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The Coldest War (Milkweed Triptych #2)

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  2,261 ratings  ·  308 reviews
A precarious balance of power maintains the peace between Britain and the USSR. For decades, Britain's warlocks have been all that stands between the British Empire and the Soviet Union--a vast domain stretching from the Pacific Ocean to the shores of the English Channel. Now each wizard's death is another blow to Britain's national security.

Meanwhile, a brother and sister
Paperback, 352 pages
Published July 9th 2013 by Tor Books (first published January 17th 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I'm blown away. Although I read the first book a couple years ago, the story was so urgent and surely written that I hadn't forgotten the questions I'd had at the end of it. This has been a long, slow reveal that really hit in the last few chapters of this book. The feeling of dread is present at all times, a hopelessness increased by the scariest villain I've read in a long time, made even scarier by how she's kept in 3rd person and only viewed through other character's eyes. But! The dread is ...more
Tom Merritt
The only thing I don't understand is why the Milkweed Triptych doesn't get more attention. No Wikipedia entry. No wild fan sites. This is an outstanding series and I wait with excitement to read the conclusion and have that usual feeling of dread at its concluding and leaving me with no more. Good thing Tregillis is signed to do a new book after the last Milkweed one. Even if it's not in the same universe, I know I'll snap it up.
Mogsy (MMOGC)
Wow, did that seriously just happen?! Those were the words running through my head when I reached the very end of this book. Just when I thought this series couldn't get any crazier with its genre-bending goodness, it decides to throw me for another loop (which in the context of talking about this book is a rather clever pun, now that I think about it. I'm just a little miffed now because I can't explain it without spoiling anything!) The way I see it, as far as those shocking "I-NEED-to-know-wh ...more
May 14, 2013 David rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: warlocks, seers, ex-Nazi supersoldiers
Warning: This review contains spoilers for book one, Bitter Seeds.

This is one epic, high-stakes alt-history series. After reading Bitter Seeds, I thought book two would pick up where book one left off, at a turning point in World War II. Instead, it skips forward two decades and we're now in 1963 and the height of the Cold War.

But it's a very different Cold War. In Bitter Seeds, Britain unleashed the power of the Eidolons, vastly powerful demonic beings who live in the cracks in time and space,
... I loved this book. There really isn’t anything more than that to say. It’s a wonderful installment in a brilliant trilogy and I’m anxiously waiting for the third book. Here’s the bottom line: If you haven’t read the Milkweed Triptych yet, you need to. The Coldest War isn’t just a book it’s an experience.

Read my full review here:

Even better than the first book! Smarter, faster, more complex. More cliff-hanging. Can't wait for book three.
Šī ir Asinzāles triloģijas otrā grāmata, kā jau otrajās triloģijas grāmatās pienākas, galvenie varoņi tiek izvietoti uz laukuma lielajam finālam. Rit 1963. gads, karš ar Vāciju ir beidzies, Padomju savienība ir iekarojusi visu Eiropu. Tajā tagad atrodama "draudzīga" sociālistisko valstu saime. Lielbritānija ir kļuvusi par izolētu salu un tās impērija lēnām grūst. No Ivanu iebrukuma viņu glābj tikai to bailes no burvjiem, taču arī šī problēma ir atrisināma. ASV, jau četrdesmit gadus slīgst depres ...more
Paul Genesse
Review of The Coldest War, (Book two in the Milkweek Tryptich) by Ian Tregillis

(No big spoilers, except for a few minor ones that regard the set-up)

I just finished The Coldest War, book two of three in the Milkweed Tryptich cycle by Ian Tregillis. I devoured it.

I read book one, Bitter Seeds (now out in mass market paperback by the way) in about three days and the same applies to book two. I would have read faster if I’d had the time.

I'm so blown away right now from finishing this fantastic novel
Richard Guion
Coldest War takes place in 1963, almost twenty years past the aftermath of World War II. Due to the events of the first book, the world map has changed considerably. The Soviets control all of Europe, but the United States isn't a world power, which leaves it to the British to foil the Reds with covert spy operations. The Cold War is played out in this alternate universe, but with super-men controlled by the Reds and magic wielding sorcerers on the side of the UK.

The novel picks up on the surviv
If I could give this ten stars, I would. Awesome!! Kept me up all night reading it! More later...


