The Warrior’s Apprentice by Lois McMaster Bujold

Miles Vorkosigan is just shy of 5 feet tall, has a crooked spine and incredibly brittle bones.  He’d hoped to follow in his family’s military footsteps but an accident in the testing process resulted in his early discharge from the Academy.  Unfortunately, there’s not much else for a royal to do on the planet of Barrayar, a world which values physical strength and military prowess.  At his father’s suggestion, he sets off for his mother’s home world of Beta Colony for an extended vacation.

Once on Beta, things begin spiraling out of control.  On a whim, Miles bluffs his way aboard a jumpship and determines a new path for himself:  shipping.  He purchases a decrepit ship and, hoping to find a way to pay it off before *that* bluff is discovered, takes a risky commission into a war zone.  More bluffing and many coincidences later, he finds himself the leader of the Dendarii Free Mercenaries, a force sizable enough to make the Emperor of Barrayar question his motives . . . .

One of the things I liked best about The Warrior’s Apprentice is that we see characters working to redefine themselves.  Miles is a great character—his exasperating hyperactivity is mostly entertaining, his compassion is endearing, his determination to make something of himself is admirable.  (That said, he is reckless and his deceptions threaten to catch up to him:  thankfully he has a quick mind, plenty of charisma and lots of sheer dumb luck).  The Warrior’s Apprentice is a fun adrenaline-ride with a couple of dark moments (even Miles can’t halt everything he’s set in motion).

Looking forward to more Miles Vorkosigan adventures!

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Kathy Martin said,

    I envy you very much for just discovering the Miles Vorkosigan books. You have lots of wonderful stories ahead of you. Please don’t stop reading Lois’s books until you have read all of them. I really like her most recent series – The Sharing Knife too.


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