A human diplomat creates an interstellar incident when he kills an alien diplomat in a most unusual way. To avoid war, Earth's government must find an equally unusual object: A type of sheep ("The Android's Dream"), used in the alien race's coronation ceremony.
To find the sheep, the government turns to Harry Creek, ex-cop, war hero and hacker extraordinaire, who with the help of Brian Javna, a childhood friend turned artificial intelligence, scours the earth looking for the rare creature. And they find it, in the unknowing form of Robin Baker, pet store owner, whose genes contain traces of the sheep DNA. But there are others with plans for the sheep as well: Mercenaries employed by the military. Adherents of a secret religion based on the writings of a 21st century science-fiction author. And alien races, eager to start a revolution on their home world and a war on Earth.
To keep our planet from being enslaved, Harry will have to pull off the greatest diplomatic coup in history, a grand gambit that will take him from the halls of power to the lava-strewn battlefields of alien worlds. There's only one chance to get it right, to save the life of Robin Baker - and to protect the future of humanity.
©2006 John Scalzi (P)2010 Audible, Inc.
"With plenty of alien gore to satisfy fans of military SF and inventive jabs at pretend patriotism and self-serving civil service, Scalzi delivers an effervescent but intelligent romp." (Publishers Weekly)
In great parts unique, original and funny yet some plot lines were too over-the-top for my taste.
The biggest "letdown" for me was that the prose doesn't flow as smoothly as in "Agent To The Stars," my favourite from this author. Still, a highly recommendable work for sci-fi fans looking for something entertaining.
Narration is excellent!
Well, this might not be considered a ground breaking work of literature, but it was a heck of a lot of fun to listen to.
Wil Wheaton did a surprisingly good job in narrating this book and I found myself laughing out loud at several places, which was awkward being that I was in a public place listening on my mp3 player with earbuds. I can understand why people would look at me as if I was ready for a padded room, when a healthy dose of latte foam erupted from my nose in the middle of starbucks for no apparent reason. Damn you, John and Wil!!!!
Love my family...along with guitars, road bikes, cameras, and a good book!
Ok, I don't give out 5's across the board very easily. I mean, I'm not the most stingy 5-er out there, but it does take a pretty good experience to get straight 5's out of me. This book earned every one of them!
I had no idea what to expect with this book. It was a Daily Deal, and that is the only reason that I bought it. It had a fairly intriguing teaser, and so I though I would take a chance on it. It sat in my library for quite some time, and I finally decided to give it a whirl. I could not be more surprised and pleased.
This book goes to show that, if the writing is good, any good vs. evil story can be a masterpiece... regardless of how silly and outlandish the actual players and setting of the story are! The plot line of this book is ridiculous. It has a bit of sci-fi, and a bit of adventure, but for me it all comes back to simply amazing writing. The characters are so great, and their interaction is so believable and engrossing. I never felt as if the author was pushing too hard, or stretching too far. I really enjoyed this book.
The narrator could not have been better, either. Perfect pacing, perfect intonation, and tempo. All around a fantastic experience!
System and software engineer from the UK now living and working in Silicon Valley.
This is an immediately engaging story and it gets more interesting as it goes along. Some of the tech is already dated, but that almost seems to have been a choice instead of an accident and it did not reduce my pleasure in the story. He avoids the major mistake of attempting to explain technologies, which is very easy for SF authors to fall in to. The characters are engaging and distinct, as usual. There's a lot of imagination shown in various aspects of the story. I don't want to spoil it so I will leave it at that.
My other half and her friends are writers, we listened to this as we drove around Scotland together. If there had been significant mistakes it would have been torn to pieces, but the writers kept quiet and enjoyed the story.
In some ways the story line is a common one, but this is a good example of the type.
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
This is not Agent to The Stars or Fuzzy Nation. It is not terrible, but if you are thinking you are going to get as funny or as good as the above mentioned then, sorry No.
