It's the 21st century, and global warming is here to stay, so forget the way your country used to look. And get used to the free market, too – the companies possess all the best hardware, and they're calling the shots now. In a world like this, a man open to any offers can make out just fine.
A man like Greg Mandel for instance, who's psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensory equipment, carrying state-of-the-art weaponry – and late of the English Army's Mindstar Battalion. As the cartels battle for control of a revolutionary new power source, and corporate greed outstrips national security, tension is mounting to boiling point – and Greg Mandel is about to face the ultimate test.
©2011 Peter Hamilton (P)2011 Audible Ltd
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Peter Hamilton's first trilogy already displays the vivid descriptive writing and complex character development that are hallmarks of his later, more ambitious work. You won't find a better example of the mystery-meets-science-fiction hybrid, and every major character is post-human yet remains profoundly human at his or her core. Fascinating read, great suspense, satisfying resolution.
I'm a Hard SF & Space Opera-loving, alien android from the future. I bring gifts of SciFi eBooks & accessories for your leader's Kindle. Take me to him/her/it.
The key to my enjoying this PFH novel was to disassociate everything I’d previously read by the author in the Commonwealth Saga series. Here there are no alien threats or exotic stellar locations to explore. This story takes place in a far less optimistic, multi-point dystopian future where twin environmental and political disasters have stratified the class differences in society. The gritty tone is exemplified in the protagonist, psychic freelance mercenary Greg Mandel, a two-dimensional tough guy who uses the phrase “no messing” to end far too many sentences. The strength of this story is in the unraveling of a corporate mystery with turns and twists which explore most corners of Hamilton’s dark future. It’s a bit like watching a police procedural with psychic cops and some minor near-future SF tech peppered in. It compares quite similarly to Hamilton’s other, separate, story- Great Northern Road- which features a similar investigation but has the added element of off world alien settings and more examples of action scenes. Much of the crime and conspiracy here are strictly white-collar, and it was hard to identify with the Mandel character or even sympathize with him during the only truly high-stakes, dangerous moments he endures in the climactic ten percent of the story, no messing.
I don't think so. The book is great, and the narration is excellent, but it isn't the sort of book that makes you THINK. Several of the authors' other stories are worth listening to several times, because they're complex and layered, and you always hear something a little different the second and third times you listen.
This book isn't like that; it's satisfying as it is, but not complex enough to require a second listen.
The fact that this book was released in 1993, right around the time that cell phones first hit the retail market, and yet the technology in it feels very "now".
Being that I'm not British, I'm not sure how authentic any of his accents are, but to my Canadian ear, they SOUND perfect, and every character is distinguishable from the others.
I use my left foot to type my reviews.
I'm a huge fan of Peter F. Hamilton. I still think that he is one of the best writers for science fiction. He writes in grand and epic structure with vast amount of detail in his characters. When reading the first installment of "The Greg Mandel Trilogy", you have to tweak your brain from what you read before from this author. "Mindstar Rising" is not space opera, but more action pack and focus on one character that is a sci fi detective on a post disaster in England.
Please don't quote me, but I believe that the Mandel series was Hamilton's first. It will be interesting if he veer off more into space opera and somehow introduce us to Commonwealth as I keep listening to this trilogy.
When reading the this book, Hamilton is in one direction. It's very different than what I've read from him in the past.
I only gave "Mindstar Rising" 3 stars because it's like getting introduce to an new author. My mind still need to adjust that there is no space drama and sexy droids in this universe. I'm sure that more stars will be added in the following books as I see Hamilton in a different light.
Just a lot of action in this one.
I made it through all of Pandoras Star and the sequels. The thickness of the prose was daunting in those books, but the universe created was fascinating.
This book has the same dialogue-heavy blandness with no story or characters. I listened for 8 hours and gave up.
A mail carrier on a rural island somewhere in the US; good books make me stop the "tape" at every door delivery & package hop out.
If the story was faster moving and better paced. This book seemed to drag on. While I understand that the book is suppose to be a mystery, There were several sections that were not very clear and concise. This led to certain sections that were hard to follow.