I find keeping up with current trilogies difficult. When I am waiting years between books, I can forget many of the details, and while I retained the general plot and admiration of Bitter Seeds, I forgot many of the details. When I began The Coldest War, I was really confused, as I couldn't figure out if I missed a huge chunk of the book or what, because Tregillis brings the reader in with th
Paul Nelson
The Coldest War is the follow up to Ian Tregillis's debut alternate history come fantasy war drama Bitter Seeds and the Milkweed trilogy will conclude with the third novel Necessary Evil.
The series is an original take on the events and the aftermath of the World War II period of history and Britain's fight against Germany and Russia.

Set over 20 years after the events in Bitter Seeds, Europe is a vastly different place, Russia is the controlling entity and an uneasy truce remains in place.
Jan 14, 2015 Zedsdead rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Zedsdead by: Tim
Shelves: favorites
Book 2 of the Milkweed Triptych, and holy hot damn, what a follow-up. Twenty-odd years have passed since the (alternate) end of WWII. Marsh endures the tortured wreck of a marriage, Will has a wonderful wife who dragged him back from the brink of self-destruction, and Klaus has spent two decades as a prisoner/consultant of the Soviet empire. And Gretel continues to spin her sadistic and impenetrable web around all three of them.

The middle book of the trilogy reads like a spy-adventure novel. Mar
I really liked the concept for Bitter Seeds (first in the series), but was slightly disappointed in its execution. Granted, it can't be easy to fully develop the idea of super-powered nazis versus British warlocks while still firmly grounding it in 1940s Europe. The sequel more than makes up for it though. The Coldest War actually meets and exceeds the high hopes I'd had for Bitter Seeds.

Normally I hate the idea of precognition, but the concept of a precognitive sociopath is too intriguing to p
Following Bitter Seeds, The Coldest War, is the second installment of the Milkweed Tryptich, which focuses on an alternative history of WW II by virtue of paranormal intervention. This second installment nicely ties into the first, with a set-up for the third part which I found very intriguing. I’m about to dive into that one next.

The Coldest War takes us back to the characters of the previous installments, but it’s set some twenty odd years later. The main characters are largely the same, but s
"Una trama sorprendente, una subyugante ambientación y, sobre todo, personajes fascinantes. Esta novela es un ejemplo de la mejor -y más apasionante- historia alternativa que he leído jamás. Bravo." Lo dice Cory Doctorow en y así se recoge en la propia contraportada de esta segunda entrega del Tríptico de Asclepia... y está todo tan bien dicho y con tanta razón de ser, que poco más se puede hacer que darle la razón y callarse.
Esta segunda entrega, si bien no se puede decir que sea
When a colleague introduced me to the series, he said that the second book was what really sold it to him and he couldn't wait to read the third one. After reading the first book in the series, I was skeptical about that statement. Surely, Mr. Tregillis couldn't make the story more interesting. Alas, I was wrong. The character development, the plot twists, the everything. Just, wow. Certainly one of the best books I've read this year.
Ja sākumā šķita, ka šī grāmata man nepatiks, tad uz beigām jau biju pagalam aizrāvusies un gatava zemes spert gaisā par to, ka grāmata beidzās ar tādu cliffhanger. Autors ir meistarīgi kāpinājis spriedzi un atrauties bija grūti.
Biju sajūsmā par to, ka lasītājam beidzot ir dota iespēja pamatīgi iepazīties ar Grētu un nekā nespēju saprast, kāpēc grāmatas anotācijā viņa tiek saukta par vājprātīgu. Viņa taču ir absolūti ģeniāla un, ņemot vērā viņas mērķi, es viņu īsti pat par ļaunu nespēju uzskatīt.
Kate O'Hanlon
Now this is how you write the second book in a trilogy. No wheel spinning here, no siree.

