Thursday, February 7, 2013

"Imager’s Battalion"

L. E. Modesitt, Jr., is the bestselling author of the fantasy series The Saga of Recluce, Corean Chronicles, and the Imager Portfolio. His science fiction includes Adiamante, the Ecolitan novels, the Forever Hero Trilogy, and Archform: Beauty. Besides a writer, Modesitt has been a U.S. Navy pilot, a director of research for a political campaign, legislative assistant and staff director for a U.S. Congressman, Director of Legislation and Congressional Relations for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a consultant on environmental, regulatory, and communications issues, and a college lecturer.

Modesitt applied the Page 69 Test to Imager's Battalion, the sequel to the New York Times bestselling Princeps, and reported the following:
On page 69 of Imager’s Battalion, Quaeryt is riding along a road on the south side of the River Aluse as part of the Southern Army beginning the invasion of Bovaria. He is a recently appointed subcommander, in command of a full battalion, but a battalion consisting of ten imagers, a regular company of mounted infantry, and three companies of mounted Pharsi troopers, exiled from their homeland of Khel when it was conquered by Rex Kharst of Bovaria.

One paragraph near the bottom of the page suggests exactly what is to come, as well as the character of Kharst.
Quaeryt glanced to the southern field, where three men with torches were on foot, trying to ignite the golden winter wheat close to harvest. Four others were mounted, three of them holding the reins of the mounts of the men on foot. All wore the gray-blue uniforms of Bovarian troopers.
The troopers are burning the harvest of their own people, a harvest that will not be ready for weeks, in hopes of denying any supplies at all to the invaders, despite the fact that the Telaryn forces have mounted the invasion in retaliation for Kharst’s unsuccessful attacks on Telaryn and the fact that the Telaryn troopers have taken care to minimize the toll on the civilian population…and continue to do so. This is the first of many instances that show starkly the differences between the two lands and their cultures and points toward why it is unlikely that the war can be ended in any other way than it eventually is… and the critical role Quaeryt and his ragtag battalion will come to play in the conflict.
Learn more about the author and his work at L. E. Modesitt, Jr.'s website.

The Page 69 Test: Princeps.

--Marshal Zeringue