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Cetaganda (Vorkosigan Saga (Publication) #9)

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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  8,666 ratings  ·  286 reviews
The fifth installment of the Hugo-award winning adventures of Miles Vorkosigan.

In this novel Miles Vorkosigan and his cousin Ivan travel to Cetaganda, the long-standing enemy of Barrayar, to represent their Barrayar at the funeral of the mother of the Cetagandan emperor. From the moment they arrive they are swept into a complex and little understood political game between
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Paperback, 302 pages
Published October 1st 1996 by Baen Books (first published December 1995)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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mark monday
this one hit a sweet spot that I didn't know I even had: incredibly beautiful, highly intelligent, aristocratic geneticists who prize elegance and subtlety, float around in their floating chairs while encased in pearly force fields, and never cut their hair! much like the protagonist Miles, I was immediately enchanted.

unlike Miles, the reader is able to quickly discern that these remote and regal ladies actually control their empire. power lies not with the Emperor nor the warlike generals, and
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Clouds

Following the resounding success of my Locus Quest, I faced a dilemma: which reading list to follow it up with? Variety is the spice of life, so I’ve decided to diversify and pursue six different lists simultaneously. This book falls into my FINISHING THE SERIES! list.

I loves me a good series! But I'm terrible for starting a new series before finishing my last - so this reading list is all about trying to close out those series I've got on the go.


The general consensus amongst fans of the Vorkos
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Jim
While this was another fun addition to the series, it struck me as a bit too convoluted & convenient to really work at times. Much hinged on security & technology gaffs that didn't fully make sense, still it was a fun trip featuring Miles & Ivan. They're great characters & if you just go along for the ride, it's quite entertaining.

It was also nice to get a better look at Ceteganda. They're mentioned quite often in other books, but this is the first time we get to see the beasts i
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Stephen
3.5 stars. A solid entry in this excellent space opera series. Not my favorite of the bunch, but still a good read.
Jon
Oct 23, 2009 Jon rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jon by: Beyond Reality Series October 2009
3.8 stars

Miles and Ivan travel as diplomatic representatives of Emperor Gregor to the home world of the Cetagandan Empire for the funeral of the Empress. A ten-day trip to observe and enjoy social customs (and parties) quickly turns sour when Miles become embroiled in a mystery and suicide/murder that threatens to frame him, and by implication Barrayar, for a treasonous usurpation plot.

Miles, being Miles, convinces himself, and Ivan, that only he can save Barrayar's honor and salvage the Cetaga
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Sineala
In a change from the more space-opera tone of the immediately chronologically preceding Vorkosigan novels, Cetaganda is pretty much a mystery novel in spaaaaace. Also diplomacy. Yep, Miles learns about diplomacy. In terms of worldbuilding, we the readers get to learn more about the heretofore mysterious Cetagandans, who previously were known for (a) starting wars and (b) wearing facepaint.

The Cetagandan dowager empress is dead and Miles and Ivan are off to the funeral. Because Miles apparently c
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Zach
Although the fifth of the Vorkosigan books in the series's internal chronology, this is one of the later books that Bujold wrote. In filling in some missing details in her fictional timeline, she brings to bear the collective weight of the story and characters as they exist elsewhere in the universe of the Vorkosigan Saga to present a fascinating answer to the question of the Cetagandans.

In other books in the series, the Cetagandan Empire is a rather faceless collection of baddies that exist as
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Olgalijo
After the incredible job that Bujold did in "Mirror Dance", I think that it was impossible for her to surpass herself. So, Cetanganda has more the feel of a transitional book, before ramping up into even more unbelievably entertaining adventures. Even so, Cetaganda was fun and had a solid plot. And I must say that poor Ivan needs to be in the spotlight now and then.
TheBookSmugglers
Originally reviewed on The Book Smugglers

Miles Naismith Vorkosigan has come a long way since his miserable attempt to qualify for the Barrayaran Military Service Academy - since then he's created a commanding (if solely based on smoke and mirrors) mercenary fleet, saved the Barrayaran Emperor, and thwarted a full-out war. Officially serving out a position as Imperial Security Courier, the brilliant (if physically less-appealing) Miles and his cousin the handsome (if decidedly less-brilliant) Iva
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Charlie George
Probably my least favorite Bujold yet, but of course still excellent. Miles as detective, matching wits with an unknown and unseen mastermind, up until a surprisingly anticlimactic end.

I would not go so far as to say an unsatisfying end, though. Miles heroism and accomplishments will be classified and secret, but they are known to some, to those who matter.

Miles' "first crush" didn't make a lot of sense, though it was cool she turned out to be like a shadow empress. What about Elena!?

