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Cauldron of Ghosts

(Honorverse: Wages of Sin #3)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  2,273 ratings  ·  131 reviews
Sequel to national bestsellers Crown of Slaves and Torch of Freedom, Cauldron of Ghosts is the return of Secret agent Anton Zilwicki and Victor Cachat in the Wages of Sin, the classic tie-in series set in David Weber's Honorverse.


The Mesan Alignment is a centuries-old cabal that seeks to impose its vision of a society dominated by
Hardcover, 581 pages
Published April 8th 2014 by Baen (first published March 15th 2014)
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Sable According to the Honorverse Fandom Wiki, it will be called Tangle of Tales, and it hasn't been released yet (as of July 2019).

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 ·  2,273 ratings  ·  131 reviews

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Start your review of Cauldron of Ghosts (Honorverse: Wages of Sin, #3)
This the best (and most likely last as by the end the story is wrapped in the mainline) of the 3 Wages of Sin novels and the most complete Honorverse novel since At All Costs as it closes the Mesa storyline and we finally can move to the breakup of the league, The Renaissance Factor and all the goodies promised. The ending coincides more or less with the ending of Shadow of Freedom as the timeline goes (plus travel time of course, but nothing else moves ahead)

Houdini, new characters, most
Coyora Dokusho
I got an e-arc I got an e-arc thank you baen and thank you webscriptions you rock my socks because I get the books early and I must FEED MY ADDICTION (I love you) - 1/22/2014

(Okay quick break to re-read some Torch of Freedom)


Okay, IT WAS INCREDIBLY AWESOME and then I got to the end and it was like NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO why must you end now... why?!?! (although the book was freaking long!! took me 7-8 hours to read)

I like Eric Flint, when Weber writes alone I don't get the lol's like I do
Jan 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent continuation of the *massive* Honor Harrington series. It brings together some big threads from previous books, and adds in quite a few more. I think Eric Flint has done a world of good for the characterization in the series, particularly when it comes to the villains. David Weber is damn good at space battles, but one of his weak spots has always been characterizing negative characters. Not necessarily the military characters, as there've been some Havenites I liked better than ...more
Mar 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoy this series. When Weber and Eric Flint get together, they are better than the sum of their parts. Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki are best appreciated as a superspy buddy comedy, something like Lethal Weapon with spies in space.

This book is no exception, and here, facing off against the shadowy Mesan Alignment, is where the real action of the later Honorverse books is taking place. This book finds our heroes on the ground when the Alignment activates Houdini, their plan to
Apr 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki are on the loose on Mesa again. This time, they've brought a military advisor and plans to make contacts among the underground of "seccies", the descendants of slaves who make up the underclass of Mesan society. As the repercussions of their previous visit to Mesa continue, will they be able to control the rebellion they plan to start?
Best of this side series, thus far. Only one cut-and-paste chapter from a previous book, and far more action than the main-line
Apr 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is the third book in the “Crown of Slaves Series” set in the “Honoverse”, the world of Honor Harrington. Victor Cachet, spy from the Republic of Haven and Anton Zilwicki spy from the Empire of Manticore are the two main characters in the “Crown of Slaves series” In prior books they began working together in Torch a planet of ex-slaves who elected Berry Zilwicki , Anton’s youngest daughter their Queen. They had discovered that Mesa, who create genetic slaves, plot to set Haven and Manticore ...more
Brett Thomasson
David Weber began his Honor Harrington series in 1992 with On Basilisk Station, and in it our intrepid heroine commanded a ship of the Star Kingdom of Manticore against the far larger People's Republic of Haven. Manticore remained Haven's superior on the fields of battle because of its robust interstellar trade and Haven's corruption. And in case Weber hadn't made it clear he was writing a Horatio Hornblower England v. Revolutionary France-in-space novel, the leader of Haven was Rob S. Pierre.

Apr 04, 2014 rated it it was ok
Slow to get get going. Most of the books by webber have a very short resolution. Basically his stories reach the climax and then end a few pages latter. This one ended at the climax (maybe a paragraph past) with no resolution.

There were several times I just started skimming whole pages when he was giving unnecessary details about terrorist attacks that did not involve any of the characters.

There was also a couple of story lines that are seemingly pointless and kind of abandoned. I feel like I
Carl Bussema
Jun 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
So. Many. Characters.

Seriously, we do not need to have a full name given for Soldier Q. Public, who is just going to die on the next page (or is already dead). By the end, I completely lost track of who's who, except for a very select number of important characters, and couldn't be bothered to care about the names of everyone else.

As for the plot, it's entirely predictable except perhaps for degree of vileness that the M.A. is willing to employ, and that really shouldn't surprise anyone by now.
May 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
David Weber and Eric Flint again show why they are one of the best sci-fi writing duos out there. Weber does an amazing job creating a galaxy of military science fiction, but his shortcoming was that he stuck way too closely to the analogy of the Napoleonic Wars. When his version of France (Haven) had a revolution, the leader was named Rob S. Pierre. I rest my case. Eric Flint came in and brought in some much needed broadening of characters. Honor Harrington, the main character of this long ...more
When Eric Flint and David Weber get together to write a tale, you can expect action, intrigue, plots galore and much more. The Cauldron of Ghosts provides that with plenty of military action, dastardly enemies, and a twist at the end that is not really explained in this book, but will probably pop-up in another book in the Honorverse universe. We go along with Anton Zilwicki, Thandi Palane, and Victor Cachat on their visit Mesa which ends with an uprising caused mainly by the Mesan Alignment's ...more
Feb 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014, 2018
Another great book by two great authors. I truly enjoyed the eARC version of this book. Baen just keeps publishing the greatest books! 2018 re-read. Simply superb!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathy Davie
Oct 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi, military, thriller
Third in the Wages of Sin subseries within the Honorverse overall series and revolving around Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki against the Mesan Alignment. It’s inciting revolution time! I reckon this one merits a "7".

