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Convergence: The Heritage Universe, Book 4 | [Charles Sheffield]

Convergence: The Heritage Universe, Book 4

Humans first reached out to the stars traveling at a painfully slow sublight crawl - then they found the Bose network, which allowed ships to jump instantaneously from one node in the galactic arm to another. Once in the network they found the Artifacts: enigmatic structures, millions of years old, left by a vanished race. Incomprehensible to both human and non-human minds, the Artifacts seemingly defy natural law.
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Publisher's Summary

Humans first reached out to the stars traveling at a painfully slow sublight crawl - then they found the Bose network, which allowed ships to jump instantaneously from one node in the galactic arm to another. Once in the network they found the Artifacts: enigmatic structures, millions of years old, left by a vanished race. Incomprehensible to both human and non-human minds, the Artifacts seemingly defy natural law.

Now, after millions of years, a new Artifact has appeared - and previously discovered Artifacts are showing strange changes in their inexplicable activities. When a motley crew of human and alien scientists and adventurers set out to examine still more Artifacts, they should have considered the fact that some changes are more dangerous than others...

©1990, 1991, 1992, 1997 by Charles Sheffield; (P)2000 Blackstone Audiobooks

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (169 )
5 star
 (63)
4 star
 (70)
3 star
 (23)
2 star
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1 star
 (4)
Overall
4.1 (34 )
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 (12)
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3 star
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Story
4.2 (33 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Donald Rogers, AR, USA 01-29-04
    Donald Rogers, AR, USA 01-29-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    Overall
    "Singularity of Thought"

    Sheffield's understanding of physics and quantum theory spill out in full force in this fourth installment of the Heritage Universe series. I appreciate the time and chance the author takes to make the physical implausibilities seem so real and tangible.

    All the characters come back to us, each wrestling with their own weaknesses and desires as the universal attractions around them start to change and finally disappear.

    How they handle this sweeping epoch of galactic change is entertaining and heart pounding. How this change affects them all is riveting.

    Five stars for bring us to the crossroads of new galactic era with a single purpose and a singuarity of thought.

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Ottawa, ON, Canada 03-01-04
    Kevin Ottawa, ON, Canada 03-01-04 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
    "Get ready for a great read!"

    A fun and enjoyable gem! I loved it so much I went and bought the 4th book in the series in hardcover. The "hard science" is a real feature, but the crafting of the story makes the book easy and fun to listen to. I wouldn't call it great literature, but somehow the story comes together so nicely that it quickly became one of my all-time favorite audible books. How is it this series is so unknown??

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Old Hippy PA 02-22-10
    Old Hippy PA 02-22-10 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    412
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    "Great finish to a great series ..."

    ... too bad Sheffield has passed. Every single volume in this series delivered. Great characters, fine narration, wonderful aliens. And, despite pushing the envelope vis a vis technology, you suspend belief and get absorbed by the stories. Highly recommended!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Don Austin, TX, USA 04-02-04
    Don Austin, TX, USA 04-02-04 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    80
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    "Great Series"

    A good finale to the series. Each of the familiar and likable characters from the previous three books are back and work together to try to solve the mystery of the builders. I enjoyed the reader's UK accent. For me, it added some character to the players that may not have been there in the written form. I'm sorry that the author has passed away.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 05-03-13
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 05-03-13 Member Since 2007

    I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "As good (or better) than the others in the series"

    The story is told from three points: Darya Lang and party, Louis Nenda and party, and Hans Rebka and party. If you don't know who these characters are, you probably won't enjoy this book much. This is book 4 in a series that revolves around these characters, and you really do have to be familiar with them in order to appreciate this story since a lot of it has the characters performing actions that really only make sense if you know why they're acting the way they are.

    That being said, if you have read the rest of the series, this story won't disappoint. It is as good as the second book in the series, and a bit better than the third. Sure, the story does jump from one area of space to the events in another, but you won't have trouble following who's doing what as long as you're familiar with the characters.

    I enjoyed how the mystery of the Builders was (almost) wrapped up. I liked how the recurring characters were further developed. I liked the space/time concepts. There is not much "techy-talk" and you don't have to understand physics to follow the story. I also don't think you really have to know/remember much about the Builder Artifacts either - the story flows along and it won't matter if you've forgotten from book 2 what the Pandora Artifact does.

    There is no graphic violence or sex or foul language. While there is another book in the series, this book didn't end with such a cliffhanger that you'll have an urgent need to start the next one immediately.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L. Travelers Rest, SC, United States 03-04-06
    L. Travelers Rest, SC, United States 03-04-06 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The best of the last"

    This is the last book of the series, and, I thought, The best. The characters grow and mature through the series

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan El Paso, TX, United States 08-22-09
    Dan El Paso, TX, United States 08-22-09 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    332
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    11
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    Overall
    "Good series"

    The series was good, but Sheffield didn't finish strong. I said after reading Transcendence that "I'll miss the characters." Well, Sheffield introduces a dozen more characters in Convergence that I won't miss at all. He should've deleted all of the extras and focused on his main characters. The explanantion of the Builders was very interesting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amy Deese Mims, FL United States 03-01-09
    Amy Deese Mims, FL United States 03-01-09 Member Since 2008
    ratings
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    Overall
    "Great Author, Great Narrator, Great Series"

    After completing the final installment of Charles Sheffield's Heritage Universe series, I find that I will really miss the characters and that my regret over the author's death has further deepened. I also would like to praise the narrator for truly bringing the characters to life. Even though we regrettably will not see any new books from the author, there are additional Sheffield novels in existence that could someday be produced in audio format. If that ever happens, I can only hope that Mr. Howard will be selected as narrator. I am also looking forward to downloading the C.S. Lewis science fiction trilogy performed by Mr. Howard.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Oakland, CA, USA 04-03-04
    David Oakland, CA, USA 04-03-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    5
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    Overall
    "Convergence is a terrible book"

    Convergence was terrible. The characters were flat. The literary style was uninteresting. The narrator was like listening to nails on a chalkboard. Save your money. Stay away from this book.

    1 of 5 people found this review helpful
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  • Relativitydrive
    London, UK
    7/1/12
    Overall
    "For Sci-Fi Fans who want quality and novelty"

    Can't say more than it's a great book with extended and connected narrative that brings new ideas into play and doesn't fall for all the cliches others do in the genre. I have now been turned on to find and read the three preceding and one following parts to this story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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