Sunday, April 14, 2019

Book Review: Passage by Lois McMaster Bujold

Author: Lois McMaster Bujold
Series: The Sharing Knife (Book 3)
Publication: Harper Voyager; 1 edition (April 22, 2008)

Description: One of the most respected writers in the field of speculative fiction, Lois McMaster Bujold has won numerous accolades and awards, including the Nebula and Locus Awards as well as the fantasy and science fiction genre’s most prestigious honor, the Hugo Award for Best Novel, four times (most recently for Paladin of Souls).

With The Sharing Knife series, Bujold creates a brand new world fraught with peril, and spins an extraordinary romance between a young farm girl and the brave sorcerer-soldier entrusted with the defense of the land against a plague of vicious malevolent beings.

Passage, volume three in Bujold’s breathtaking saga of love, loyalty, and courage in the face of bigotry and dark magic, the devoted wedded lovers Fawn Bluefield and Dag Redwing Hickory are joined by new companions in their quest to find peace, acceptance, and a place in a most dangerous world.

My Thoughts: In this third volume in the Sharing Knife quartet, Dag and Fawn are off to explore the world to find some answers or maybe just some more questions. Dag is developing new powers as a maker that he never showed before. He has also come to believe that the way Lakewalkers and Farmers interact has to change if the malices are ever to be finally removed from the land.

Dag and Fawn, along with Fawn's brother Whit, begin to explore by retracing Fawn's journey to Glassforge. From there, they find their way to the river. Dag has some idea of showing Fawn the sea as part of a belated honeymoon trip.

There they meet with Boss Berry who is taking her flatboat down the river in the hope of discovering what happened to her father, brother and fiance who went down the river to sell a boat and didn't return. Fawn signs on as cook and Dag and Whit to do general labor.

As they go down the river, they gather problems and people from beguiled Hod, to runaway patrollers Remo and Barr. Along the way they meet Farmers and rivermen and Dag tries out sharing Lakewalker secrets to begin to erase the rear and suspicion between Farmers and Lakewalkers.

The trip takes a turn for the dangerous when they run into river bandits controlled by a renegade Lakewalker. Berry learns the fate of her loved ones and Lakewalkers and Farmers work together to end the threat.

The worldbuilding is very realistic. Bujold mentions the accounts of the real keelboaters and others who traveled the upper Mississippi that she read for background. The characters are well-drawn and all grow and change through the book. I am eager to read HORIZON to get to the end of this epic journey.

Favorite Quote:
Dag said more slowly, "He was just an ordinary patroller, before his knife got broken. But if ordinary folks can't fix the world, it's not going to get fixed. There are no lords here. The gods are absent."

"You know, it sounds real attractive at first, but I'm not sure I'd want lords and gods fixing the world. Because I think they'd fix it for them. Not necessarily for me."
I bought this one in 2008 and am rereading it. You can buy your copy here.

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