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Sentry peak
Turtledove, Harry.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Riverdale, NY : Baen Books, [2000]

Physical Description:
404 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
"A Baen books original"--T.p. verso.
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THE STRANGEST CIVIL WAR NOVEL YOU EVER READ When Avram became King of Detina, he declared he intended to liberate the blond serfs from their ties to the land. The northern provinces, where most of the serfs lived, would not accept his lordship. The hot north was a land of broad estates, whose noble overlords took the serfs' labor and gave back next to nothing. Those provinces left Detina, choosing Avram's cousin, Grand Duke Geoffrey, as their king in his place. Avram said he had inherited all of the kingdom, not just a part. He refused to let Geoffrey rule the north without a challenge. And the southron provinces, full of merchants and smallholders, stood solidly behind him. So he sent armies clad in gray against the north. Geoffrey raised his own army, and arrayed his men in blue made from the indigo much raised on northern estates to distinguish them from the southrons. Avram held the larger part of the kingdom, and the wealthier part, too. But Geoffrey's men were bolder soldiers. And the north, taken all in all, had better wizards than the southrons did. The war raged for almost three years, until Avram's General Guildenstern moved against the northern army under Count Thraxton the Braggart, which held the town of Rising Rock, close by Sentry Peak. It was to be a crucial battle -- more crucial than either side knew....

Author Notes

Harry Turtledove was born in Los Angeles, California on June 14, 1949. He received a Ph.D. in Byzantine history from UCLA in 1977. From the late 1970's to the early 1980's, he worked as a technical writer for the Los Angeles County Office of Education. He left in 1991 to become full-time writer.

His first two novels, Wereblood and Werenight, were published in 1979 under the pseudonym Eric G. Iverson because his editor did not think people would believe that Turtledove was his real name. He used this name until 1985 when he published Herbig-Haro and And So to Bed under his real name. He has received numerous awards including the Homer Award for Short Story for Designated Hitter in 1990, the John Esthen Cook Award for Southern Fiction for Guns of the Southand in 1993, and the Hugo Award for Novella for Down in the Bottomlands in 1994.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Playing mightily with words as well as worlds, Turtledove sets the Chickamauga campaign of the U.S. Civil War as a fantasy in which, to keep its serfs, the North has seceded from the South, and a General Guildenstern (i.e., Rosecrans) goes down to bloody ruin before the magical talents of Thraxton the Braggart (Braxton Bragg, of whom Turtledove is no fan). Despite the aid of Ned of the Forest (Nathan Bedford Forrest, rendered as vividly as in Turtledove's Guns of the South, 1992) to Thraxton, Generals Bart (Grant) and Doubting George (Thomas) save the day for the gray-clad defenders of the freedom of blond serfs against the blue-clad secessionists of the North. Readers who survive the wordplay to the end of the book will appreciate Turtledove's historiography and sensible attitudes about generalship, ethics, and minority status. And they should also brace themselves, for this is the first in a projected series. --Roland Green

Publisher's Weekly Review

Readers who remember General Rosenkrantz from Turtledove's Civil War- inspired How Few Remain (1997) have been waiting for the appearance of a General Guildenstern. Here he isÄnot incompetent but overconfident, lecherous and fond of the bottle, leading the gray-clad armies of southern Detina on behalf of King Avram, whose plans to free the fair-haired serfs of northern Detina led the northerners to secede and to field blue-clad armies in defense of their King Geoffrey. Opposing Guildenstern is Thraxton the Braggart (and even translated into an alternate and fantastical universe, Braxton Bragg is still odious), ably assisted by the natural genius of Ned of the Forest. This funhouse mirror of a book proceeds the rest of the way through the Chickamauga campaign of 1863, ending in the "southron" victory of General Bart (Grant's middle name was "Simpson") and Doubting George (Thomas). Readers who resist the temptation to fling the book down will find more than a treasure trove of japes and wordplays here. They will also discover some serious and cogent thinking on the position of minorities, the art of command (as practiced both well and badly) and the Civil War, on which this author is perhaps the outstanding expert in the SF and fantasy field. And they will find some exacting tests of their cultural literacyÄit helps in identifying the Battle of Essoville to know that J. Paul Getty is an oil billionaire, and that one can identify "Roast Beef William" either by his having written a tactical manual or by knowing of the fast-food chain by the name of Hardee's. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

When Avram claims the throne of his late father, King Buchan, his cousin Geoffrey contests the throne, raising an army of blue-clad northern troops to send against his southern rival's gray-uniformed forces. Drawing upon his considerable knowledge of military history and his love of alternate realities, veteran sf and fantasy author Turtledove has crafted a fantasy spin on the Civil War. Demonstrating his talent for mixing genres, the author of Darkness Descending produces one more winner in the field of alternative military fantasy. A good choice for most fantasy collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.