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Barrayar (Vorkosigan Saga (Publication) #7)

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4.31  ·  Rating details ·  19,761 Ratings  ·  697 Reviews
Second novel in the popular SF Vorkosigan series. Cordelia Naismith has deserted her home planet and a career in astrocartography for her husband Aral Vorkosigan, who has just been appointed Regent of Barrayar by the dying Emperor. As Lord and Lady Vorkosigan, they struggle to establish stability in a fragile government thrown into confusion by the transition of power. Whe ...more
Published by Fictionwise.com (first published 1991)
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Randy Well, if defined as meaning "the characters are flying about in space" - maybe only a quarter. But by a broader definition, I think you could say it…moreWell, if defined as meaning "the characters are flying about in space" - maybe only a quarter. But by a broader definition, I think you could say it all is.(less)
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Evgeny
Feb 09, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
A buddy read with Choko.

After the events of the last book Cordelia ended up on Barrayar. She thought she would be able to get used to new life fairly soon, but Barrayar is always full of excitement and surprises - like assassinations, civil war, regicide, forbidden duels
Duel,
external conquerors and such. You are guaranteed to never have a boring moment, but such lifestyle surely takes quite a while to get used to. Cordelia however was determined to fit in as best as she could which means she had to
...more
karen
Apr 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
many thanks to eh and elizabeth etc, because i would never never never have read a book with a cover like this, but i did it for youse, and it has been wonderful, really.

but so if i am understanding this correctly (and i hope that i am not) ms. bujold created one of the most interesting and likable-while-still-being-flawed characters ever and then abandoned her to write books about this character's son?? and all the rest are about him??

so lame.

because i loved this book. i love cordelia. i love
...more
Bradley
Third read, update 12/6/17:

The love story between Aral and Cordelia continues, but it's really a tale about Barrayaran politics and cultural horrors. To cull genetic mistakes or not? To break from the hold of barbaric cultural practices or not?

Hell, it even goes a long way to toward teaching us forgiveness for the mentally ill. Although, to be perfectly fair, Cordelia's bulldog of a man has a lot of nobility in him for latching on to a truly noble mistress, but maybe that's missing a point somew
...more
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
4+ stars. Barrayar--a Hugo winner and Nebula nominee back in 1991--is a book that improved dramatically for me on reread. It's more subtle and complex than I initially gave it credit for. And it's fascinating to see the development of Cordelia and Aral's characters from their initial beginnings in Shards of Honor, and their growing relationships with each other and with the people around them.

The first half of Barrayar is a little on the quiet side, more deliberately paced, as Cordelia, a woman
...more
Choko
Feb 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*** 4.75 ***

A buddy read with Evgeny, because we love Sci-fi!


Wow!!! Just WOW!!! This is the third book in the chronological order of the series and I am already addicted to it!

It is Sci-fi, but this one was on a planet very similar to Earth, Barrayar. No space battles, no new monsters, if we don't count the Barrayar Vors, the planet's nobility, who all act like monsters most of the time. No robots and no new races of humanoids. Just the life of Vorkosigan and Cordelia four months after they got
...more
Melindam
description


Barrayar - chronologically Book #2 in the series, the Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold - is Space Opera at its best. Describing it in opera terms: it is bel canto ("florid and intricate, requiring supreme agility and pitch control") combined with powerful and dramatic storytelling and LMB just got what it takes to write a damn fantastic libretto. The first part seems restrained, introducing dramatis personae & laying the ground for further action. LMB is gradually raising the stakes o
...more
mark monday
Barrayar continues and completes the story of former survey ship captain Cordelia Naismith and her husband Aral Vorkosigan, Regent of Barrayar. it is pretty enjoyable. is Bujold becoming one of my favorite scifi authors? i'm surprised at that realization. her style is not particularly striking, often rather plain and unadorned. i don't usually gravitate to those sorts of writers - the straightforward ones. but her themes, her careful way with characterization, her undramatic recognition of the c ...more
Lizzy
Oct 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“I am afraid.” So simply opens Barrayar with Cordelia words. It takes places immediately after the events of Shards of Honor and starts out with low-key family strife that sets the tone along with political developments. All the time, Lois McMaster Bujold’s character build up takes center stage. All in all, it is much more than the science-fiction tag that describes it.
“My home is not a place, it is people.”
The beginning might be slow though not less significant, and it is preparing for what i
...more
Clouds

Christmas 2010: I realised that I had got stuck in a rut. I was re-reading old favourites again and again, waiting for a few trusted authors to release new works. Something had to be done.

On the spur of the moment I set myself a challenge, to read every book to have won the Locus Sci-Fi award. That’s 35 books, 6 of which I’d previously read, leaving 29 titles by 14 authors who were new to me.

