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Author Topic: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer  (Read 1762 times)

CJC070

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #30 on: 25 May 2021, 21:53:39 »
Caste assignments?  Plural?  No, no, no - there's just one assignment for anyone who can't prove their bona fides as an insurgent supporting the regime change to the Confederation...Servitor.  If they work hard and keep their noses clean for 10+ years, then maybe, just maybe, they'll be worthy of a caste assignment.

You do see Danai trying to step away from 5+ years of servitude and acknowledging the corruption in the Confederation.  She doesn’t apologize about the rote but neither does she look away from it.

I don’t know what the future books holds for her but she is definitely not like either of her birth parents.

Nav_Alpha

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #31 on: 25 May 2021, 21:59:05 »
Ok, so I purchased this on Kindle today. I’m at work and will get a start on reading it after dinner, housework, couple stuff, etc.
I’m excited that Jason S has written this - I love his stuff, so I’m stoked about that.
But... there’s a lot riding on this.
The recent crop of books have made me fall out of love with BattleTech big time.
In my opinion the quality of writing has dropped dramatically, to the point I’ve just skimmed most of the recent books as cardboard characters took on moustache-twirling mad men bad guys.
The Hour of the Wolf was damn near the last nail in the coffin for me and saw me embark on a bit of a disconnect with the fiction.


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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #32 on: 26 May 2021, 00:28:51 »
See, now you're just playing on stereotypes. Who among us in the land of fiction is without sin?
None of us. Fortunately, the victors get to write the history and prosecute the guilty (on the losing side).
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Sartris

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #33 on: 26 May 2021, 02:07:29 »
But... there’s a lot riding on this.
The recent crop of books have made me fall out of love with BattleTech big time.

reading things like this makes me glad i never invested heavily in the fiction at any point

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #34 on: 26 May 2021, 02:35:10 »
(...)as cardboard characters took on moustache-twirling mad men bad guys.

I see you have been rereading the old Stackpole books.  ;D

I know what you mean. I just wanted to point out that BT is full of this kind of characters from day 1. The age of the reader is a factor here. At least it is for me. I have to put on 14 year old glasses before I pick most BT novels. It is also why I prefer the short story antologies over the big plot books. I prefer sourcebooks for that.

But yeah, moustache bad guys were here form day  one.

Cheers
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Orwell84

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #35 on: 26 May 2021, 02:41:49 »
Finished this one earlier in the week. Like many here I liked it action and narrative flow-wise.

As far as pro-Capellan bias goes, I think Schmetzer gave a more nuanced look at the system, why native Capellans support it, and implying the moral downsides of it without hitting the reader over the head either way. Not surprising, considering he did the same when he literally (re)wrote the book on House Liao.

Being on board with George Orwell in how I regard totalitarian regimes in general, I'm still not sold on supporting the CC or viewing them as a righteous faction. But Schmetzer's writing here makes them real characters worth reading about instead of 1-D cartoon villains (cough Warrior trilogy cough)

And while Mina Liao is used as a way to show the reader about the capellan social system, it ended sounding hollow, and way too much as some people that support certain politics ideas that i have meet in the past.

Lastly, two more things. I began to laugh loudly when she got had her "Maude Lovejoy" moment (you killed 6 kids!!!!). Lady, your country have made of the creating of murderous terrorist organization an art form for the last 100 years. I think its a little hypocrital from her to be offended about that. Also, while some will find "enjoyable", i founded that part about the billonaire is stupid at least.The guy is offering a way to pacify the populous faster, and just demand very little in return (be a noble). We all know the CapCom. You can use the moron until he is not longer useful, and sick the Maskirovka on him after that.

Agree with your opinion on all of these, but I figure Danai's moral blindness and short-sighted treatment of the billionaire stem from understandable character flaws. Namely her rather idealistic view of her homeland and social system, plenty of BT characters and real people alike being guilty of the same thing.

It is also why I prefer the short story antologies over the big plot books. I prefer sourcebooks for that.