Set 20 years after the events of Bitter Seeds, The Coldest War opens with one of my favourite spec-fic themes, what happens to the heroes after the great battle. I found Marsh stuffy, priggish and reckless in the first novel, so I was sort of psyched to see that things had gone to shit for him and turned out pretty well for Will. Of course it all got a little more complicated than that as the story unfolded.
...The Coldest War is a strong sequel to a very interesting debut. I have a thing for alternative history, although not necessarily for the period Tegillis chooses to change, but even taking that into account, it is a strong book. Tregillis has written an action-packed novel, following a number of very human but twisted characters in a conflict that is much larger than they can handle. It's a shame the publication of this book was delayed, had it come a bit sooner, the series might have been abl ...more
It seems that the inevitable outcome of British warlocks fighting Nazi supermen is that eventually there will be Soviet supermen who are building up as part of an alternate universe sort of Cold War, one where it's all up to the British because America, never entering the war, never came out of the Great Depression, etc.

Twenty-some years after the first book in the trilogy, life sucks for everybody as a consequence of the first book. It's something of a jarring time-skip between books, somewhat
Joel Pearson
The Coldest War picks up where the brilliant FIS, Bitter Seeds left off. We follow the familiar cast of characters - Marsh, Will, Gretel, Liv, Klaus, Gwendolyn and co, 20 some odd years after the end of WW2. Klaus and Gretel turn up in England, turning themselves in to the SIS in an unprecedented move, one that of course plays into Gretel's plans. Meanwhile, Marsh's marriage to Liv is in shambles, his daughter dead from the previous book, and his son a husk of a person that has driven his marria ...more
Jordan Steinhoff
I'm pleasantly surprised by this book.

I rated Bitter Seeds 3 stars and expected this to be a continuation of the same.

Tregillis kicked this up a notch, though.

All the characters that survived the first book return here and they are all damaged by the events of that book. Marsh, most of all.

I was wondering how he would progress these characters, or if they'd even be the same characters, since he was moving from WW2 to the mid-60s but he kept all the mains in play and active quite well. The story
All Things Urban Fantasy
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

20+ years after WWII and BITTER SEEDS, the second book in Ian Tregillis’ The Milkweed Triptych picks up during the cold war in THE COLDEST WAR. Hitler has been defeated by warlocks and now the remnants of his experiments, humans with X-men like powers, are resurfacing with deadly consequences. Cinematic in scope and filled with rich historical details–with a supernatural twist–THE COLDEST WAR is a dark, character driven thriller that fully embraces is b
Melissa McShane
This book begins twenty years after the end of Bitter Seeds, which was something of a surprise to me--I'd sort of expected it to pick right up from where that one ended. But the time jump makes a lot of other things possible, both in advancing the plot and in creating a different kind of tension. Twenty years down the road, in the alternate future that develops from the psychic experiments of the Reichsbehoerde and the English warlocks' tampering with evil cosmic forces, Russia has become a worl ...more

Full Review originally at Fantasy Book Critic

Overall review = 4 & 1/2 stars.

Analysis: The Coldest War is the sequel to Ian Tregillis’s brilliant debut Bitter Seeds, this book opens up nearly twenty years after the events of the second world war that took place in this alternate historical world. I was very much intrigued by this book and dove in based on Liviu’s excellent review of the first book.

The story begins in 1963 and we are introduced to a Europe wherein a cold war is on but the p
The story is getting more impressive. We're moving away from traditional hero types and we're getting a lot more flip-sides. Sure, we've scooted a couple of decades into the future and everyone has gotten a little flabby, but what can you expect in an upside-down world where England is pretty darn evil, the Soviet Union saved the day from the Nazis, and Cthulhu is knock knock knockin on heaven's door. I've still got that image of Greta with pigtails, and she's just as charming and as odd as ever ...more
Amanda Steinhoff
I'd say this was a 3.5 star book. Maybe just 3, but im kind of torn. I love so many of the concepts of this series, i.e. nazi super children, British warlocks, Cthulhu like gods threatening to destroy the universe. I just feel the execution doesn't live up to the concept, or the first book.

To start, there's something a little of the fake, forced britishy-ness about these Milkweed books that grates on me at times. Mostly it's with one specific character, William, who is the quintissential uppity
All I can say is, "Whoa! I was not expecting that!" Once I finished The Coldest War, I was so blown away that I immediately had to go out and pick up the next one, Necessary Evil to find out what happens. If you have not read the first book in this cycle, Bitter Seeds, I highly recommend you read that first since there are details being thrown in that were in book one.

The same characters from book one are back and it takes place 20 years after the end of the alternate World War II. England is n
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Now Available via / Further schedules 1 12 Jan 17, 2012 12:58PM  
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