A couple of friends recommended this series to me, and sent me the first book as a birthday gift.Wow.S.M. Stirling has created a post-apocalyptic world in which the archaic skills practiced by historical reenactors become the most valuable talents available. In his world, technology has ceased to function: electricity, steam power, internal combustion, you name it. Thus, the ability to farm the land with old-style tools, raise crops and rear livestock become increasingly valuable as food becomes the barter medium.Of course, there are the villainous sorts who want a return to feudalism with themselves at the top of the food chain ... and the "good guys" have to do battle with them more than once.I look forward to reading the rest of this interesting series. On top of an interesting scenario/plot, Stirling's characters are interesting, believable and sympathetic. Highly recommended.