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Lord of Mountains: A Novel of the Change (Change Series) Hardcover – September 4, 2012

238 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Praise for S. M. Stirling and his Novels of the Change

“Stirling has blazed a clear comet trail across his postapocalyptic landscape that illuminates both the best and the worst of which our species is capable.”—Science Fiction Weekly

“Nobody wrecks a world better than S. M. Stirling, and nobody does a better job of showing that people remain people, with all their high points and low, in the wreckage.”—Harry Turtledove, New York Times Bestselling Author of Supervolcano

“[A] richly realized story of swordplay and intrigue.”—Entertainment Weekly

“Absorbing.”—The San Diego Union-Tribune

About the Author

S. M. Stirling is the author of numerous novels, both on his own and in collaboration. A former lawyer and an amateur historian, he lives in the Southwest with his wife, Jan.


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Product Details

  • Series: Change Series (Book 6)
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Roc; 1 edition (September 4, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451464761
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451464767
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (238 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #80,437 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm a writer by trade, born in France but Canadian by origin and American by naturalization, living in New Mexico at present. My hobbies are mostly related to the craft -- I love history, anthropology and archaeology, and am interested in the sciences. The martial arts are my main physical hobby.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 10, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The "Change" novels (as opposed to the "Islands" novels) have always been a little questionable to me. At times, they are incredibly enjoyable (the first couple especially), but the last few haven't impressed me as much. The impending building of a sense of magic hasn't really sat well with me. It's an interesting transition from science fiction (with a funky premise) to ever more high fantasy. I've seen books go the other way, but never really this direction. It just hasn't worked for me.

With that said, the writing in Lord of Mountains continues to be very tight and on point (as all of Stirling's work), but I just didn't get the goal of the story in this one. We start right in the middle of the great battle, but there isn't really a sense of concern. There's not the slightest bit of worry here that Rudi and his team (basically every culture we've seen in the course of this series except three) might lose. There's no tension and a lack of tension means a lack of drama.

This book almost felt like an epilogue or coda, rather than a complete story. The climax of the great battle occurs and then things start wrapping up and I had to look at the page count. I couldn't believe we were on the downhill slope of the story. The book hadn't felt like it had gotten a plot going.

I wonder if the last book was too long and this is where they decided to chop it? Because Lord of Mountains really didn't feel like a stand-alone book to me. It felt like wrapping up loose ends to the series without a real plot in place.

We met several new characters in the book, and yet, nothing is done with them! Two young squires are developed as characters, but they don't have any kind of actual arc. We meet them. They bond.
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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Staylor on September 16, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I was once a huge fan of the Change series. A few years ago I could not wait for the first of September so that I could get plunged back into the unique postapocalyptic work that Stirling has created. That being said, I bought this book out of sheer obligation rather then actual desire. The last book in the series (Tears of the Sun)was such a dull, plodding bore that it sucked away the enthusiasm that I had felt for this series and directed it towards other authors.
While Stirling is still a great writer he has allowed himself to waste his prose on describing Protectorate party dress, McKenzie eating habits and walks through meadows instead of driving a story, developing characters or surprising his readers. These bad habits, which are latent in all Stirling novels, reached their apogee in the last book where we had four hundred pages of describing largly unimportant characters, places and events prior to the novel abruptly ending before the climax. This novel is mostly about that climax and as such is better than its predecessor though they really should have been one book.
The book started out weak (another Protectorate dinner party, if I have to read the terms parti colored hose or houppe lande one more time I may just go crazy) but got stronger as we actually had some action and plot movement. Unfortunently, the pacing just does not work when you have a book that is basically the climax for the last book and after the big battle that this entire series has been building up to is finished we are treated to another hundred pages of mostly inconsequential filler that we have already been told until this tome finally whimpers to a close with many plot elements unresolved.
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36 of 42 people found the following review helpful By ElkRiverJohn on September 27, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read all the previous books in this series and liked them. I am so disappointed in this one that I hope there are no others! Rather than an action filled story that stimulated my imagination, I bought a rambling story filled with trivia about medieval dress and customs that I am not interested in. I paid top dollar for this book and didn't get what I expected. I read to the 90% mark and just stopped. I don't care what happens to these characters. Sterling took my money and did not deliver.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Phil on December 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Another greasy one plops onto the pile that is Stirling's book mountain.

This go-around I fulfilled my promise not to buy the book but instead picked it up at the library. It's worth a skimmed read if you essentially enjoy the world but it's as good/bad as the last few. The big battle is tensionless in the set-up and pretty ho-hum as it plays out. It consists of all the stuff we've read before numerous times.... massive arrow volleys, a big cavalry charge, the TUNG of field artillery, etc. etc. That's too bad because if there are high points to these books it's the action scenes and the atmospheric descriptive passages. This one is too populated with grating, awkward, and often sugary sweet conversations.

Of course the book is populated with the stock passages and micro scenes familiar to anyone who has read a book in this series. Warriors identified by their thick wrists or calluses. Characters sticking their tongues out at each other. There are plenty of wimples and girdles and more esoteric clothing descriptions. I recall at least one lol moment with passages such as " Her soft Court shoes were chamois as well, and the toes turned up--moderately.". Likewise for armor, rather than a description of a helm you get terms like 'sallet'.

In the end I'm not even sure I'll pick up the next one even if it is free... because my time is not. Not sure that I care what happens next and the real question is will anything advance in this series? After all the main changes across the latest books are along the lines of whether the main character wears a 'houppeland' or a 'sprechenfrock' or whatever. Will they eat slabs of cornbread or 'beaten biscuits'?
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