I do like the novels for 'spoiler' type events and getting an overview on a conflict without getting bogged down in 'Unit X landed on Planet Alpha and fought Unit Y' x 20 (or x 50). But in general, yeah, I'll second your opinion on sourcebooks vs novels.
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Mendrugo

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #36 on: 26 May 2021, 05:00:06 »
You do see Danai trying to step away from 5+ years of servitude and acknowledging the corruption in the Confederation.  She doesn’t apologize about the rote but neither does she look away from it.

The servitor issue isn't necessarily the Capellans being evil/corrupt, but represents a difference of philosophy.  Being State-centric, they view citizenship as a reward for service to the State.  If you're coming in from outside (by whatever method), you need to pay your dues.  Wealthy nobles can buy their way in, as Jacob Bannson did.  Citizens of worlds that fought the Confederation's coming need to atone through service. 

It's interesting that these rules have presumably been on the books for centuries, but would rarely have been applied prior to 3057.  I mean, count how many worlds the Confederation took and held during the Succession Wars.

I'll wait.

Right.  So, basically, the Servitors were almost exclusively juvenile delinquents who failed their citizenship tests and the occasional POW.  When huge numbers of Servitors were brought aboard in and after Guerrero, Sun Tzu had to make reforms to the system, because it was being tested on a large scale really for the first time (with the possible exception of the First Succession War).
« Last Edit: 26 May 2021, 05:04:55 by Mendrugo »
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Orwell84

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #37 on: 26 May 2021, 08:03:23 »
It's interesting that these rules have presumably been on the books for centuries, but would rarely have been applied prior to 3057.  I mean, count how many worlds the Confederation took and held during the Succession Wars.

I'll wait.

<flips through Handbook House Liao maps>

Found one! Rollis, freed from the Davionista yoke since 2822. No doubt the loss of Iskandia wood has kept House Davion's rulers up at night, vowing never to rest until this vital quasi-Periphery trading hub and its denizens can once more enjoy the Six Liberties.
All Clan totems are equal but some are more equal than others

"Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution, one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship."

"Threats to freedom of speech, writing, and action, though often trivial in isolation, are cumulative in their effect, and unless checked, lead to a general disrespect for the rights of the citizen"
George Orwell

Baldur Mekorig

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #38 on: 26 May 2021, 10:19:11 »
<flips through Handbook House Liao maps>

Found one! Rollis, freed from the Davionista yoke since 2822. No doubt the loss of Iskandia wood has kept House Davion's rulers up at night, vowing never to rest until this vital quasi-Periphery trading hub and its denizens can once more enjoy the Six Liberties.

Or the planet and its inhabitants goes back to Taurian control, and finally enjoy some real "freedom" again.
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Jaim Magnus

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #39 on: 26 May 2021, 10:22:43 »
Freedom is an illusion wherever you go.
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Nerroth

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #40 on: 27 May 2021, 12:58:36 »
In one section of Chapter 8, the Duchy of Andurien is stated as being "a component state of the Free Worlds League". However, according to Shattered Fortress, the Anduriens remain separate from the reconstituted League as of last reporting, nestled as it is in a marriage alliance with the Magistracy of Canopus... and, through them, with the Confederation itself.

That said, the Oriente Protectorate is not much farther from Castrovia than the Duchy of Andurien is. Perhaps Oriente would be a better target for the kind of (false) propaganda being discussed in that chapter?

-----

Speaking of the Magistracy, I find it somewhat unfortunate that Danai - who, so far as I'm aware, is no less in line to become Magestrix as she is to become Chancellor - has gone to such lengths to distance herself from the Centrella side of her joint lineage. But then, she wouldn't be the first BattleTech character with a double surname to lean more heavily on one side over the other.

But then, perhaps the Canopian influence might be more noticeable if/when she inherits the Chancellorship, should she set out to reform certain aspects of Confederation society?
« Last Edit: 27 May 2021, 13:02:44 by Nerroth »

FaithBomb

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #41 on: 27 May 2021, 13:06:20 »


But then, perhaps the Canopian influence might be more noticeable if/when she inherits the Chancellorship, should she set out to reform certain aspects of Confederation society?

