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The Excalibur Alternative

(2002)
(The third book in the Ranks of Bronze series)
A novel by

 
 
In the latest SF adventure novel from the creator of Honor Harrington, Weber (On Basilisk Station; Ashes of Victory; etc.) expands a short story, "Sir George and the Dragon," which appeared in the David Drake anthology Foreign Legions (2001), to good effect. The novel adheres to the story's basic plot: aliens of the Federation abduct 14th-century Englishmen to serve as mercenaries on planets where only low-tech weaponry is legal. But the author extends these events in several directions, with his usual mixture of apt characterization and historical sophistication (here regarding medieval weaponry and tactics). The Englishmen liberate themselves with the aid of the "dragon-men" (the Ternaui) and "Computer" (renamed Merlin), as well as the obstinate stupidity of their opponents. The narrative then leaps ahead several centuries to an ending that surprises both humans and aliens as they learn of the Empire of Avalon. The slam-bang action leaves little room for developing subplots beyond tantalizing hints, though this approach also means a streamlined story, in contrast to Weber's normally rather sprawling narratives. Newcomers to the author's work will do fine without having read previous books in the series. This novel makes an honorable companion to the late Poul Anderson's classic The High Crusade, which uses a similar plot idea.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Genre: Science Fiction

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Used availability for David Weber's The Excalibur Alternative

Hardback Editions

January 2002 : USA Hardback
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Title: The Excalibur Alternative
Author(s): David Weber
ISBN: 0-671-31860-8 / 978-0-671-31860-4 (USA edition)
Publisher: Baen
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

January 2003 : USA Mass Market Paperback
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Title: The Excalibur Alternative
Author(s): David Weber
ISBN: 0-7434-3584-2 / 978-0-7434-3584-0 (USA edition)
Publisher: Baen
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Kindle Editions

January 2002 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: The Excalibur Alternative (Ranks of Bronze Series Book 3)
Author(s): David Weber
Publisher: Baen Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU