Opinions on David Weber

Parson

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I won't say you are wrong, but if you ignore On Basilisk Station a lot of the insight and tension which is built up in (what I consider the best of the series) Field of Dishonor is missed.
 

psikeyhackr

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I won't say you are wrong, but if you ignore On Basilisk Station a lot of the insight and tension which is built up in (what I consider the best of the series) Field of Dishonor is missed.
They will miss it anyway if they are turned off to the series by the apathy induced from trying to read On Basilisk Station.

Read HoQ and get hooked on the series first.

psik

PS - Yeah, I'm an asshole and I'm always right. What can I do?
 

Siberian

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Basilisk is not that different from HotQ. If they hate it, the whole series is not their cuppa.
 

TheDustyZebra

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I can't imagine starting with Honor of the Queen, but then I can't imagine being bored with Basilisk, either. :p

I'll second what Timba said just above, about the e-books and their formatting. I have always read the hard copies, and there is no formatting problem with them. I had occasion last year to collect the first three e-books when they were free on Amazon, just to have them on my iPad in case I needed them somewhere, and discovered quickly that there are line breaks missing that would explain what people consider to be head-hopping.

Oh, and while I've read all of the Honor Harringtons at least half a dozen times each (more in many cases), I skip or skim the info-dumps about ship details every time. It doesn't detract from the overall excellence of the characters and stories, if you just ignore it. :D
 

Parson

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I had no idea that you'd read all the Harringtons multiple times! I thought I was the only one nerdy enough for that on this site. But I don't skip the "info-dumps" I keep trying to figure everything out.
 

psikeyhackr

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I had no idea that you'd read all the Harringtons multiple times!
When I got them in e-book form I did text to speech and listened to them as audiobooks. I still say Basalisk is "relatively' boring compared to HoQ. I haven't actually READ a Weber book in some time.

There is a fanfic writer named Scott Washburn who has done some good take offs from Weber and Bujold.

https://www.fanfiction.net/u/2266883/Scott-Washburn

psik
 

chrispenycate

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Hey, I can do nerdy, too. I've even had direct discussions with him about drive details. I just max out on the politics.
 

Nick B

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I really didn't like the opening book, On Basi, I didn't like Honor Harrington I'm afraid. And that pretty much made me not want to continue with them.

Each to their own, it'd be boring if we all liked the same books.
 

ralphkern

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I'm not a great fan of On Basilisk Station. I actually started with Honor of the Queen and then went back to it. I suspect had I started with OBS, I probably wouldn't have tried HOTQ... and that would have been a crying shame as it's an awesome book.
 

Vertigo

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Funny, I didn't have any particular problem with OBS and immediately loved the series. It's more the most recent books that I'm having trouble with where there is much much less action and far more politics. I feel they've gone from military action with a bit of politics to politics with a bit of military action.
 

Brian G Turner

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I enjoyed On Basilisk Station, but didn't feel particularly challenged by it. It kind of felt like I'd experienced an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Something fun, but not too serious.

I enjoyed the technical details, but came away with a sense of there being a bit too much padding with that. There's an early chapter dedicated to explaining the orbital defence platforms in the Basilisk system - yet I don't recall them ever playing any actual role in the story.

trundled through the first ten pages or so, and so far I'm not impressed
IIRC, there's a prologue that simply has people saying "something's going to happen round Basilisk way", which seemed a bit unnecessary with hindsight. The opening lines about the treecat are also a bit fluffy. After that, there's some really good tension about taking command, especially between Harrington and her senior officer.

Certainly with pushing on with, if nothing else, to see if you actually enjoy it once the story gets started.
 

BAYLOR

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He writes pretty good military science fiction.(y)
 

Siberian

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I don't find this damning. That's basically what I would say if someone asked me about DW. Writing good mil SF is not that easy.
 

Vertigo

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My problem with Weber now is that, at least with HH, he's not really writing military SF any longer; it's more political SF which, whilst still good, I personally don't enjoy nearly as much. I also have a similar problem with his Safehold books.

I must try the newer spinoffs as I feel they are more likely to be going back to his 'roots.'
 

Timba

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My problem with Weber now is that, at least with HH, he's not really writing military SF any longer; it's more political SF which, whilst still good, I personally don't enjoy nearly as much. I also have a similar problem with his Safehold books.

I must try the newer spinoffs as I feel they are more likely to be going back to his 'roots.'
I have read the first two books in the new Honorverse series with Timothy Zahn and enjoyed them both. The second book had material I am sure I had read before though although I cannot pin down in my mind where I read it before. Sometimes a sample shows up on Baen and that may have been it or possibly a short story from one of the collections now expanded into a more full story, just not sure. I enjoyed it either way but the question of where I had read it before kept niggling at me. They definitely are more action and less politics although not totally.
 

Siberian

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I've realized that my problem with the recent books (post Book 8 or so) has less to do with politics than with general bloat: boring conversations between meaningless characters discussing ad nausea events already know to the reader. As a result, you get maybe one event per 2-3 books and the rest is fluff (ok, maybe I'm exaggerating somewhat, but it just feels like that to me).
 

tinkerdan

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On Basilisk Station is the book that hooked me into the Honor Harrington. I'm fully aware of other feelings on this book and that's why I've read it three times through. I've tried to understand what I like about in the face of all the serious objections I've heard.

I'm not a fan of prologues and this one could easily be ignored; but I think skipping the prologue will put that reader behind in understanding of the world of Honor Harrington and set a precedent for the reader to continue that behavior and the nature of the prologue in this book defines a lot of the writing in the entire series and skipping through all of that would really confuse a reader.

If the prologue annoys you a lot then theoretically a lot of David Weber's writing is going to annoy you.

The story doesn't start with a bang and in fact it seems to be a large chunk of world building and introduction to the relationship between Honor and Nimitz and that the Manticoran Navy took that relationship seriously enough to allow her to command a ship with her tree-cat on board and actively in evidence. And even with the time taken to introduce us to Honor- we don't get to know her that well until page 16 where David starts this odd way of acquainting us with Honor through the eyes of people who are in most cases meeting her for the first time.

There's a lot of the first half of the novel feeding out backstory to begin to fill in the truth about Honor Harrington that the reader can then compare to the various characters impressions and preconceived notions. So yes in a way this reads very much like a star-trek type episode where someone is tasked to prove themselves amidst a mixed group of preconceived notions.

So I'd admit that David Weber takes his time building all of this to that moment of truth where the lines have to be drawn in the sand and Honor has to make a decision that risks the lives of everyone aboard and her success is contingent upon them being willing to follow her into battle. (And in a way it mirrors itself in that the reader has to also decide if they are going to follow David Weber's narrative on to the end.)

Much of what defines the character and even the bit of hero worship that the series eventually has starts here and is not complete without On Basilisk Station.

Is it the best of the series-It wouldn't be my choice as best; but I do know that it was the one I read first and the one that hooked me into continuing. It should be read to fully understand Honor Harrington, but It may not be necessary to read it as the first because they do get better-but arguably they sometimes get worse. And I still think that On Basilisk Station has the basic elements of David's writing style that continues to develop as each book gets larger and the plot gets thicker.
 
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