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Empyrus

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #42 on: 27 May 2021, 13:54:29 »
I thought the book was OK (and merely OK) until Mina went. Felt too much like a checkmark: "Do something to piss off the main character". I don't like reading about battles in BattleTech, there's just so many ways one can describe weapons fire etc. and it gets repetitive fast. Character interactions are way more interesting. And no more Mina meant way less interaction.

Though i don't like reading about combat, points for drones and some interesting uses with them. And dropping Purifier Adaptives from OmniVehicles was neat.

When Hall stuff ended, i was surprised the book continued. Felt a bit like dragging on unnecessarily.

While i like reading about Danai (think she was among my favorites in MWDA books), this kinda felt way too... i don't know, common? Learning that being a fighter is not all, what ruling entails, etc. Or maybe i've seen that just done better, dunno. Still, now that this is done, perhaps there will be more interesting stuff later on.

Also didn't like that there were some expository sections covering BattleTech history like Succession Wars. I suppose those are included in case there are casual BattleTech fans or readers who've read some BT but it's been a while, but for a fan like me, those are just an annoyance.
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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #43 on: 27 May 2021, 14:21:09 »
Off to the pleasure circus with you!!!

Nobody expects the Capellan Inquisition!

mikecj

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #44 on: 27 May 2021, 15:56:14 »
Overall, I enjoyed the book both for the story and for the way Jason told the story.  Worth my time & money!   :thumbsup:
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Sartris

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #45 on: 27 May 2021, 16:12:48 »
Nobody expects the Capellan Inquisition!

which is weird, because like one in three denizens of the confederation is maskirovka so you'd figure they would be the very first people to expect

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #46 on: 27 May 2021, 16:15:50 »
which is weird, because like one in three denizens of the confederation is maskirovka so you'd figure they would be the very first people to expect
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FaithBomb

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #47 on: 27 May 2021, 16:23:38 »
See, every citizen does their part!
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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #48 on: 27 May 2021, 16:25:03 »
which is weird, because like one in three denizens of the confederation is maskirovka so you'd figure they would be the very first people to expect

Yes but expecting it is such a normal part of daily life it becomes normalized. So they don’t expect it. And when they least suspect it because they suspect too much for too long. BAM. Inquisition

Niopsian

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #49 on: 27 May 2021, 16:39:47 »
So you expect it most when you expect it least?


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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #50 on: 27 May 2021, 16:41:29 »
i'm thinking it's like if the kool aid man burst through a wall and literally no one reacted

"just arrest someone and leave, duane. you're ruining the party"

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #51 on: 27 May 2021, 20:30:47 »
My head-canon on the drones:

You remember the bit a couple chapters into HotW, where Stone goes "if we give the clans a chance to fight duels they will, and we want that." It didn't work because Alaric could see that as a path to failure, but giving the Clans a chance to fight honor duels means not pissing them off to the point they break zell - which means few or no drones.

So they sent the drones to another point they would be useful, playing boogeyman for the cappies.

That said, HotW might have been better with the drones, they could have given Warbear a chance to show his tactical chops by suddenly coming up with a solution.



Years ago there was this show, transformers beast wars. it ran for a while, and there was some heavy-handed character development; standard cartoon morality stuff. It ended but was followed by a sequel series, transformers beast machines. It had some of the same characters, but the thing is? They had to learn all the lessons they already had, and go through the same development on Cybertron as they previously had on Earth.

Apparently the producers did it on purpose, to re-establish the characters for the "new audience" or something. I'm not sure the same thing isn't happening here.  As has been pointed out, it's been a while since the dark age novels came out.
« Last Edit: 27 May 2021, 23:58:55 by Greatclub »

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #52 on: 27 May 2021, 20:42:45 »
That said, HotW might have been better with the drones, they could have given Warbear a chance to show his tactical chops by suddenly coming up with a solution.

That would have required an author who thinks splitting your naval forces between the zenith and nadir jump points is tactical brilliance to come up with a solution, though.

Niopsian

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #53 on: 27 May 2021, 20:43:42 »
My head-canon on the drones:

You remember the bit a couple chapters into HotW, where Stone goes "if we give the clans a chance to fight duels they will, and we want that." It didn't work because Alaric could see that as a path to failure, but giving the Clans a chance to fight honor duels means not pissing them off to the point they break zell - which means few or no drones.

