A thousand years in the future, mankind's influence expands into the universe.
Alastair Reynolds epic vision of our journey into deep space will redefine Space Opera. Mankind is making its way out into the universe on massive generation ships.
The new novel from Alastair Reynolds is one for fans of Peter F. Hamilton and Iain M. Banks.
©2013 Alastair Reynolds (P)2013 Orion Publishing Group
Lover of sci-fi and the occasional horror story. Philosophical inclinations. English is my second language.
While I thought Blue Remembered Earth (the first of the Poseidon's Children series) only average, with On The Steel Breeze Reynolds returns to the levels of mastery I associate with many of his other books. Again, the scope is enormous, entailing the nature of politics, emotions, intergenerational ties, time, artificial intelligence, morality and God... And amazingly, he succeeeds in weaving these threads into a believable tightly knit whole.
I am a fan of space opera, and so it should come as no surprise I find Reynolds so marvelous. Still, I think this book and the upcoming series deserves a much broader audience.
There are some scenes in the book that should have particular interest for debates on morality and God, where the knowledge of being surveilled by powerful entities impacts (or not, depending on your interpretation) deeply moral decisions. Would love to hear them debated.
The elephants are an interesting theme throughout the book, but I don't think Reynolds has used them as fully in the narrative as their repeated mentioning might make sensical. I suspect they will make their presence more known in future installments of the series.
An earlier reviewer remarks that the books feels unfinished, perhaps as an outcome of the $1m contract Reynolds has with his publisher for the series. I am sure the book could be better (as could any book) and it might be it does not reach the full heights of some books in the Revelation Space series. Still, Reynolds manages to push all of the right buttons with me, which means I would not be able to give the book less than a full score. I cannot imagine Reynolds-fans will be disappointed.
Adjoa Andoh does a really good job giving voice to the different characters and the tense emotions that sometimes grip them. Admittedly, I have always felt Reynolds books are better in audio than on paper, perhaps partly thanks to the narrators.
The gigantic scope of the story. Alastair Reynolds has a knack for such things and he proves himself again with this one. King of Space Opera he has been called and I don't disagree.
I compare this book with mr Reynolds previous books of course but also with many books written by of Peter F Hamilton, who is also among my favourite writers.
Yes. Adjoa Andoh does a great performance when telling this story. The african accents fits wonderfully with the characters in the story and when needed, she shifts to a more neutral accent. Very good interpretation of the personalities and it's quite easy to pinpoint who is talking even if you are distracted from listening for a minute.
When Arachne talks however, is really hard to endure.... but maybe that is intentional.
No. I always fall asleep when listening too long.
Despite being quite good SF this could have been so much more. This book feels rushed, which I suspect comes from a demand for delivery. Sad if literature goes the same way as almost everything else. Maybe that could be a plot/trope in a future story?
I feel that this book is like a sketch that Picasso made, many good things just hinted at. Quite a few great events are just summarised in the story, and a rather good amount of standard clichés are used when we are let into the experiences of the main characters.
Mr Reynolds, I urge you: Lean back and write a real masterpiece. I can wait for it ten years or more!
I cannot finish this audio book. I find the narrator difficult to understand.
Kobna Holdbrook Smith did a great job on the last one.
This is a kindle book for me it seems.
The story was interesting, with the twists typical of the author. The narration was excellent, with a wide variety of accents and voices.
It should be noted that this is the second part of 'the Poseidon's Children trilogy, following his 2012 novel Blue Remembered Earth.
"Obvious shortage of telescopes"
Why oh why is Ocular the only telescope in the known universe that can see the Pinecones ?
first book i've listened to with a female narrator. Helps that almost all the characters are women.. did initially have a few problems differentiating between the sexes.
almost no emphasis on the alien elements within the book, to much on squabbling humans.
"The least of his work"
This latest story by Alastair Reynolds disappointed this reader. The narration was proficient although some of the accents jarred.
I hope Alastair will get back on track for the next story. More science and speculation please. I can do without the continuing saga of the Akinya dynasty if the characters are as uninteresting as the identical triplets in this story.
This is the first narration by Ms Andoh I have heard. She is clearly talented.
The title of the story is great. It comes from a line in Crazy Diamond from Pink Floyd's album, Wish You Were Here.
"At a Snail'sPace"
I'm a big fan of Alastair Reynolds' Revelation Space series, and also enjoyed some of his other, one-off stories, but this novel is a dreary, laborious and overlong attempt to create an Epic Tale, which falls far short of the mark. Unfortunately, the narrator makes it even worse by attempting to invigorate the characters with heavily overdone regional accents or unusual vocal styles which are extremely irritating and intrusive. For me, good narrators, like good actors, underplay or understate rather than draw lots of attention to themselves. Almost gave up halfway through, but stuck doggedly to the task of finishing this wearisome plodder.
Blue Remembered Earth was a bit different and took me a while to get used to it. But once I did I thought it was fantastic. I have been waiting for this follow up and I'm not disappointed. If you enjoyed Blue Remembered Earth you'll enjoy this, it's more of the same but to my mind better. Very well read and a great story.
"Elephants in Space!"
In this sequel to Blue Remembered Earth the progeny of the Akinya line attempt a 200 year journey beyond our solar system to an earth-like planet called Crucible, where an ancient alien mystery awaits them. Reynolds takes us from the main setting of the holoships, a caravan of hollowed out asteroids hurtling through space, back to earth and beyond to Mars and Jupiter. Reynolds delves more into the theme of artificial intelligence that was touched upon in the first novel, whilst painting us a grand picture of this world with some amazing imagery. Unfortunately, the story moves along in a stop-start motion, with far too much internal politicking between the holoships. The "African Renaissance" setting, which I really enjoyed in Blue Remembered Earth, is gone and all that is left of Africa are the augmented Elephants and the remains of the Akinya Family. Though admittedly, augmented elephants in space are pretty cool!
"Chillin' on The Steel Breeze"
There's a place for slow, epic and thoughtful science fiction, and Alistair Reynolds' Poseidon's Children series is a wonderful example. The universe he's creating is expanding with each chapter and book, and he's filling it with characters that you slowly get to know and care about as they deal with the never ending crises that he throws in their paths. It helps that it's extremely well narrated as the African-ness of the family at the heart of the story really comes across strongly and this adds a very interesting feel to the whole novel. Chilled but intelligent stuff - recommended!
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