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Legions of Fire (Babylon 5: Centauri Prime…

Legions of Fire (Babylon 5: Centauri Prime Trilogy)

by Peter David

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I have thoroughly enjoyed this Babylon 5 trilogy. I found the characters of Londo and Vir, as well as the supporting cast, to be excellently fleshed out. Peter David's plotting and narrative style is rich and engaging in the finest tradition of the television series.

I was thankful that the novel addressed the questions of John and Deleen's son David from the tv episode 'War Without End'.

The only drawback I saw in the series was the Technomages. I know they were a necessary plot device, but I found them tedious and uninteresting. ( )
  brodiew2 | Nov 13, 2009 |
Note: this is actually a trilogy, but I have the edition with all three books in one, and I read it all at one go, so I don't really remember where the breaks were.After reading this book, I have to say that Peter David is a much better scriptwriter than he is a novelist. He almost seems to be afraid that without the visual cues provided by television, his audience won't understand his intent. It was very frustrating, because he would write a passage that created a very clever allusion or a nice echo with another part of the novel, and then he would ruin the moment by actually pointing it out. It was like being beaten over the head. Your audience isn't dumb, so let your work speak for itself!

The story itself is interesting enough but nothing to write home about. There are some places where my suspension of disbelief got very stretched, and one or two rather glaring plot holes, but on the whole that's doing pretty well for a sci-fi TV tie-in. Where Peter David shines is in his dialogue; he has a great ear for each character's unique voice. Another thing he handles well is the changes in Vir's character, which needed to happen if he was going to become the guy we saw in "Sleeping in Light."

This book suffers, like many tie-ins, from what I might call "Loose Ends Syndrome" - it attempts to tie up too many loose ends that don't actually contribute anything to the story. The author tries too hard to work in a lot of minor characters from the show that I would have been perfectly happy never to see again, and it makes the universe feel too small. The original characters are hit-or-miss. Durla, the stock conspirator, might as well have been cut out of cardboard. I eventually grew to like Senna (the orphaned daughter of Lord Refa, whom Londo adopts because she throws a rock at him), but for most of the first book all I could think was "If he wanted a woman who would yell at Londo, why didn't he bring back Timov?" Timov does eventually show up, and those were some of my favorite scenes.

Recommended to B5 fans who want something light and fun to read. ( )
  Zathras86 | Jun 13, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0739414852, Hardcover)

Contains "The Long Night of Centauri Prime," "Armies of Light and Dark," and "Out of the Darkness."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:01 -0400)

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