Winner of the Hugo Award for Best Novel 2014
The spectacular debut novel nominated for every major science fiction award in 2014, Ancillary Justice is the story of a warship trapped in a human body and her search for revenge. Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the Nebula Award, the British Science Fiction Association Award, a James Tiptree Jr. honour, and a Kitschie. Currently shortlisted for the Hugo Awards.
They made me kill thousands, but I only have one target now. The Radch are conquerors to be feared - resist and they'll turn you into a 'corpse soldier' - one of an army of dead prisoners animated by a warship's AI mind. Whole planets are conquered by their own people. The colossal warship called The Justice of Toren has been destroyed - but one ship-possessed soldier has escaped the devastation.
Used to controlling thousands of hands, thousands of mouths, The Justice now has only two hands, and one mouth with which to tell her tale. But one fragile, human body might just be enough to take revenge against those who destroyed her.
©2013 Ann Leckie (P)2014 Hachette Audio
"Thrilling, moving and awe-inspiring" (Guardian)
"Signals the arrival of a hard science fiction author who just might fill the gap left by Iain M. Banks. Ancillary Justice is a highly original novel . . . an intelligent slow-burner. Highly recommended" (Independent on Sunday)
"You will be truly astounded at how Leckie has fully fleshed out a universe and is asking and attempting to answer the difficult questions that many authors never even address in science fiction" (Buzzfeed)
"Unexpected, compelling and very cool - Ann Leckie nails it. I've never met a heroine like Breq before. I consider this a very good thing indeed." (John Scalzi, Hugo Award-winning author of Redshirts)
"Total gamechanger. Get it, read it, wish to hell you'd written it. Ann Leckie's Ancillary Justice may well be the most important book Orbit have published in ages" (Paul Graham Raven)
"Establishes Leckie as an heir to Banks and Cherryh" (Elizabeth Bear)
"It's not every day a debut novel by an author you'd never heard of before derails your entire afternoon with its brilliance." (Tor.com)
"Using the format of a SF military adventure blended with hints of space opera, Leckie explores the expanded meaning of human nature and the uneasy balance between individuality and membership in a group identity. Leckie is a newcomer to watch." (Library Journal)
"Leckie's novel cast of characters serves her well-plotted story nicely. This is an altogether promising debut." (Kirkus)
"Our #1 pick for the year's best science fiction or fantasy book . . . this Iain M. Banks-esque tale was the book that made us most excited about the future of science fiction in 2013." (io9.com)
"It engages, it excites, and it challenges the way the reader views our world. Leckie may be a former Secretary of the Science Fiction Writers of America, but she's the President of this year's crop of debut novelists. Ancillary Justice might be the best science fiction novel of this very young decade." (Staffer’s Book Review)
"The sort of book that the Clarke Award wishes it had last year ... be prepared to see Ancillary Justice bandied around a lot come awards season. (As it should be)." (Pornokitsch)
"Leckie uses familiar set pieces-an expansionist galaxy-spanning empire, a protagonist on a single-minded quest for justice-to transcend space-opera conventions in innovative ways. This impressive debut succeeds in making Breq a protagonist readers will invest in, and establishes Leckie as a talent to watch closely." (Publisher’s Weekly)
"Leckie's debut gives casual and hardcore sci-fi fans alike a wonderful read." (RT Book Reviews)
"First rate, rollicking space-opera with plenty of action, intrigue and adventure ... a fabulous debut." (The Skiffy and Fanty Show)
"A sharply written space opera . . . tackling ideas about politics and gender in a way that's both engaging and provacative . . . a gripping read that's well worth a look." (SFX Magazine)
The idea of AI running facilities was great.
Orn, completely loyal to the end.
Eskia (spelling). Great voice. So many African intonations.
The story isn't the easiest to follow but the narrator's use of accents helps a great deal. She does a brilliant job with the complexity of the names, particularly the lesser. I'm not sure the book is up to all the hype -- I've read more exciting SF books but it's intriguing enough. Worth a listen.
"Interestingly feminist SciFi"
That headline might do the novel more harm than good but I mean it in a totally inclusive engaged way, I'm male and the book feels written by a woman in command of her view of the future, a future just a dystopian as a million others but there's something really different here, I was believing, the world created is complete and different while being relatable... OK I'm not writing this well, just try it, it's really intelligent.
"Brilliant! A great story and characters"
Narration was excellent, full of depth and really bought the characters to life. The story moved well and kept true to its central premise.
The plot is excellent, how the lead character deals with and explains her/its predicament is brilliant, really keeps you in, and surrounded by, the story.
She understands the book extremely well, she uses the subtle intonations of her voice to perfectly build the characters and really helps you get a mental image of them.
Its not how I listen to audiobooks in general but I think it benefitted from occasional breaks to let the concepts sink in.
I'd recommend this and I can't wait for the sequel.