Another t
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Shamela
Bujold has never failed at deeply satisfying me. I go back to the Vorkosigan series again and again, and more often than not it's this one. Miles is such a compelling character, and the trouble he gets himself into is magnificently inventive. I love the dialogue, the descriptions, the tight plotting, the scope and arc, the fascinating secondary characters--all of it. This one is particularly political with an outstandingly original way of looking at genetics and class systems.

Her books are full
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Kathi
This is my favorite book so far in the Miles Vorkosigan series.

What I liked: A limited sphere of action, fewer characters than some of the other books, a mystery to be solved, and a closer look at the Cetagandan civilization.

Miles does more thinking things through in this novel, rather than making so many intuitive leaps. We get to see more of his relationship with his cousin Ivan (who provides some of the laugh-out-loud moments in the book). Miles continues to learn about himself, continues to
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Sarah
Jul 20, 2011 Sarah rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: sf
"Mountains of Mourning" is still my favorite Vorkosigan story, but this one was an entertaining mystery in SF trappings. I thought it started stronger than it finished, and I had a little bit of trouble keeping all of the players straight, but it was interesting to get to know the strange Cetagandan culture. Also, I've never seen so much temporizing in one book. I guess everybody's doing it.
Megan Baxter
Cetaganda doesn't have the manic energy of The Warrior's Apprentice, which retains top spot as my favourite Vorkosigan book so far. It lacks that pell-mell, out-of-control sense of urgency that I absolutely fell in love with. But it is still a solid entry into the series, and Miles remains an incredibly appealing character to read about.

Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.

In the mea
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Rosario (http://rosario.blogspot.com/)
Cetaganda is one of those "filling in the blanks" books. It comes after The Vor Game in chronological order, but it was actually written after two or three more books were out. As far as I can tell, that means that the whole issue of Miles as Admiral Naismith and the Dendarii Free Mercenaries is left to one side (I'm assuming something will happen in that area in the next few books), and we get a little side-adventure.

That side-adventure takes place in Cetaganda, of all places. Miles and his cou
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Linda
Miles and cousin Ivan, in a very vice presidential role, are sent to Cetaganda as Barrayaran representatives. Things start to go "wrong" immediately as their ship is sent to dock at what appears to be an unused or maintainence area and then a man attacks them. Ivan grapples with the man, causing him to drop his gun and what liked like it might be a pipe bomb. As Miles retrieves the items, the man makes a hasty exit.

The item is not a pipe bomb, rather more like a "time bomb," as Miles works to f
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Simon Mcleish
Originally published on my blog here in November 2001.

The central idea of this Miles Vorkosigan novel can be summed up in a sentence from it (also quoted on the back of this edition): "Miles had always dreamed about saving the Empire. He just never expected it to be the Cetagandan Empire." Although currently at peace with his native Barrayar, Cetaganda has long been a traditional enemy, having at one time been an occupying power Miles is a member of the Barrayan delegation to the mourning ceremo
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Monica
I am a McMaster Bujold fan. I enjoy most of her books. Out of the 7 books I've read by her, two of them (Mirror Dance, Barrayar) are among my all time favorites.
That said, Cetaganda was an interesting, worthwhile read, but not top tier. I enjoyed the very richly drawn world of Cetaganda and it's strange customs. Bujold has a great imagination and the world she creates is strange, but comprehensible. Bujold has a fascination with genetic manipulations. It is one of the ongoing themes in the Vork
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Mike (the Paladin)
This is the third book in the Miles Vorkosigan saga (the first 2 aren't about Miles) and it's the weakest I've read so far. The book is another adventure in the convoluted history of Miles' somewhat...unusual "military" career. "Technically" assigned to Barrayarian Security Miles has been sent to Cetaganda for the funeral of the Cetagandain Empress.

The book sets out to tell an intricate, Byzantine type story of palace intrigue. It does a pretty good job and the story holds the interest fairly we
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SA
Dec 12, 2011 SA rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
"Miles Learns About Investigating." One of the first things I learned about the Vorkosigan Saga, when someone was trying to convince me to read it a few years ago, was that Miles was a space detective. I've spent these first five or six books vaguely wondering when that was going to come true. Cetaganda is the first hint at that. It's also a much needed reminder about Lt. Vorkosigan, the bit of Miles' personality that tends to get lost in the shuffle most of the time.

I have to admit I spent a l
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Cindy Griffin
Miles is at it again! In this installment of the Vorkosigan series, Miles is sent with his cousin Ivan to Cetaganda to attend an Imperial funeral. Miles and Ivan are charged with representing the Barrayaran nobility at the somber affair. They definitely represent Barrayar, but not in the expected manner. At least on this trip, the trouble, mayhem, and murder were thrust on Miles against his wishes. Miles finds himself in the middle of a murder investigation, fighting off attacks on him and Ivan, ...more
Punk
Space Mystery! Tapped to attend the funeral of the Cetagandan Dowager Empress, Miles and Ivan haven't even landed before Miles steps in it and nearly causes an interplanetary incident. Though, to be fair, this time it's not really his fault. Miles has been framed! Dun dun DUN. Of course, this being Miles, instead of reporting this to, oh, ANYONE, Miles takes it upon himself to sleuth out the culprit. Ivan is there too.

