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The end of the four-volume Sharing Knife series, in which the romance / action plot, of mutual suspicions between two human cultures, equally threatened by an 'orrible supernatural menace, resolves in entirely satisfactory manner, with much character-building wisdom being imparted to the foolish younger relatives. But I found myself a bit dissatisfied with Bujold's use of the very rich background she has developed, for three reasons: first, the story got way further into the technical details of her world's magical system than I was interested in; second, my niggling concern about the uniqueness of Dag and Fawn's mixed marriage was actually exacerbated when it becomes clear in this book that it isn't unique at all (which disintegrates some of the framing description in the earlier volumes); and third, I got the lingering feeling that the entire story is to an extent an attempt to positively reframe the history of interaction between white settlers and Native Americans (note that the Lakewalkers are magical and basically a warrior culture) - I am not saying that this is a necessary reading of the series, but I would have been more comfortable if some way of deprecating that interpretation had made it into the text.

Anyway, even problematic Bujold is entertaining enough, but I'm not sure how strongly I recommend the series as a whole.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 4th, 2012 06:26 pm (UTC)
To be honest, I thought the series was over by the third book! Hm... now to decide if I want to read this one.
Jan. 4th, 2012 07:46 pm (UTC)
IIRC I think there was a very brief mention of half-breeds in the very first book, when Dag was considering Aunt Nattie's mild Groundsense. Frankly, I would have been more surprised if there hadn't been any besides Fawn and Dag's get. Note that a lot of the first section of Horizon is Dag getting cut down for trying to reinvent the wheel. By the time they're on their way to Tripoint I'd gotten the impression that the Hickory Lake and other northern Lakewalkers were poor country cousins compared to their southern kin.

And yeah, there's a heckuva lot of Magicial Native American to the Lakewalkers, but there's also enough divergence that the initial premise didn't bother me all that much.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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