So they sent the drones to another point they would be useful, playing boogeyman for the cappies.

That said, HotW might have been better with the drones, they could have given Warbear a chance to show his tactical chops by suddenly coming up with a solution.



Years ago there was this show, transforms beast wars. it ran for a while, and there was some heavy-handed character development; standard cartoon morality stuff. It ended but was followed by a sequel series, transformers beast machines. It had some of the same characters, but the thing is? They had to learn all the lessons they already had, and go through the same development on Cybertron as they previously had on Earth.

Apparently the producers did it on purpose, to re-establish the characters for the "new audience" or something. I'm not sure the same thing isn't happening here.  As has been pointed out, it's been a while since the dark age novels came out.

Man, I was all prepared for HotW to be the final word on the Clan philosophy on war, with Stone basically suckering in as much of the Clan military machine as he could before unleashing an army of soulless automatons on them, along with some pretentiously delivered dialog about "teaching them what war is really all about."

Of course, I also wanted the end of the book to be Stone confessing to Alaric that of course he tipped them all off about the Fortress Wall because he wanted them all here for when he did this - at which point he would push a Big Red Button that would detonate every K-F drive within the Sol System, creating a permanent Fortress effect around Sol out to around 8 or 9 LY, trapping the Clans on Terra, forever (or at least for the 12 to 40 years it might take to slowboat to Keid, I guess...).

Novel would have ended with Stone's last words, being "Welcome to Earth, suckers."


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Marveryn

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #54 on: 28 May 2021, 02:12:26 »
well thing i can say.  For one the timing of the release was way off.  This should had happen prior to hotw and the event of Highlanders which i read prior.  Having these book release in this order had me scratching my head timeline on what happen first and what happen next House Immara been busy.   I think the battle of Liberty must had happen prior to landing in Northwind, if i am getting my timline fix on the events right.  It also show the short coming of republic all this time to get ready for the eventually invasion and what they end up doing.  Saying OH shT the wall are down let run to terra.  You think with all that time they had the first layer of defense would had been harder to crack.  I mean who bright idea was it to leave hall without a unit to defend it this entire time while training the unit for a battle in elgin.  Either your initial plan was to sacrifice hall and hold the invasion at elgin till reinforcement or they should had those units already in hall training there for years prior to the wall going down. 

I would had thought with the wall being up as long it had most units would had been available for Stone to defend key worlds.  I also thought the original plan on bringing a clan to terra would had been bring them in shatter them.  maybe using the bondsman system of the clan take the survive rebuilt your own units under the wall of terra and then spread out once more.  Stone really had no clue what to do didn't He

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #55 on: 05 June 2021, 16:23:35 »
Sorry I'm late to the party; I didn't see this thread until today.
I'm not a fan of the Capellans, but I think they made the right choice in terms of trying to get them out of the "black hat" category.  I think that Danai will have a great deal of work in reforming the Capellan legal system and human rights before significant numbers of fans will come to embrace the Confederation.
I'm puzzled by the decision to take the Elgin militia off their home turf and have them fight on an unfamiliar world.  I don't see the strategic  sense in it, but I recognize that this was the script that Jason Schmetzer was handed.

Kibutsu

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Re: Blood Will Tell - by Jason Schmetzer
« Reply #56 on: 08 June 2021, 12:04:29 »
I'm puzzled by the decision to take the Elgin militia off their home turf and have them fight on an unfamiliar world.  I don't see the strategic  sense in it, but I recognize that this was the script that Jason Schmetzer was handed.

It's what militaries do. A buddy of mine was trained to be an artillery officer, then sent to Vietnam to command an infantry company. It doesn't have to make sense to the people it affects most, but somebody somewhere thought it was a good idea.

I quite enjoyed this one. Jason Schmetzer's work always feels authentic, particularly with regard to the militaria. The dialog feels real, without paragraphs of expository conversation where characters discuss the state of the Inner Sphere etc. It was also very well edited, which was refreshing.

 

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