Vorkosigan Group Read: Young Miles

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Vorkosigan Group Read: Young Miles

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Jan 4, 2014, 9:22pm

Welcome to the Vorkosigan group read of Young Miles, or any of the works in this omnibus: The Warrior's Apprentice, Mountains of Mourning and The Vor Game.


Jan 4, 2014, 9:31pm

This is the place to discuss any of the works in the Young Miles omnibus, which includes the first two novels (The Warrior's Apprentice and The Vor Game) and the first novella (Mountains of Mourning) about Miles Vorkosigan, in internal chronological order. Note that the actual publication order is different from the chronological order.

In your posts, please mark spoilers clearly, with a bold *SPOILER* heading or by using LibraryThing's spoiler feature: This is a spoiler.

Jan 5, 2014, 3:28am

I have read The Warrior's Apprentice and The Mountains of Mourning, I will get to The Vor Game after finishing with Cordelia's Honour.

Jan 5, 2014, 4:21pm

I'm in for the whole Young Miles omnibus! I wasn't planning to start right away, though…but on the other hand, I don't want to miss the discussion! I will probably aim to read this in February.

Jan 5, 2014, 9:27pm

I am ready for The Warrior's Apprentice - probably will try to start this in January.

Jan 12, 2014, 7:47pm

I'm in for the whole omnibus, but don't know when I will be starting... I have a couple of big books already on my plate just now.

Jan 12, 2014, 10:57pm

I'm reading the Cordelia's Honor books this month--Shards of Honor and Barrayar--so won't be starting Warrior's Apprentice until February.

Edited: Jan 19, 2014, 1:02am

Finished up the first two books, and feel a need to jump right into TWA. MY copy, the original 1986 first printing, has the infamous battle nightie cover. Lois signed it for me anyway.

Jan 19, 2014, 1:14am

Someday, my copy of Young Miles will arrive...

Jan 19, 2014, 5:07am

#8 Wow! Just Wow! Both for the *brilliant* cover and the signed first edition!

Jan 19, 2014, 10:22pm

I love these covers, quite ugly yet totally awesome and interesting!

Jan 19, 2014, 10:24pm

I love those covers, too! I was thinking that I was totally warped, but if I have company...

Jan 20, 2014, 12:39pm

@ 8 -- LOL at "battle nightie"!

Jan 28, 2014, 1:25pm

I am halfway through Young Miles - I've finished The Warrior's Apprentice and have yet to start The Vor Game. It's a bit weird to read about the start of Miles' confusing life with the Dendarii right after reading Memory, where he figures it all out, but I am really enjoying it. I'm also noticing how Ivan is more and more sympathetic in the later books.

Feb 11, 2014, 8:53am

I've just started my Young Miles omnibus…only a few chapters into The Warrior's Apprentice and I'm already hooked! :) I'm a little concerned because it's been years since I read Shards of Honor and Barrayar…even though I'm following the plot fine, I'm worried that I will miss things because the (chronologically) earlier books aren't fresh in my mind. Is anyone else reading the Young Miles books without having read the Cordelia's Honor books?

Feb 11, 2014, 12:24pm

Of course you will miss some of the background nuances, but you can easily read about Miles without them.

Feb 14, 2014, 2:32pm

Well, I've just completed The Warrior's Apprentice, and I really liked it! I'm glad that, even though it's been a while since I read Shards of Honor and Barrayar, I could still easily follow the plot. I was shocked by Bothari's past and saddened by his death, but I think this was ultimately the right way to go in the book. I was also a bit disappointed that Miles and Elena didn't get together -- I had to keep reminding myself that he's only 17 in this book! I'm about halfway through The Mountains of Mourning now, and so far so good -- I like the idea of a murder mystery in this setting!

Feb 15, 2014, 2:47am

#17 I am with you on both the points you made regarding The Warrior's Apprentice. The Mountains of Mourning is a good one too, different, but good.

Feb 15, 2014, 1:25pm

I enjoyed The Warrior's Apprentice because I was excited to meet Myles but I was a little disappointed after Barrayar. I just found Barrayar to be a more compelling and realistic book. I'm a little over halfway through the series and Warrior's Apprentice remains one of my least favorites (Brothers in Arms being the other). I know those two and Shards of Honor are among Bujold's earlier works. It's a fun book but is just a little out there for my taste.

