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The Family Trade (Merchant Princes) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. Juli 2005


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Produktinformation

  • Taschenbuch: 312 Seiten
  • Verlag: Tor Books; Auflage: Reprint (1. Juli 2005)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0765348217
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765348210
  • Vom Hersteller empfohlenes Alter: 14 - 18 Jahre
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 10,8 x 2,2 x 16,9 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (4 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 157.888 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

"Quirky, original, and entertaining. "The Family Trade" could be the "Godfather" of all fantasy novels."-Kevin J. Anderson

Synopsis

Miriam Beckstein is happy in her life as a successful reporter. When she gets iron-clad evidence of a money-laundering scheme, Miriam thinks she's found the story of the year. But when she takes it to her editor, she's fired on the spot and gets a death threat from the criminals she's uncovered. Before the day is over, she's received a locket left by the mother she never knew - the mother who was murdered when Miriam was an infant. The knot work pattern within has a hypnotic effect on her. Before she knows it, she's transported herself to a parallel Earth, a world where knights on horseback chase their prey with automatic weapons and where her true family is in charge. The six families of the Clan rule the kingdom of Gruinmarkt from behind the scenes. These nobles and criminal conspirators use their exclusive inherited power to walk between the worlds and grow rich. Miriam's unexpected return will supercede the claims of other clan members to her mother's fortune and power, and whoever killed her mother will be happy to see her dead, too. But Miriam is no one's pawn, and is determined to conquer her new home on her own terms.

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Ten and a half hours before a mounted knight with a machine gun tried to kill her, tech journalist Miriam Beckstein lost her job. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von M. Duda am 15. Februar 2010
Format: Taschenbuch
The Merchant Princes saga hits the ground running and maintains a break-neck pace over all of the four books that I have read. Don't let the mounted knights with MP5s fool you: Stross has created a lively and living world of intelligent extrapolation and high adventure firmly rooted in the grand "what-if" tradition of classic science fiction.

The heroine is highly intelligent, and she does the reader the favor of never sacrificing common sense for the sake of the plot. In fact, the book feels much more real than many ostensibly rooted in reality. Yes, the world-walking conceit is lifted whole from Roger Zelazny's Amber series (homage!), but it feels as fresh as anything Stross has written -- high praise indeed.

