1632 1632 discussion


165 views
Getting into 1632

Comments Showing 1-24 of 24 (24 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

Tyler I was talking to a girl at random earlier today (saturday) that I met in the Vacaville Barnes & Noble about books...just randomly striking up a conversation to see about sharing good/bad reads, and she introduced me to this site. So in her honor, I will happily share this series with anybody who wants to get into it...besides, her and I talked about it specifically, lol.

As I discussed with her, and was later explained in the series, the book starts with the idea that due to a mistake with a cosmic alien art project a small dying mining town in 1990s Virginia gets translocated with a piece of empty terrain in 1630s Germany...right in the middle of the 30 Years War. Both temporally and geographically.

With no hope of returning to their own place and time, the highly honor-driven hillbilly inhabitants of the town are faced with the daunting task of simple SURVIVAL in their new and bizarre situation... So why not start the American Revolution early?

The book's, and by and large the series', plot-lines essentially follow this pattern:
1 - Take a gun-nut hillbilly raised on ideas of freedom and justice for all, and working towards the common good.
2 - Expose them to the rampant social and economic injustices of 17th-century Europe.
3 - Toss in some memorable characters from the town, and some from history, for spice. Telling the story from BOTH sides of the temporal coin!
4 - Pick up the piece when the battle is over.

If you like your sci-fi with a heavy dash of realism (hell, the series goes into the hard science problems the town has to face OFTEN), yet still close enough to "home" to be easily understandable, then this is a series for you. No ray guns or faster-than-light potato plants, but try telling the 17th-century natives that pump-action shotguns and armor-plated mining trucks aren't "sci-fi" enough!


Kerri I couuld not get into this book. The book is well-written, but the plot did not appeal to me. I am not much of a sci-fi buff. I read the first 100 pages and the moved on.


Marie Being from West Virginia I feel the need to correct you about a couple things. The first is that the story is set in WEST VIRGINIA. If you are not aware, please let me enlighten you. West Virginia is a separate state from Virginia. They separated in 1863 and went with the North during the Civil War. Virginia was a state of the Confederacy. When the war was over the states remained separate. As a matter of fact, West Virginia was endeavoring to become a separate state before the Civil War and used the war as an opportunity to leave Virginia. This is something of a pet peeve of mine. I am always surprised at the number of people who are not aware of it. Ironically enough I now live in Buffalo, New York. Many believe it to be a suburb of New York City, Not realizing that there is a very large state between the extreme eastern point of New York City and the western end with Buffalo.

The second issue I have with your review is perhaps more subjective. I did not consider the characters in 1632 to be Hillbillies. A bit redneck perhaps, but not really hillbillies. If you were to look into the word you would find that hillbillies (while rooted in truth) are more of a legend now. The state of WV may be a poor state with it's base in coal mining and steel but it is hardly the stuff of the Hatfield's and McCoy's any longer.

Perhaps a quick look at Wikipedia on WV & hillbillies would give you a better perspective.


Norma Druid This series is an education, and I wish I could get more non-scifi people into it. The questions and problems the characters deal with we still have to deal with today, and their results are enlightening.


tiailds The first book is fine. The premise was rather interesting, but the later books lose me. The Americans become adjusted to the environment and then it just becomes another altered history story.


Jason Loved this book, got people at work hooked on it too.


Pamela I really enjoy the way the authors examine real problems that you would have if you were back in time. No Mozart yet, but you have CD's that play Mozart. What would local musicians think about that? Disease--yikes the Plague how can you cope? I really enjoy the way they bring historical figures. It feels like they have researched the character. I've enjoyed the whole series.

Pam


message 8: by Kressel (new) - added it

Kressel Housman I was absolutely hooked on 1632 when I read it. I stayed up through the night just to finish. But as an Orthodox Jew, I was really disappointed with the direction the author took Rebecca.


message 9: by Kressel (new) - added it

Kressel Housman Oh, and welcome to GoodReads, Tyler. You'll find it can get pretty addictive.


Victoria Hi, Tyler
I used to live in Fairfield (CA for those not from the neighborhood) so I know where Vacaville is, though I don't think it had a Barnes & Noble when last I was there, a dozen years or so.
The 1632 series is one of my favorites. I have all the books and the Grantville Gazettes, too. If any of you read ebooks, which I have been doing since 1999, Baen Books is one of the greatest places on the 'net. All of the books are DRM free and very reasonably priced.
I just got the latest 1632 volume 1636:The Kremlin Games which won't be released in hardback until June 1, for less than $3. That price was part of a bundle of 7 books for $18. Individually it is $6.
*Pamela - Eric Flint, who wrote the first book and designed the series, spent 3 years at UCLA working on a PhD in History, so yes the series is well researched.


message 11: by Alvin (last edited Mar 23, 2013 06:11AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Alvin Love this series, I try to introduce new people to it. It's intresting to see thier reaction, who gets into it and who doesn't. However I was not impressed with the Kremlin Games, did NOT seem realistic, which is one thing I really love about the others, you could see them actually happening, the historical figures acting the way written in the new sitution.


