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Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
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Apr 24, 08

Read in April, 2008

I finished Doomsday Book and pronounce it wonderful; an incredible blend of medieval history with a touch of science fiction (the Oxford historian travels back to the 14th century via The Net, a neat premise). At the moment of her transfer back, the 21st-century protagonists are hit with a deadly influenza epidemic, and Kivrin lands in 1320 with a bad case of it herself.

She recovers from the flu, only to find that they've sent her to 1348 by mistake. She's now smack in the middle of the bubonic plague hitting England. Great stuff, if a bit heavy on the disgusting details of how people die of plague.

Willis downplays the techie/SciFi stuff (it's a tool for her to place these characters in these settings, rather than the driving force of the book, huzzah!) and concentrates on the emotional lives of her characters, vividly-drawn settings and period details. I love this approach to science fiction!
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