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Conventions Of War (Dread Empire's Fall)
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Conventions Of War (Dread Empire's Fall #3)

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  816 ratings  ·  38 reviews
There are only two people who can defeat the Naxids and save the Empire - and neither is looking hopeful. Sula is on the ground trying to start a revolution with an army of three. Lord Gareth Martinez is with the Fleet raiding into enemy territory when he uncovers a murderous plot to see him and the Fleet destroyed.
Trade Paperback, 677 pages
Published November 7th 2005 by Simon & Schuster (first published September 27th 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,168)
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Peter Walton-Jones
While it will not stick in the memory as a major classic, I have enjoyed this series. Conventions of War concludes the sequence and provides a satisfying finale. The characters (Sula and Martinez in particular) are interesting and engaging. The themes of class and difference are important to the story but do not take it over.

The space travel narratives are interesting for the wormholes and the gravities experienced during accelerations. Williams fills in the time gaps here with a murder mystery
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Brian
It took me almost three years to finish this series, but i'm glad I did.
On the surface this book seems like a typical science fantasy/space opera epic. Humans have left earth and colonized space and joined an empire comprised of many other races. But when the empire falls apart, humanity goes to war with its millions strong armed forces. But this story isn't about a struggle vs good and evil, instead it focuses on the surreal lives of the people in command and the absurd social situations they
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Pyyric
The final book in the Praxis series. I call it the Praxis series because all three books wrestle with the idea of final knowledge. The Praxis teaches that everything important is known and that intelligent species can take comfort in that fact instead of believing in the unknown. This book deals with not only the spiritual side of this ideology but also the logical side of it. It explains the former without getting preachy and outright invalidates the latter.

Even though the book's ending isn't 1
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Chris
I've been thinking a lot about what makes this series more successful than Implied Spaces, and eventually realized that you can tell the two heroes and one other character are smart, because nobody else in the whole 3 books ever has a bright or novel idea. I realize it's a stagnant society, but that seems extreme.
Chad
I had never read a sci-fi book before when I picked up the first book The Praxis from a book sale in my town. I started reading the book expecting a cheesy space story, I was surprised and glad that I was wrong.
I was actually enjoying the book immensely when half way through the first book I was dismayed when I found out that it was actually the first book in a trilogy! I immediately ordered the other two online and read them both within two weeks of getting them.
The characters of Martinez and S
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Larry Kenney
Another great book in the series. It wasn't quite as enjoyable as the first two in the series, I thought, as the relationship between Martinez and Sula has changed quite a bit, but over all a very enjoyable read. I'm hoping for more in this series!
Bill
No real tension. I never felt like I got to understand the Shaa or Praxis enough. I knew our "heroes" would win battles and didn't really care one way or the other.
Gwen
Long live the Praxis! I WANT MORE!!!
D.w.
The series comes to an end and better than some. We have a rebellious population in the capital, and some shortcuts are taken when the typical foolishness we have come to suspect from the command structure is again displayed.

At some point there should have been a great many other smart people out of the billions to draw from. There wasn't and that is sad. Further, much of this book follows the tale of the second hero, and the first is relegated to a mystery that there are too few clues for all t
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Rob
Conventions of War is the third and final novel in Williams' Dread Empire's Fall series. Lady Caroline Sula leads the guerrilla war against the rebellious Naxids on the Empire's occupied capital world of Zanshaa, while Lord Gareth Martinez commands a battleship in the Fleet task force waging a war of attrition on the enemy's economic heartland a la Sherman's “March to the Sea.”

I can't say much more about the plot without giving it away, but I can say the book wraps up the series with an endin
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Jim
This is a re-read for me. I read the Dread Empire trilogy years ago and rembered it as a rousin space opera. My memory was that it was an excellent epic with lots of space battles. Well, my memory was partially correct. There are some space battles, though nearly as many as I remembered, which are all brilliantly plotted and presented. There is also a substantial amount of politics, class warfare (particularly relevent with today's "1%" disputes), and interesting aliens, which I had forgotten ne ...more
Tom
To avoid spoilers I will avoid discussion of the plot here as much as possible since this is the third book in a trilogy. That said, it is difficult to talk about whether the conclusion to the Dread Empire's Fall arc succeeds or fails without SOME possible spoilers.