My Take
Omigod. I don't know if it's just been too long since I've read an Honorverse story or if Weber and Flint are having too much fun with this story. I chuckled and laughed through at least the first half before it got serious. And, yeah, there are parts where I cried. There
Leigh Kimmel
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
In Torch of Freedom, Victor Cachat and Anton Zilwicki made a daring covert mission to Mesa, the heart of the genetic slavery system. The disruptions they caused have led the secret core of the Mesan Alignment to activate Operation Houdini, a long-planned flight of their key personnel to a secret bolthole, somewhere. And in the process of covering their departure, creating mayhem that they can blame upon their opponents, particularly the Audobon Ballroom.

But Victor and Anton are back for a second
Robert Scott
Jul 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I like all Honorverse books, but this one maybe tops all of them that are not dealing with Honor herself or the RMN. Involves Manticore, Haven and Torch and takes place mostly on site on Mesa. Anton Zilwicki (G) & Victor Cachat (H) along with Thandi Palane (T), Steph Turner (M), Andrew Arlett (PS) & Yana (T) arrive with body and/or facial disguises created on Beowulf and assist a local seccy ganglord prepare to face off with Mesan authorities and their armed methods for seccy & slave ...more
Kamal Syed
Jul 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Lots of action, but the plot hasn't seemed to have advanced very far. The editing was very poor and the seams between chapters wasn't great - there were literally passages that were duplicated word for word.

I enjoy Weber's works, but his habit of stretching the plots on beyond the breaking point is becoming quite annoying. This interweaving of various series, while probably great for his sales, makes it harder to stay up to date and interested. I'll keep buying for now, but I wish he would
Dec 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not the best in the honorverse books, but better than the main story books at the same chronological period of story because it's not the same story reprinted (new/different stuff happens) makes me look forward to the next real honor Harrington book, where the parallel time period Harrington books didn't really. Worth a read if you read the other 2 torch books.
Tim Gray
Aug 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
As ever a very well written book, great characters, and moves the Honoverse story lines on. It did take me a little while to get into this one, but it certainly picked up speed as it went along. Very good.
3.5/5 stars

Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
More Zilwicki and Cachat, and increasingly complicated political intrigue.
Mar 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
A fitting finale for the strong characters in this spin off.
Nov 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well done now waiting for the next book

Because I enjoy reading all the books connected to the honor series and how character s change or evolve. A very good read
Bruce Hill
Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of overlapping information with other books in the universe. Can't wait till the next book is out
Joe Jungers
Victor & Anton take a vacation on scenic Mesa.
What could possibly go wrong?
Scott Holstad
Jan 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: david-weber, sci-fi
Oh man, what a book! What a hell of a book! That was one of the best damn books I've ever read. So why only four stars? Cause the last few pages, the ending, is so anti-climactic and incomplete and leaves you panting for justice and revenge and more and more and it's damned cruel of Weber to do this to us and I've NEVER felt so let down by an ending in my life!

This is the third book in what is probably a final book of an Honor Harrington sub-series trilogy called the Crown of Slaves Series,
Mike Franklin
Jun 09, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Cauldron of Ghosts is without doubt, and by a very large margin, the worst book in the various Honorverse series that it has been my displeasure to have to read. And I do mean 'have to' as my fear was that had I just thrown it away, as was my inclination (unwise as I read on an eReader!), it might have left a hole in my knowledge of the political background when reading the other (much better) books in the series. The book was a collaboration between David Weber and Eric Flint, though I suspect ...more
David Goodnow
Better edited than other recent Harrington books

Not in the same class of writing as early novels of the Honor Harrington series, this Cauldron of Ghosts suffers from pedantry but is a huge improvement on the cut-and-paste waste of time and money that are At All Costs, Mission of Honor, Storm from the Shadows, and A Rising Thunder. Hopefully Shadow of Freedom and Cauldron of Ghosts represent a turn-around from the publisher, editing, and author of that garbage. I've been hoping that if I could
Feb 28, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pulp, kindle
Technically following on from Torch of Freedom, this book also overlaps with some of the events of Shadow of Freedom and a bit of A Rising Thunder. However, the overlaps are fairly minimal, though the start to the book is a little slow as the various timelines and set ups are synchronised. Cauldron of Ghosts has plenty of its own story and focuses on important but background issues in the whole unfolding Honorverse story.

Quite enjoyable, definitely benefiting from a bit of change of focus from
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David Weber and Eric Flint 2 16 May 27, 2014 10:57PM  
Honorverse: New Torch Book 6 29 Jan 22, 2014 11:46PM  

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David Mark Weber is an American science fiction and fantasy author. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1952.

Many of his stories have military, particularly naval, themes, and fit into the military science fiction genre. He frequently places female leading characters in what have been traditionally male roles.

One of his most popular and enduring characters is Honor Harrington whose alliterated name

Other books in the series

Honorverse: Wages of Sin (3 books)
  • Crown of Slaves (Honorverse: Wages of Sin, #1)
  • Torch of Freedom (Honorverse: Wages of Sin, #2)
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