No While I have a feeling I will not be continuing the series. I love the scifi genre and I will continue to listen/read novels in this area. I will also read other books from Peter F. Hamilton.
I liked the voices in this book, I found none of them to be annoy or hard to listen to. Also all of the voices were unique enough to tell who was who.
My favorite characters were any of the characters that are stored/interfaced in a computer. There are several moments where people who use an AI/computer to speak and interact. In several of these scenes there are sections where the computer interface "glitches" This leads to erratic dialogue from the characters. This was amazing to listen to. It must have been so hard for the reader to pull that off. Toby Longworth did a great job reading!
I would not cut any characters personally, All of the characters played a role in the story and moved the plot forward all be it slowly.
I really wanted to like this book, I love Sci-Fi it is fun, techie, and can be full of adventure. This book has a great premise, it blends Sci-Fi and detective work and it does so OK-ish. I would have preferred a little more action in this novel. I did not like the anti-corporate/business and environmental spin. That drove me nuts. I hear enough about climate change and global warming crap in the news today, I don't like to hear it in my science fiction novels. I also did not like the several gratuitous sex scenes in the novel, it did not further the plot and it just added to the dragging on of novel.
All in all I would say the idea of the novel and the series is a great idea but it is poorly executed.
Bad to good
Toby's English accent makes for perfect setting of this English story
This book starts with a couple of chapters like a bad soap opera but after that it switches to a very good thriller. The book reminded me of British sci fi of times past. It is an early work of the author so you can see the characters do not have the depth of his later works but as a thriller with neat plot it works.
I would listen to this book again. The story was a little slow to start, but it captured me in the end. Towards the end I did't want to stop listening.
The story line about the gland enhanced main character. The story starts slow but becomes a murder mystery that draws you in.
Like Isaac Asimov Peter weaved a mystery and SifFi. Great story!
Perfect reader with enough voice inflections to sort out the charterers.
One must ignore the focus on man causing global warming crap unless you are a global warming pin head
Finally, a Peter F. Hamilton audiobook that I can follow without taking copious notes.
I love a good, meaty sci-fi series, like Dune, Simmon's Hyperion, and got all the Peter F Hamilton Commonwealth series on audiobook, but honestly I didn't like them. They were too disjointed, and too many characters involved. One of his Commonwealth trilogies was like sitting down and reading about 5 separate _unrelated_ novels concurrently, and then 50 hours/1000 pages in, these seemingly unconnected stories would "sort of" link up. But by that time, you couldn't remember who they were at the beginning. So the second trilogy I listened to I started taking notes when I was listening (WTF?) on who each person was, which I'd update as I went along. It was better but too much work.
Peter F Hamilton trilogies are honestly the best books for showing the limitations of audiobooks. I wish that the actual audiobooks had a notes page, where you could click to read synopsis up to where you are, or even a character list. In an audiobook, you can't just like a paper book flip back looking for words/paragraphs.
But I digress. When I picked up the Greg Mandel ones and started listening, I was more than a bit surprised, and very happy with it. The cast of characters was manageable, and the characters really well rounded and felt real. It wasn't like a commonwealth series book were you'd be reading the story from some persons point of view, and wondering what it had to do with anything. It is great also to have a sci-fi crime novel, with a lot of conspiracy, action, and intrigue.
Toby Longworth does a real nice job of narration. He's probably one of the main reasons I've stuck with the series.
And on the series as a whole, I really enjoyed the feel of the universe. in short, a damaged earth, where it is rebuilding slowly, with some really good corporate people actually thinking of the world rather than themselves. You hear the constant doom and gloom on global warming, and this story I felt had a nice background non-apocalyptic vision of what the world could be like after.
Given was written in the early 90s, the setting is eerily apt and poignant right now. Near future sci-fi, elements of cyberpunk, corporate scandal and detective story to boot and Toby Longworth's performance (because that's what it is) is first class. Highly recommended!
"Sixth Star for Toby Longworth."
