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House of Suns Audiobook

House of Suns

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Publisher's Summary

Six million years ago, at the very dawn of the starfaring era, Abigail Gentian fractured herself into a thousand male and female clones: the shatterlings. Sent out into the galaxy, these shatterlings have stood aloof as they document the rise and fall of countless human empires. They meet every 200,000 years to exchange news and memories of their travels with their siblings.

Not only are Campion and Purslane late for their 30-second reunion but they have also brought along an amnesiac golden robot for a guest. But the wayward shatterlings get more than the scolding they expect: they face the discovery that someone has a very serious grudge against the Gentian line, and there is a very real possibility of traitors in their midst. The surviving shatterlings have to dodge exotic weapons while they regroup to try to solve the mystery of who is persecuting them and why---before their ancient line is wiped out of existence forever.

©2008 Alastair Reynolds; (P)2009 Tantor

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1373 )
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4.5 (1018 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    james newport news, va, United States 12-03-13
    james newport news, va, United States 12-03-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    Story
    "Imagine William Shatner dubbing everyone"
    What did you like best about House of Suns? What did you like least?

    Good focus on a rational mystery but the poor performance of the reader made characters indistinguishable from one another - until a sentence or two was spoken. One never knew who was speaking (after a pause) so was confusion intended?


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I never connected to a character since most were killed off and the main character was bi-gender as with the thinking machines.


    What aspect of John Lee’s performance would you have changed?

    A computer would have read better. Better means some inflection and tone changes from character to character.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    depends on the cast


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    George 10-02-13
    George 10-02-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Silent "R"s"

    Drama over millions of years and millions of miles. For awhile, I thought it might be a romeo and juliet, but not so. There were several trajectories and each did not seem to come together. It was a long listen and the narrator carried a thick Brit accent and I began to wonder about the missing "R": "dark" sounded like "dock." The book finally ended and I don't think I'd listen to another if this is a series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sara darby, MT, United States 09-17-13
    Sara darby, MT, United States 09-17-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very good"

    One of the authors better books, would like to see the story in this universe continue. John Lee's performance was excellent as always.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter Prince George, BC, Canada 09-13-13
    Peter Prince George, BC, Canada 09-13-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Performance
    Story
    "Hungry for More"
    Any additional comments?

    In no way am I experienced enough in the genre to critique a Science Fiction title. I read science fiction for a couple of years way back in the mid 80's. And tried again 5 years ago with the Mars Trilogy (which I did not finish)The book delivers engaging Hard Sci-fi and solid Opera. It was satisfying in that regard.However, I felt as though the book had a Fantasy feel about it. For my taste I would have liked to learn more about the authors idea of regular people.The human part of this story is mainly focused on the Gentians. 6 million year old clone people. Although this span of time is required to tell the story, the hard sci fi describing this ability was lacking, convenient and not very thought provoking. Don't get me wrong. Much of the explanations of technology were fantastic.So when I say "Hungry for More" in my headline. I'm not talking about another book. I just wanted more from this one.

    I will buy more from this author.John Lee is great (as usual)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julius Butcher 08-30-13 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not the best Reynolds, but still OK"

    I'm always amazed at the scale Alistair Reynolds applies in his books. In the House of Suns he exceeds even himself. Campion and Purslane travels across galaxies, through millions of years. It puts my imagination to test.
    The book has a lot of compelling ideas, also awesome aliens (like the giant librarians, or the golden machine man). The story is interesting.
    In some places I found the book too long, too detailed, sometimes repetitive. By the end it annoyed me a little bit that every character talked in same, very accurate, punctual way, like everyone was an English teacher.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diana Zou 04-26-13
    Diana Zou 04-26-13 Member Since 2014

    water babies

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    28
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Rediscover the potential of intelligent machines"
    If you could sum up House of Suns in three words, what would they be?

    inspiring, ascending, think big


    What did you like best about this story?

    I like its ending, that we were finally allowed to meet the representative of the ancient, first race of the intelligent machine.


    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He kept me very engaged with the story till the end.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    An investigation of the mysterious disappearance of Andromeda galaxy.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ramon B. Cano Orem, Ut 04-19-13
    Ramon B. Cano Orem, Ut 04-19-13 Member Since 2015

    tvaelm

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    "Enjoyable hard Sci-Fi novel."
    Any additional comments?

    I truly enjoyed this book. I really liked the fact that for a long while at the beginning of the book I didn't know what was going on and still found that I enjoyed the story and narrative.The universe the author creates is interesting and the flashbacks help bring the story into focus over time. Others have complained that there is not enough action in the story - and I admit after I was done with the book - I looked back and realized the same thing. But I still really enjoyed the read ... and getting lost in this world was fun. This was my first book by Reynolds - but will most likely not be my last. The is some hard profanity in this book although lightly used most of the time ( I estimate there were maybe 2 dozen F-Words in and 18 hour book )As for the Narrator, he does an excellent job on this book - and that may have contributed to how much I enjoyed listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip Darfield, New Zealand 03-19-13
    Philip Darfield, New Zealand 03-19-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    "Good story, narration let it down a bit"

