Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Mirror Dance (Vorkosigan Saga, #8)” as Want to Read:
Mirror Dance (Vorkosigan Saga, #8)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Mirror Dance

(Vorkosigan Saga (Publication Order) #8)

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  19,770 ratings  ·  659 reviews
The dwarfish, fetally-damaged yet brilliant Miles Vorkosigan has more than his share of troubles. Having recently escaped an assassination plot whose tool was a brainwashed clone of himself, Miles has set the clone, Mark, free for a new chance at life. But when he decides to let his clone brother assume his secret identity and lead the Dendarii Free Mercenary on an unautho ...more
Paperback, 560 pages
Published March 1st 1995 by Baen Books (first published 1994)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Mirror Dance, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions

If Amazon is accurate in separating "mass market paperbacks" from 'trade paperbacks', you should be able to fi…more

If Amazon is accurate in separating "mass market paperbacks" from 'trade paperbacks', you should be able to find a good copy by following the links to used books on this page.

Sometimes I regret getting rid of most of my omnibus editions, but having hardcover, paperback, omnibus, and ebook editions seemed a touch excessive. I sent them to someone who hadn't read all the Vorkosigan books. (less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.32  · 
Rating details
 ·  19,770 ratings  ·  659 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Mirror Dance (Vorkosigan Saga, #8)
Apr 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: scifi
A buddy read with Choko and Maria.

The moment I start describing plot of this book I completely spoil the previous one - to the point that if you read my non-written plot description you might as well skip the previous installment. So if what I say below would not make sense remember: I did it for your own good.
I did it for your own good

Let me talk about a really bad cliche widely used in literature since the humanity discovered the wonders of a written word. A bad guy is out to get you and almost succeeds. You somehow m
Mar 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
*** 4.75 ***

A buddy read with Evgeny and Maria, because we love the Vorkosigans!!!

"...“Since no one is perfect, it follows that all great deeds have been accomplished out of imperfection. Yet they were accomplished, somehow, all the same.”..."

I wrote this passionate and thoughtful review, and GR ate it, forever lost in the gut of the internet... I am quite frustrated about that, but I still wanted to say that this book, although in no way perfect, was very emotional and it tugged on all of m
mark monday
Mar 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
when appreciating characterization, Space Opera - much like its cousin Epic Fantasy - is often more about surface appeal rather than depth. for the most part, that's okay by me. I can enjoy the expansive world-building and intriguing concepts, the science and adventure, without realistic or meaningful characterization. as long as the characters are fun, I'm not going to overthink it. I'll look for rich, resonant characterization elsewhere.

Bujold's Vorkosigan Saga is very nearly the opposite of a

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 beca
Dec 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011
"Miles Learns About Consequences" and "Mark Learns About Self-Identity." Holy shit, this book. This book.

To say that it puts you through the wringer would be a gross understatement. Flipping between perspectives--the first time Bujold has done this, I believe, and deftly utilized here--served to underscore the differences between Miles and Mark. And there are so many, spawning an argument beyond Bujold's case for the many guises of humanity into one of the affects of genetics versus experience.
Caro the Helmet Lady
Mar 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
UPDATED 2020.03.29 with Worst Cover Gallery!

This is probably the least funny book in the series - although I'm far from ending it yet, but it seems that my GR friends say the same.
Which is not a problem, it's just different. A bit sadder. Also the subjects in the book are quite heavy, to say the least but Bujold is a masterful writer and also a good psychologist and she handles it so well. Reading the series feels like growing up, maturing together with Miles. Who is still one of my favourite c
Jan 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, favorites
If I was a billionaire who can afford to commission a novelist to write a custom made book just for me the desired end result would probably read something like a Lois McMaster Bujold book. Her prose style just clicks with me. Always very clear and accessible, yet graceful, passionate, witty and often humorous. Her writing is never clunky or clumsy, never a word out of place. Even before getting into the actual storyline of the book the narrative style in and of itself is already a pleasure to r ...more
Mirror Dance: The Best Miles Adventure, and He's Not Even the Main Character
This entry in the Miles Vorkosigan Saga won the Locus and Hugo Awards for Best SF Novel in 1995, and lives up to its billing. Having read a number of other reviews (because I try to avoid repeating what has been said already), this volume is perhaps the darkest and most emotionally-involved book in the series, with a mixture of adventure, her signature depth of characterization, tragedy, humor, familial drama, and a very
Jun 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Part of a Vorkosigan reread with the SpecFic Buddy Reads group in 2017/18. This is the last of the novels in the series that I hadn't read before and I'm very happy to say, probably my favorite since the very early books of the series.

Mark, Miles's young and erratic clone brother, reappears and again pretends to be Miles long enough to requisition a small Dendaari force to tackle some repellent activity on Jackson's Whole. Unfortunately, the raid is poorly conceived and even more poorly executed
Oleksandr Zholud
Jul 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: vorkosigan-1
This is a novel that is part of Vorkosigan Saga, where we finally have some return of Cordelia. I read is as a part of Vorkosigan Saga challenge in July 2020 at Hugo & Nebula Awards: Best Novels group.

