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Dies the Fire

The Protector's War

Written By:S. M. Stirling - 2005

  • The Protector's War  - S. M. Stirling cover


It's been eight years since the Change rendered technology inoperable across the globe. Rising from the ashes of the computer and industrial ages is a brave new world. Survivors have banded together in tribal communities, committed to rebuilding society. In Oregon's Willamette Valley, former pilot Michael Havel's Mackenzie, is led by Wiccan folksinger Juniper Mackenzie. Their leadership has saved countless lives.

But not every leader has altruisitc aspirations. Norman Arminger, medieval scholar, rules the Protectorate. He has enslaved civilians, built an army, and spread his forces from Portland through most of western Washington State. Now he wants the Willamette Valley farmland, and he's willing to wage war to conquer it.

And unknown to both factions is the imminent arrival of a ship from Tasmania bearing British soldiers...


"Absorbing." —The San Diego Union-Tribune

"Rousing... a stirring tale." —New York Time Bestselling Author John Ringo

"[A] vivid portrait of a world gone insane... It also has human warmth and courage... It is full of bloody action, exposition that expands character, and telling detail that makes it all seem very real... The Protector's War is grim and infused with a sense of hopeless dread. It is the determination of its major characters to create a safe and loving world that makes the book so affecting." —Statesman Journal (Salem, OR)

"Reminds me of Poul Anderson at his best." —David Drake

"Readers who relish a battle between the forces of light and darkness, along with many frissons about what civilization means, are in for a rousing good time." —Science Fiction Weekly

"Without a doubt [The Protector's War] will raise the bar for alternate universe fiction and shows all of S.M. Stirling's hallmark ability to tell a stirring tale with vivid characters." —John Ringo, New York Times bestselling author of Ghost

"An exemplary specimen of the postapocalyptic tale. That SF subgenre have to blend hope with ashes, nostalgia for the old, dead civilization with excitement about building a new one, adventure with reflection, lost technology with its replacements, and outmoded expectations with new paradigms dictated by the circumstances. All this Stirling does, with panache, insight and ingenuity. He alternates massive, thrilling set pieces that are impeccably crafted—pirate attacks at sea, ambushes by bandits, a charge of feral British hippos—with quieter chapters that examine core human issues such as responsibility, love, justice, jealousy, camaraderie, and spirituality. The blend is very effective. Just as your heart is racing fit to burst, you get a break." —Science Fiction Weekly

"Villains of the darkest hue are matched by average men and women grown into heros of Arthurian stature and complexity. The action streaks across the page like an avenging blade... When you're finished reading, you'll beg him for more." —John Birmingham, author of Designated Targets

"The characters are distinct and clearly drawn, with a lovely sense of humor... Very readable." —SFRevu

"Consistent excitement and dramatic tension... a marvelous adventure and a strong entry in an improving trilogy. The new characters and overseas settings are an immense asset, in that we finally see the global scope of the Change. Thus, there's even greater depth to the overall story." —SF Reviews

"Stirling always does a great job with his novels of uprooted communities building a new world." —Chronicle

"[S.M. Stirling's] ability to imagine a return to quasimedievalism in the modern world provides a glimpse into the inner strength of men and women under fire. Highly recommended." —Library Journal

"Stirling's pictures of ruined cities and towns are grimly convincing, and his loving descriptions of familiar landscapes gone wild are wonderful... extremely readable." —Publishers Weekly

"Stirling's blending of fiction and history produces a strange hybrid civilization, in which the confrontation between warlord and mystic in viscerally satisfying." —Booklist

"[An] exciting and well-constructed work of speculative fiction... Readers will eagerly await the next work in the stunning series." —Midwest Book Review




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