This book tries to present interesting ideas as story. But in fact there is no story, or none that I could detect before I gave up with ear fatigue after about 8 hours. The collection of characters have unique characteristics but in this effort become unbearably dull. There are chapters, or minutes of time given over to lists of ideas/concepts/factoids , which seem to add no value to the book. Perhaps there is a point to the lists but it eluded me.
Others have commented on the narration but frankly i thought she was the only bright spot to the book. I may have been digging but I don't think she had much to work with yet somehow kept me listening for a bit longer than I should have.
Much of the book is given over to describe interesting ideas about how man could live in space and to how varied societies and their habitation could become. Charitably I think the author is trying to contrast that potential with earth both in its current state and its likely state in 2312. However there appears to be no purpose to this and the ideas themselves are too thin and too varied to hold interest.
Spoiler alert. The thread that attempts hold these ideas together is the apparent plot destroy space based colonies with some hint that there is involvement by machine intelligence. But if that's the plot, its presented far too weakly
Bottom line: Weak plot, dull characters, and a shotgun of interesting ideas aimed at nothing substantial.
Get rid of the apparently useless lists which seem to exist only to add pages/minutes to the book. Cynically I would argue that the author was trying to write a long book out of a short story, regrettably losing the short story.
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