Bear, Elizabeth -- By the Mountain Bound

Prequel to emo Norse technofantasy series. This explains how the world got to the apocalyptic point where Windwracked Stars began. This was decent but just a little bit pat, and I'm not sure whether that's because it was set earlier (so I knew where it was going), or because the author had worked over the ideas so often, or just because it's a simpler book (both in storyline and in setting). So I think I will shift away from my usual "always read in publication order" stance, and say that By the Mountain Bound should not be read second in this trilogy. But should it be read first (chronological order) or third (the order that the author wrote them)? I'll let you know after I get my hands on The Sea Thy Mistress.

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