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Revolution: The Secret World Chronicle III Hardcover – January 7, 2014
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About the Author
Mercedes Lackey is the New York Times best-selling author of the Bardic Voices series and the Serrated Edge series (both Baen), the Heralds of Valdemar series, and many more. Among her popular Baen titles are The Fire Rose, The Lark and the Wren, The Shadow of the Lion, and Burdens of the Dead (with Eric Flint and Dave Freer). She lives in Oklahoma.
Cody Martin is originally from Scottsdale Arizona and currently resides in Florida. An avid gamer, he spends his extra time chained to a computer, writing.
Dennis Lee was born in Seoul, Korea and grew up in Canada. He has a degree in pharmacology and is a cell biologist when not writing.
Veronica Giguere started off as the voice artist for the Secret World Chronicle podcasts then quickly proved her writing chops and was taken on as a series coauthor. Veronica remains active as a voice talent. An educator with a background in mathematics and ocean engineering, she has lent her voice to various research and campus promotional endeavors. She makes her home in Florida.
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Mercedes Lackey, Veronica Giguere, Martin Cody and Dennis Lee
Baen, Jan 7 2014, $25.00
The meta-humans of Echo and CCCP managed to halt the blitzkrieg Invasion by the Nazis in spite of the seemingly superior ultra-powerful weaponry of the invaders. However, inside of Echo a revolt has broken out over the merit of romance writer and techno-mage Victoria Victrix Nagy's Overwatch recording of events while one of Bulwark's Misfits Harmony leaves her mentor in a comatose state (see World Divided). Two other Misfits Bruno and Scope hunt Harmony who has turned into a Blacksnake assassin.
As Nagy improves her Overwatch program while stealthy testing it on CCCP, EMT Bella Dawn Parker AKA Belladonna Blue the healer tries to save Bulwark's life; as Seraphym enters his dreams to lay out his possible futures to him. At the same time General Shen Xue lives inside the body that once belonged to CCCP operative Fel Li who's trapped inside the Jade Emperor's sword Whisper possessed by Xue. The General accosts Echo owner Dominic Verdigris III while his bodyguard Khanjar tries to intervene but fails. However Xue and Verd reach an accord.
As with the second entry (see World Divided), action in the third Secret World Chronicle is a bit muted compared with the opening Invasion as the hostility remains from within and with Echo's adversarial rival Blacksnake rather than the Nazi/Thule threat. The key to this enjoyable fantasy remains with the superhuman filled with flaws that reduce their super qualities to mere human. The engaging storyline emphasizes the shaky political bedfellows who make for Revolution at a time when unity is critical.
Now the gripe. With four writers, proofreaders and an editor from Baen--usually pretty good--I'd expect quite a bit fewer misused words. I kept hearing Inigo Montoya's voice, "I do not think that word means what you think it means," echoing *heh* behind the narrative. One example (of more than there ought to have been, IMO) will stand in for them all.John Murdock, checking team gear before an insertion reflects that, ". . .noise discipline was going to be tantamount [sic] for this insertion."
Tantamount: equivalent in value, significance, or effect.
The word the writers (3 of them listed for this chapter) were groping for was "paramount," and three writers and any proofreader and editor who viewed the text missed that. It takes some serious lack of attention to detail to miss words misused so egregiously, but it happens too often, IMO, in this text. And no, there is no way any argument can be made for the misuse of "tantamount" here, any more than other egregious word misuses can be excused.
That gripe aside (PAY ATTENTION, PROOFREADERS!), it was nevertheless engaging and just a good, fun read. Being bumped out of the story by an occasional bad word choice or infelicitous turn of phrase (admittedly a "negative" where "horse race rules" apply) just meant a pause to pour another cuppa joe and take a brief stretch. Yes. Engaging enough to read in one sitting (with those breaks for refreshment).