This chapter focuses on Bujold's fantasy novels. Since the turn of the millennium Bujold has produced seven fantasy novels and just three science fiction novels. Her first fantasy novel was The Spirit Ring (1992), inspired by Agricola's treatise on metallurgy and the autobiography of Benvenuto Cellini, both written in the mid-sixteenth century. Her next fantasy venture was the Chalion trilogy (2001–2005), modeled on fifteenth-century Europe. Chalion is a disorienting version of Castile, in the generation before a queen of Castille set about the unification of Spain through a marriage alliance. With many fantasy novels, the way the author has developed a unique magical system is often the major point of interest; with Chalion, however, it is Bujold's imaginative theological system that sets it apart from its rivals: Chalion and its neighbors worship five gods who form a family.
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