In terms of setting, this wasn't what I expected from a Vorkosigan novel, but
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Andrea
The Cetagandans are a race trying to bioengineer themselves into a higher...something, with occasional attempts to conquer all their neighbours. Barrayar has a long history of conflict with the Empire, but currently it's all diplomatic steps, and Miles has been sent to stand about at the former Cetagandan Empress' funeral.

Miles isn't good at standing about.

The book is primarily an exploration of Cetagandan culture as Miles tries to resist being framed, while indulging his Knight Errant impulses.
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Cera
My 2nd or 3rd reread of this, and I had very mixed feelings. I love Cetagandan culture -- Bujold clearly drew on Japanese history, with her artistic high-culture Imperial haut who are carefully keeping the reins on the military ghem; the two classes need one another and struggle against one another in equal measure.

What I liked less about the book was, surprisingly, Miles. Young, brash, impetuous, arrogant Miles, who is so convinced of his own competence and almost everyone else's *in*competenc
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Aaron
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Janet
Not as strong as Warriors Apprentice or The Vor Game in terms of plot, but it had much better worldbuilding and provided an interesting look at a vastly different culture system. 3 books in, looks like I'm going to stick with this series, though I'm already feeling a little bit of repetition in the plot structure, so I think I might try to intersperse them a bit more. I like Miles, I like the world, I just still wish it had a bit more depth to it.
Kurt Adam
What a fantastic book. I wasn't expecting the next Miles book I read to be a murder mystery, but it was one with the great character of Vorkosigan at the center doing his usual job of falling ass-backwards from one troublesome situation to another. The multi-layered structure of the Cetagandan society and their genome manipulations for the "betterment" of their own empire was really interesting. Highly recommended.
Banner
Another adventure of the young and daring Miles Vorkosigan. A strange human (?) world that has let genetic manipulation go without limits. It seems the only question asked was "can we?" and no one ever asked, "should we?" You have to admire how Miles continues to have such a strong spirit in a culture that values physical perfection so much. Maybe that is what makes him excel (that and his parents).

This is a "whodunit" set in a alien (even to Miles) culture. The mystery is reveal within an ever
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Althea Ann
Not my very favorite in this series so far, but still an excellent mystery/adventure.
Miles Vorkosigan and his cousin are sent as diplomatic envoys to a state funeral on Cetaganda. Basically, all they're expected to do is to show up and look suitably grave.
However, the minute their spaceship docks, a mysterious assault occurs. In a combination of diplomatic tact and egotistical curiosity, Miles stays silent about the event, and embarks on solving the mystery himself.
Murder, politics, an enigmat
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Tamara!
The fantasy world created by LMB is quite fantastical, almost surreal in it's complexity and politics. I enjoyed the trouble that Miles and Ivan kept getting into, and through no fault of their own for a change too. Truly happened to be at the wrong place at the right time apparently. Ivan is getting a little more personality, Miles is just trying to survive and enjoy the beauty around him while walking that delicate line of diplomacy. This series has yet to lose my interest and I can see it bec ...more
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Romance Lovers fo...: Cetaganda by Lois McMaster Bujold , Sometimes in September 30 18 Sep 18, 2013 02:04PM  
Sci Fi Aficionados: Cetaganda 25 42 Aug 30, 2013 06:45AM  
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16094
Lois McMaster Bujold was born in 1949, the daughter of an engineering professor at Ohio State University, from whom she picked up her early interest in science fiction. She now lives in Minneapolis, and has two grown children.

Her fantasy from HarperCollins includes the award-winning Chalion series and the Sharing Knife tetralogy; her science fiction from Baen Books features the perennially bestse
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More about Lois McMaster Bujold...
The Curse of Chalion (Chalion, #1) Barrayar (Vorkosigan Saga, #7) The Warrior's Apprentice (Vorkosigan Saga, #2) Paladin of Souls (Chalion, #2) Shards of Honour  (Vorkosigan Saga, #1)

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“It was suicide, wasn't it?"
"In an involuntary sort of way," said Vorob'yev. "These Cetagandan political suicides can get awfully messy, when the principal won't cooperate."
"Thirty-two stab wounds in the back, worst case of suicide they ever saw?" murmured Ivan, clearly fascinated by the gossip.
"Exactly, my lord.”
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“Emperors per se did not unnerve Miles . . . . Emperor Gregor had been raised along with Miles practically as his foster-brother; somewhere in the back of Miles's mind the term emperor was coupled with such identifiers as somebody to play hide-and-seek with. In this context those hidden assumptions could be a psychosocial land mine.” 9 likes
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