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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Strong entry in a terrific series
This book marks the turning point of Miles Vorkosigan/Naismith's life. Without giving away the plot, there's not much else to say. Miles faces his life, his choices and himself, in prose so brutally honest that it almost hurts to read. But the writing is beautiful, the plot twisty and surprising, and the characters glorious. This is the culmination of all that has...
Published on August 28, 2000 by Marcy L. Thompson

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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit slow
Fans of Bujold's Miles Vorkosigan saga will probably enjoy the personal growth of the series' hero in "Memory." Miles, cashiered from his beloved military for lying about a serious incident precipitated by one of his seizures - an aftereffect of his cryo-resurrection - falls into a depression on his home world, the rigidly class-conscious Barrayar.
And...
Published on June 4, 2004 by Lynn Harnett


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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Strong entry in a terrific series, August 28, 2000
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This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
This book marks the turning point of Miles Vorkosigan/Naismith's life. Without giving away the plot, there's not much else to say. Miles faces his life, his choices and himself, in prose so brutally honest that it almost hurts to read. But the writing is beautiful, the plot twisty and surprising, and the characters glorious. This is the culmination of all that has gone before, and I strongly recommend that you read what has gone before. prior to dipping into this novel.
_Memory_ is a fabulous book. It would be well worth reading if it had only the great story, or only the incredibly well-drawn characters, or only the deeper layers of meaning. When you combine all of these, and add in the absolutely sublime prose, you have a fabulous book. Read the precursors, then read this. You won't be sorry.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best of the first 10 books..., March 13, 2000
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This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
I will venture the very bold statement that Bujold is the best woman SF writer active today (ealier claiments to that title would be LeGuin and C. J. Cherry). This series of Bujold's (about Miles) is really a remarkable work. Not only is it extensive (10+ books) but it has gone after things in a strongly chronological fashion. Instead of skipping forward and backwards in time, picking off the highlights, this series has (with a few exceptions) moved forward in time very "cleanly". I really get the feeling that I'm reading about a real person's life.
One remarkable aspect to this series is that while it is science fiction, it is very strongly about character development as well. Miles changes over time. Most other people in the series don't change but then, most other people in the books are older than Miles and more set in their ways. Another interesting thing about this series is that the "galaxy" in which this book is set is slowly coming into focus. We only see bits and pieces of the Miles galaxy but even so, it is developing very nicely as a coherent, believable background for the stories.
Now this book, Memory, is a real turning point in Miles life and in the series. It marks (what seems to be) a turn away from "space opera" and towards something new... science fiction for policy wonks? Its hard to describe but the old days of blasting your enemies are replaced by the new, more mature challenges of politics and character assassination. It also represents a chance for Bujold to engage in some "romance".
Don't take this wrong, this is not some romance novel, but it is a novel that in many ways is about relationships. Its rare to read a SF novel that is this carefull balance of comedy, mystery, and character.
Bottom line: Bujold's Miles series started pretty well 15 years ago and has transformed into a series that is unlike anything that has been written before. I find it highly enjoyable and this book is one of the best "installments" in the life of Miles.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A New Career for Miles, July 3, 2002
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This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
The first half of the book deals with Miles' old life as Admiral Naismith becoming a memory: he has to re-invent himself (again). Tragic circumstances - his former mentor's loss of memory - open up an unusual opportunity for our hero: to become an Imperial auditor. To quote from the book: "imperial with capital imp".
So the book becomes a mystery with Miles as the investigator and - naturally - his cousin Ivan as the sidekick. And it is a great story with all the colorful, romantic background of Barrayar.
If "Mirror Dance" was the very dark but brilliant story about his clone-brother becoming Lord Mark, then this is Miles' turn to really become Lord Vorkossigan, new suite and kitchen-staff included. There is also romance in the book, but it mostly evades Miles - well, at least the emperor is happy ...
A mystery, romance, a search for oneself - it's all there in this book. I regard it as one of the best of this brilliant series. To read it before "Komarr" (and consequently "A Civil Campaign") is recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Introspective look at Miles, February 4, 2002
By 
David Roy (Vancouver, BC) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
While Mirror Dance is still the best Vorkosigan book so far, Memory is almost up there. After having explored Miles' brother Mark's character so vividly in Mirror Dance, Bujold turns to her main character in Memory, bringing Miles to a turning point in his life and showing what makes him tick. She does this by having Miles go through a crisis of conscience that ends up blowing up in his face.
