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The Legions Of Fire (2010)

by David Drake(Favorite Author)
3.19 of 5 Votes: 1
0765320789 (ISBN13: 9780765320780)
Tor Books
The Books of the Elements
review 1: I've come to think of David Drake as a fairly good fantasy writer and a really terrific science fiction writer, so I approached this first volume of a new series more or less wishing that the characters on the cover had on space suits rather than togas. However, I was most pleasently surprised and enjoyed the story very much. The characters are a family and a few friends and the book reminded me more than anything of Christopher Stasheff's wonderful Warlock books... a much, much darker world than Stasheff's, of course, but a very good thing nonetheless. One point that confused me is that the story is set in Rome in the year 30 A.D., but the city is called Carce. All of the other things and people and places keep their historical names, so it was a little jarring to read "C... morearce" on the page while hearing "Rome" in my mind. The story was captivating, the historical detail fascinating, and the characters enjoyable and well-developed; I enjoyed it more than his previous fantasy series, the Isles books.
review 2: This was a New Year's gift from Chris Swanson. I thoroughly enjoyed it, though perhaps for the wrong reasons - the writing isn't great, nor is the plot particularly lucid. But it is set in an alternate-history world in which Rome is replaced with a city called Carce, and is set during the Principate. The alternate-history world is on a collision course with more magical worlds, seemingly based on Norse mythology. Drake does a good job of understanding Rome, even an alternate-Rome, and of weaving genuine elements of Roman and Germanic myth into his narrative. I'll probably read the rest of the series, now. less
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a nice interlude.
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