Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Insurrection

Something I've noticed about science fiction authors is that they tend to be conservative, even to the point of libertarian. The best example of this is Robert Heinlein. David Weber also has this tendency. So they also use examples from US history and take a lot from the founding fathers.
This book was a space version of the Revolutionary War. By transferring the setting, he can play what-if games, like what if Benedict Arnold hadn't turned traitor? and then follow a likely scenario, without goring anyone's sacred cow in the historical area.
That being said, it was one heck of an intense book. I read it in one night, David only took two. It starts off with something you would think of as boring, a Senate meeting, but it just jumps from assassination to groups withdrawing from the main government, and war and intense space battles and it was very good. Of course if you don't like science fiction or military type stories you might not think so.
It was especially interesting because I am in the middle of a history of the Revolutionary War so I could pick out the parallels and the differences. David's favorite part was how he examined the conflicts of the military officers. To fight with their own country they have to betray someone; either the government they had sworn to serve, or their own planet and families and neighbors who were fighting to be free. The complexities of various peoples' responses to this dilemma were very engaging. I don't think I've ever seen anything about this problem with the military people of the Revolutionary period, but all of the Colonials who had military experience gained it fighting with the British. Then not many years later they were fighting against them. It must have been a gut wrenching decision.

Insurrection. David Weber. Baen Books. 1996

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