Eric Flint is the author of the New York Times best seller 1634: The Galileo Affair (with Andrew Dennis)—a novel in his top-selling "Ring of Fire" alternate history series. His first novel for Baen, Mother of Demons, was picked by Science Fiction Chronicle as a best novel of the year. His 1632, which launched the ring of Fire series, won widespread critical praise, as from Publishers Weekly, which called him "an SF author of particular note, one who can entertain and edify in equal, and major measure." A longtime labor union activist with a master's degree in history, he currently resides in northwest Indiana with his wife Lucille.
Ring of Fireby Eric Flint
The battle between democracy and tyranny is joined, and the American Revolution has begun over a century ahead of schedule. A cosmic accident has shifted a modern West Virginia town back through time
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Return to the Alternate Universe of 1632 and 1633 as the Top Writers of Alternate History and Military SF Join Forces in the Shared-Universe Volume of the Year
The battle between democracy and tyranny is joined, and the American Revolution has begun over a century ahead of schedule. A cosmic accident has shifted a modern West Virginia town back through time and space to land it and its twentieth century technology in Germany in the middle of the Thirty Years War. History must take a new course as American freedom and democracy battle against the squabbling despots of seventeenth-century Europe.
Continuing the story begun in the hit novels 1632 and 1633, the New York Times best-selling creator of Honor Harrington, David Weber, the best-selling fantasy star Mercedes Lackey, space adventure author K. D. Wentworth, Dave Freer, co-author of the hit novels Rats, Bats & Vats and Pyramid Scheme (both Baen), and Eric Flint himself combine their considerable talents in a shared-universe volume that will be a must-have for every reader of 1632 and 1633.
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The premise of many people tackling short stories set in and around several complex novels is likely to be a mess, so the coherence and high quality here throughout is really surprising. I was particularly surprised how genuinely moving many of the stories were rather than only clever and many of the stories reveal some deep thinking and insights rather than just a facile twist or entertaining characterization. The character development is very strong using many very minor or off-stage characters from the novels and weaving them back in. I'm not a big fan of short stories as I prefer the kind of development that takes hundreds of pages so I was surprised how much I enjoyed this anthology. If you bought 1632, 1633, and 1634, you need this one and will relish it.
This is an excellent book which continues the universe created by Eric Flint in 1632. It introduces new characters and breathes new life into the old characters. Some of the characters who were the bad guys in 1632 are developed and become good guys in this book. It continues the development of the 1632verse and makes me look forward to the next book.
Unlike most Alternative History where the characters are the real people of the era kept in the story no matter how much events would have been changed by the changed starting point, the 1632 Universe recognizes that everything could have been different. This is the real pleasure of reading these books. The reader gets a sense of what might have been, and from that realizes the importance of what choices we make today. My personal favorite story of the entire series to this point is 'Between the Armies'. It contains a discription of the War between Protestant and Catholic armies as being one where the opposing forces treat their religions just like the gang colors of today. It's a profound statement and inditement of the Thirty Years War and by implication the violence in Northern Ireland and the current struggles in the Near East. It's also only one of the multitude of thought provoking concepts you will be exposed to in this landmark series of books.
This book is much better than the previous sequel 1633 but not near as good as 1632 which started the series. At least this one is right up front letting you know that it is a collection of about 15 short stories -- unlike 1633 which pretended to be a sequal but was about 4 short stories intermixed haphazardly throughout the book with about 3 or 4 hundred pages of boring history and old plane safety and flying. The stories in Ring of Fire introduce new people and have occasional appearances of our heros and heroines from 1632 - some of the stories happen before 1633 and some after 1633. A few of the stories even had some of the joy and adventure which made 1632 so good. It was a nice look back into the Mr Flint's 1632 time frame by many authors but did not really advance the overall series much except Flint's longer short story 'Wallenstein Gambit' which was both good and advanced the series. Hopefully Mr. Flint will re-engage and put some more effort into writing a real sequel for 1632.