Feb 15, 2014, 6:03pm

@ 19 -- Well, if The Warrior's Apprentice is one of the WORST books in this series, I'm thrilled! :)

Feb 15, 2014, 6:23pm

#17-18: Christina and Piyush, Elena was way too good for Miles (at least, Miles in The Warrior's Apprentice) – I was very glad they didn't end up together. Bujold does an amazing job of Miles' growth over the books, though, so when Miles gets a stable romantic relationship, it's only when he deserves one :)

Feb 15, 2014, 6:28pm

@ 21 -- Very interesting! See, I like Miles a lot, even immature Miles. But your point is well taken, and I'm intrigued to see where things will go from here! :)

Edited: Feb 15, 2014, 6:34pm

#22: I love Miles like he's one of my best friends, at all ages, but I think one of the reasons I do is because he's so realistically pig headed sometimes :)

Feb 18, 2014, 3:03pm

Just finished Young Miles, and I really liked it! I think The Vor Game was the weak link, mostly because it seemed like two totally different stories that had been mashed together. The return of the Dendarii Mercenaries was way more interesting than Miles' exile to the arctic camp! And I was bugged by the corpse that Miles found in the drain there...in Bujold's afterword to the omnibus, she admits that she was originally going to turn it into a murder mystery, but she didn't want that plot to run away with her. I understand that, but now the dead body just feels like a loose end to me. But I am still a big fan of the series, and I plan to keep reading the Vorkosigan books! Maybe not this year, though...I've already got too much to read in 2014!

Feb 18, 2014, 5:38pm

#24: I don't think the corpse was a loose end – I think it was supposed to be another reminder of how Kyril Island is an uncaring place. That's just how I read it, though.

Feb 18, 2014, 11:38pm

@ 25 -- I can see it being read that way. I just thought that guy had been murdered, and somebody should have looked into it, dammit!…but I can see why Bujold didn't want to pursue that idea. Ah well, I'm glad it didn't bug you!

Mar 6, 2014, 10:05pm

I'll be starting The Warrior's Apprentice on audio tomorrow. I can't wait to get started on the part of the series and then come back and take a peek at all these spoilers!

Mar 18, 2014, 2:09pm

I have just finished The Warrior's Apprentice and although I was sad to say goodbye to Cordelia as the main character, I have totally fallen for Miles. This was a perfect kick-off to the Miles story, tying up some old connections and launching some new ones. I am looking forward to continuing on.

Mar 18, 2014, 4:03pm

>28 DeltaQueen50: although I was sad to say goodbye to Cordelia as the main character, I have totally fallen for Miles. Exactly, Judy! I think that's a common experience with this series.

Mar 18, 2014, 4:38pm

I have finally made some time for this and am almost done with The Warrior's Apprentice. I am enjoying it so much, so I am glad that this group read has motivated me to take it off the shelf!

Mar 19, 2014, 1:15pm

>17 christina_reads: I had the same reaction you mentioned in your spoiler.

Now I am curious to see what will happen as the series progresses!

Mar 23, 2014, 10:30pm

I've finished The Warrior's Apprentice. Very enjoyable! I thought this scene was hilarious: Miles as Baba -- I couldn’t get that picture out of my head for some time!

Mar 26, 2014, 12:45am

I just finished The Mountains of Mourning. It was excellent. Young Miles experienced the true responsibility of being a Vor Lord and it looks like the future just may be in good hands one day.

Mar 26, 2014, 6:26pm

>33 luvamystery65: Once I finished the entire omnibus, I thought that although the 2 full novels were more exciting, The Mountains of Mourning was actually my favorite part. You really get to see Miles mature and also get some insight into the historical background of Barrayar.

Mar 26, 2014, 11:36pm

>34 leslie.98: Leslie I am ready to start The Vor Game next. I absolutely loved the pace and setting of The Mountains of Mourning. I love young Miles but this really gives you a peek into the man he will become (I hope). I am usually nervous when a series goes "off setting" but this story worked out really well.