In comparing Scalzi to Scalzi, I was a bit disappointed. At times I forget I was listening to Scalzi and thought I was Listening to Nora Roberts. This really gets bogged down in the details. The plot is fairly complicated and not in a good way. Warning to all, chapter six has a high Ick factor. I am talking sex with animals.
I did like Robin, she was a funny character. I liked the bowling shoes. I also liked the satire about L. Ron Hubbard.
Wil Wheaton was good, although at the beginning of the book he sounded a little tired. He might have been arguing with Sheldon all night. Will WHHHeeedon!
I love to read books; and now just recently I've discovered that audio books are very cool!! I'm also an author. You can find the SciFi book "The Curse of Europa" here on Audible or on Amazon.
This wasn't exactly up my alley, I'll admit. A crazy beginning with farting to communicate - come on now! Needing a certain kind of sheep for a ceremony?? A lot of it was a bit over the top, but I guess that's what a lot of people liked about it too. Once I willed myself to just go-with-it, it did keep my interest and was well told. Although to be 100% honest, I thought it was going to be about androids, given the name and the android on the cover. It is not - silly me!
Sometimes the author would mention something about a character (and then take 5 - 10 minutes filling in a silly back story that wasn't always necessary - imho.) To me that was just a bunch of unnecessary detail.
But overall, wow, it ended up being an elaborate and clever story as long as you aren't looking for realistic. The ending is mind blowing (in all the detailed events that fall into place) and Kudos to Scalzi for keeping it all straight. While it wasn't exactly "up my alley" I have to admit it was some good story telling and thus give it 4 stars.
Will Wheaten did a great job narrating - 5 stars!!
Molecular biologist. Musician. Lover of science. Lover of music. Dreamer of magic. Thinker of thoughts. ||| "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" - Arthur C. Clarke ||| As a scientist, science fiction and fantasy inspire me to push the line of discovery forward, beyond conventional imagination, beyond conventional wisdom.
Definitely. This book hits the full spectrum. If you have even the slightest interest in scifi, religious studies, philosophy, action films, extraterrestrial relations, law, biotechnology, animal science, computer science, politics, or fun you will find something to love in this book.
I got used to Wheaton's reading style in Agent to the Stars, where I came to appreciate his ability to convey the emotional state and personality of a character, even alien characters, with great precision. The voices he gives to the individual extra terrestrials are absolutely spot on.
The way Scalzi is able to take ostensibly parallel plot lines and weave them into the intricate climaxes (yes, I would say this book has a few) present in this book gave me goosebumps on a few occasions. I would find myself with a huge smile realizing at specific moments, "My, how clever!"
I'm actually a day old tart, filled with maple custard. Perhaps, this reads as a rational introduction to others, and you are deliberately misreading it, because, come on, maple custard.
I loved Blade Runner, and Do Android's Dream of Electric Sheep, so I was pretty excited to hear this novel, and it didn't disappoint. It wasn't my favorite Scalzi, but it was pretty original. The story starts out vulgar, and I was regretting my purchase with all the flatulence, arterial congestion, and bursting things. Frankly, it may turn you green, until the meat of the story really starts.
Although I could see where certain parts of the story would go, the girl was a creative and viable surprise. Not his strongest story, he uses a few deus ex machinas, but Scalzi is a master of science fiction, and I haven't been disappointed with his work yet. His characters are fun and adaptable. The story keeps a good pace. The alien incarnation representing all of our negative characteristics from the obvious to the subtle, was well thought out. The aliens remain dynamic, yet have built their society around all of our major failings. The Nidu are like a crystal ball showing us what would happen if we let Wal-Mart fashion legal doctrine for the entire world.
Kea Giles (Asmus)
As usual, excellent narration by Wil Wheaton. Scalzi's writing and story on this one feels off to me, like its a collage of things from other books and most of it doesn't make much sense including the ending. If this were my first introduction to Scalzi's work, I would probably not pick up another.
This is a complex and fun tale with a series of strange twists. Scalzi is quickly becoming one of the rising stars of SciFi and there is a reason. Well worth a listen.
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