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MOBI Lois McMaster Bujold Ù Cordelia's Honor Epub è Ù

In her first trial by fire Cordelia Naismith captained a throwaway ship of the Betan Expeditionary Force on a mission to destroy an enemy armada Discovering deception within deception treachery within treachery she was forced into a separate peace with her chief opponent Lord Aral Vorkosigan he who was called The Butcher of Komarr and would conseuently become an outcast on her own planet and the Lady Vorkosigan on his Sick of combat and betrayal she was ready to settle down to a uiet life interrupted only by the occasional ceremonial appearances reuired of the Lady Vorkosigan But when the Emperor died Aral suddenly became guardian of the infant heir to the imperial throne of Barrayar and the target of high tech assassins in a dynastic civil war that was reminiscent of earth's Middle Ages but fought with up to the minute biowar technology Neither Aral nor Cordelia guessed the part that their cell damaged unborn son would play in Barrayar's bloody legacy This edition includes an author's afterword and a chronology of the events in the Vorkosigan Saga series Cover art by Gary Ruddell

10 thoughts on “Cordelia's Honor

  1. says:

    Shards of Honour 35 Stars This was a fun start to an interesting series The main characters were likeable and interesting especially the gradual reveal of Vorkosigan's past and the plot was fast paced filled with a series of exciting adventures The world building was solid but nowhere near as ambitious intriguing and memorable as the first book in the other sci fi series I have experience with Hyperion The secondary characters were for the most part also not particularly remarkable with the exception of the menacing and tormented Sergeant Bothari I'm definitely interested to see where this series goes from here especially in how the weird publication vs reading vs chronological order debate will effect the series' developmentAftermaths 45 stars This was a short story that only had a tenuous connection to the events of the 2 main books With the setting of 2 characters aboard a small space ship on a mission to recover the bodies of those killed in a recent war the tone was suitably subdued and introspective Overall I found this to be a somewhat creepy but deeply poignant story Barrayar 4 starsJumping around a bit in reading book 7 after book 1 in this series but it worked pretty well This book started out brilliantly with some understated well as understated as assassination attempts and high risk experimental surgeries can be family turmoil politics and character development taking center stage While it wasn't particularly dramatic Bujold's masterful writing of interesting nuanced characters kept me engaged With the introduction of a much larger and interesting supporting cast than in the first book it's become obvious that writing characters is Bujold's greatest strength her world building is pretty shallow and the plots are for the most part straightforward and over reliant on somewhat cliched adventures but Bujold has now written an impressive cast of colourful nuanced characters Especially interesting in this book were Droushnakovi the female bodyguard who defies the expectations of a warrior society where women aren't supposed to have anything to do with war Princess Kareen who was convincingly written as a woman who had been forced into a series of horrific and difficult situations while struggling to survive and protect her young son Count Piotr a decorated old officer whose old fashioned values bring him into conflict with the main character and especially Sergeant Bothari who was a complex and compelling character in the last book and becomes even so here as we learn about his background and motivationsHowever about half way through the book the focus turned into an isolated trek through the countryside that just seemed to drag on and on And on By the time the plot returned to the important points and characters I had grown to care about I was struggling to maintain my attention Fortunately the conclusion was strong exciting action and some really cool moments where we learned about certain characters and their motivations insights into Sergeant Bothari and how his messed up childhood led to the development of the demons that have plagued him throughout the series were especially compelling Overall this was a good continuation to the series that has left me psyched to check out the rest of the series especially as these first 2 books often felt like a prologue to the really start of the series with the appearance of Miles in book 2

  2. says:

    This is an omnibus edition of 'Shards of Honor' and 'Barrayar''Shards of Honor' is the first novel in what has since become an extensive series of which I've read a great many It's always odd to go back and read an early book featuring characters who were later fleshed out a great deal To be frank this book does not fully live up to many of the later entries into the saga but then how could it really? The world and the people in it have grown in the three decades since this book was writtenNone of this is to say this isn't a good book It is Non combatant Betan scientist Captain Cordelia Naismith and her exploration team are ambushed and attacked by a group of militaristic Barrayaran soldiers Next thing she knows her spaceship must flee leaving her behind Also marooned on the planet is the Barrayaran commander Aral Vorkosigan betrayed by his own men Cooperation may be the only way that either of them can stay alive and the only way that Cordelia can keep a severely injured member of her crew alive as well Forced into proximity the two of them may learn that although they come from wildly disparate cultures as individuals they may have in common than they would have guessedThat's just the beginning of the story and it progresses with plenty of action but also with a very realistic human focus on emotions values and decision makingAt the end of the book 'Aftermaths' a separate short story which was actually written and published before the rest of the book goes even farther with that theme It gives us a look at an aspect of space battles that action packed stories of glory usually skip the civil servants employed to collect the corpses floating in space working an unpleasant but necessary job It's a powerful and heartwrenching taleThe chronological seuel to 'Shards of Honor' 'Barrayar' follows Cordelia Naismith as she defects from Beta in order to make her way to Barrayar and find her former captor Aral Vorkosigan a man she has come to love and respectIt's not incomprehensible that her Betan psychologists assume that she must be suffering from something like Stockholm syndrome or some insidious mental conditioning The suspicion cast on her means that even though the war between Beta and Barrayar is technically over Cordelia must leave the familiar comforts of home behind and give herself fully to her new life on primitive violent militaristic Barrayar Nearly immediately she finds herself plunged into the dizzying complexity of the upper levels of Barrayaran politics as Aral discovers that the peaceful retirement he'd been planning is not in the cards for him And that's not the only sudden change Cordelia is pregnantIf you've read later books in this series a great deal of this book is a lot of tension waiting for certain events that you've already read about to happen It's intentional on the author's part this book involves her backtracking and filling in details about events that have already been referred to in other books I think it would be an eually enjoyable although different experience to read it without already having been introduced to Miles and knowing the difficulties and circumstances surrounding his birth

  3. says:

    Actual rating 45 starsThis is a combined volume consisting of numbers 1 7 of the Vorkosigan saga Shards of Honor and Barrayar It is hard for me to believe but although they are two halves of the same story there was about 10 years between their original publication dates I am really glad to have read them togetherI really enjoyed Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan as a main character She was practical capable smart and sensible And despite all of that she fell in love with a guy on the wrong side of a war This was kind of an anti fairy tale romance Cordelia and Aral are mature people not impulsive 20 somethings They talk about the things that are bothering them and they count on one another for support In short they have a real relationshipCordelia is from a rather Gene Roddenberry esue culture that of the Beta Colony Decisions are made rationally government is democratic knowledge is valued sexual preferences are publically acknowledged and frank discussions are seen as normal Sure a scientific expedition of Betans is rather like herding cats—everyone thinks they get a vote—but the aim is reasonably pure I adored Bujold’s idea of uterine replicators to take the nasty part out of pregnancy—and all their medical procedures are first rateContrast that with Aral’s society on Barrayar A military hierarchy a royal family ineuality of men and women hidebound by tradition a bit primitive in medical technology As Cordelia struggles to figure out all of the nuances of this society there are bound to be misunderstandings Add to that political intrigue and you’ve got a recipe for a good storyI also appreciated that there’s no pretense that people have forgotten Earth and its history They discuss Medieval history and one character in particular has become a devotee of the Maruis de Sade I’ve always thought it would be a bit weird to have a society forget its roots while still having enormous databases full of informationFavourite bits The Betan psychiatrist and the fish tank; Cordelia’s use of a shopping bag at the end of Barrayar This is my first venture into Ms Bujold’s writing but I think I can safely say that I love her style and will happily work my way through this whole seriesBooks 211 and 212 of my science fiction and fantasy reading project

  4. says:

    The precursor to her Vorkosigan saga this is an omnibus of two books featuring Miles's mother Cordelia It is amazingly well written and not only a wonderful sweeping Space Opera but uite romantic and sweet The first installment is essentially a survival story on an alien world with enemies forced to survive and uncover treachery together The second half is political as Cordelia now an outcast from her own culture enters Vor politics in her own fierce and indomitable way Cordelia is witty snarky and tough with an innate sense of right and wrong and true grace under fire I'm interested in her character than in the events leading up to Miles' birth as I've never had the time or inclination to commit to the full seemingly endless Vorkosigan saga Please don't tell me how sad this makes you or how I should rush out and buy now now now it's my retirement plan The true beauty of this omnibus is that it stands alone and gives great insight into Bujold's brilliance

  5. says:

    45 Stars Cordelia's Honor is a fascinating novel or rather a fascinating omnibus having been split down the middle Well not the precise middle but that middle we mortals all mean when we say middle The middle that's a little to the left However either way this novel was split into two novels a sort of conjunctive novel and as such I will discuss my reaction to the two different stories Shards of Honor 4 Stars This novel flings its readers directly into the action causing the two romantic interests of this space opera to be flung together uickly and decisively Aral Vorkosigan and Cordelia Naismith are two intriguing characters however their romance proved to be unbelievable a little fast paced and rushed It was a bunch of teasing flirting and then suddenly they were in love? I didn't really buy it that much In fact the major problem that prevented me liking this book as much as I could was the pacing At times it was too uick at times it was too slow I did like the plot which involved a war between two cultures in space and of course the romantic elements and some close calls where some very gruesome things almost happened to Cordelia But it was all okay because this is a fictional novel and nothing bad happens to characters in fiction right unless you're GRR Martin or Cormac McCarthy nothing but bad seems to happen to you then Barrayar 5 StarsIt was easy to see why Barrayar is the winner of a Hugo for best sci fi of the year As science fiction goes this was magnificent It had the science fictional gadgets it had the characters it had the setting it had conflict and it had political intrigue The speed of the plot was far even and the character interactions and romantic angles levelled and believable As for the plot well this novel focused on the culture shock experienced by Cordelia in a different world as well as a power vacuum created by the loss of a ruler As such a kind of 'game of thrones' begins without so many character deaths as GRR Martin and Cordelia proves why she is one of the strong women of fiction The relationships between characters in this novel were perhaps the highlight for me I loved Kou and Drou I found Aral and Cordelia to be one of the best relationships in fiction not just science fiction and I loved the complexity of Bothari as a character He's the insane character kept in check by meds and the strength of Cordelia's personalityUltimately this is an omnibus that must be read by all sci fi fans I particularly encourage the first novel for space opera and romance lovers and I particularly encourage the second for anyone who just loves a good sci fi read It certainly is one of the best character driven sci fi novels I've read and I will read of the Vorkosigan Saga

  6. says:

    As I finish up listening to this series I couldn't help but go back and start a reread of the first two omnibus editions; both first read several years agoShards of Honor is still a book that does not do the series that follows justice It is disjointed jumps in time without transition though at least it avoids tedious filler of unimportant events and lacks the mix of humor and serious later books have Bujolds ability to give characters real personality shines early though Barrayer though is a different animal The humor is there the heartbreak is there What amazes me though is how seamlessly she ties in a seuel to her first book after the next few books set 20 years later have already been written It doesn't feel like a retcon; as a reader joining the series much later I would have never know there was a gap between writing the first two books in the chronology

  7. says:

    I'm not going to lie guys I didn't like Shades of Honor which is the first book in this bind up I thought the story moved a little too fast to the point characters were lacking development The romance was bland and the plot is one I read in hundred of books in multiple genres I didn't understand why people like Lois Bujold so much Why do people say she's the ueen of Scifi if this is her best work? The only thing keeping me from dnfing the series was a short story at the end called Aftermath A short story that made me cry so I kept going and I'm glad I did because Barrayar is amazing “You should have fallen in love with a happy man if you wanted happiness But no you had to fall for the breathtaking beauty of painBarrayar takes place after the events of Shades of Honor and it follows a woman surviving in a society and world that's unfamiliar to her What I enjoyed about this book is Cordelia the womanprotagonist of the two books about how strong she is without seeming unrealistic How she hates the society but finds benefits in it I loved her struggle because it's real She isn't some pity girl who wants to complain about the world; she's sees real danger that anyone would be afraid to face and wants to run yet she stays not because she has to because she loves the people she meets and doesn't want to abandon them or the man she's come to love Don't even get me started on what these people do to her cause I would have hightailed out of there He's bisexual you know He took a delicate sip of his wine Was bisexual she corrected absently looking fondly across the room Now he's monogamousHighly recommend

  8. says:

    Let’s all agree on this right up front the covers of the Vorkosigan Saga books are horrible Just plain awful The cover art for anything published by Baen is pretty bad enough to make even the proud nerds of today cringe and place the book face down whenever possible to avoid being snickered at But these covers in particular with their dramatic poses and odd retro fonts seem to house a strange breed of uasi historical space pulp that embodies everything that “serious readers” should avoid And that’s a damned shame because Bujold writes fantastic accessible science fiction Were I to browse this by cover instead of trying out a no frills ebook version I may well have never discovered itI’ll try to stick to well known details but there are a few mild spoilers here if you want to fly completely blind Cordelia’s Honor is an omnibus comprising two separately published novels Shards of Honor and Barrayar These two books represent the first chronological stories in the sprawling Vorkosigan Saga and begin a generation before the introduction of that saga’s hero Miles Shards of Honor begins with Betan explorer Captain Cordelia Naismith attempting to chart a new unclaimed world Her party is surprised and attacked by a suad of the warlike Barryarans and she barely escapes with her life She finds herself lost on an unfamiliar planet and thanks to a mutiny within the Barryaran ranks she is forced to rely on a gruff Barrayaran outcast named Aral Vorkosigan better known to her people as the Butcher of Komarr She comes to know him better than she would ever have guessed during their ordeal in the wild and their understanding of one another becomes crucial when they meet again once the reason for the Barrayarans' presence on the untouched world becomes clear and their respective peoples stand on the brink of a brutal war The second book Barrayar picks up on the titular planet Having forsaken her homeworld of Beta Colony after her unpleasant homecoming Cordelia attempts to build a peaceful life with her new husband and the eventual birth of their son However after the Barrayaran emperor dies Aral Vorkosigan finds himself manipulated into being the regent for the child heir and thus a prime target for those lusting after the child heir’s power An attempted assassination has dire conseuences for Cordelia’s unborn child and before she and Aral can gain their balance a Barrayaran noble launches an insurrection and attempts to seize control of the empire through force Cordelia loath to accept the responsibilities placed on her by political momentum must decide how far she is willing to go to rescue her fledgling family and how much she should compromise her personal ethics in order to do soThis is the second collected omnibus of seuential novels that I’ve read in the past year third if you count graphic novels and I’m starting to notice a distinct feeling that the novels contained within such volumes work a lot better together than they do apart I can’t decide whether that’s a psychosomatic thing that’s brought on by there being so many pages left after getting through one book; I finished Shards of Honor feeling like should have happened and glad that I had a second half to move on to In retrospect I think that has everything to do with Bujold’s writing style and I’m pretty sure I would have liked each book on its own had I approached them that way These books are referred to as a “saga” and that’s an appropriate label This is the first entry in a space opera that spans great distances unravels intricate political intrigues and narrates epic battles but it’s immediately clear that the books are first and foremost about the characters The saga follows the rise and fall of its players and the landmark events in the plot provide the catalyst and backdrop for the landmark changes in the character arcs This is what makes these books transcend pulp sci fi and confirms them as a great choice for anyone who wants to read a good storyThere are a couple of snags though The characters are pitch perfect but their dialogue can get a little awkward from time to time The narration is also a little odd as well especially in Shards of Honor Bujold tends to get a little informal with the narrative voice occasionally letting Cordelia’s sardonic humor bleed into the exposition and narration Compounding this problem is the lack of italics or any other device to differentiate character thoughts in the first book making the whole story feel a little slapdash There was apparently a fair amount of time between the publication of the first book of this story arc and the second and it definitely shows; Barrayar is much tightly plotted better paced and efficiently narrated than Shards of Honor displaying Bujold’s evolution as an author between the two stories Standing as a testament to her talent however the joining of the actual story is seamless and naturalI am to understand that the Vorkosigan books don’t really get going until we get into the exploits of Miles Vorkosigan but as a newcomer to the series I found this book to be a wonderful introduction to this particular worlds and set of characters It gives insight into the politics and technology of two distinct planets without seeming either contrived or confusing leaving plenty of room to get to know wonderfully nuanced characters like Cordelia Aral Droushnakovi and my favorite Bothari This gets a solid recommendation to any science fiction reader that puts a premium on good characters