"An Introduction to Radch world"
At first it feels strange and disjointed but stick with it. It will start making sense. This is the introduction to Radch space and the Ancillary character. A fine, if a bit long introduction.
It really is so nice to see such a well written female (or is it male? gender pronouns are not
important in Radch) character. Near the end there is more action as it is revealed exactly how we got to where we are today.
Adjoa Andoh does a great job in narrating and playing characters. Very distinctive and enjoyable acting.
The second book is much more interesting as we know so much more about he character, but it wouldn't work as well if we didn't have the introduction of the first book. So I guess what I'm saying is if you feel it drags on a bit, stick with it!
"Brilliant - don't put it down"
This is a book about an alien culture on alien worlds and, for the first few chapters, nothing quite adds up. You'll have more questions than answers. It's intriguing but static, with not much actually happening, but it does enrich you with a great cultural knowledge of the 'Radch' civilization, which is very different to our own. Stick with it - many of the observations and idle chit-chat at the start of the book will enrich and reward you for doing so.
Once the turning point hit, from about 1 hour into the book, it went from interesting and thought-provoking, to utterly gripping. The book's protagonist, who has told you the entire story from a first-person perspective, faces an impossible situation, and a decision must be made which will affect the entire civilisation.
At this point Ancillary Justice progresses from a political and cultural study of a modest town on an icy planet, to a full-blown space opera, taking you to the heart of the civilization's leadership, without missing a beat. I can't wait to read more.
"Once in a while comes a book with rave reviews ..."
... that leaves you wondering why.
For around 3/4s to 4/5s of the book it bounces between the past and the present so you know what is happening and why. Nothing so wrong in this but in both cases, at no point is there any pace or excitement. The story just goes on like a second paragraph making you wonder when the story is really going to start. Even when it starts to pick up it still feels flat and unexciting. It's more a fantasy novel with a sci-fi back ground, but again that is no problem if it works, here it's just fluff on the side, what you're left with is almost a monologue.
The final chapter was actually quite good and lead to excitement over the next book, but I won't be going there as that could well be the same, lots of chapters of nothing then one or two leading you on to the next stage.
There is then the actual reading of the story. For the most part Adjoa Andoh does a very god job, however she uses different accents to fit different character backgrounds. One of them is rasta in style and I found that one very hard at times to listen too as words became indistinct. I think at times she was just forcing it too much.
In summary, I for one can not understand the fuss. This is not a well written story with a sci fi background, but more a plod along leaving you trying to stay awake.
"Wins through the tiresome gender correctness"
As a first novel in a series, the author establishes her universe well. Her tiresome constant gender clumsiness gets in the way, and the plot is slow to the point of treacle, but it wins out in ideas and development.
The narrator does an adequate job with the unnecessarily long names though has a poor grasp of accent.
There were unusually some slips in audio content quality.
Despite the frustrations, I will try book 2.
"One step removed"
it's ok. My main problem with the book is that the main protagonist acts as a distanced observer of her own life. That makes it very hard to engage with the story. Especially since neither the world or the plot portrayed are strong enough to carry the book on its own.
The book is pleasantly read. Some voice dramatization, but nothing that grates too much. Apart from a short segment with a child towards the end.
"Great start to a promising trilogy"
Great story excellently narrated. looking forward to listening to the next two books in the series!
"A Lot of Not Very Much"
The concept of Ancillary Justice sounded interesting and so I thought I'd try a new science-fiction author and broaden my ever growing list of such authors. However, it soon became clear that this story was not working for me at all. At times I was seriously considering just abandoning the book as it just seemed that a lot of nothing very much was happening. one of the key complaints I have with this story is the excessive amounts of dialogue which a lot of is irrelevant and does not add or really move the story along at all. It's clever and high brow stuff and reminds me of those arty TV dramas you sometimes see where a lot of subtle and clever dialogue goes on but not much in the way of a tangible story. or, it's like something that has not been edited to remove the padding. I just didn't like the style of this book and it might be me just not being appreciative enough of something more sophisticated and intellectual that's beyond me but I just could not get on with this mostly dull and slow story.
Things finally started to get moving at about chapter 20 which I thought far too late on in the book to have held most readers interest up to that point. The latter chapters were what kept me reading as the culmination of the plot such as it was fairly raced along compared to the almost stagnant narrative up to that point. The author seems to take us places and meet people who have nothing to add to the story and really do seem like a way of padding out the book. I'm kind of sorry I see it this way as I still feel that I've missed something that others clearly more intelligent than me have seen and it does seem that a sequel is there but if I have to wade through 75% or so of the book in that instalment before reaching anything of interest or substance then I don't think I will be getting this book anytime soon.
Despite the story, I have to praise the narrator as she did a superb job of pronouncing the difficult names and did excellent accents too.
Clever, I'm sure but a largely very dull read for me I'm afraid.
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