The Covenant has collapsed after a long, brutal war that saw billions slaughtered on Earth and her colonies. For the first time in decades, however, peace finally seems possible. But though the fighting's stopped, the war is far from over: it's just gone underground.
The UNSC's feared and secretive Office of Naval Intelligence recruits Kilo-Five, a team of ODSTs, a Spartan, and a diabolical AI to accelerate the Sangheili insurrection. Meanwhile, the Arbiter, the defector turned leader of a broken Covenant, struggles to stave off civil war among his divided people.
Across the galaxy, a woman thought to have died on Reach is actually very much alive. Chief scientist Dr. Catherine Halsey broke every law in the book to create the Spartans, and now she's broken some more to save them. Marooned with Chief Mendez and a Spartan team in a Forerunner slipspace bubble hidden in the destroyed planet Onyx, she finds that the shield world has been guarding an ancient secret – a treasure trove of Forerunner technology that will change everything for the UNSC and mankind.
As Kilo-Five joins the hunt for Halsey, humanity’s violent past begins to catch up with all of them as disgruntled colony Venezia has been biding its time to strike at Earth, and its most dangerous terrorist has an old, painful link with both Halsey and Kilo-Five that will test everyone’s loyalty to the limit.
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©2011 Microsoft Corporation (P)2011 Macmillan Audio
I've enjoyed the entire Halo story, and Karen Traviss takes the story to a new level. Well laced with character building and humor, and less on the weapons and battle description (because lets face it, by now we know that stuff very well)
My favorite character would be Naomi. Ive always wanted to see a confidently humorous Spartan
all of them were very well done
Audiobooks are my way of easing the long commute to work! Thank you!
Definitely! This is a great piece with a lot of backstory for the Halo canon. Any Halo fan would surely appreciate it!
I liked Dr. Halsey. Her interactions with the spartans as well as her superiors was great to see and enlightening as far as Halo backstory was concerned.
The part where The commanding office and Dr. Halsey explain about Red and Blue Spartan origins.
Yes fore sure!
Great story and great addition to the Halo realm.
This was a surprisingly different experience from the other Halo novels. Much like the games, most of the previous installments have been fairly action-packed and event oriented. Large sections of this book (and I do mean LARGE) consist solely of conversations and internal monologue. If you ever thought Star Trek The Next Generation was kind of boring given that it was a show about staff meetings, this book will be even more difficult. Since the book primarily follows the activities of intelligence agents, the lack of action shouldn't be a total shock. That's not to say that nothing happens, it's just that it's about as far from the novelization of a first person shooter as you could possibly get.
The book is also a lot more linear than many previous novels. Those early books have to go back and establish a lot of backstory. By this point a lot of that has more or less been established in the author was able to focus on a specific store in a fairly condensed period of time.
The author also explores some areas I honestly didn't consider before. A lot of the mundane detail about life in the Spartan armor is discussed for the benefit of the reader. The content also has a much more distinct psychological overtone which adds depth to both existing and new characters. I found that to be a plus, though it was difficult at times because of the positions taken. A lot of angst is expressed over the actions which led to the creation of the Spartan program. You certainly could make a war crimes argument over most of that. But I did get a little tired of worrying about 70 children when billions or trillions of humans were killed along the way. No one in this book has clean hands, it just seemed a little bit overbearing for some of the characters to pass judgment on others.
I was also a little bothered by the physics of the book. Early in the Halo universe (just a few years ago according to the book's own chronology), humans were crawling across the vastness of space in cryo tubes. Getting anywhere seemed like a real hassle. Likewise, communication between different planets functioned more like an intergalactic pony express.
In this book the universe seems no larger than a modern-day big city. The main characters pop back and forth between planets with relative ease. They also have real-time communication spanning galactic distances, even though sending one-way communications over huge distances was portrayed as slow and prohibitively expensive in the previous novels. Granted, these characters would have the absolute best technology available, and probably access to some wonderful covenant toys. But if all of that was available to the covenant, the war never would've taken 28 days, much less 28 years. Having such a rapid switch in communication and travel limitations is pretty jarring.
