drawn with rapid pen strokes and Moon creates a world and its military companies. Even the escape from an enemy slaughter with two friends is detailed while still moving the action forward; it's not easy to describe slogging through mud while staying away from the enemy but keeping an eye on his movements. Afterwards, though, I found the endless battle descriptions a bit numbing, even though they are part of the story. But Moon also begins her technique here of telling another character's story from (his) POV then weaving in the central character's actions in relation to it. ( )
  threadnsong | Aug 5, 2018 |
A pretty good example of the 80s/90s fantasy trend for gritty realism in the lives of ordinary soldiers - this is very much a military fantasy, focused on the minutiae of training, fighting, and surviving. Unfortunately, I hate those details. I always skip over them in other books, but that's basically the whole book here. There are some interesting flashes of worldbuilding here and there (though I suspect there's not much more to it than the standard D&D manual), but there's a lot of fighting to go through to get there.

I read this because it'd been recommended to me many times as one of the few examples of an asexual main character in fiction. I was a little leery, because someone had also mentioned a sexual assault, but that's not used as motivation - Paks explains, after she's been assaulted by another soldier, that she didn't want to sleep with him, she didn't want to sleep with anyone, he just wouldn't let it go. She is a pretty great asexual character. I wish I liked the book more. ( )
  jen.e.moore | Apr 15, 2017 |
Not your typical fantasy. There's barely any magic and no grand battles with millions of soldiers. But the foundation of ordinary serves to highlight the extraordinary.

It's not without its flaws, but overall this was one of the most interesting fantasy books I've read. ( )
  oswallt | Nov 25, 2016 |
This isn't a flashy, magic filled, fantasy trilogy (though you do get elves and paladins and whatnot). This is mainly a young woman's story about following her dreams to live her life as she wants to live it. There are hardships and there are moments of glory. You learn with her that war is not the glorious thing she has pictured, but harsh and bloody. You watch as she loses friends and sees that evil does not need magic to strike, but that men and women can do great evil by themselves.

The trilogy is wonderfully done and you are glad to follow her on the ups and downs of her journey. I only wish I had known about Elizabeth Moon sooner. ( )
  Half-elf28 | Jun 1, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elizabeth Moonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Davies, KevinCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holmberg, John-HenriTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lockwood, ToddCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Dyck, JenniferNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In a sheepfarmer's low stone house, high in the hills above Three Firs, two swords hang now above the mantelpiece. - Prologue
"And I say you will!" bellowed the burly sheepfarmer, Dorthan Kanasson. - Chapter 1
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Book description
Paksenarrion--Paks, for short--refuses her father's orders to marry the pig farmer down the road and is off to join the army. And so her adventure begins--the adventure that transforms her into a hero remembered in songs, chosen by the gods to restore a lost ruler to his throne.
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Paksenarrion, a simple sheepfarmer's daughter, yearns for a life of adventure and glory, such as was known to heroes in songs and story. At age seventeen she runs away from home to join a mercenary company and begins her epic life. In book one, Paks is trained as a mercenary, blooded, and introduced to the life of a soldier, and to the followers of Gird, the soldier's god.… (more)

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