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The Domination Hardcover – May 31, 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 784 pages
  • Publisher: Baen; First Edition edition (May 31, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671577948
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671577940
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.4 x 1.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #887,418 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

It's about time! No more scouring used-book stores for tattered copies to replace the ones you loaned your friends: the first two installments of S.M. Stirling's superlative military-SF/alternate-history Draka trilogy are back in print, bound along with the third installment in hardcover. The only downside to this collection--which spans Marching Through Georgia, Under the Yoke, and The Stone Dogs--is the disappointing omission of the helpful maps, glossary, and so on that appeared in the original editions. But as some consolation, we at least get a bit of new backstory for the pseudo-sequel to Stone Dogs, Drakon, in the form of a prologue and a few interspersed paragraphs bookending each title.

The Draka series (dubbed The Domination in this collection) still requires a strong stomach--you'll find no shortage of blood and bullets or sex and violence here. But it's prudish to argue with Stirling's choices. A skilled writer and rigorous thinker, he's spun a compelling--not to mention plausible and well-researched--alternate history for earth: in this timeline, the Loyalists losers in the American Revolution set up shop in South Africa and then proceed to subjugate and industrialize the continent, eventually exporting their brutal system of slavery and conquest through WWI, WWII, and beyond to cover the better part of the globe. Page-turning, blood-pumping, realistic, and masterfully written combat SF, The Domination is part of the genre's canon. --Paul Hughes

Review

"[Stirling is] a writer to be reckoned with".-- Wilson Library Bulletin

Customer Reviews

Some say they're great works of alternate history, some say they're unrealistic garbage.
Jeph Gord
They're a cultural that is so anti-ethical to us that they seem evil, but if you're truly open minded, then you can see how the Draka see their way as THE way.
Corey Somavia
The Draka are enough like us that we should see ourselves in them, making the nightmare far more believable.
T. G. Lindsay

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

62 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Jeph Gord on July 4, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If you've ever looked at an alternate history wep site or discussion group, you've no doubt noticed numerous references to the Draka books. Some say they're great works of alternate history, some say they're unrealistic garbage. Either way, these books seem to inspire a great deal of emotion. So what's the buzz about? Find out in this volume, which contains all of the original Draka trilogy (Marching through Georgia, Under the Yoke, and the Stone Dogs).
This series has a somewhat unusual point of divergence. It came in the 1770s, when Britain conquered South Africa. After the American Revolution, many of the defeated British loyalists moved to this fledgling colony, where they went about building a new nation, which eventually came to be called the Draka Domination. This energetic, militaristic slave-holding society rapidly spread across the continent of Africa, becoming a power in its own right. At this point, the timeline gets somewhat improbable. Despite the presence of this large, powerful, economically influential political entity, the rest of the world develops much as it did in real life (although the USA successfully conquers Canada, Mexico, and central America during the course of the 19th century). It seems that the Draka should have a much bigger impact on history.
Dispite the problem of plausibility, however, this volume makes for a very compelling read. The Draka are in the unique position of being both fascinating protagonists and terrifying villains. Throughout the course of the (one-volume) trilogy, most of the viewpoint characters are Draka. We are given an in-depth look at their society, which places great emphasis on both military prowess and artistic talent. However, we also see the dark side of this society.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By McKinneyTexas on November 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This review comes well after the publication of The Domination and the primary purpose is to address some of the negative reviews that might otherwise disuade a potential reader. Most of the criticism is grounded on what the critics assert is an implausibly high level of technology in the Draka time line. Two points: First, if the negative reviewers had been afforded the original novels with their extremely detailed appendices, they would be fully up to speed on why technology advanced quicker in Stirling's alternative world than it did in our own. Second, no one can credibly claim that, given different historical stimuli, our technological level could not be more or less advanced depending on circumstances that, as Stirling did, can only be imagined.
The point is, the first time reader should really read the original novels, then read Drakon AND then read The Domination. And, actually, the only reason to read The Domination is the teasers about the post-Drakon world that, with any luck at all, we will see in book form in the not to distant future.
On the general subject of Alternate History, Stirling and Turtledove are both masters of detail and authenticity, and thus the leaders of this genre. I give Stirling the slight edge for one simple reason: he links, or at least gives himself the option to link, his books even beyond what his fans might first perceive.
Consider this: His two most widely read and discussed solo series, the Draka series and Nantucket series, have a cross-time event as the central plot device. The similarities between the the cross-time mechanisms in these two seemingly unrelated series are not accidental, in my opinion. As a big fan, my hope is that we might someday be treated to a connection between these two series.
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33 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Hm, the reviewers below seem kind of nitpicky. They may not realize this, but in history, even a small twist of fate can have huge impact on the timeline.
Sure, the Draka have more advanced technology, but why is this so improbable? If you had gone back 5-600 years and told someone that western Europe would significantly outstrip China in technology and power in couple of hundred years, you would have been laughed at. Or if you had told someone a hundred years ago that China will vastly outsrip the U.S. in technology and power in couple of hundred years, you would have been laughed at again. Yet this is what happened, and almost certainly will happen.
Technical progress is a direct function of social environment and chance. Nothing Stirling writes is implausible as our own timeline.
By the way, let's not be so chauvanistic about the Revolution and the Civil War. Loyalists lost because there weren't as many of them, and the South lost because they had less industry. It had nothing to do with the people's character.
Finally, that Janissaries fought well is not farfetched. Didn't Indians and African Americans show great courage in WWII, even though they were so severely oppressed? Didn't Rome have many former enemies and second class citizens not fight well for them?
This is a great book, written by a man who is incredibly perceptive and well informed. This is not a book for an intellectual lightweight or a those with a closed mind. It is a very intellectually honest book, and I would say, perhap the greatest science fiction I have ever read.
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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.

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