S.M. Stirling's new Emberverse novel "The Golden Princess" comes out 09/02/14

And you can already read the first two chapters online. Apparently it’s going to involve Asia, where the same Powers that controlled the Cutters have gotten control of the Koreans and attacked renascent Japan. I foresee a Montivalan military expedition – even though Montival as yet has not even enough of a navy to deal with the Haida raiders.

Four chapters online now. The fourth gives us our first glimpse of post-Change Australia!

I gave up on the Emberverse several books back. I keep hoping he’ll write something else, but…

He lost me with the anticlimax of Rudy’s death in the last book.

I guess that’s an anticlimax because it was explicitly said it was going to happen two books prior.

I don’t read the chapters that get put online because I don’t want to be spoiled, but God, I can’t wait.

The fact that it happened wasn’t the anticlimax. The trivial nature of the death, together with the whimper-rather-than-a-bang nature of the final battle with the Cutters in Wyoming made it anticlimactic.

And, you know, the title, The Given Sacrifice. That’s a hint like a Norrheimer war-hammer.

Well, yeah, but, ya know, it was clear the Cutters were beaten at Horse Heaven Hills and the rest was going to be mopping up. Except for the siege of Boise, and Stirling did manage to make that exciting even without allowing for much suspense as to the outcome. Likewise with the encounter with the Morrowland Pack and their distinctive culture, which meets all kinds of Rule-of-Cool tests, which is a thing not often said of Boy Scouts & Girl Scouts.* :wink:

  • It seems to be a Boy-Scout-based culture, for the most part, but, since there appear to be roughly as many Girls around as Boys, one infers that the airplane that crashed in Yellowstone National Park to found their society was carrying both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts to some kind of joint convention.

The pacing has seemed off. There have been times when Stirling has devoted dozens of pages to some minor event - and then he’ll rush through huge world-shaking events.

Me likewise. And in recent years, when it hasn’t been “Emberverse”, he’s been writing about blasted vampires. I used to love SMS, but I think the end of the road has been reached.

Another set of books that would have benefited from some extensive editing. It’s a bloated trilogy that probably would have made a great novel. By the same token, I’m sure great novels like Conquistador or The Peshawar Lancers would have been ruined if they had been padded into trilogies.

I understand the motivation. Writing the Shadowspawn series as a trilogy sells three books instead of one. But in an ideal world, quality would trump quantity.

Amen. I sometimes think – perhaps rather harshly – that it would be a good thing if authors did not make authorship the way in which they earned a living; but earned their bread by their boring “day jobs”, and wrote in their free time. That way, what they wrote, would be what they desperately wanted to get out – no “potboilers”.

It depends a bit maybe, on what one subjectively does or doesn’t like. I delighted in Stirling’s “Island” series, and found that well worthy of being a trilogy – would have loved more books in that series. The Emberverse – I found it a depressing premise from the first; and when he went, with it, what I refer to as “all magical / mythological / mystical”, I voted with my feet. “Whatever” – a pity on the whole, that what authors write, so often seems to be commerce-driven.

Why the hell couldn’t he write a sequel to the ISOT trilogy that took place a generation later? THAT I would love to read.

Oh yes, oh yes, oh yes!

I agree. I loved the world of Peshawar Lancers, and was glad for the short story he wrote in it. But if he had padded it out it would have really damaged the story he told. I’m still hanging on with the Emberverse, but didn’t even try the fantasy one. Too many series, not enough stand alones. I’m pretty much the same way with Harry Turtledove. I’ve stopped a couple of his series in the middle, and I think his stand alone novels are so much better quality.

This would be very fun to read. And you know he has more story to tell there. The ending was written for it. My guess is it didn’t sell well enough, so the publisher didn’t want anymore novels set in that period.

He has written a – IMO splendid – short story, Blood Wolf, set in the Britain of the ISOT universe, a few decades after the Event. More – much more – along those lines, would for me, be great. Well – there seem to be plenty of fans who love the Emberverse, and would joyously lap up dozens more tomes about same…

We posted at exactly the same time ! I thoroughly agree, concerning Turtledove. I reckon a number of his stand-alones – Guns of the South, A World of Difference, Ruled Britannia, Thessalonica – quite excellent; whereas his series can, in some cases, go on quite ad nauseam. And I refuse these days to read any offering by Turtledove, which has anything – however remotely – to do with World War II. He has completely done that conflict to death.

And the Civil War, don’t forget that!

He managed to hold my interest throughout the entire Lizards series of books, right to the end. But the fantasy WWII lost me after 3 or 4. Now it is stand alones, or if he ever does a Lost Legion universe book again, I will probably get that.

This is showing signs of “drifting” from a Stirling thread into a Turtledove one; but what the heck, I gather that as well as authors in the same genre, they’re personal friends – and have given each other roles as characters in certain books.

I, too, greatly enjoyed the Lizards series – IMO one of the most original things he’s done. Likewise the Videssos material; and I in fact took much pleasure in the fantasy WWII (“Darkness”) series – would be hard put to it to explain why: looked at dispassionately, it would seem to be an exceedingly “lame” idea. For me, the “Southern Victory” series had its moments; but I found it to go on repetitiously, for far too many books – and so much of it was just slavish mirror-imaging of “real” history through the 1920s, 30s, and early 40s. Irritatingly to me, it appears to be the “Southern Victory” series, which most Turtledove buffs want to discuss – to the point of their seeming to have little interest to spare for the rest of HT’s works.

For me, absolute rock-bottom among what I’ve read of Turtledove’s, is the “sorcerous Civil War” stuff – “Sentry Peak” and the rest. I found it beyond dire – struggled through the first volume and half of the second, then said “stuff this”.

According to Stirling’s website, The Golden Princess is the first book in a new trilogy set in the Emberverse.

Five chapters now online.