    I found the basic premise of the book intriguing: that humans could extend their lives and influence, as well as indulging their desire to explore the galaxy, through a combination of cloning, stasis, cryogenics, and near light-speed travel.
    The two main characters, Campion and Purslane, are described as lovers in the novel, but Reynolds gives very little space for the reader to imagine a relationship strong enough to have broken through the supposed taboo against such pair-bonding in their culture.
    The story, on the other hand, manages to convey almost unfathomably broad passages of time in a believable way, and the extended chase that is the novel's growing climax takes over 60 thousand light years.
    I pressed on with listening to the entire book because of the author's ability to combine a number of futuristic concepts, a compelling "who-dunnit" that drives the middle third of the novel, flashbacks to the genesis of the main characters, and the extended chase.
    And these strengths fortunately outweighed the narration, which I found a bit mannered and confusing. John Lee did nothing with his voice to signal the alternating narration chapter by chapter of Campion (male) and Purslane (female) in the story, even though he did differentiate the voices of the Machine People from the humans effectively, albeit in a manner of speaking that belied their supposed sophistication. As a North American, I found the various Scottish accents he used for secondary characters jarring because I didn't expect it, although I must admit it added an bit of realistic menace to the author's depiction of two characters, a traitor and an inquisitor.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Moreton Brisbane, Australia 03-12-13
    S. Moreton Brisbane, Australia 03-12-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Epic story that keeps you captivated"
    If you could sum up House of Suns in three words, what would they be?

    Immense awesome fiction


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Perslaine because she was compassionate and strong at the same time.


    What about John Lee’s performance did you like?

    I liked his rendition of Hesperus but there was a section of bad editing where his voice changes and the difference is quite noticeable. You can listen to him for the whole way easily.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    At this length, not a chance but it is still a book I wanted to finish, very much.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a great book.The story line is complex but believable and despite the fact that you think you have figured out where the book is going several times, it still surprises you in the end.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BJ Emerald Isle, NC, United States 03-11-13
    BJ Emerald Isle, NC, United States 03-11-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    "Not as Complicated as Summary indicated"

    I was originally put off by the idea of 1000 seedlings or copies, but the story is a fun read and written in such a way to make it not only believable, but fun romp in and through space and time. Another great Reynolds!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Nick
    Stevenage, United Kingdom
    6/1/10
    Overall
    "Reynolds gets better and better"

    Alastair Reynolds publishes books with such a rapidity it is truly astonishing that each is so good. He has certainly become one of the great masters of Space Opera. He is consistently brilliant unlike the erratic Iain M Banks who only has flashes of Sci-Fi brilliance.
    House of Suns proved to be an excellent, involving read which is intriguingly and shrewdly paced and plotted. And it is read with a great sympathy for his style of writing - great to hear a British voice for a British novelist - which adds to the enjoyment.
    I never got far beyond the first fifty pages reading the novel but this recording engaged much more quickly and it just got better every page. I do hope they'll go back and record 'Century Rain' now with the same narrator

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. G. J. Walker
    Leicester, UK
    2/9/10
    Overall
    "Mr Reynolds does it again"

    Fatastic story and the characters are really in depth and believeable (although slightly similar to characters from other books of his; but this is kinda unavoidable). My only complaint with this book it that it simply does not finish it only ends. Alastair Reynolds is top notch sci fi writer but please can someone help him to finish a story??? I was looking forward to the sequel to House of Suns until I realised there wasn't one. Shame as it really lends itself to a Revelation Space-type triology.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Ron
    Windsor, United Kingdom
    9/11/09
    Overall
    "House of suns"

    Excellent story well read, money well spent.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Miss King
    UK
    12/27/12
    Overall
    "House of Suns"

    Who wants to kill all the Gentian shatterlings and why? This is what I would describe as proper scifi; strange aliens, lots of space travel and strange future technology. This was the second book by Alastair Reynolds that I listened to (I can also recommend Terminal World). Wonderfully read by John Lee. A great listen.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Patrick
    MORPETH, United Kingdom
    3/17/12
    Overall
    "Way to go !"

    I simply don't believe it ! I am in awe and an unrepentant fan, the scope of his imagination, the characters, in this case a love story spanning time and space, a great yarn that spins its way across millions of years and takes as read sci-fi staples, held me rapt and delighted.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • paul
    2/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A good read"

    Decent plot. Good characterisation. A worthwhile read if you like epic space adventures and layered plots and lots of characters.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Peter
    Hertfordshire
    1/30/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Exceptional!!!"

    Depth of the story, boldness of imagination, well rendered emotions and richness of characters - all creating an enchanted iniversum you yearn to come back to!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mr
    Cranfiled, United Kingdom
    7/12/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyable but not outstanding"
    What made the experience of listening to House of Suns the most enjoyable?

    I listend to this book and enjoyed going back to it each day, never feeling I wanted to give up. The story was entertainging and I would recomend it, however it does not stnd out to me as outstanding - just a good book work listening to.


    What other book might you compare House of Suns to, and why?

    None


    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    I liked the acent of this narator


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Nor really


    Any additional comments?

    I m currently listen to "Revalation space" which is a bit of a slog in comparision, however I am persisting with it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Cenydd
    7/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Confusing at first, but keep with it"
    What made the experience of listening to House of Suns the most enjoyable?

    I say confusing because the story has two main characters, and the nearrative keeps swapping between them. However once you get used to this it keep you on your toes wanting to know what the other character is thinking at this point. Add to that an excellent main storyline with some cracking sub plots, and John Lee's excellent narration and you really do want a sequel to know what happens next!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The best part of this story is that the science behind it is well thought out, Light speed is still a barrier in this future, but there are many ways to beat the years it takes to travel anywhere. Black hole generators for power and gravity just as we are currently learning to make micro black holes, and excellent extrapolation from now to then.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • AndyMackenzie
    6/26/10
    Overall
    "house of sons"

    Another good book by the author. lots of good characters and plot. John Lee brings out the best of the book in his narration.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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