This review contains some spoilers of the previous book, Brothers in Arms.

The story starts with Mark (clone-brother of Miles) hitchhiking Denarii ship under the guise of his brother to proof that he is no worse a commander and to have a revenge on Jackson's Whole, which created him. What starts wit
Milda Page Runner
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Must be the darkest book in the series. And since most of it is not from Miles's PoV there is no sarcasm and humour to soften the blows. That said it had some some really touching moments when I wanted to give the book 5*. The most highlights in the series.
I expected headcount towards the end - but worry not - the ending is positive.

"People are the only mirror we have to see ourselves in. The domain of all meaning. All virtue, all evil, are contained only in people. There is none in the universe
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: scifi, favorites
**edited 11/28/13

When Mark Vorkosigan looks in a mirror, he doesn't quite know what stares back. Mark was created a clone, trained as an assassin, intended to replace his progenitor, Miles Vorkosigan, as part of an attack against the infamous Lord Vorkosigan of Barrayar. But Mark failed spectacularly in carrying out his task, partially because of the discovery that Miles himself has constructed an artificial identity as Admiral Miles Naismith of the Dendarii Free Mercenaries. Now Mark again plan
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read, audiobook
4.5 stars

It's probably because I've watched SO many hours of Game of Thrones that I can't help but associate Tyrion Lannister with Miles Vorkosigan. On top of the personality similarities, did you know that Miles and Peter Dinklage are even approximately the same height? How can I not think of Miles Vorkosigan as Tyrion Lannister in space and raised by much better parents?

This book gives a view of Miles raised in radically different circumstances in the form of his clone brother, Mark. Bujold ag
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi, space-opera
Despite the whole evil-twin setup, this novel pulls off something much deeper and exciting than I would have expected. Twists and turns, complicated plots, and severe complications are studded in this novel. It's more than satisfying to read, and it sucks you in quite nicely.

Mile's corpulent brother has become more than fascinating in his own right. His growth is not only in his waistline. :) His black gang friends are very humorous. I'm glad to know that Mile's genes can express his insanity in
4.0 stars. Another well-written, well-polotted and interesting story involving one of the best characters ever created, Miles Vorkosigan.

Winner: Hugo Award for Best Science Fiction Novel (1995)
Winner: Locus Award for Best Science Fiction Novel (1995)
Mirror Dance is number nine of the full length novels of the Vorkosigan Saga, and the third to win a Hugo award. I can see why. This is easily the best book to feature Miles and one of the my favourites of the series overall.

This time, the book is told not only from Miles’s point of view but also from Mark’s, his clone brother who was introduced in the previous book, Brothers In Arms. Mark was created (for want of a better term) to assassinate Miles and then take his place in Barrayar society;
Mike (the Paladin)
I'm a little tempted to include some of these on my "Spy-Fi" shelf, LOL.

I was advised for a long time to read the Miles Vorkosigan series, but as it's another rather long series I had put it off. Now that I've started I think I owe a thank you to all those who kept recommending them. I've read several books by Lois McMaster Bujold. Some I've liked greatly others, frankly I almost disliked by the time I got through them. These are in my estimation the best so far.

I haven't read all these in order
Megan Baxter
Jun 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
And we're back to Mark! Eeeennnteresting. What's even more interesting are the ways in which this Vorkosigan book has a large chunk there in the middle without any Miles in it! I was shocked when that happened, and I'm trying very hard to figure out how to allude to what happened without giving it away. I wasn't sure how a Miles book without Miles would work.

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 de
Dec 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebooks, sf, reread, 10, 2010
I've been rather under the weather lately. I've done too much physically and my CFS has come along and thwacked me around the head to remind me it's still there. As a result, my brain isn't running on full steam either. So I don't have this post quite planned out in my head and I don't know how coherent I'm going to be. However, I know that the longer I put it off, the more and more likely it becomes that I won't write anything at all. So here we go. I'll start typing and we'll see what happens. ...more
Jul 24, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's a tough call on this book. It started out slow, got kind of crappy, then finished fantastically. Excellently read again.

The first third had a lot of back story in it. If a person hadn't read any of the series, they would appreciate it. BUT, it's a series. Skip books at your own risk & let those of us who have read it read the new story.

The middle got into Mark's head until it was just boring. He had a horrible life & a lot to figure out.
Got it.
Got it.
Got it.
Got it.
(Bored yet? I was.)

