“Bishop’s Honor” tells the story of Bishop, a detached soldier who formerly lived in solitary, far from the rest of the humanity. Then came Maeve, his former best friend’s widow, and her six-year-old son. Due to his promise to Maeve’s husband, Bishop came out from his isolation in order to help Maeve and her son navigated themselves through the Maunder Minimum, a period of solar inactivity that led to a mini-ice age.
This story has good premise. An original idea about a post-apocalypse world that isn’t so far from today’s reality, set in 2030. How the story is executed though, unfortunately, is unrealistic. After the town fell into the dark side where bad guys monopolized foods and weapons, Bishop somehow managed to take down all of them by himself. No matter how great he was as a soldier (and no matter how small the town was), it’s unbelievable that he was able to save the town from collapsing single-handedly without outside support.
The romance was also insufficient. I felt like it’s better to cut off the romance entirely instead of forcing Maeve to fall in love so quickly with Bishop while she was clearly still grieving from her husband’s death and had to think of the survival of her son. It’s not helping that Bishop and Maeve themselves didn’t have much of connecting moments between them. Throughout the story, they simply tried their best to stay alive. To imagine that they somehow developed romantic attraction to each other was too soon and too forced. These were people who had been living alone for months, still mourning after loss of loved ones. Bishop himself isolated his life from other humans for who knows how long before he finally met Maeve. I personally think they would need a whole lot time to warm up to each other and learn how to open up to one another, even as friends. The book didn’t provide us enough moments of that, which was actually fine if only the author didn’t already set them up as an endgame by the end of book one.
In conclusion, “Bishop’s Honor” is a nice read when you want to pick up something a bit darker than usual but not really deep. I wouldn’t say it’s a romance book since it focused a lot more on the survival aspect of the characters, so please do keep that in mind. I am not sure about the scientific aspect of the Maunder Minimum (I have read some articles about the phenomenon, but still cannot grasp whether it would truly be as severe as described in the story with today’s technologies). There are more books in the series but unfortunately I won’t continue to follow the story from here. So, see you in another book!