The two-time Hugo Award-winner expands the universe of his Coyote saga. The danui, a reclusive arachnid species considered the galaxy's finest engineers, have avoided contact with the Coyote Federation. Until, that is, the danui initiate trade negotiations, offering only information: the coordinates for an unoccupied world suitable for human life - a massive sphere, composed of billions of hexagons. But when the Federation's recon mission goes terribly wrong, the humans realize how little they know about their new partners.
BONUS AUDIO: Includes an exclusive introduction written and read by author Allen Steele.
©2011 Allen M. Steele (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
In order to fully appreciate this book or the series you need to understand a few things about Allen Steele as well as the last 60 years of interstellar travel fiction. 'A Mote in God's Eye','Footfall','Rendezvous with Rama','2001','The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy' and its kin,'Foundation' series, are among the ranks of the best in the category. They all leave you with an immense sense of incompleteness. The 'Coyote' saga while not eradicating this feeling, at least gives you several thousand pages from 2070 AD to 2370 AD to brood about the science the author can't invent to satisfy you. Steele is not a perfect writer. However the scope and ambition of this series is palpable. All future writers in this category should aim to out do this saga, in both breadth and technical aspects. This is a must read series for any hard science fiction aficionado.
"I'll be a story in your head, but that's OK. We're all stories in the end. Just make it a good one, eh? The Doctor
I enjoyed the idea of Hex. I was enthralled by the Dyson Sphere and wish I could read (or listen) to many more stories about this fascinating place, that even in my mind’s eye, was breathtaking. It was so colorfully detailed that I was able to see Hex as I read. I love that. I plan on reading the other books in the Coyote Series if only because I loved that type of imagery. This story was pretty good as well. I would have given it 4 stars because after "reading" it I felt not a second was wasted. In saying that….
So imagine if you will, asking people over to your home for free food and shelter, and because you were not there at their arrival, they kick in your door, steal a car, run it into the neighbor’s house, trespass in another yard, and then beat up some disabled kids down the street. Then they act like it is entirely your fault because you wasn’t available at the exact time they were wanting. That is basically what the Humans on the Montero were like. You were trying to help them and they repay you by being hoodlums.
I wanted to punch the characters in the face. I actually would find myself yelling at them while driving. Apparently the government officials of Coyote are morons. If I were going to send a sample of the human race to met highly advance race of aliens I would NEVER choose Andromeda nor her son as ambassadors. I cringed at every decision that Andromeda and Shawn made. As we say in the South, none of them were “raised right.” I would have totally jettisoned them as soon as Shawn decided to steal the boat. RULES people. RULES!
Possibly the purpose of the story is to show that humans, many times, are impatient and filled with a sense entitlement, and that this will be our near downfall in the future. The author did an excellent job portraying that future. I am sure that the lesson learned by the “mistakes” made were to show that humans need approached others in the COMPLETE opposite manner in which most of these characters did. Once again the author did an excellent job of that as well.
The sense of entitlement, selfishness, rudeness shown by the humans as they stumbled through the story and Hex, was the drawback of the story. Nobody would have sent them to this important of a meeting, ever. Thus, making the story a bit hard to swallow.
Anyway… can’t wait for the next one, may be all the annoying people will be gone.
4 stars for story
2 stars for the characters (I only wanted to punch them not kill them).
yes, if they like the Coyote series.
The final scene
I enjoyed all the Coyote Series. This one added more dimension and understanding about the other entities in the universe.
Good science fiction typically has good science at its foundation. While the science of the Dyson sphere I felt was meticulous, many other aspects of the story were not.
The story relied heavily on the stupidity of its characters to provide the fodder for a plot. It didn't take long for me to stop caring about the characters altogether!
Certain aspects of applied tech seemed anachronistic.
I personally would not recommend this story if you are a stickler for details, but it is enjoyable enough to keep you company while you do yard work.
I really wanted to like Hex after the authors forward but several issues. I've bought both the audible and the kindle book and haven't been able to finish either one. Good price, good performance but issues with story and character development. Issue without spoilers, I hope.
All the characters ( with one possible exception) continually show poor judgement with regard to command decisions, technical insights, how to respond to possible/potential threats, all couple with the emotional maturity of 12 year old children.
Repeated clanging of the archaic use of 20th century technologies even for a new frontier world that gets painful to overlook after few chapters. Idiots making decision or making such obviously dumb ones to set up a story line.
