Bitter Seeds : Milkweed Triptych

  • by Ian Tregillis
  • Narrated by Kevin Pariseau
  • Series: Milkweed Triptych
  • 14 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Audible was thrilled to discover this genre-busting alternate history of World War II by an exciting new writer, Ian Tregillis.
It's 1939. Raybould Marsh is a British secret agent in the early days of World War II, haunted by something strange he saw on a mission during the Spanish Civil War: a German woman with wires going into her head who looked at him as if she knew him. It wasn’t his imagination; the wired woman can see into the future and use her knowledge to twist the present. In fact, Marsh soon discovers that the Nazis are running missions with people who have special powers – a woman who can turn invisible, a man who can walk through walls, and the woman Marsh saw in Spain.
Marsh is called upon to stop them from aiding the Nazi expansion. He rallies a group of secret warlocks in Britain to hold an impending invasion at bay. But magic always exacts a price. Eventually, the sacrifice necessary to defeat the enemy proves as unthinkable as surrender. Alan Furst meets Alan Moore in this wildly entertaining epic of supernatural historical fiction. Bitter Seeds portrays a twentieth century much like the one we knew, but also profoundly different.


What the Critics Say

"A major talent.... I can't wait to see more." (George R.R. Martin)
"Debut novelist Tregillis breathes new life into alternate military history with this fun take on WW II." (Publishers Weekly)
"Magic and mad science mix in this entertaining alternate history of WWII, with the warlocks of Britain uniting to battle German forces with super powers. A striking first novel." (Locus magazine)
"Tregillis writes and plots beautifully. The characters - twisted German psychics, bitter warlocks, the brutal calculators of the British intelligence apparat - are complex, textured, surprising. The physical descriptions are wonderful. And the plot is relentless, a driving adventure story with intrigue, battle, sacrifice, and betrayal." (BoingBoing)

Best SF and Fantasy Books of 2010: Readers' Choice (SF Site)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

WW II alternate history: X-men vs Warlocks

One of my first alternative history (audible) books. Saw this in hardback, was waiting for the paperback - but to my surprise (even better) it's on Audible!

Basically, the British are losing the war - the US did not join in the war and the Germans have created the ??bermensch (Superman/women) - sociopathic orphans taken from WW I, and endowed with X-menesque power by mad scientists.

In response, a desperate Admiralty establish the Milkweed organisation - British warlocks that use magic to fight back.

I believe this is Tregillis' first novel - stunning piece of work and fortunately there's more to come as this is the first book of the Milkweed Triptych (trilogy).
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- Phelix_da_Kat

Butterscotch Mud

Why could I not get into this book? It had Warlocks, super humans, and Gods. It was a unique alternate history. It had some interesting prose. Some writers such as King or Card can write about stuff I don't care about and make me interested, some writers such as this one, can write about stuff I get excited about, but put me asleep. I think some writers have the ability to connect with the reader. It is hard to describe, but it is a talent some writers have and some do not. In this book Ian Tregillis did not connect with me, so all the prose, all the cool characters fall flat. My ears hear, but my mind does not register.

Ian spends a lot of time describing things, for instance a man gives a woman a boutique of flowers and we get an inventory of all the flower types in the boutique. You will always know the weather, the scenery, the direction of the wind and the smells. The smells will always include oil or gas or diesel. Every form of the word crystal is used in this book.
The story would have also flowed a lot smoother if he would have left out the Idolans. These are some type of gods? who are part of the universe. They are a difficult concept to describe, even for the author himself. They are not that interesting and just detract from the rest of the story.

I thought the narrator was pretty good, especially when he was doing voices. It was during the long explanations where no one spoke that I had trouble staying awake. There are more explanations in this book then actual interaction between the characters.
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- Jim "The Impatient" "My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-24-2010
  • Publisher: Audible Studios