Jacob Proffitt
Jul 15, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned, sci-fi
I tend to skip this one when I reread the series, these days. Indeed, this is probably only the second time I've read this one. That last quarter or so is just very hard to go through. It colors so much of the following books, though, and since I was listening with Melissa so she could hold me through the night terrors, I endured it again. And upped my unfair rating to where it should be and realized, once again, how much I love Bujold's stories and sheer brilliance. ...more
Melissa McShane
Jul 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This is a hard book to read, painful at moments, and yet I think it draws power from those very things. Miles's clone brother Mark, who is trying very hard to be Lord Mark Vorkosigan, is deeply damaged, and his disastrous attempt to rescue fifty clones from House Bharaputra has far-reaching consequences I can't discuss without venturing into spoiler territory. But despite their effects on Miles (who is, after all, the hero of this series), this book is ultimately about Mark even when, like the t ...more
Jul 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved the psychological layers and thrilling action in this 5th in a delightful series of military space opera novels featuring Miles Vorkosigan. As usual, he must juggle his identities as the aristocratic son of a planetary prime minister, a lieutenant with Barrayar Imperial Security, and an admiral of a mercenary fleet which takes on undercover operations.

The theme of identity becomes even more prominent when Miles' clone brother Mark, introduced in the preceding "Brothers in Arms", assumes
Jul 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: completed-series
Review to come.
Rosario (
This was the book that proved beyond all reasonable doubt that I'm putty in Lois McMaster Bujold's hands. At regular intervals she had me exclaiming out loud "no, no, NO!", and telling myself she'd gone too far, and that I wasn't going to follow where she was leading, but every single time, I did. I totally did. And I loved it, more than any of her books up to now.

I'll back up a little bit. Right, plot. You might have noticed that the description above is particularly cryptic and uninformative.
Dichotomy Girl
Jun 29, 2018 marked it as to-read-maybe
Shelves: hugo
Maybe I'll read this someday, but for now, I'm glad I skipped it, because it was holding me back from finishing the series, and I ended up loving Memory, something fierce. ...more
Jane Stewart
I did not enjoy it. It was tedious. It dragged. I wanted it to be over.

From previous books: Miles is a government agent (sort of) and an admiral. Because his father is a powerful government figure, enemies obtained Miles’ DNA and created a clone now called Mark. They tortured and trained the clone to be an assassin with plans to kill the father. Mark was set free (or escaped) from the bad guys and met Miles.

In this story Mark pretends to be Miles in order to steal his ship and crew.
Maggie K
Nov 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
Miles Vorkosigan has been the starring character in this great series by Bujold...but when Mark, the clone of Miles that was sent to assassinate him now tries to take over his life...well, he just might get Miles killed anyway!

I have been reading these in chronological order, so be ware of spoilers to those of you reading in publication order.

Here, Mark is itching to save some of his fellow clones back on Jackson's Whole, and when Miles is away he takes advantage and orders the Dendarrion to the
Maria Dimitrova
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: buddy-reads, barrayar
Buddy read with Choko and Evgeny.

What makes a human being a person? If you strip this book down to one thing, it'll be that question.

Mirror Dance is hard on the emotions. Probably the hardest of the entire series. There's only one scene in the series more emotionally charged than this book but it revolves around a single emotion while Mirror Dance takes you on a rollercoaster of emotions and leaves you both drained and elated. It's not perfect and if I'm being objective there are a lot of thing
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Worm Holes (Quantum Roots, #2)
  • Unparalleled
  • The Lost Intelligence (Lost Starship #12)
  • A Memory Called Empire (Teixcalaan #1)
  • Fuzzy Nation (Fuzzy Sapiens #7)
  • Network Effect (The Murderbot Diaries, #5)
  • Split Second (Split Second, #1)
  • As Our World Ends (Cyber Apocalypse #1)
  • Eon (The Way, #1)
  • The Awakening: Fate in Motion
  • Sporting Chance (The Serrano Legacy, #2)
  • Hunting Party (The Serrano Legacy, #1)
  • The Threat Below (Brathius History, #1)
  • Atlantic Island: The Traveler
  • Riverworld: To Your Scattered Bodies Go/The Fabulous Riverboat (Riverworld, #1-2)
  • Beggars and Choosers (Sleepless, #2)
  • The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress
  • Command Decision (Vatta's War, #4)
See similar books…
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

Other books in the series

Vorkosigan Saga (Publication Order) (1 - 10 of 16 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)
  • Barrayar (Vorkosigan Saga, #7)
  • Cetaganda (Vorkosigan Saga, #9)
  • Memory (Vorkosigan Saga, #10)
  • Komarr (Vorkosigan Saga, #11)

Related Articles

If you love the fantasy genre, this is the season for you! Some of the biggest books out this fall promise to be epics full of magic, adventure,...
193 likes · 49 comments
“Since no one is perfect, it follows that all great deeds have been accomplished out of imperfection. Yet they were accomplished, somehow, all the same.” 127 likes
“I do think, half of what we call madness is just some poor slob dealing with pain by a strategy that annoys the people around him.” 50 likes
More quotes…