After barreling through the first four books at the cost of much sleep, my only complaint is that Stross will never be able to write more books in the series as fast as I can read them! He should stop visiting conventions and get to work.
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Von M. W. Broscheit TOP 500 REZENSENT am 12. März 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Wer seit vielen Jahren SF und auch den einen oder Thriller sieht/liest wird nicht so wahnsinnig viele, neue Ideen in diesem Roman (erster Band einer Serie) entdecken; was ihn so lesenswert macht ist die Kombination der bekannten Elemente und der in seinem Kontext logisch aufgebaute Handlungsverlauf.
Der Grundsatz " Make it believable." wurde vom Autor immer beachtet und so lassen sich die Handlungen der Protagonisten logisch nachvollziehen, auch wenn sie in guter Thrillertradition zunächst überraschend erscheinen.
Die Figuren sind vielschichtig und selten das was sie zu sein scheinen, insofern gibt es mehr als fifty shades of grey ;-) Alle Charaktere haben eigene offene und versteckte Motive und selbst die eigentliche Hauptperson ist nicht einfach nur gut.
Als SF würde ich die Erzählung in erster Linie nicht betrachten, das SF/Fantasy Element ist die Existenz von Parallelwelten und einer kleinen, genetisch bevorzugten Gruppe von Menschen, die zwischen diesen Welten wechseln können, der Rest ist eine realistisch geschilderte Hier- und Jetztwelt und der Welt drüben/daneben mit einer interessanten Kultur zwischen Mittelalter und von hier importierter Technik, die von den Weltenwanderern nicht beherrscht aber stark beeinflusst wird. Schon dieses erste Buch deutet auf eine komplex ausgearbeitete Kultur hin, ich bin auf deren Ausgestaltung in den Folgebänden gespannt.
Mehr als schon hier auf der Amazonseite schon zum Inhalt geschrieben wurde möchte ich nicht verraten, jedenfalls habe ich den Roman in einem Rutsch durchgelesen und fange gerade mit Band 2 an. Bisher wirklich eine gelungene Mischung aus Thriller, Fantasy und Gangstergeschichte.
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3 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Grendel0606 am 8. August 2009
Format: Taschenbuch
es ist selten, dass Autoren dem fantasy-genre noch originelle seiten abgewinnen. Charles Stross' Serie "The merchant Princes" schafft dies erfreulicherweise.
Die Grundidee, dass ein normales Mädchen (hier eine erwachsene Frau) feststellt, dass sie in Wirklichkeit adoptiert und eine Prinzessin ist wird hier variiert.
Wirthschaftsjournalistin Miriam Beckstein stellt fest, genau das fest, nur dass ihre sippe aus der Fantasywelt weniger mit Tolkien und mehr mit den Corleones gemeinsam hat.
Die mischung dieses Clans aus mittelaterlichem (durchdrungen von nordischem) Gendankengut einerseits und Verbrechen andrerseits und die Frage wie Miriam als toughe moderne Frau mit einem wissenschaftlichen hitergrund sich behauptet, machen das buch originell. Es ist spannened erzählt, abe etwas kurz und sehr auf den Cliffhanger ausgerichtet.
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Von uli ulrich am 18. Oktober 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Eine wirklich fantastische Geschichte. Unsere Heldin hat als Journalistin gearbeitet und eine "mafiöse" Sache herausgefunden.
Was ein Glück, dass sie in eine andere Welt entkommen kann. Eine Welt die genau an gleicher Stelle liegt nur etwa 200 Jahre zurück und sie ist eine Prinzessin.
Es ist immer wieder lustig zu lesen, wie amerikanische Autoren damit umgehen.
" Wir sind ja gute Republikaner oder Demokraten, keine verderbten Aristos"
Aber dann die Platinkreditkarte voll akzeptieren.
Diese andere Welt ist voll von skurrilen Menschen und Gebräuchen, aber es gibt Freunde und Feinde da und die Heldin integriert sich schnell.
Da diese Geschichte in 4-5 Teilen angelegt ist, kann man noch nicht wirklich einUrteil fällen, jedenfalls amüsant zu lesen.
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Amazon.com: 84 Rezensionen
54 von 54 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Novel but classic 5. Dezember 2004
Von Terrell T. Gibbs - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Charles Stross is a relatively new writer who has already developed quite a track record of breathing new life into classic SF themes. In Singularity Sky and Iron Sunrise were stories of interstellar adventure, but set in a post-singularity universe. In the Atrocity Archives he gave us spies vs. Lovecraftian horrors. Now, once again, it is time for something completely different.

The Family Trade is a slim book that is clearly the first of a series (Merchant Princes). Miriam Beckstein is a financial reporter specializing in biotech. She is fired when she stumbles over a money-laundering scheme that her bosses have a stake in, and then discovers that she is the long lost child of a family of Merchant Princes from an alternate earth who have the genetic ability to cross from their medieval alternate earth to ours, and who have built up a financial empire based upon cross-world import/export and smuggling.

The naive character suddenly over her head in an alien culture is a familiar SF theme, and Stross handles it expertly. The Merchant Princes have an essentially medieval attitude toward women, while Miriam is a modern, American, professional woman. The Merchant Princes have a complicated family structure (they are required to marry into the family to maintain expression of the recessive world-walking trait). Miriam must quickly find her balance in the complex family intrigues of the Princes before one of them decides to assassinate her (and assassination is hard to avoid when an assassin can suddenly pop in from an alternate world). But she has one key asset--her knowledge of modern business practices and her skills as an investigative journalist.

