Friday, September 15, 2006

The Armies of Memory by John Barnes

Yay, it's a new Giraut Leones book! Boo, it's the last one! Yay, John Barnes knows when to quit!

The Armies of Memory is the final book in John Barnes' Giraut Leones saga. Of the books I've read by him, this series is certainly his finest work. Giraut Leones is a special agent and spy with a shadowy government organization that attempts to manipulate and influence governments (usually for the greater good) throughout their patch of the galaxy.

Barnes manages to create convincing plots with good characters. What I like best about this series is how he creates planets. Of all the places he has conjured up, none has been a monoculture, and each planet has many different geogological, geographical and meteorolgical environments, just like Earth. It's very unreasonable to assume there are desert worlds like Tattoine.

At 400 pages, it's rather big. Unfortunately, you can definitely skip the first 65 pages, and if you're really brave, you could even start at page 200. He wastes a lot of time before getting into the real plot. By the time he does, it's very good.

If you've never tried this author and like science fiction, it's certainly worth reading.