Certainly, I enjoyed this book as much as the previous two but its ending seems to leave open a great many questions. So many, in fact, that I believe that the author plans to return to this universe at a later date. Also, it is hard
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Joanna
Decent finish to the series, although (literally) all over the galactic map. The entire trilogy strongly resembled the novelization of a video game (though apparently it's not) which was not unenjoyable.
Mike
May 25, 2008 Mike rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: SciFi combat, hard science fans
Shelves: scifi
A good but not great close to a fine trilogy. I enjoyed the wide-ranging space opera but felt like there could have been more interesting areas to explore. The society and structure of the empire was ripe for cataclysmic changes but everyone seemd ready to revert to the aristocracy over the common man theme. The heroes are pretty much Terran but I thought there could have been some really interesting non-Terran characters. Maybe he will develop this in future stories--he seemed to leave the door ...more
Lynnda Ell
Conventions of War is a fitting end to the Dread Empire's Fall. Lady Sula and Martinez manage to keep the war going from their own unique bases long enough to throw momentum towards the loyalists. As in real life, the ending is just the prequel to the rest of the story. Even though a temporary peace breaks out, Mr. Williams leaves plenty of room for another three-volume book in his universe. I hope he sees fit to write more stories for this series.

By-the-way, if you're interested, may rating fo
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Wes
It starts out really slow, almost painfully so, but by the middle the pace has picked up considerably. As usual there's a lot of political intrigue and character drama, and surprisingly enough there's a murder mystery tossed into the mix as well. While it kinda throws off the pace a little bit, I was pleasantly surprised by how well it was handled, and it was quite complementary to the plot, to be sure. And its all tied together with a wonderfully crafted climax.
Of course, this book seems to ha
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Daniel
The weakest of the trilogy and the ending just wasnt good. A disappointing end to an entertaining series.
Luka Novak
Decent end of a trilogy. Main characters continue to struggle with orthodoxy everywhere, despite showing their ideas are superior. Post war end is book's best part. Instead of happy ending we get more realistic one and instead of universe changing to what we think should exist we see old wolrd reaserting itself.

The book is not as strong as previous two but brings story to an end, ties up major loose ends and open threads. And there are enough seeds for next conflict should Williams decide to con
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Macha
3 and a half stars.
Tbloxham
An excellent end to the Dread Empires fall trilogy, although I feel there is definately more exploring to do in the universe Williams has created. Conventions has more of the great 'realistic' space battles which made the first so much fun, it still suffers of course from the female character being a bit too mercenary in her affections, and the male character being deliberately reticent in pushing himself forward as the real hero, but both were believable characters
Jenine
My husband encouraged me to skip over the entire murder mystery subplot on board the spaceship. I did and I ended up skimming plenty of the space war strategy and battle events as well. I got tired of Sula on planet but that certainly ended up with a bang (more than one). I liked the ending very much. It was a bait and switch in the best sense. First book of the series is my fave.
Brendan
The actual plot/story ending to the series is rather obvious from some time in the second book on, and there were really no surprises, so the weight of this final installment rests on the characters. Sadly, their ending is not one I liked - it left me feeling kind of empty and disappointed. Still, a good read, and totally worth it if you've already started the series.
Boulder Boulderson
The best book of the series. Much more pacey than the previous two and, being longer by 50%, actually has time to develop several plotlines.
An entirely reasonable work.
Adrian Hunter
hard science fiction is where i live. so conventions of war, with non relativistic travel and hard gees and decelerations was good for me. the two story lines of martinez and sula meshed nicely, and the waging of both a guerrilla war and space battles changed things up often enough to involve and make you want the next chapter.
Steven
I'm letting this stand as my review of the series: the first two were great, and the last was good, except that the characters made decisions that caused me to hate them. By the end of the book, I wanted most of the characters to be miserable because I didn't like them anymore...
September
Mar 14, 2008 September rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to September by: George R.R. Martin
Shelves: sci-fi, trilogies
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Janice
This is the third book in a triology, and it's been AGES since I read the first two. So, it took me a few chapters to get back in the swing of the story. But once I did, I throughly enjoyed it. I good wrap up to a good series.
Niall519
Reasonably satisfying conclusion to the trilogy. The almost completely unresolved romance was a surprising feature from a male author - possibly even more maddening than Mulder and Scully in the X Files.
Andy S
This was my least favorite of the three Dread Empire's Fall series; the character revelations had all already taken place and all that was left was the resolution of the war. Enjoyable, but not as intriguing.
Jday
Overall, this was a great series. Very consistant. Great characters, lots of action and very few slow spots.
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48960
Walter Jon Williams has published twenty novels and short fiction collections. Most are science fiction or fantasy -Hardwired, Voice of the Whirlwind, Aristoi, Metropolitan, City on Fire to name just a few - a few are historical adventures, and the most recent, The Rift, is a disaster novel in which "I just basically pound a part of the planet down to bedrock." And that's just the opening chapters ...more
More about Walter Jon Williams...

Other Books in the Series

Dread Empire's Fall (3 books)
  • The Praxis (Dread Empire's Fall, #1)
  • The Sundering (Dread Empire's Fall, #2)
Destiny's Way (Star Wars: The New Jedi Order, #14) Hardwired (Hardwired, #1) Ylesia (Star Wars: The New Jedi Order, #14.5) This Is Not a Game (Dagmar, #1) The Praxis (Dread Empire's Fall, #1)

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