After what happened to him in Mirror Dance, Miles goes through some introspection about the way his career has gone. What he does puts him at odds with Simon Illyan, the head of Imperial Security. The results from this send Miles on a downward mental spiral. While all of this is going on, a plot against Simon presents itself, and Miles has to figure out what's going on. Seeing how Miles deals with all of this is one of the best things about the book. The last couple of Bujold books have shown a great maturity in writing style that I really like.
A couple of reviewers have mentioned how predictable the Simon plot is. I have to agree, but I would say that it's beside the point. The reason for this novel is not the plot against Simon, but how Miles deals with it, and how he incorporates it into his dealing with his other issues. It doesn't matter that the plot is predictable, because the only reason it is there is to showcase Miles and his thought processes. In handling this dilemma, Miles makes great strides in his maturity. He's gone past the daring-do of his Admiral Naismith persona and become a much more well-rounded person. He discovers that he's been denying his real self as Miles Vorkosigan, and burying it in Admiral Naismith.
It's a great treat to read this book and see how Miles progresses. He comes out of the book a much better person than he went into it as. I really like the way the character has progressed. I also like the way Bujold has refused to leave Miles a static character. Too many series fall into that trap of never having major changes to the lead character. Miles is still incredibly interesting, but he's not the same man who started the series.
I would not recommend starting your reading of the Miles series with Memory. It references every single book and story that Miles has starred in so far. Everything is explained well enough for the first time reader, but I think you'd get more enjoyment out of it if you've read the previous books. However, Memory is a standout in the series, and should definitely be read by any Bujold fan. I'm enjoying my run through this series (though I'm taking a break now before moving on to Komarr), and that's certainly a great way to be exposed to the saga. I heartily recommend doing it that way. Buy them all!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loss of Memory and Dreams, October 13, 2005
This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
The problem with long running series is that usual at some point the stories get stale. Not so with the Miles Vorkosigan series because Bujold allows her characters to grow and change with their experiences. In the last book, Miles nearly lost his life but thanks to the miracles of medicine he has another shot at serving his world however, there are after effects of that resurrection. Miles comes face to face with limitations, limitations that could change is life radically. Meanwhile, on Barrayar changes are occuring that set in motion a chain of events that will change the face of ImpSec for years to come.

Not much more can be said without spoiling the book for you. However, there is a starkness to this book that causes the reader as well as Miles to evaluate the meaning of honor, justice, reward, and punishment. Can we be true to ourselves if we are false to those around us? Does the end justify the means as long as we get what we want in the end? What are you willing to trade for your hearts desire? The passionate wanting of Miles to serve is so strong you just bleed for him in this no holds barred novel where Miles faces temptation and must solve a mystery to save a friend.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 stars, actually, January 3, 2001
This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
I began the Miles saga with Memory, and although I did not understand several allusions at the beginning of the book, the story rolled along anyway, building momentum. I CARED what happened to this aging adolescent (the story begins just shy of his 30th birthday.) Miles has managed to finagle his way through repeated scams, and in this book, the scams all catch up with him at once. One thinks of "coming of age" stories as happening in the late teens and early 20's, and of dealing with learning to relate to others. Instead, Miles must deal with a deep split in his identity, and forge, quite literally, a psychic INTEGRITY he didn't even know he lacked. And at the same time, he must decide whether a crime has been committed against his former mentor, and if so, what to do about it. Memory worked for me on every level. I've laughed and cried through it and the other Miles books 5 times in the few months since I began reading them. Yes, the allusions make more sense now that I know who the other characters are and what the history is. But this is Miles's story, and my GOD, what a story it is! A must read!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flat, but rich, October 13, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
I don't regret buying this book.
