The Imager Portfolio
by L.E. Modesitt, Jr
Here's the thing about L.E. Modesitt, Jr. You can take the protagonist of any of his books and plop them down in any other book, and it works just fine. Another thing is that he almost always writes stories about the nerdier aspects of the world: accounting, lawmaking, carpentry, farming, archaeology. There's not a whole lot of hack-n-slash action or dragons breathing fire. It's just people doing their jobs. Imagine if an author just write down what you did every day. "Joe woke up, went to work, did his job, then came home, had dinner, and watched TV before going to bed," then turned it into a book.
Yet, somehow and in some mysterious way, Modesitt, Jr makes this absolutely fascinating. I have no idea how he does it. I read a passage of Assassin's Price to my wife, and she started snoring halfway through. Yet I couldn't put the book down.
I've long been a fan of Modesitt, Jr and have bought and read every book he ever wrote, ever since my buddy Kevin Gessert bought me The Magic of Recluce back in 9th grade.
I totally understand if you're not a Modesitt, Jr fan. If you're not, then don't bother picking this up. But if you are, and especially a fan of the Imager Portfolio series, this one is a solid addition.