I have had a print edition of this book since the late nineties. It is one of those books we all have that are the equivalent of comfort eating for the mind. I must admit I was sceptical about an audio edition as I had some definite ( or so I thought ) ideas as to how the characters sounded. These thoughts were blown away by Toby's performance. It is like listening to an ensemble reading but from one man. This should be a recording that they give to all budding readers and say .... Like That One Please.
"Good book, excellent narration"
Hamilton is always good value and the narration from Toby Longworth was top-notch and has prompted me to look for other books he has narrated.
An early Peter Hamilton novel which lacks his later polish but enjoyable never the less. Toby Longworth's excellent narration was worth an extra star.
"Intelligent, well crafted and absorbing spaceopera"
I listen to audio books on long car journeys - if they are any good then the journey appears to take no time at all. Listening to this, the first of the Mindstar trilogy, caused me to enter a time-space vortex in which I was transported nearly 200 K without any sensation of movement, time or other reality. My esper sense clearly helped me to drive while the gland secretions enabled me to do so safely - either that or the other road users just gave me a wide berth. I cannot believe this was narrated by one person; awesome is the only real reaction. I particularly liked the evocation of one of the evil characters who sounded remarkably like a former UK prime minister!!! I think you either love sci-fi or just don't get it. If you love it - you will definitely get this. My feeling about what makes a really good audio book (or any book come to that) is - are the characters believable, do you care about the characters and what is/will happen to them, is the plot immersive and does it make you want to guess? I would answer yes to all those points and just say that the creation of England post global-warming is intelligent and very well articulated. I loved the idea of Peterborough becoming a major sea port and a kool place to live - now that really is science fantasy.
"Brilliant Sci Fi Story & Setting"
This is an excellent read if you are into "not too distant future" sci fi. Present day politics, companies etc, but with twists. The story doesn't hold you by the hand, from the get go it used terms (mimox crystals etc) I wasn't sure on, I thought had I missed something from another one of Peter Hamiltons books. But things are revealed bit by bit and I have to say, I rather liked it like that. Not explaining everything as soon as it appears, the story lets you piece this world together yourself, but does expand on it later. A great story, excellent world and Greg Mandel is now number 3 in my list of top main characters, after Jack Reacher (Lee Child) and John Clarke (Tom Clancy). I am definitely getting the second and third parts of the trilogy, and will probably get the rest of Peter Hamiltons books, on the back of this great story.
"Good PFH story"
Well I did enjoy this and am going to listen to the rest of the trilogy. It is early work and quite amusing. By setting it in the near future - the future we are now in - he is very close to reality in some respects and miles away in others. His references to obsolete trade names for example is amusing but irritating. If we write a book now about 5 years in the future will we talk about Apple i products? I am sure there will be a icommunicator watch for example..... but do enjoy guys!
"Didn't think I would like this"
After listening to the void trilogy I was looking for something else from Peter Hamilton but these didn't appeal to me, I think the near future bit and name put me off. However when I decided to give this a go I was hooked. I still prefer the distant future novels but this was very enjoyable and have since purchased the remaining 2 books. Would definitely recommend no messing.
"buy the follow on books"
bought this as a reduced price audio book liking sci-fi detective/thriller type books, the narrator is absolutely brilliant with a great range of voices and great character portrayal the pace of the story is easy and i found myself stopping what i was doing to listen as this book totally absorbed me, I have bought books 2 and 3 and have enjoyed the whole series. this is the first time I have felt compelled to write a review
"Morse with PSI - and more mature"
After enjoying my first Peter F Hamilton book - Great North Road, i thought i would try some more out.
This book reminded me of a futuristic version of Morse or Lewis - a detective working out whodunit - with extra PSI ability. This is not a bad thing as i really enjoyed those series. This changes a little part way through the book and turns into a hunter/prey piece.
OK, some of the techno babble was a little off putting, and a couple of the scenes were a little slow. Some characters were a bit weak/one dimensional.
The hardest part for me was the landscape (both physical and political). As i live in the UK, i knew a lot of the places, but of course it all sounded different.
The narrator (Toby Longworth) did a great job of portraying the main players in the book.
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