message 12: by Clay (new) - rated it 4 stars

Clay The only problem I have with the series is it branches off into multiple lines written by different authors. They have a web site where you can submit fan fiction and they use that for some of the different legs on this sprawling Ring of Fire beast. Not that this is bad but you have to know what line you are following when you decide what to read next.
This series prompted me to start reading CV Wedgwood's history of the Thirty Years War which if you are into the actual history, is fabulous.
I love Eric Flint' s Rivers of War series which is more straight contra factual historical fiction without the sci-fi.
I have only read about four of the Ring Of Fire books but recomend the wikipedia page:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1632_series
as a score card to help you read these in some sort of coherent order.


Larry Lennhoff One of the things I really like in this series is the way it takes religion seriously. In the first Grantville Gazette there is a Lutheran meeting to discuss which Lutheran sects should have access to the churches. Much of the Italian section of the series is concerned with Catholicism and how it reacts to the post Vatican 2 theology. Jews also play a role, although with less emphasis on theology than the other religions.


message 14: by Marko (new) - rated it 1 star

Marko I was put off by the bad historical research when it came to the values and mores of the 17th century people (they adopted the concepts of half-naked cheerleaders and other witchcraft entirely too easily) as well as the way the Americans chose to massacre the Imperials with no mercy whatsoever, more or less relishing their power over their enemy.


message 15: by Bill (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bill This book is the first in a very richly developed series. I have read them all, and wait with bated breath for each new one. I have learned more about the history of the 1600s than I ever thought I might. The common humanity that unites all of the people involved is heartening. The series in not all bang bang shoot 'em up. I enjoy the way so many different authors bring in varying areas of knowledge to speculate on issues as varied as how music - and musical instruments - from the 1600s and the modern era might cross-fertilize.


Brian Personally, I think the fact that there are so many different authors is the weak point of the series. It makes for a variable quality and voice.


message 17: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth Loved 1632 and the first Ring of Fire. Have read and reread my copy of 1632 so much that the cover is falling off. :)
But after that, the series starts losing me. I don't really care for never-ending series(at least ones that don't evolve over time) and that's what this one seems to have turned into.


Norma Druid Larry wrote: "One of the things I really like in this series is the way it takes religion seriously. In the first Grantville Gazette there is a Lutheran meeting to discuss which Lutheran sects should have acces..."

The religious history is one of the things I love most about the 1632 series. It challenges me to think about various issues at one remove - This is science fiction, so I feel free to think about what is said. That's the genius of Science Fiction; you know it's not real, so you can accept thinking about a new idea.


message 19: by Karl (new) - rated it 4 stars

Karl Smithe I think the series is interesting and thought provoking but I won't try to argue about how accurate the history is. I don't trust history books anyway. LOL

But if you want stuff from the series try this:

http://baencd.thefifthimperium.com/23...


message 20: by Kressel (new) - added it

Kressel Housman "Larry wrote: "One of the things I really like in this series is the way it takes religion seriously."

The portrayal of Jews and Judaism was not accurate. It was enough to make me give up on the entire series.


message 21: by Karl (new) - rated it 4 stars

Karl Smithe Kressel wrote: "The portrayal of Jews and Judaism was not accurate. It was enough to make me give up on the entire series. "

So tell us what was wrong about it.


message 22: by Marko (last edited Sep 10, 2013 08:40PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Marko Heck, the portrayal of Catholics and Protestants wasn't accurate either. They would not have tolerated the immorality of the future Americans so easily. Similarly, the High Chancellor Axel Oxenstierna wasn't anywhere near King Gustavus Adolphus when he was on his campaigns. He took care of the kingdom and politics and they mostly communicated by writing letters to each other.

The king also had learned to control his temper far better by this age than the novel lets us understand. He had been short-tempered as a youth, but short temper and military strategy don't actually go hand-in-hand that well.


message 23: by Karl (new) - rated it 4 stars

Karl Smithe Marko wrote: "Heck, the portrayal of Catholics and Protestants wasn't accurate either. They would not have tolerated the immorality of the future Americans so easily."

How could anyone know how they would react when an obvious "MIRACLE" occurred right in the vicinity that no one could deny? Mountains cut and landscape changed that anyone can see. Prove God didn't do it. It is "Science FICTION"!


message 24: by Marko (new) - rated it 1 star

Marko Karl wrote: "How could anyone know how they would react when an obvious "MIRACLE" occurred right in the vicinity that no one could deny? Mountains cut and landscape changed that anyone can see. Prove God didn't do it. It is "Science FICTION"!"
It is science fiction, but it is also historical fiction. As such, one expects some sense of realistic portrayal of the difficulties that the time-swapped people would encounter. As it is, everything was quickly solved in group discussions and mass murder was the ultimate answer.

In short, I did not find the storyline plausible at all. Even sci-fi needs to be plausible to work.


back to top