Home Literature Stories Movies Games Comics News Discussion Forum
  Science Fiction and Fantasy News
Esslemont's Stonewielder Prologue and Cover (07-26)
Deals and Deliveries (9!!!) (09-12)
Iron Man: Femmes Fatales by Robert Greenberger (09-12)
Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead by Steve Pe (09-12)

Official sffworld Reviews
Big Time, The by Fritz Leiber (05-29 - Book)
Rogue Clone by Steven L. Kent (05-25 - Book)
The Blue Blazes by Chuck Wendig (05-21 - Book)
The Wisdom of the Shire by Noble Smith (05-17 - Book)


Site Index

Book Info    Bookmark and Share

Once a Hero by Elizabeth Moon

  (5 ratings)

A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z

Rating (5 ratings)
Rate this book
(5 best - 1 worst)
Book Information  
AuthorElizabeth Moon
TitleOnce a Hero
SeriesSerrano Legacy
Book Reviews / Comments (submitted by readers)
Submitted by Anonymous
(Mar 27, 2000)

Elizabeth Moon is a fine writer. Her legacy of Gird series is an example of good fantasy. That which takes the legacy of Tolkien and builds on it in a different and refreshing way rather than simply changing names and faces.

This book, the fourth in a series, is much harder to praise in the same way. It is space opera of the modern kind. That is to take the winning formula of C.S. Forresters Hornblower stories, and translate them from 18th Century wet navy to future time space navy.

As such it treads the same path as other authors. David Feintuchs Hope series with Nicholas Seafort in the Hornblower role, and David Webers Honor Harrington series.

Moon tries hard with this novel, to emulate their success.

Esmay Suiza, a young officer from a military though not naval background, is caught up in a space mutiny and emerges with honor intact. We join the novel with Esmay having to go through a court martial and then being reassigned far away from any potential front line.

Of course we know that mere geography is never enough to seperate heros from the time and the place to do heroic deeds. So it is no surprise when the enourmous repair station where she plies her trade, is suddenly called to the aid of a stricken spacecraft as part of a carefully constructed plot against the 'empire'.

Already the seeds of the plot have grown to full bloom in the imagination and it is scarcely worth finishing the book to discover what happens at the end.

It is too Moons credit however that the story carries you along with it, resulting in a satisfying if not revealing conclusion.

On the way, we naturaly find out much more about Esmay Suiza, and what drives her to her deeds. I never really believed however that the story provided a vehicle of self discovery for her. In that the book fails. Characters should be changed by their experiences. Here, Suizas discoveries about her past should have changed her, yet at the end, I felt you could have taken the character from the end of the book and reinserted her at the begining without changing the outcome.

When I read the first book of Feintuchs series, I ordered the next imediately. the same happened with Webers 'On Basilisk Station'.

After finishing this book, I viewed the fact that there were others in the series with some ambivalence.

The difference I think is partly in the exposition of the future technology. Elizabeth Moon is simply not as good at this as the other two authors.

For those wanting to discover Moons work for the first time, I can recommend 'Sheepfarmers Daughter', the first of the Legacy of Gird series.

This book is not in the same class.
Visit the author of this review

Sponsor ads



The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now First Novel Prize!
05-31 - News
Stephen King's Joyland UK Promotion
05-30 - News
UK Publisher of Stephen King’s New Novel Unusual Promotion
05-30 - News
Big Time, The by Fritz Leiber
05-29 - Book Review
Rogue Clone by Steven L. Kent
05-25 - Book Review
The Blue Blazes by Chuck Wendig
05-21 - Book Review
The Wisdom of the Shire by Noble Smith
05-17 - Book Review

05-10 - News
The Tyrant's Law by Daniel Abraham
05-04 - Book Review
Galaxy's Edge 1 by Mike Resnick
04-28 - Book Review
Poison by Sarah Pinborough
04-21 - Book Review
Bullington, Beukes and Bacigalupi event
04-19 - News
The City by Stella Gemmell
04-17 - Book Review
Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan
04-15 - Book Review
Tarnished Knight by Jack Campbell
04-09 - Book Review
Frank Hampson: Tomorrow Revisited by Alastair Crompton
04-07 - Book Review
The Forever Knight by John Marco
04-01 - Book Review
Book of Sith - Secrets from the Dark Side by Daniel Wallace
03-31 - Book Review
NOS4R2 by Joe Hill
03-25 - Book Review
Fade to Black by Francis Knight
03-13 - Book Review
The Clone Republic by Steven L. Kent
03-12 - Book Review
The Burn Zone by James K. Decker
03-06 - Book Review
A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz
03-04 - Book Review
Blood's Pride by Evie Manieri
02-28 - Book Review
Excerpt: River of Stars by Guy Gavriel Kay
02-27 - Article
Tales of Majipoor by Robert Silverberg
02-24 - Book Review
American Elsewhere by Robert Jackson Bennett
02-20 - Book Review
Evie Manieri Guest Post
02-19 - Article
The Grim Company by Luke Scull
02-17 - Book Review
Red Planet by Robert A. Heinlein
02-11 - Book Review

New Forum Posts

About - Advertising - Contact us - RSS - For Authors & Publishers - Contribute / Submit - Privacy Policy - Community Login
Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use. The contents of this webpage are copyright © 1997-2011 sffworld.com. All Rights Reserved.