While working through this reading list I got married, went on my honeymoon, switched career and became
...more
Conor
Dec 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jumping around a bit in reading book 7 after book 1 in this series but it worked pretty well. This book started out brilliantly with some understated (well as understated as assassination attempts and high risk experimental surgeries can be) family turmoil, politics and character development taking center stage. While it wasn't particularly dramatic Bujold's masterful writing of interesting, nuanced characters kept me engaged. However about half-way through the focus turned into an isolated trek ...more
Trish
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am so sold on Cordelia and Aral as a couple. This might be an old scifi saga but it's one that has aged well in my opinion.

This is the third book, chronologically, and tells of Cordelia after she married Aral Vorkosigan and came to live with him on Barrayar. Naturally, a few things about this society are alien to her (and to us) but she also realizes some weird things about her own culture and that both aren't exactly perfect. Moreover, since the Emperor has appointed Aral regent, there is a l
...more
Milda Page Runner
Mar 29, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Milda by: Caro M.
Shelves: science-fiction
3.5*
Similar to previous book the first half is slower – mainly focussing on family melodrama and politics with a few assassination attempts to spice things up. Half way though pacing changes dramatically and then we get all the action and suspense one could hope for from the book. Cordelia shines in it.

Whilst I loved second part of this book I also had few issues with this instalment. With all the time spent on Barrayar it becomes obvious that Barrayar is remarkably similar to Earth. The same g
...more
Althea Ann
Dec 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The chronological sequel to 'Shards of Honor' follows Cordelia Naismith as she defects from Beta, in order to make her way to Barrayar and find her former captor Aral Vorkosigan - a man she has come to love and respect.

It's not incomprehensible that her Betan psychologists assume that she must be suffering from something like Stockholm syndrome, or some more insidious mental conditioning. The suspicion cast on her means that even though the war between Beta and Barrayar is technically over, Cord
...more
Daniel
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
Znaci wow. Odlicna knjiga, mnogo bolja nego ocekivano. Mnogo bolja nego prethodna. Prica kao prica je dobta mada nista posebno ali zato likovi i nacin na koji su prezentovani je savrsen. Drze paznju, dobri da za njih navijas, losi da ih mrzis. Isto tako niko nije savrsen, dobri prave greske, nekada i glupe, losi momci i nisu tolko losi kolko su vodjeni drugom ideologijom i kulturom u kojoj su odrasli. Nije sve suvese crno/belo ima i sivog.

Nacin pisanja je takav da me,a dosade, prica te stalno vu
...more
Kathleen
Apr 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars — it's even better on the second go-round. Chronologically, book two in this nicely-paced, militaristic space opera / romance, set centuries in the future on planets peopled by various descendants of Earth (two planets are Barrayar and Beta). I liked this book more than Shards of Honour. In sum, Cordelia and Aral Vorkosigan take no prisoners, protecting their marriage, their unborn son, and the empire.

Plot, major spoilers hidden: At the end of book one, Cordelia and Aral married. Now,
...more
Caro M.
Mar 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: s-f, 2016-reads
UPDATED 2017.04.02 with Worst Cover Gallery -check down below and feel free to comment!
_________________________________
I'm reading it in order suggested by author, so after nr 1 comes nr 7, instead of nr 2. Barrayar is a sequel to Shards of Honor and a prequel to Warrior's Apprentice.

Cordelia Naismith becomes Cordelia Vorkosigan and as a Vor lady she must play by new rules of Vor class (call it military junta, call it samurai, depends on your feelings for army) and get used to life on Barrayar
...more
Jim
Jul 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow! Absolutely wonderful as an audio book & the story was much tighter than the previous one.More great history & expanding internal politics of Barrayar. A lot of tough decisions & some remarkable adventure. There are also some shining moments, especially by Cordelia.

Two of the things I loved; Cordelia goes off & completes her own adventure much to Aral's dismay & delight. He tells her not to do that to him again. She simply tells him to make sure she doesn't have to again
...more
Sarah Anne
Oct 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These characters are so wonderful that I'm regretting not buying every single book in the series when that Audible sale was happening a few days ago. Sigh.

One of the things that I appreciated about this book was the way that it dealt with pregnancy, birth, and motherhood. It was a small part of the book but I like that it was in there at all. It's just not something I've run across often. There was quite a bit of danger and some heart pounding situations, and then there's Cordelia herself. She's
...more
Veronique
4.5*
“I don't want power. I just object to idiots having power over me.”

