enhanced] DD-B

Book Note: Lois McMaster Bujold, Mirror Dance

I read this book about 18-Dec-2003. I've read this book before. The book is copyright 1994. This note was last modified Friday, 02-May-2014 23:47:52 PDT.

This is book 6 of the "Miles Vorkosigan" series.

This note contains spoilers for the book.


Mark steals the Dendarii to try to rescue some clones from Jackson's Whole (scheduled to be on the wrong end of brain transplants). Bel catches him at it but goes along. It goes badly wrong. Mark is captured. Miles has by this time figured out what's going on, comes after Mark, and gets there in time to mount a rescue mission. That has its problems too, including Miles being hit in the chest with a needle grenade. He's prepped for cryo, put in the tank, and they mostly escape, except the tank turns out not to be with them. Oops. They do, however, rescue Mark. After a while the tank turns up far away, empty. Oops.

Miles is, in fact, being revived in the Durona medical clinic, where a clever trooper has shipped the tank shortly before he was cut off and killed in the fight. They do a decent job; the cryoamnesia takes a while to wear off (and the confusion of those around him as to who he really is is a factor too; they don't all even know what the choices really are).

Or maybe the details are wrong, there. The details are definitely complex. Mark is captive to Baron Ryoval for a while, who's seriously into torture. Mark pretty much beats him, by letting Howl, Grunt, and Gorge take front stage, and eventually Killer, who does his job. He clears out of the secret facility shortly before Miles shows up to rescue him.

This is pretty much the book where Mark and Miles build some kind of relationship. Mark also gets to Barrayar finally, and meets the parents. Lots of important character development here, which really pays off later. Lots of characters start coming up out of the background who will be important later.

Anyway, it does eventually all get straightened out, and people get set onto their courses. Including Miles having his seizures, which will do him in professionally in the next book.

There's been a big gap in time here. This book is from 1994. The previous book, Borders of Infinity, is from 1989. (Barrayar is from 1991, but is a prequel). The Spirit Ring is from 1992. So Lois wasn't slacking off, she was just doing other stuff, outside this particular plot arc. It seems to me that this books shows some considerable jump in writing skill and in character realization, as will Memory and most especially A Civil Campaign.

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David Dyer-Bennet