  9. says:

    45That was great Both books in this bindup started off relatively slow I even restarted Shards of Honor at one point after stopping around page 70 The story just continued to gain momentum and found a place in my heart Great characters

  10. says:

    It is a good thing that these two books are joined in one volume The first book Shards of Honor is by far the weaker book; however when taken with Barrayar it works Honor sets the stage by introducing the reader to Aral and Cordelia These two would be lovers are from different uasi warring planets Barrayar aka Sparta and Beta aka Athens I found Honor to be the weaker novel The major problem I had was I just didn't by the fact that Aral and Cordelia were in love deeply in love I just didn't buy it I brought the sense of the companionship they had while on planet I brought that they were alike I could even by Aral's first uick proposal because of the culture he comes from Cordelia's reaction and Aral's love I just couldn't buy It's true that Bujold drops hints shot sentences that say Cordelia is attracted to Aral and considering the situation it would hardly be surprising But love? Love enough to leave your home and go some place completely different? Didn't buy it The other problem is Cordelia who in a section of the book seems to be a completely different person She becomes stupid for several chapters in row too stupid to be chalked up to simply understandably stress The best part of the book for me was the epilogue that featured none of the main characters and focused on the cost of war in a harsher degree than the rest of the book I felt for those characters in particular Boni then I did for Aral and Cordelia Barrayar is completely different From the first paragraph it is uite easily to tell the writing is far polished Cordelia and Aral not only seem real here but so does their relationship I couldn't buy them falling in love in the first book but I brought them as an united married couple in the second As Bujold herself and several other reviewers have pointed out the theme of motherhood runs throughout this second novel I found however the most touching and affecting part to be the conversation between Cordelia and Bothari Bothari's struggles and concern his repentance even were touching than his caring of the children Perhaps because at the end he seems devoted to Miles than to Elena or perhaps because I don't have children myself With Bothari Bujold gives the reader a different kind of victim She also fully addresses rape here than in Barrayar both books combining uite well in looking at the ramifications Bujold does a good job using both Bothari and Kou to explore the mental and physical effects of war on members of a Spartan societyI have to say though I do wonder about books like Barrayar This isn't a comment just on Bujold but on other writers as well I always feel strange when reading a book or watching a movie where a woman leaves a place where she has power to go and live in a totally new society where she doesn't have very much Bujold does it with Cordelia Marion Zimmer Bradley did it to a degree with her Darkover novels and no I'm not talking about the Free s; I'm talking about Magda While Bujold does show the reader Cordelia's anger or dislike of some of the rules and gives us Drou who is wasted or precieved as wasted in the society I never feel that the examination of Cordelia's reaction goes as far as it could I have yet to read a book that really does so and I have to wonder why such fiction appeals because it does But would I want to give up my right to vote my right to wear what I want my right to anything because of love? I can only think of two books that tackle the idea of a role reverse in such a situation The Ruins of Isis and The Gate to Women's Country