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wealhtheow

wealhtheow

Currently reading

The Theory of the Leisure Class (Modern Library Classics)
Thorstein Veblen, Alan Wolfe
Crucible of Gold - Naomi Novik After repeatedly doing what they thought was moral, rather than following their orders, Laurence and Temeraire had finally broken free of the British Empire and began living a peaceful life in Australia. But alas, Laurence's dutiful nature cannot be overcome forever, and he and his draconic bff are convinced to rejoin the Aerial Service. They ship off to South America, in hopes of gaining new allies or at least, not losing their current ones.

At this point I kinda don't know why I shouldn't be rooting for Napoleon? I mean, I've always read the Napoleonic Wars from the viewpoint of the British, so I'm predisposed to hope Napoleon loses, purely so the protagonists can win. And in real history, he ordered various atrocities--poisoning the ill to keep from holding up the baggage train, that sort of thing. But in Novik's alternate history, it is the British who use germ warfare, defend their allies' practices of slavery, and refuse to treat women, dragons, or non-white people well. Napoleon, meanwhile, seems perfectly willing to treat women, non-white people, and dragons as equal to white men. He makes treaties with African nations to help them get their enslaved fellows back. He sees no problem relying upon the brains of his female dragon, or marrying an Incan woman. I'm sure it's all part of one of his self-serving schemes, but--his allies are perfectly aware that he's using him, and they're using him back. Would it really be that bad if this alternate Napoleon won?