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Genre: Science Fiction, General Science Fiction
This highly anticipated book is, unfortunately, a bit of a disappointment. Miles is his usual overly inquisitive self (to the point of self-endangerment), the other viewpoint characters — Roic and Jin — are precisely what you’d expect them to be, and the final three pages of this novel make the rest of the cleverly constructed and executed plot feel like a gigantic flinch.
On Kibou-daini, the dead are frozen by the cryocorps who then have the right to proxy vote for their clients. They’re looking to expand to Komarr, so Gregor, the Barrayaran Emperor, sends Imperial Auditor Miles Vorkosigan to investigate. Miles is abducted by a radical group and in the course of his escape, falls in with a group of squatters running an underground cryofacility. Miles’ abduction is but a symptom in a growing generational conflict where the dead — in the hands of profit-seeking cryocorps — have disproportionate power, and it falls to him to unravel not only the danger to the Barrayaran Empire but to discover the rot at the heart of Kibou-daini as well. (BAEN, Oct., 400 pp., $25.00)
Reviewed By: Natalie A. Luhrs
Published: October 2010