Like Stross's other work, "The Family Trade" manages to bring back fond memories of classic stories without seeming at all derivative. In this case, I was beset by fond memories of Zelazny's "Nine Princes in Amber." And like the first book in Zelazny's Amber series, "The Family Trade" is frustratingly slim, ending just as it gets going really good. Nevertheless, while it left me wanting more (and soon; I hope he writes fast), "The Family Trade" is a satisfying read. However, be warned that if you get started on this series, you may well find yourself buying expensive hardcovers because you won't be able to wait for the next one to come out in paperback.
37 von 39 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A great premise, and an enjoyable escape 3. März 2005
Von Esther Schindler - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Long ago, when I played a lot of fantasy role playing games (D&D for grownups) we had long discussions about how much one could do with a single magic spell. In a sense, that's what the author has examined here: if you had the single "magic" capability of swapping between two universes in a flash... what could you accomplish that you couldn't do now? What would you bring back and forth, and who would benefit?

It's a great premise, and the author does a good (not blow-me-away-wow but good) job at exploring it. Miriam is a high-tech journalist who loses her job and, on the same day, through a series of mishaps, discovers that staring at her birth mother's locket can bring her to an alternate universe. (It's in the same place as Boston, for instance... just a different history that brought the people there.)

Do be aware that this is the first of a series; the author doesn't wrap up very much at the end, so you may not feel as though the book has closure. Also, the story is heavy on political intrigue, and brings up economic theory; that may be a turn-off or something you appreciate.

While the story isn't perfect -- there were a few places in which I thought the protagonist simply wouldn't DO that -- the book held my interest, and I stayed up late to finish it. It also re-sparked our old discussions about what you could do with this particular single magic spell: would *you* have made the same decisions that Miriam did? that her family did? Any novel that instigates philosophical conversations gets a positive nod.
18 von 18 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A fast-paced, riveting, and eccentric novel 7. Dezember 2004
Von Bookreporter - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
You have to love a book that starts out with this kind of a bang: "Ten and a half hours before a mounted knight with a machine gun tried to kill her, tech journalist Miriam Beckstein lost her job. Before the day was out, her pink slip would set in train a chain of events that would topple governments, trigger civil wars, and kill thousands."

The trouble starts when Miriam uncovers an enormous money-laundering scheme. When she brings it to the attention of her boss, she's instantly fired. As it turns out, Miriam's now ex-employer's parent company is deep in the action. Miriam visits her ailing adoptive mother, who gives her newspaper articles about Miriam's birth mother --- a "Jane Doe" who was stabbed to death. The murdered woman's baby, Miriam, was adopted. Now Miriam's adoptive mother challenges Miriam to investigate the murder.

Along with the papers, Miriam receives a locket worn by her murdered mother. As she examines it, she sees blue-white lights, smells burning toast, her stomach is upset, the light goes out, and she falls down. When she rises, she is no longer in her home. Instead, she's outside in a forest. As she attempts to orient herself, she spies a most disorienting sight --- armored knights riding horses toward her, and shooting at her. She gazes again at the locket and finds herself near her home.

Miriam decides she must return to the mysterious place. Not only must she satisfy her journalist's curiosity, but she also needs to find the connection that the strange forest may have with her birth mother. After her life is threatened concerning her knowledge of the money-laundering scheme, she suspects that she may someday have to travel to the forest to hide. However, that makes her wonder: if her birth mother could have escaped to the other world, why hadn't she done so to escape her murderer?

As Miriam sleeps in her own bed, she is kidnapped. Her kidnappers wear swords and call Miriam "your highness." The reader discovers what happens when take-charge Miriam finds herself in an unbearable and dangerous situation. Her actions set this series in motion, leaving us anxious for volume two of the series. Can Miriam single-handedly drag her new world out of the middle ages? Can she somehow change the despicable trade her family is engaged in? And, with her life in constant danger, will she survive to accomplish her lofty goals?

THE FAMILY TRADE's characters are endearingly flawed and likeable. The pace is quick, with many unusual twists in the plot, and the story is riveting from the first sentence --- an excellent read! When, oh when, will Book Two be out?

--- Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon
21 von 26 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
there is a very interesting idea here, but the writing is rather poor 1. Juli 2005
Von Joe Sherry - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
"The Family Trade" is the first volume in a new series by Charles Stross called "The Merchant Princes." I would assume this series is going to be a trilogy, but I could not find this stated. In theory, the type of world Stross created would allow for as many volumes as the author can think up stories. There will definitely be a sequel, "The Hidden Family", and the structure of this first book is such that it feels like the beginning of a trilogy.

