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RATS, THE BATS & THE UGLY [Mass Market Paperback]

ERIC FLINT

Price: CDN$ 8.73 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

Aug. 1 2006
The intrepid team of mentally uplifted rats and bats, and their vat-born human leader had not only pulled off the only victory the beleaguered colony's feeble military forces had won against the invading aliens, but had also uncovered the secret that the invaders were really a feint, being under the control of the other aliens which the naive humans had thought were their allies. Unfortunately, that was the easy part, because now they had to convince their boneheaded military bureaucracy (burdened with incompetents and riddled with quisling humans) of their discovery, and keep from being court-martialed, drugged into submission, or executed by the human traitors. And they had to do this quickly, before the aliens launched their surprise attack. Fortunately, they had found a way around the alien's mental programming. What's more, the daring and resourceful Fluff, apparently the ineffectual pet of one of the colony's ruling class, was on their side. Only Fluff can save us now. . . .

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Baen Books; 1 edition (Aug. 1 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416520783
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416520788
  • Product Dimensions: 17.2 x 10.7 x 3.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 249 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #867,205 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Booklist

Another zany tale of the planet Harmony & Reason, which is somewhat short of both at the moment, thanks to its hierarchical society and the invasion of the alien Korozhet. The victorious, vat-cloned Corporal Chip Connelly and his love, the Shareholder heiress Virginia ("Ginny") Shaw, return to Bernard Shaw City and a welcome very different from what they expected. The authorities want to preserve the hierarchy by executing Chip and kidnapping Ginny. Fortunately, the uplifted (i.e., intelligent) bats and rats are on the job, complete with accents, and so are a good many lawyers. In fact, the book's complex legal scenario may occasionally come between readers and the fullest enjoyment of the book, which isn't as fast-paced as Rats, Bats & Vats (2000). Not that it will disappoint anyone, especially given an ending that leads one to suspect that Ginny will have to get out her chain saw for the battles of a third volume. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Eric Flint is a popular new star of SF and fantasy. His latest novel in his popular alternate history series, 1634: The Galileo Affair (with Andrew Dennis) was a New York Times best seller. His first novel for Baen, Mother of Demons, was picked by SF Chronicle as a best novel of the year. His 1632, which launched the major alternate history series, sold out in hardcover almost immediately, followed by multiple printings in paperback. He currently resides in northwest Indiana with his wife Lucille.
Dave Freer, author of The Forlorn and A Mankind Witch (both Baen) and of many articles in scientific journals, is an expert on sharks, an accomplished rock-climber, a wine-taster, and was an unwilling conscript in the "undeclared" South African-Angolan war. He lives in Natal, South Africa with his wife Barbara, two sons, and several Old English sheepdogs.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  18 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious Oct. 22 2004
By Elliott - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
The plot has already been described so I won't repeat that.

The book, however, is hilarious. This morning I'm eating breakfast at the local diner and reading the book in the electronic version. I couldn't stop laughing, figuratively ROFLMAO. I made quite a scene there.

I finished the book tonight and just couldn't stop laughing.

I was planning to wait for the paperback, but now, I'll probably run out and buy the hardcover. Good authors deserve rewards.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars funny, but not quite as successful as the original Dec 18 2004
By Mike Garrison - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
It is possible to read this book without reading the prior RATS BATS AND VATS, but there's not much point to that. Not only is the first book slightly better, but the second book contains a lot of plot spoilers for the first book. So, assuming you have read the first book, what's this one like?

Funny. Socially (and socialist) motivated. But slightly less successful than the first book.

The best scenes in the first book followed the action behind enemy lines. The story back in military HQ was amusing, but nowhere near as original or as involving (M*A*S*H or Catch22 did it better). The novel's highlight was the interaction between the four different types of intelligences -- bats, rats, man, and woman. With a little bit of Fluff on the side.

Unfortunately, most of the second book takes place with the bats, rats, Chip, and Ginny all separated from each other. And it takes place back in the home front. In other words, the best aspects of the first book are cast aside. In their place we get a bunch of farcical legal proceedings and a lot of conspiracy (both successful and not).

