A century from now, thanks to a technology allowing instantaneous travel across light-years, humanity has solved its energy shortages, cleaned up the environment, and created far-flung colony worlds. The keys to this empire belong to the powerful North family - composed of successive generations of clones. Yet these clones are not identical. For one thing, genetic errors have crept in with each generation. For another, the original three clone "brothers" have gone their separate ways, and the branches of the family are now friendly rivals more than allies.
Or maybe not so friendly. At least that's what the murder of a North clone in the English city of Newcastle suggests to Detective Sidney Hurst. Sid is a solid investigator who'd like nothing better than to hand off this hot potato of a case. The way he figures it, whether he solves the crime or not, he'll make enough enemies to ruin his career. Yet Sid's case is about to take an unexpected turn: Because the circumstances of the murder bear an uncanny resemblance to a killing that took place years ago on the planet St. Libra, where a North clone and his entire household were slaughtered in cold blood.
The convicted slayer, Angela Tramelo, has always claimed her innocence. And now it seems she may have been right. Because only the St. Libra killer could have committed the Newcastle crime. Problem is, Angela also claims that the murderer was an alien monster.
Now Sid must navigate through a Byzantine minefield of competing interests within the police department and the world's political and economic elite...all the while hunting down a brutal killer poised to strike again. And on St. Libra, Angela, newly released from prison, joins a mission to hunt down the elusive alien, only to learn that the line between hunter and hunted is a thin one.
©2012 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2013 Tantor
"It's a perfect introduction to his gifts for character design, dialogue, and sheer, big-idea-driven storytelling." (Booklist)
I thoroughly enjoyed other books by Peter Hamilton so I decided to give this one a try. He puts forth a lot of effort in developing the characters through direct description or through the characters past memory of a particular event. It is in this manner that he weaves the characters to others so that the reader gets to know them and their place in the plot.
Although the book does become a bit tedious as he tries to build this universe, the narration makes it tough to hang in there to the conclusion. Perhaps it is just me but I find the British accent hard to get accustomed to. In this case it makes the story not nearly as enjoyable. The narrator does well with mixing in a few different accents but the overall accent delivering the story diminishes the enjoyment, in my opinion.
All in all, definitely a good listen. Especially if you like Hamilton's other books.
Hopefully you are familiar with Hamilton's other works like the 2 + 3 book commonwealth saga. I truly enjoyed how complex and deep those stories were so I thought I would give this one a shot too. Easily as complex but not as enticing as his other works. I use this as a filler between other audio books and am not sure when I will ever finish it but it just doesn't draw me in at all. Felt like it was building towards a grand climax and then just fell away so who knows.
No I would not - Hamilton and his enzyme bonded concrete...jesus christ, is everything done on enzyme bonded fucking concrete?!!
The North's are my kind of twisted family
No, this book is about 3 books in one
I loved Peter Hamilton's Common Wealth Universe. It is simply audacious and I always keep wanting more.
This book is not set in the same universe. There are some similarities, but not on such a grand scale as the previous trilogy. This is mostly a suspense mystery novel set in future. Many of the characters are believable and one can relate to them.
I am waiting for Peter's next book which is supposed to be set in the Common Wealth Universe
Long, complex, with ultimate resolution of the "Huh?" parts. I would give it 5 stars for the "overall rating" if the download would have let me continue where I left off.
Angela, of course.
The audio in the penultimate dowloaded part kept snapping back to the midway point when I turned off my iPod. Had to hunt around for where I left off. Hope this has been fixed.
Cannot say. Have not read the print version.
Great introduction into Peter F. Hamilton's books. Not connected to his other stories. From what I can tell, I love his writing style and will be moving on to his other books.
Well, now that I've finished I guess I should get back to my life, do some dishes, talk to my husband. But everything real seems so unreal, like waking up from a dream. It may take me a few days to untangle myself from this book.
First of all, Great North Road is Epic. It is really something to sink your teeth into and live with for a while. The characters work themselves into your psyche like historical figures or memories from your distant past. Sid the police detective is an awesome trope given new life in the context of a space-themed sci-fi. Angela the bad-ass babe has added depth with her 1000-year life span. (I do wish she didn't have to be so hot though. Why are they always hot? What about a completely ordinary-looking bad-ass babe? Is that so hard to imagine? Give us normal girls someone to see ourselves in.) The plot is filled with teases and secrets and slow reveals. Sometimes annoying, but oh-so-satisfying when finally resolved.
And the reader was really good too. Very British. His cadence was sometimes a little off, and he propelled us into new chapters, taking place light years away, without any warning - like a little pause or a change in tone would have been nice - so I was confused sometimes, but maybe that was just me. Still a quality performance.
Anyway, I loved it. Get off the fence and start listening.
I truly love how Peter F. Hamilton builds these awesome characters, in a range of regular joe's who live in an advanced technological age, all the way to personalizing beings who are so alien they would be near impossible to comprehend. All the while, he adds in base human problems, thrilling action, and super-nerd science that is well-researched and truly upholds the rest of the story. All of these things in one novel.... I was absolutely saddened when it was over. This is one hardworking author. And an excellent book.
Ravi. Angela. Hard to pick between the two. Ravi is your basic Sgt. Slaughter super-warrior who is past his salad days but is grounded enough he can still see the forest despite the trees. Angela is just a cool character who has floated through so many lives...
The way this guy distinguishes characters voice is as fun as listening to the story.
Yes, never got bored or distracted. The execution was so good. Just when you thought you might hit a low dull point where something is re-explained.... whoosh, it didn't happen.
I recommend checking out other Peter F. Hamilton books if you like this. The guy can tell a story in any setting. And make it worth every last second of the listen.
The story is interesting and the extrapolation of a possible future was well done with one very annoying exception, the christian dogma was very heavy handed and didn't feel like it fit in the story. It was distracting and constantly pulled me out of the story. I would recommend skipping this book.
This is a really good tale. It is engaging and fun and has a nice sci-fi component. It is a Peter F. Hamilton story though so it has (1) Rich Families, (2) Wormholes, (3) Police officers, (4) Murders, (5) High society intrigue (6) anti-aging processes, (7) novel social constructs. Additionally, he includes his standard sci-fi component of wearable computing, omni-present net access and varying degrees of smart-matter.
It's a stand alone tale that, at its core, is a murder mystery. However, the person who committed the murder, the reasons for it, and the what is uncovered by the multiple protagonists is quite fun and enjoyable.
The narration is top rate. Toby Longworth now ranks up there with John Lee, Simon Prebble and Scott Brick as my preferred narrators.
If you like elaborate sci-fi - pick it up. You won't regret it.
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