Synopses & Reviews
In the tenth year of The Change, the survivors in western Oregon have learned how to live in a world without technology but there are those who would exploit the new world order.
On one side stands Michael Havel's Bearkillers and their allies, Clan MacKenzie under the leadership of Juniper MacKenzie. On the other is the Lord Protector, Norman Arminger the Warlord of Portland, whose neo-feudal empire rules over much of the Pacific Northwest.
The tensions between factions have been building for some time, and the only reason they haven't met on the battlefield is because Arminger's daughter has fallen into Clan MacKenzie's hands. But a plan to retrieve her threatens to plunge the entire region into open warfare.
"Stirling concludes his alternative history trilogy that began with Dies the Fire (2004) in high style. Some U.S. survivors of 'the Change' that destroyed all modern technology just want to enjoy balanced, wholesome lives in tune with nature, such as former Marine Mike Havel's Bearkillers, who warily defend their territory in cooperation with peace-loving neighbors, especially Juniper MacKenzie's pagan clansfolk. Not far away, however, ex-history professor Norman Arminger is building a fascistic, neofeudal empire with himself as Lord Protector. The inevitable conflict builds, through layers of scheming and skirmishing, into full-scale war. Characters are cut from good quality cardboard, but the real interest lies in watching the different cultures exploring ways to solve problems. The story begins slowly, with detailed descriptions of scenery and armor. But readers will discover that the massive thing is moving after all and realize how much it resembles one of the cavalry charges the novel describes gorgeous, stirring and gathering such earth-pounding momentum that it's difficult to resist. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The ensuing maze of intrigue, diplomacy, and battle (with a wonderful variety of weapons ingeniously exploiting archaic technology) comes up to Stirling's highest standards for pacing, world building, action, and strong characterizations, particularly of women." Booklist
"Diehards will find this richly realized story of swordplay and intrigue immensely satisfying. (Grade: B)" Entertainment Weekly
Tensions between survivors in western Oregon and those living in northwest Oregon have been building for some time, and the only reason they haven't met on the battlefield is because the Warlord of Portland's daughter is in Clan MacKenzie's hands. A plan to retrieve her threatens to plunge the region into open warfare.
In the tenth year of The Change, the survivors in western Oregon have learned how to live in a world without technology. But a confrontation between the forces of those who would rebuild the world peacefully and the feared Protector, who will use whatever means at his command to extend his power, threatens to plunge the entire region into open warfare.
About the Author
S. M. Stirling is the author of numerous novels, both on his own and in collaboration. A former lawyer and an amateur historian, he lives in the Southwest with his wife, Jan.