Apr 12, 2014, 11:12pm

>35 luvamystery65: How did you like the Vor Game? I really enjoyed it.

Apr 13, 2014, 8:49am

>36 grundlecat: It felt like two stories mashed up together but it was very good. I have a lot of fun with Miles especially when he is with the Dendarii.

Apr 13, 2014, 7:50pm

I just completed The Mountains of Mourning and all I can say is Wow! This shows both a side of Miles and of the author that we haven't seen yet in the series. Beautifully written, a sad tale brought full circle and a great way to show Miles maturing into a compassionate man of strong morals.

Apr 15, 2014, 12:00pm

>37 luvamystery65: - Well, the intro on Fort Permafrost is a far cry from the madhouse at the Hegen Hub, that's for certain, but I thought she tied it together nicely. I have to wonder if she's ever served in the military since she seems to have such a keen grasp of the idiocies involved in military service, as well as the need to keep your non-coms happy if you are an officer. I spent six years in the Army myself and really enjoy the finer points of her military knowledge as I could not when I read them as a civilian. I've watched more than one officer left flailing when he had pissed of his mechanical or technical support NCO's ... in fact, I inflicted the flailing myself on one occasion.

>38 DeltaQueen50: - The Mountains of Mourning was certainly a whammy, wasn't it? What a powerful story. I think Bujold really raised the level of her art here.

Apr 15, 2014, 2:45pm

>39 grundlecat: I totally agree. I have really been enjoying the Vorkosigan books, but I have been missing the wonderful writing that I encountered in her Curse of Chalion fantasy series.

Apr 15, 2014, 9:46pm

I just finished Mountains of Mourning and I agree with all of your comments. I like how Bujold manages to pack so much in a short novella. I'm halfway through The Vor Game right now and really enjoying it so far.

Apr 15, 2014, 10:48pm

>39 grundlecat: she seems to have such a keen grasp of the idiocies involved in military service, as well as the need to keep your non-coms happy if you are an officer She really does.

Apr 22, 2014, 10:16pm

I've just finished The Vor Game. Great fun! One thing I particularly liked was seeing how Miles's relationship with Gregor developed. As I'd read some of the later Vorkosigan books first, I'd always wondered about that, as the two seemed to have a very close bond.

May 6, 2014, 4:16pm

I am just starting The Vor Game and it has immediately drawn me into the story. I already know I am going to enjoy this one!

May 6, 2014, 4:58pm

>44 DeltaQueen50: Judy it gets better!

May 7, 2014, 11:29am

What Roberta said.

May 9, 2014, 2:14pm

Well, I've finally finished my re-re-read of The Warrior's Apprentice and was bowled over; it gets better every time. I rushed over here to post my review, but no-one else has - so I'm a bit deflated.

So I'll just say 6 stars out of 5. Wonderful!

May 9, 2014, 3:19pm

Oh my. I have to go back and start re-reading. Better every time - and it bowled me over the first time.

May 9, 2014, 7:34pm

Today I finished The Vor Game which I enjoyed very much. I thought there was less attention paid to Miles' character development and more to his relationship with some of the other reocurring characters, most notably Gregor.

Edited: Aug 4, 2014, 12:13am

I picked up Young Miles, and discovered (again) that the first book of the omnibus is The Warrior's Apprentice, which I've already read for this group read. I'll just say that that last chapter is the whole book condensed; Miles is hyper observant, thinks on his feet, pulls victory and more out of disaster and, of course, the humour is still there. 'Kostlolitz and the instructor could only watch, breathing in yoga-like cadence.'

ETA But I came here to say that I've read the novella The Mountains of Mourning, which is a change of pace. Miles's usual 'forward momentum' would be of disservice to him here, in Vorkosigan backcountry, but even with the necessary moderation, Bujold's narrative works just as well here and the denouement is just as neat as ever. It gives a depth to the overall story arc, to see this other, quieter facet of the lives of the Lords Vorkosigan.

Aug 6, 2014, 11:35pm

>50 humouress: I agree, I loved the quieter pace of the Mountains when Miles just sat on the front porch so everyone could come and observe him. So different from the usually peripatetic young Miles.