As the latest book that I've read of Miles's adventures, perhaps it is a wee bit flat. Not very exciting overall. BUT I totally love this book as it expands and (conversely) encapsulates the Vorkosigan world approx. 230 odd years since 'Falling Free'. Similar to Asimov's style - for the series portraying the possible future of a (rather) roboticised world - of not making a continuous character the continual central character, Miles Vorkosigan is subsumed in the events surrounding his life, i.e. the intrigue against Illyan, rather than causing chaos (as in the Little Admiral's adventures). Bujold treats Miles as she did Ethan of Athos, as eyes to tell a greater story and yet a character in his own right.
I enjoyed reading the little digressions from the central theme, relating the details of other people in Miles' life, such as his Emperor, and Miles' friends from previous adventures. I also enjoyed the method by which new and interesting characters are introduced into "our" Vorkosigan world. (Analogous to past Pratchett 'Discworld' books, where the most laugh-on-a-bus of the story is a mere footnote.) Wait 'til you meet Zap the cat.
Dare I say that Miles grows up? I believe that 'Memory' is more than a mere sci-fi mystery wi' a bit of psychology thrown in. It is a good story set in an interesting world, populated with believable characters. Miles' personality becomes more complex (as we all should when we grow), and Miles learns to know himself better (as I wish I could), and a sub-theme throughout seems to be "life goes on".
I wouldn't catergorise 'Memory' as puff pastry, but maybe puff savoury (as only Miles' new cook can make it - with perhaps a side dip, or a filling of dairy products after it passes through the cook's domain ). That's the way I see it, that's the way I call it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good lord, can this woman write a damn good story!, October 15, 2002
By 
Dussan (Baltimore, MD United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
I like my heroes tall dark, handsome. Namely because I am tall, dark, and relatively handsome (or so my mother and various siblings assure me).
I hate short characters. I like to envision myself as the hero of the book, and I can't do that with a dwarfish disfigured hunchback, therefore I dont' like reading about them.
I change my mind.
If you have not read any of the previous Vorkosigan adventures then start with Cordelias Honor, and then pick up Warrior's Apprentice to start the Miles adventures.
For the veterans of the hyperactive dwarfs' previous adventures here is the skinny on this one.
After awaking from cryo-revival, Miles is suffering from some continuous medical problems. After a Dendarii mission, that ends with one little wrinkle ( a damn funny one too!), Miles is recalled home to Barrayar to face the music.
Much of the book deals with Miles' coming to grips with his life without "Admiral Naismith". He struggles to find himself, while at the same time uncover the mystery behind Simon Illyan's damaged memory chip.
While Miles is growing as a character and not an extension of "The Little Admiral", several supporting characters, really come in to there own light. Namely Simon Illyan.
This is a great book, light on action but oh so good a read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Miles grows up., September 22, 1997
This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
by Don Lowry.

Bujold has done it again! This series of books about the Vorkosigans keeps getting better and better . How this latest addition to the ongoing saga would strike someone who has not read its predecessors is hard to say. (Start with Shards of Honor, if possible.) But for those who have read at least most of them, this has to be one of the three or four best of the bunch. It does not have as much action as many of the others, but makes up for that lack in plot, and especially in characterization. This is not just space opera. This book is "literature!" (And I liked it anyway!) Halfway through this book, her central character, Lieutenant Miles Vorkosigan of Barrayaran Imperial Security, alias Admiral Miles Naismith of the Dendarii Mercenaries, ceases to be an adolescent out on a lark, and becomes a responsible citizen of the Empire. And yet his story remains highly entertaining to follow. Bujold showed from the start an ability to create characters of unusual depth and reality, and yet she has greatly outdone herself here. If you have read all of the prequels, by all means, do not fail to read this book. If you have not read the prequels, what are you waiting for? SF doesn't get any better than this
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant !, May 27, 2004
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This review is from: Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) (Mass Market Paperback)
I started the Miles series early this year. At the end of Diplomatic Immunity, I just need to choose my favorite. Memory is definitey my choice. Action may be light in this book. However this book is not about action. Memory is about Miles as a person, his self examination and growth . He faces his crossroad plus all the little devils accumulated in his 30 years life. Miles' transition from the little admiral into Lord Vorkosigan who is his true self is just brilliantly written. I found myself liking the new Miles more. Memory is a treasure.
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Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures)
Memory (Miles Vorkosigan Adventures) by Lois McMaster Bujold (Mass Market Paperback - October 1, 1997)
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