It's a funny book, and it consistently carries the plot and the characters in the same direction as they were going in the first book, but it's just not quite as magical. RATS BATS AND VATS was marvelous at playing off the interspecies misunderstandings against the romantic misunderstandings between Chip and Ginny. There is nothing that quite takes up the slack for the absence of it in THE RATS THE BATS AND THE UGLY. And the ending is more deus ex machina than the first book -- you don't quite feel like the victory has been earned.

There are some obvious open plot threads for a third book, but the authors will have to work a little harder to find a replacement for the romantic subplot that really made the first book work so well. And hopefully they will also continue to provide us with the wordplay and farce which they did so well in both RATS AND BATS novels.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilariously funny: impossible to put down Sept. 18 2004
By Liz Bourke - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This is the sequel to the hilarious `Rats, Bats and Vats' (as if the title isn't a dead giveaway). Those who've read the first book will be well acquainted with Dave Freer's sense of humour. Well, he's done it again, and though the action is slightly less hectic than previously, this book is, if anything, even more hilariously amusing.

Returning from the war against the insectoid Magh', Private Chip Connolly and his comrades the soft-cyber uplifted bats and rats should have been feted as heroes. After all, they'd rescued the First Shareholder's daughter, Virginia Shaw, from the spines of the treacherous Korozhet, destroyed a Magh' field generator, and become the first soldiers ever to survive and return from behind enemy lines. Unfortunately, on the planet of Harmony-And-Reason, things don't quite work that way, and Chip soon finds himself in the stockade, while Virginia Shaw is a prisoner in her own house, trapped by Korozhet villainy and the corruption of members of HAR's government.

Fortunately the Korozhet never counted on noble Fenian bats, voracious Shakespearian rats, and the arcane branch of human philosophy known by the sinister name of 'Platosforms'. Cue daring deeds, heroism and social upheaval - in the cause of not one but two rescues.

And no one ever tells a lady she's undressed while she still has her chainsaw...

Seriously, this book's an excellent read. I finished it inside four hours - no, it's not short, I just couldn't put it down - and I'm still laughing every time I think about it. From characterisation to plot to humour, it has it all. I preferred the first book, though - RBU is fast-paced and side-splittingly humorous, but RBV was faster and fresher, if not quite as hilarious. Not that RBU is stale, or anything like it. Far from it. The soft-cyber uplifted (sentient) galago who thinks he's Don Quixote is a prime example.

In marks out of ten, I'd give this book ten just for style and guts. (Well, nine point nine nine, anyway. RBV deserved the full ten more. But who's going to nitpick? 9.99 rounds up to 10)

Now, when's the next one coming out?
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wild, wacky, and witty Sept. 25 2004
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Hominidae Private Chip Connolly, his girlfriend Ginny and their ratty batty comrades expect a hero's welcome when they return to George Bernard Shaw City on planet Harmony and Reason having defeated the invincible gazillion alien menace the Magh. However, Chip comes from the lowest vat in the humanoid caste system, so members of the elite Inner High Five decide he must die. Chip is arrested and expected to be executed at first light.

The rats and bats that make up his victorious team become concerned because they need one member of the squad with movable thumbs to open the beer. They decide they must rescue their best can opener Chip, but by doing so they bring down the wrath of the secret police, aliens, and the High Five upon themselves and their humanoid companions; then again Chip is still alive at first light. Their only hope to survive resides with Fluff the Kong, a warrior like none before, whose chances for success hinges upon avoiding burial by cup.

This sequel is as wild, wacky, and witty as the previous tale (see Rats, Bats and Vats). The story line satirizes everything as Eric Flint and Dave Freer take no prisoners. Chip is the center that holds the plot together, but it is his allies that make for a fast-paced, out of the world, rowdy science fiction adventure.

Harriet Klausner
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Tis a pleasure indeed Sept. 20 2004
By G. Tansey - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
RBU is just as much fun to read as its predecessor, RBV. Besides the classical literary allusions (which take me back to 11th grade English class, when I had to memorize certain lines from the Scottish Play), I'm particularly fond of the biological terminology. When I see the word "instar", I immediately understand that this is an invertebrate with multiple stages of development. Making an alien species out of something familiar yet strange adds layers upon layers of meaning.

The plot takes off and swoops, the dialogue crackles, and the characters jump off the page. All in all, this is a book I plan to keep by my bedside for re-reading over the years to come, and Dave Freer is an author on my "Buy in Hardcover" list (and so is Eric Flint).

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