No biologist? No linguist? Text messages that take minutes to translate? Surprise and wonder at basically electronic paper? Surprise at the idea that a communication device might also be used to listen to conversation without you knowledge!
Hex has lot promise and I may give the Coyote early novels a try but at best 2.5 stars for me.
The academic/VP at least until the middle of the book where i gave up did the smallest number of stupid things. But really saving his guess of it being a Dyson sphere because a real scientist wait to test his data before he tell anyone his theory ?? That old one ...
The Hex concept was intriguing but I found it a let down... the ending was wrapped up too quickly & neatly.
I mostly enjoy audio books while in the car. They are a great way to pass the time spent behind the wheel. 99 percent of my titles are SF.
I enjoyed the previous novels in the Coyote series, but I found this one to be a disappointment. I found the old narrator detracted from the story telling, so I was pleased that a new person was doing the reading. But that is were the praise ends. The story was a great idea, but poorly told. The characters were all idiots and they kept on doing the stupidest things. I could tell what was going to happen next because of this. The events in the story were mostly just cobbled together, wasting the terrific venue that Steele created. Only buy this book to complete your series, do not start here.
The Steele faithful might like it. And people that think humans are stupid.
Definitely not, there are plenty of good books out there on alternate types of worlds (Rama, Ringworld, etc).
A total re-write with better characters.
I was very angry and frustrated as every character in charge made totally idiotic decisions. The captain, by the books own admission was suppose to be able to make quick decisions and be intuitive. Every decision she made got them deeper in trouble. Not to mention that she couldn't even process the capabilities of a race that could build something like Hex. Every other in-charge character in the book made idiotic decisions from putting a shuttle at full throttle (Casey) to deciding to explore rather than staying put when you end up at the wrong location (Sean)...only to mention a few idiotic decisions.
One question - does a race that can build a Dyson sphere invite other species to come live there just so they can capture and destroy, torture, and/or eat them?
Maybe if I had read the book with my internal voice the characters wouldn't have seemed like such idiots, but the narrator's voice seemed to add to the incompetence of the characters. If I were an alien species I wouldn't let those poor decision making humans into my world.
This is the first book that I have read from Steele. I hear the other books are good, but I am not going to chance it. This is the last book from this author that I will read.
More dynamic reading, improved story, more interesting characters, more consistent technology... and more.
The abject stupidity of the human characters... worrying about taking GUNS in to face a species that's Millennia beyond you technologically!? NOBODY is that dumb... and that's just one example. If I'd been the super advanced species watching the humans bluder stupidly around my sphere, I'd have told them "ahh... on second thought..."
I'd have just told her to use a bit more vocal range in her performance, I felt like I was listening to the female equivelant of the teacher on Ferris Buelers day off... "Bueler... Bueller..."
Needs a massive overhaul... there's not any one scene that's problematic.
Though the concept was interesting and well though out the characters seemed way to impulsive to be believable. It seemed each conflict was caused by stupid decisions no rational, let alone a seasoned spacer, would make. I enjoyed the Coyote series but this was not one of Allen Steele better works.
"Sadly assumes the reader is as stupid as the chars"
Very disappointing first purchase form Audible. Sadly the only bits that drive the story forward is the stupidity of the characters. To make matters worse, rather than leave the reader/listener to work out that they have been stupid, like a really crap movie where the camera zooms in to make it quite clear that the character has accidentally left the door open; Allen Steele feels he has to perform the literary equivalent which not only ruins any potential mystery within the book but also is done in such a way that it actually made me feel that he thinks they we just as stupid as the characters in the book. And all of this around a very poorly written and shallow mother-son relationship that leaves you far from interested let alone satisfied.
The narration is also rubbish with Tracy Sallows doing her best to do gravely male voices which sounds more like someone trying to strangle an Alsation dog with their bare hands. Not to mention the overly American accent and inability to pronounce words properly which is super annoying for a Brit like me.
I don't normally bother doing reviews of stuff even when they're bad, but this was so bad and I am so disappointed by what should and could have been a good story that I thought I'd share my frustration in the hope that it might spare someone else nearly 10 hours of their life.
"good but could have been better"
I have read/listened to all the books in the Coyote series. There were many aspects of this particular book which I found extremely interesting, especially the element of discovery and exploration into new races and strange places. The narration was very acceptable for the most part, the accent of the reader did not trouble me at all, however, she could not "do" male voices, making them sound like very excited teenagers, but then some of their actions did seem immature. Overall I enjoyed it. Three stars is about right as far as I concerned.
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