Down in the Bottomlands was nominated for a Nebula in 1994 for best novella. Kind of a thin year, I guess. It's a competent story, but not something one would normally go far out of the way to read. It's an espionage/mystery story set on an alien Earth--rather too literal a one. This planet is what I would call an Earth "skin"--peopled by humans with predictably human motivations, with 20th century human technology, all with straightforward english analog names. Examples--"starbombs" = nuclear weapons, "The Trench" = pretty much like the Grand Canyon, etc. There's action, sex, and environmental appeal, but it's all stiff as can be.
Turtledove is mostly known for alternate history work--alternate versions of WWII, etc. I would go there for better examples of his writing. Two stars for this one.