Miriam Beckstein is an investigative reporter for a technology magazine in Boston. When Paulette, a co-worker and researcher at the magazine brings Miriam an exhaustive stack of research on a story Miriam is working on, what they discover is strong evidence of corruption and money laundering. Bringing it to her editor, Miriam is promptly fired and soon receives death threats. Paulette, for being involved is also fired. The cause has nothing to do with the offense except that the company that owns the building the magazine works in (and possibly the magazine) may be implicated. Miriam goes to her adoptive mother to tell her about being fired and her mother says it is time Miriam knew a little bit more of how she ended up in the care of the family she did. She also gives Miriam a shoe box containing some of her true mother's belongings.

When Miriam gets home she opens the box and discovers a locket. The locket has a strange pattern and when she focuses on the pattern she finds herself in the middle of a forest with no sign of civilization except for a horseman riding towards her holding a machine gun. She focuses back on the locket and returns home. This is the true beginning to the story. As an investigative reporter, Miriam needs to figure this out, to find out what happened or if she is simply going crazy. While going crazy might work for a short story, it would be a pretty poor opening for a fantasy novel if the fantasy world isn't real. It is, of course, and she begins to investigate what this medieval styled world is like and what is all about. She soon learns that she is part of the aristocracy there, but that things are darker and more dangerous than what she expected.

As a long time fantasy reader I think the idea behind this book is fascinating. I want to know how these worlds are connected, why, who and how this was discovered. I want to see further interaction between the worlds as Miriam discovers how this works and what her place is in either world. I even want to know what happens in the next book. I just want someone else to write it.

See, "The Family Trade" is a very interesting concept and Miriam Beckstein is a smart woman who behaves in a much more realistic way than most fantasy characters who get plopped into a strange new world. Most behave as if they know everything or as if they can know nothing. Miriam seems to learn and it makes sense how she figures things out, even if there may be jumps in logic which don't work for me but might work for a reporter. The problem is the writing, especially early on, is just cheap and weak. Here's an example of page four of the paperback and where I almost gave up:

"Back upstairs, fortified by an unfeasibly large mug of coffee, she had to work out what to wear. She dived into her closet and found herself using her teeth to tear the plastic bag off one of the three suits she'd had dry cleaned on Friday --only to discover it was her black formal interview affair, not at all the right thing for a rainy Monday pounding the street--or at least doing telephone interviews from a cubicle in the office"

Bear in mind this is just after Miriam fled downstairs and switched on the coffee percolator. The beginning of the book was all like this and while it did get somewhat better, this was still the same tone that was used throughout the book and it simply downgraded what is, at heart, an interesting story.

In the hands of another author I am sure I would have loved this book and would be excited to read the second volume. As it stands, I didn't and I'm not. I am interested enough in the core story that I'm actually considering it, but I can only hope that the writing style improves somewhat.

The bottom line is that as a first book in a series, this is not a complete story. The pace is fast enough that this is a book that will be finished fairly quickly and the idea is interesting enough that I still do want to know what happens next. The way Stross phrases sentences, ideas, and paragraphs just leaves a little to be desired.

-Joe Sherry
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
more a SF action adventure than fantasy (which I see as good) 18. August 2006
Von Marilyn Fisken - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Verifizierter Kauf
Since others have outlined the plot of this book, I will just say that I enjoyed reading it. However, the author does seem to have a lot of trouble with the various relationships of Miriam's family. First, her mother is her presumed uncle's sister, then his step sister, then possibly a half sister. Roland is variously described as a first cousin to Miriam, then a 2nd cousin, etc. Gets very confusing! Just the same, the concept is fun and Miriam (of course) always gets out of a jam. I still don't know just why, on her first visit to the alternate world, there was a knight in armor shooting at her with an automatic weapon. Forget the strange juxtoposition of that - why was he shooting at her in the first place, instead of trying to capture her and find out who she was and how she arrived on the road he was travelling.

A good, fast book, if you are looking for a fast read.
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