The previous two books in the saga were ok but this one finally got under my skin. We’re back with Cordelia, witnessing her efforts in trying to adapt to her new life as Aral’s wife and to the social rules of Barrayar. The couple seem to work well together but the stress and weight of the regency does put them into ever worsening situations. The narrative starts slowly, setting the scene, letting us get the lay of the land an
...more
Laura (Kyahgirl)
4.5/5; 4 stars; A

I first read this book 7 or 8 years ago and couldn't remember all the details. I'm glad I re-visited it. Cordelia is one of my favorite heroines. She is smart, courageous, snarky, and kind hearted. (view spoiler)

This book has political intrigue
...more
Stephen
4.0 to 4.5 stars. I started reading the Vorkosigan Saga in chronological order (rather then publication order) with the first "Miles" story, The Warrior's Apprentice. I have gooten around to focusing on the first two books in the Saga and I must say that I really liked this one. I have always been a fan of Miles' mother, Cordelia, and she really shines in this story.

Opening right after the events in Shards of Honour (which I still need to read), Cordelia, who has recently married Aral Vorkosiga
...more
C.T. Phipps
Lois Bujold follows up Shards of Honor with a work that actually makes me feel the series could have been solely about Cordelia and her husband instead of their ill-fated son Miles. The pair is a contrasting one of equals that gets along splendidly because of their differences rather than in spite of them. I also like how their marriage is not portrayed as something which is smooth sailing from beginning to end--something any married person will say is true to life.

Following her immigration to
...more
Ben Babcock
Immediately after finishing Shards of Honour , I jumped into Barrayar with gusto. I’d say this is the payoff to Shards of Honour, but that might give you the wrong idea. Both novels are good—but this is where it gets really interesting. Cordelia has married Aral Vorkosigan and left everything she knows behind to live with him on Barrayar, capital planet of the interstellar empire of the same name. Things are complicated: she’s pregnant and has very progressive ideas about raising kids; Aral get ...more
Jack +The Page Runner+
While I had read Shards of Honor for a book club discussion (and enjoyed it immensely), Barrayar was something I wanted to read of my own volition. It wasn't up for discussion, even if we did toss out a few tidbits here and there, but I really wanted to see how the story of Cordelia and Aral progressed.

Barrayar was written later on in Bujold's writing career, even though it's a direct sequel to Shards of Honor, and the jump in quality is immediately apparent. This is, in every way, a superior no
...more
Katie
Nov 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
IT CAN'T BE OVERRRRR
IT CAN'T BE 2:30 AM
new_user
Ninety-two must have been a bad year in scifi-- or else, ninety-one was an especially good one because I think I might have chosen Shards of Honor over Barrayar for the Hugo. Granted, Barrayar was more sprawling and ambitious -a coup in the palace!- but Shards had more emotional appeal for me.

I liked both characters better in Shards. Cordelia was not forever condescending to the Barrayarans. Realistic, perhaps, to point out Cordelia's difficulties in adjusting to Barrayar. Some immigrants never
...more
Angela James
Loved this--so much more than Shards of Honor. I felt it was much deeper and more dramatic, with a lot more emotional tension. In this one, I particularly warmed up to Cordelia and was glad to see her suffer both insecurities and doubts, go a little mad from all of the strain, but then also rise to her challenges.
Melinda
Apr 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: moms
My dh went to Iraq, I was expecting, and in the course of events I found this book at a thrift store. It is amazing. I found it life-sustaining at a time when I really, really needed help. I can keep going!
Nathan
Fantasy Review Barn

Minor spoilers of Shards of Honor are possible, you have been warned.

Wow, what a wonderful book. This just blows its predecessor out of the water. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed Shards of Honor quite a bit. (And I realize that technically this is not the second book of the series, but it was packaged this way in my omnibus and who am I to argue?) I thought Bujold’s first book was full of heart, with a protagonist that quickly was proving to be a favorite. It was a page turner,
...more
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Science Fiction A...: Barrayar 38 91 Mar 03, 2016 01:06PM  
Romance Lovers fo...: This topic has been closed to new comments. Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold 74 32 Jul 30, 2013 12:56PM  
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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
...more
More about Lois McMaster Bujold...

Other Books in the Series

Vorkosigan Saga (Publication) (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • Shards of Honour  (Vorkosigan Saga, #1)
  • The Warrior's Apprentice (Vorkosigan Saga, #2)
  • Ethan of Athos (Vorkosigan Saga, #3)
  • Falling Free (Vorkosigan Saga, #4)
  • Brothers in Arms (Vorkosigan Saga, #5)
  • The Vor Game (Vorkosigan Saga, #6)
  • Mirror Dance (Vorkosigan Saga, #8)
  • Cetaganda (Vorkosigan Saga, #9)
  • Memory (Vorkosigan Saga, #10)
  • Komarr (Vorkosigan Saga, #11)
“My home is not a place, it is people.” 118 likes
“But pain... seems to me an insufficient reason not to embrace life. Being dead is quite painless. Pain, like time, is going to come on regardless. Question is, what glorious moments can you win from life in addition to the pain?” 104 likes
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