By David Weber, Eric Flint, Dru Blair,

American Freedom and Justice vs. The Tyrannies of the 17th Century the recent govt in imperative Europe, known as the Confederated Principalities of Europe, was once shaped via an alliance among Gustavus Adolphus, King of Sweden, and the West Virginians led via Mike Stearns who have been transplanted into 17th-century Germany by way of a mysterious cosmic coincidence. the recent regime is shaky. outdoors its borders, the Thirty Years battle keeps to rage. inside of, it's beset through monetary obstacle in addition to the political and social tensions among the democratic beliefs of the 20th-century american citizens and the aristocracy which maintains to rule the roost within the CPE as all over the place in Europe. Worst of all, the CPE has aroused the implacable hostility of Cardinal Richelieu, the powerful ruler of France. Richelieu has created the League of Ostend on the way to strike on the weakest hyperlink within the CPE's armorits dependence at the Baltic because the lifeline among Gustav Adolf's Sweden and the remainder of his realm. the best naval warfare in eu historical past is ready to erupt. love it or now not, Gustavus Adolphus should depend on Mike Stearns and the technical wizardry of his obstreperous american citizens to avoid wasting the King of Sweden from wreck. stuck within the conflagration are American diplomatic missions in another country: Rebecca Stearns' challenge to France and Holland, and the embassy which Mike Stearns despatched to King Charles of britain headed by way of his sister Rita and Melissa Mailey. Rebecca unearths herself trapped in war-torn Amsterdam; Rita and Melissa, imprisoned within the Tower of London. and lots more and plenty as Mike desires to delivery 20th-century values into war-torn 17th-century Europe via candy cause, nonetheless he unearths convenience within the incontrovertible fact that Julie, who as soon as informed to be an Olympic marksman, nonetheless has her rifle...

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And whatever James and Mike thought of John Simpson, both of them approved highly of Simpson's son Tom, who had married Mike's sister on the same day the Ring of Fire changed their entire world. Especially under these circumstances. Whatever other dangers James' lover Melissa and Mike's sister Rita would face in their diplomatic mission to England, they were hardly likely to be pestered by footpads. Tom Simpson was quite possibly one of the ten biggest men in the world. He'd been something of a giant even in 21st-century America, with the shoulders and physique you'd expect from a lineman on a top college football team.

Even Sweden had had its share of domestic turbulence, now and then, such as the rebellion led by Nils Dacke a hundred years earlier. But, for the most part, the rebellions had been easy enough to suppress. The rebels, as a rule, were a motley assortment of poor peasants and townsmen, many of them outright vagabonds, "led"—if such a term could be used at all—by a sprinkling of the lowest layers of the nobility. Poorly educated, as much in the realities of politics as anything else, with not much in the way of any guiding principles beyond extremist theology and sullen resentment at the exactions of the mighty.

Do not, Axel. " Gustav swiveled his head, bringing the predator's beak to bear on his chancellor. ' " The head swiveled back, resuming its scrutiny of the golden arches. "Besides, you worry too much. The very thing that frightens you the most about Gretchen Richter and her malcontents is actually the thing which reassures me. Those people are not ignorant villagers, Axel, never think it. I've read their pamphlets and their broadsides. So have you, for that matter. Very thoughtful and learned, they are, for all the shrillness of their tone.

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