Chris's Reviews > The Short Victorious War

The Short Victorious War by David Weber
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's review
Oct 16, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: sci-fi-space-opera, cat-fiction
Read from October 16 to 18, 2011

2.5 really.

This is the third Honor book that I've and I'm reading them in order. This book isn't bad, it's a little better than okay.

The second book in this series (The Honor of the Queen) looks at a female officer forced to work in a culture where women are second class citzens. In some ways, this book feels like he is going over something similar. This is because everyone who doubts Honor in this book is male and, therefore, either (a) dumb (b) evil or (c) both. Weber seems to want to talk about sexism without talking about sexism.

I can understand the reason. Talking about sexism, writing about sexism, is hard in a culture that is supposedly beyond it. (You get funny looks if you mention sexism and Star Trek. But honestly, why did all the women on ST:TNG were a one piece, and the guys two, hmmm?). There are ways, however, to deal with it. Take for instance, the UK and US versions of Prime Suscept. The original, the UK version, done many years ago dealt with sexism straight out. In the US version, the sexism is still there, but it is the subtle kind. Jane is disliked by some of her male collegues because she is new, and because she isn't a "soft" "girly" woman. She is too direct, she is too pushy, she isn't polite. She acts, in some ways, as how the male lead cop in a show should act (in essence, she is a less physical Steve Macgarret from the new Hawaii Five-0). If she was a man, it wouldn't be a problem, but because she doesn't act like a woman, it is. (BTW, it's a great show. I love the fact the fact she is tough and has a healthly personal life). Or if that doesn't work for you, think about Starbuck in the Battlestar remake, some people disliked her because she didn't act like a girl. A man doing all that is fine, but a woman, nope. It isn't quite the same as saying, "girls stink" but such thinking is still sexism. If Weber was dealing with this more sublte form, I could see it, and he seems to come close, but he doesn't hit it.

Another problem I had was Honor's prefection. Even her relationship with her tree-cat is extra special. In some characters, too, felt very flat.

Yet, there are parts of this book that are really good, in particular the space battle scenes. And it moves very quickly, yet there is something off about it.
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10/28/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Derek That's pretty much my take on the whole series. I itch at the way he skirts (can I use that word?) the whole sexism issue, and yes, she's much too perfect. I think I prefer some of the other Honorverse books which focus on her less perfect colleagues.

otoh, I just discovered that almost all of these books are freely available (legitimately), and I'm doing a mass read of all the ones I've missed.

Chris I think skirts is a good pun. I haven't tried any of the ones that focused on her colleagues. I'll have to give them a go.

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