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Gavin Greig [userpic]

Fear Our Offal Cries!

January 19th, 2009 (07:18 pm)
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current location: KY16 8SX

I’ve just finished reading Between the Rivers, by Harry Turtledove. For more detail, follow the link, but it follows the fortunes of a particular resident of the city of Gibil who, among other achievements, manages to set off a war between his city and the neighbouring one.

Maybe it’s just me but I don’t think, if I were a native of Gibil, that I would be inspired to acts of bravery  in the field by the war cry: Forward the Giblut! Forward the Giblut!


Posted by: Nik Whitehead (sharikkamur)
Posted at: January 19th, 2009 10:30 pm (UTC)

I've not read too much Turtledove - I got about two books into the World War:In The Balance series and gave up, although I did manage his Shakespeare one. Forward the Giblut! does sound a little less than encouraging. :)

Have you read David Drake/Eric Flint's Belisarius series? They're set during the late Roman period and manage to mix SF, military history and alternative history in quite a fun way. The first four of the series are available from in the Baen Free Library. I'm rather enjoying them myself.

Posted by: Gavin Greig (ggreig)
Posted at: January 19th, 2009 11:00 pm (UTC)
Beep the Meep

I haven't read any of those (Turtledove or the others).

Oddly enough though, the Turtledove I have read consists mainly of the Videssos books. Oddly, because the first series kicks off with a Roman legion who fall out of historical Gaul into the Byzantine Videssian empire. As the Byzantine Empire was the subject of Turtledove's Ph.D., his Videssian tales ought to be at least reasonable.

I read them initially because flybynightpress was running a game with a Videssian background, possibly as much as ten years ago.

Looking back, although there are three Videssos series set at different time periods, it's only the first I remember any detail of, because of the culture clash between Rome and Byzantium Videssos. Might be worth a try.

I'll keep an eye out for the Belisarius books. Which is Turtledove's Shakespeare one?

Posted by: Nik Whitehead (sharikkamur)
Posted at: January 20th, 2009 08:05 am (UTC)

Ah - that would explain the Belisarius books, as they're set to the background of Byzantium's relationship with Persia and India. I must keep an eye out for the Videssian ones then, as they sound similarly inspired.

The Shakespeare one is Ruled Britannia which assumes that the Spanish Armada was successful as its historical difference point.

Posted by: Gavin Greig (ggreig)
Posted at: January 20th, 2009 09:09 am (UTC)
Beep the Meep

Thank you.

If you fancy trying the Videssos books, it's the Videssos Cycle you want first, the first book of which is The Misplaced Legion.

The other two series step further back in history, and there's a relatively recent standalone book (2005) that I haven't read yet, but which goes back further still to "the beginning". flybynightpress wasn't effulgent in his praise.

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