Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Mirror Dance, Chapter 5

This is the moment, people! Grab a box of tissues and keep your companion animals close at hand—we’ve reached the chapter with the raid. Nothing good is going to happen here.

This reread has an index, which you can consult if you feel like exploring previous books and chapters. Spoilers are welcome in the comments if they are relevant to the discussion at hand. Comments that question the value and dignity of individuals, or that deny anyone’s right to exist, are emphatically NOT welcome. Please take note.

Mark and Bel Thorne lead the Dendarii into House Bharaputra, and then their plans go horribly wrong. This is, in large part, because they didn’t have a plan. Mark wanted to be the clone who stuck it to House Bharaputra and saved some other clones, and Bel Thorne wanted that too. Neither of them gave sufficient practical thought to the challenges involved. ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Mirror Dance, Chapters 3 and 4

We’re still wading slowly into the shark-infested waters of the Doppelgangening. As of the end of chapter four, no one has been killed. Things are getting darker, though, because chapters three and four explore Mark’s childhood. Miles’s childhood involved a lot of fractures and medical procedures, a school that taught him to recite entire plays, and ponies. Mark’s did not.

This reread has an index, which you can consult if you feel like exploring previous books and chapters. Spoilers are welcome in the comments if they are relevant to the discussion at hand. Comments that question the value and dignity of individuals, or that deny anyone’s right to exist, are emphatically NOT welcome. Please take note.

If you can use a uterine replicator to replace a woman for gestational purposes, it makes sense that you could then have a number of children who are functionally motherless. They can lead lives ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Mirror Dance, Chapters 1 and 2

Chapters 1 and 2 are really just barely dipping our toes into Mirror Dance. These opening chapters are simple—almost gentle. Nothing clearly bad has happened yet. Mark gets on the Ariel and no one gets tortured or dies. That’s it. We’re OK. Everyone is OK except Mark.

This reread has an index, which you can consult if you feel like exploring previous books and chapters. Spoilers are welcome in the comments if they are relevant to the discussion at hand. Comments that question the value and dignity of individuals, or that deny anyone’s right to exist, are emphatically NOT welcome. Please take note.

Mark is not OK. When we last saw him, he had killed Ser Galen, and was in possession of a credit chit for half a million Barrayaran marks. Three years later, he’s arrived on Escobar with only three hundred Betan dollars, his righteous anger, and the contact ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Staring into the Abyss of Mirror Dance

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga Lois McMaster Bujold Falling Free Ellen Cheeseman-Myer I’ve read all the books in this series before, some over and over, others only once. In most cases where I’ve only read the book once, it’s because it hasn’t been convenient. I lost my copy, or it came out after A Civil Campaign and I was busy rereading that. Whether I’ve read the book one time or a thousand, I usually give it a thoughtful skim before embarking on the reread. This time, we’re flying blind because Mirror Dance is terrifying. My vague recollection is that we are about to enter the dark heart of Rudyard Kipling’s “If” – We’re about to flirt with triumph and disaster, and of the two, disaster is the far superior imposter. We’re going to be trodding the well-worn paths of “If” for a while – in Memory Miles makes one heap of all his winnings, and, as Kipling suggests, he loses it. ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Staring into the Abyss of Mirror Dance

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga Lois McMaster Bujold Falling Free Ellen Cheeseman-Myer I’ve read all the books in this series before, some over and over, others only once. In most cases where I’ve only read the book once, it’s because it hasn’t been convenient. I lost my copy, or it came out after A Civil Campaign and I was busy rereading that. Whether I’ve read the book one time or a thousand, I usually give it a thoughtful skim before embarking on the reread. This time, we’re flying blind because Mirror Dance is terrifying. My vague recollection is that we are about to enter the dark heart of Rudyard Kipling’s “If” – We’re about to flirt with triumph and disaster, and of the two, disaster is the far superior imposter. We’re going to be trodding the well-worn paths of “If” for a while – in Memory Miles makes one heap of all his winnings, and, as Kipling suggests, he loses it. ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Staring into the Abyss of Mirror Dance

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga Lois McMaster Bujold Falling Free Ellen Cheeseman-Myer I’ve read all the books in this series before, some over and over, others only once. In most cases where I’ve only read the book once, it’s because it hasn’t been convenient. I lost my copy, or it came out after A Civil Campaign and I was busy rereading that. Whether I’ve read the book one time or a thousand, I usually give it a thoughtful skim before embarking on the reread. This time, we’re flying blind because Mirror Dance is terrifying. My vague recollection is that we are about to enter the dark heart of Rudyard Kipling’s “If” – We’re about to flirt with triumph and disaster, and of the two, disaster is the far superior imposter. We’re going to be trodding the well-worn paths of “If” for a while – in Memory Miles makes one heap of all his winnings, and, as Kipling suggests, he loses it. ...

Rereading the Vorkosigan Saga: Brothers in Arms, Chapters 13-16

We’re approaching the end of Brothers in Arms here, which means it’s time for the dramatic rescue sequence! Miles rescues Mark from the Komarran Underground, the Barrayarans, the Cetagandans, and the London police, then rescues Ivan from the high tide and Elli from a closet (actually a closet, not a metaphorical closet). On an aesthetic level, I feel like two planetary governments, one resistance movement, a police force, and a mercenary company is a lot of moving parts to involve in a single rescue mission. In defense of Bujold’s work (though it doesn’t need defending), it’s a single night’s work, but not a single rescue. We’ve got four rescuees, three of whom are partially self-rescuing or who make major contributions to the rescue of others. This reread has an index, which you can consult if you feel like exploring previous books and chapters. Spoilers are welcome in the comments ...