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Cauldron of Ghosts (Crown of Slaves) Hardcover – April 8, 2014

4.2 out of 5 stars 253 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

With over seven million copies of his books in print and seventeen titles on the New York Times bestseller list, David Weber is the science fiction publishing phenomenon of the new millennium. In the hugely-popular Honor Harrington series, the spirit of C.S. Forester’s Horatio Hornblower and Patrick O’Brian’s Master and Commander lives on—into the galactic future. Books in the Honor Harrington and Honoverse series have appeared on fourteen best seller lists, including those of The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and USA Today. While Weber is best known for his spirited, modern-minded space operas, he is also the creator of the Oath of Swords fantasy series and the Dahak saga, a science fiction and fantasy hybrid. Weber is has also engaged in a steady stream of bestselling collaborations including his Starfire Series with Steve White, which produced the New York Times bestseller The Shiva Option among others. Weber’s collaboration with alternate history master Eric Flint led to the bestselling 1634: The Baltic War, and his planetary adventure novels with military science fiction ace and multiple national best-seller John Ringo includes the blockbusters March to the Stars and We Few. Finally, Weber’s teaming with Linda Evans produced the bestselling Multiverse series. David Weber makes his home in South Carolina with his wife and children.

Eric Flint is a modern master of alternate history fiction, with over three million books in print. He’s the
author/creator of the New York Times best-selling Ring of Fire series. With David Drake he has written six popular novels in the “Belisarius” alternate Roman history series, including, and with David Weber collaborated on 1633 and 1634: The Baltic War. Flint was for many years a labor union activist. He lives in Chicago, Illinois.
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Product Details

  • Series: Crown of Slaves (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Baen; First Edition edition (April 8, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476736332
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476736334
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (253 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #271,842 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
David Weber and Eric Flint are among my favorite authors... but this is not my favorite book by either one let alone both of them. As with all these sideline books Honor only appears in cameo roles but that’s to be expected.

This is not a book to be read out of context, you need to have read (at least) Torch of Freedom and Crown of Slaves before jumping into this book.

I love the Honorverse... I’ve read every single one of the books (most of them several times) and I eagerly awaited this book. I enjoyed reading it but... well... it left me a bit hollow. And I wonder who edited it... or if there was an editor...

Yes there’s lots of action and Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki turn everything on its ear more than once but... it just doesn’t hang together. It goes from an involved information gathering project to a massive insurrection of the downtrodden seccy’s with some massive steps that simply don’t make sense. Lots of action, just not a lot of sense.

And, as another reviewer noted, the boys spend a lot of time and verbiage convincing Steph Turner to help them return to Mesa and set up a front from which to work but, other than obtaining a ‘store’ it fades into nothing. And, once they’re on Mesa, Steph vanishes. Her boyfriend, Andrew Artlett—who reluctantly follows her—later shows up again and again... what happened to Steph?

And what is all this drooling over Yana’s new boobs and hips as part of her ‘disquise’? It’s annoying, needless and eventually tiresome.

And I found all the violence and atrocities visited on Mesa itself by the Alignment to cover its actions to be flat, needless... and not terribly interesting.

All that said, I did enjoy reading the book and I will buy the next one... I just hope it’s a bit better.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I've been an Honorverse fan since a friend introduced me to On Basilisk Station. I eagerly await the new books. This book unfortunately was no where near the quality on any of the previous books. It almost makes Beginnings look good.

This book has the distinct feel of being a first draft, unedited for continuity or logic. With entire chapters seemingly added just to lengthen the novel. A few examples that may or may not spoil parts of the book follow.

Yana who has been following Victor and Anton, from Mesa to Parmley to Haven to Manticore and now they want her to go back to Mesa with them, so we then get this...

“It’s worth a try,” said Victor. “If we want Yana, we’ll need to send a courier to Parmley Station anyway. We can ask Steph to come back with her. For reasons unspecified, of course—"

But she's been with them, complaining of how bored she is the whole time... Did she leave her favorite gun?

And the authors spend several chapters both discussing Stephanie returning to Mesa and convincing her to return, then once they all get there, she virtually disappears from the book. Similarly the three surviving Mesan Seccie's that helped Zilwicki and co. escape get several scenes and are then rescued only to disappear for the rest of the book.

We get long descriptions of Mesa Alignment atrocities committed to cover up Operation Houdini, but we already know that the Alignment is willing to slaughter anyone for their purposes. It is just more filler to lengthen the book.

Then we get the miracle of Zilwicki figuring out that the Alignment is covering up their leaving Mesa. There is nothing that leads up to this, just out of the blue he figures it out...
Read more ›
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Format: Kindle Edition
This novel can't decide if it is episodic or stand-alone. It ends with an unfinished storyline of an anti-slavery raid, which is an episodic tool, while spending 10-15% of the novel reprising previous events, which a tool used to engage new readers. Some of these reprises are whole chapters lifted from previous novels. For instance, if you have been keeping up this will be the 3rd time you get to read Chapter 19 in its entirety.
Less specifically, some characters activities have gaping holes in their activities. How did Anton obtain the data he is analyzing? Where is he doing it? On his ship? How is he getting back-and-forth?
Also, Mr. Weber’s prose deteriorates noticeably with this novel. For example, identical obscure idioms are used by multiple characters across multiple cultures. And an even better example is obscenities appear to be the only tool used to express anger, disgust, or condescension. In this novel there are 74 uses of f*** as opposed to 15 for a novel released only 3 years ago.
My suggestion is to manipulate some supposed friend into reading it, and have them provide a synopsis.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have every one of Weber's Honorverse novles, the story collections, the spinoffs, etc. and it seems to me that David simply starts to lose interest as the story lines drag/move on and the fluff percentage starts to climb. There is not really anything new in this book and th characters have been more insightful, dramatic, and powerful in prior books. It is time for the Evil Badguys of the Mesan Alignment to be brought to bay, their superweapons and drives neutralized, and wiped out to the last villain. It is time for Merlin to invade the basement of the temple in the Safehold series and string up the Grand inquisitor. The characters - Victor Cachat, Anton Zilwicki, Honor, Michelle Henke, etc have been explored and explained. "Cauldron" is a pleasant read but not gripping at all. Weber needs to reboot his imagination.
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