One last criticism is about the type of story. I could probably shoehorn this thing into the traditional three act story format used by 95% of fiction novels. But that would be a real stretch. This book would've comfortably fit within an anthology format comprised of multiple short stories. The only overall story arc (outside of the one provided by the larger Halo universe) is that humanity consists of the bunch of jerks. Over the course of the trilogy I have no doubt a larger story will take place. The author is clearly talented enough to pull that off. But this didn't feel like a self-contained novel to me.
I did enjoy many of the references to previous books and games. Dr. Halsey's journal for example was mentioned quite heavily (a highly recommended buy on Amazon if you didn't get hold of it with your copy of Halo: Reach). It was also interesting to see the Halo universe from a more "grownup" perspective.
I think the narration is also something of a mixed bag. He does a pretty good job of many of the characters native accents and he doesn't do that appalling falsetto voice for the women. Given how many female characters this book has, that would've been unbearable. But sometimes the reading is a bit jarring when perspective shifts back and forth between places and characters. And although I like his take on most of the new characters, some of the voices/accents don't really fit with the existing cast.
Overall, I wouldn't put this in my top three Halo book list. It's slightly above average as far as they go, but not my favorite. I really hope this doesn't become required reading for players of Halo 4. I suspect they will create a standalone story for the game, because I can't see the typical first-person shooter fan sitting through 16 hours of this kind of book. Get it if you feel compelled to consume everything Halo related, there are certainly wonderful gems to be found. But if you are a casual fan of the games, spend your time and money somewhere else.
So far this is my second least favorite of the Halo books (the flood is my least favorite).
This is my first book by Karen Travis.
Hard to say. It was probably one of the scenes with Admiral Parangosky.
No, but I did enjoy it.
I really didn't like the way Dr. Halsey was written. Chief Mendez either. Pretty jarring change from Ghost of Onyx.
If the narration was not monotone, I would have enjoyed this much better
BB, AI are always very interesting.
His monotone made it hard to digest the information contained in this book. It was nearly impossible to tell when characters were speaking aloud or in their own heads. His voice droned on and made me want to stop listening even though I wanted to finish the story.
The story was fine.
Performances of audio books need to be actual performances, not just readings. I should have just picked up the book at the store so I could have read it myself.
flowing,enjoyable, satisfying minimum 15 words??????? and they only ask for three words!
the other HALO books
it was OK
This should be called "Crucify Halsey" rather than Glasslands as almost the entire story seems to be a vehicle for Traviss to replay time-worn cliches about govt abuses of power instead of the continuation of the Ghosts of Onyx. It seems as though she wrote this without reading any of the earlier stories. This reminds me of all the Atlantis myths and legends that grew out of Plato's mentioning of Atlantis, while only retaining a superficial relationship to the few lines mentioned by Plato. I found Traviss' version of Halo to be boring and uninteresting. In addition to being a waste of time and money, it's actually insulting to any fan of the game and the stories.
The lack of any action in this novel made it a very hard novel to like. While it had the making of a very good sci fi yarn, the author missed the mark by such a large margin, it made this book painful at times. If there had actually been any Halo type action, then I would rate it higher.
I have read or listened to all of the Halo series of books. After this novel, I am going to read the novels on the Forerunners.
I thought the performance was very good, top marks to Euan for his performance.
The few times that an actual trigger was pulled or one of the characters did more than sit and complain about past issues, then those are the redeeming qualities of this book.
In my opinion, the whole Halo series is built around the Spartans, the game and all of the novels. Granted the series has evolved with the additional Spartan program and the OSDT characters, but let’s be honest, we all play the game and read the books because we all want to be Spartan 117, the Master Chief. We want all want to go down range with him and see him blow the kaka out of things, that is what makes this series so much fun and so very good.
We, at least I, read these because they are at the core, very good science fiction. To spend the vast majority of this book on the ethical issues involved with the Spartan program, is in my opinion, not a good use of ink. This is after all, Science Fiction, not a social commentary on man’s inhumanity toward man.
I would hope that the next book in this line, will remember its roots and give us all what we are looking for, a good story that is true to the original story line, not a 10 hour trial of the mother of the Spartans.
yes. to gain better understanding of whats going on
hard to say, they were all great
adds voices and accents helps identify characters, giving them faces
this is a story of a frist person shooter game from microsoft, not a shot was fired!?
add a few gun battles and we will see
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