AD 3580. The Intersolar Commonwealth has spread through the galaxy to over a thousand star systems. It is a culture of rich diversity with a place for everyone. Even death itself has been overcome. But at the centre of the Commonwealth is a massive black hole. This Void is not a natural artefact. Inside there is a strange universe where the laws of physics are very different to those we know. It is slowly consuming the other stars of the galactic core - one day it will devour the entire galaxy.
Inigo, a human, has started to dream of a wonderful existence in the Void. He has a following of millions of believers and they now clamour to make a pilgrimage into the Void to live the life they have been shown. Other starfaring species fear their migration will cause the Void to expand again. They are prepared to stop them no matter what the cost.
And so the pilgrimage begins....
©2008 Peter F. Hamilton; (P)2008 Macmillan Digital Audio
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"Captured my imagination"
This was a story that really stuck with me, in fact I listened to it about a year ago and I still regularly think of it. Although Longworth doesn't do the following two books in the series and John Lee does leave a lasting impression, he is a good performer here and I do like his voice.
The story is original, varied, imaginative and although not highbrow sci-fi, thoroughly enjoyable and a pleasure to be immersed in.
I did listen to this before the Commonwealth Saga, where several of the characters are first introduced. Not a major problem at all, as it didn't affect my understanding, but on reflection, I would have benefitted from Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained being heard first.
"What a book!"
Dreamy intricate and epic
This was a really excellent reading and I think it was a big part of the reason I fell in love with this book.
I was really blown away with this book at first I was not sure if I even liked it and I was I unsure if I wanted to stick with it, but by the end, I was totally hooked I will defiantly be buying the second one. This book is dated but that really makes no difference to this totaly engrossing story.
"Yet another great trilogy !"
Exciting, descriptive and in grossing.
Which one to choose ! I think for me it would be Inigo the main character. He has a certain type of innocence, his feeling of awkwardness around other people.
The accents of the many characters. And the many characters that are easy to get to know.
Inigo and his feelings of awkwardness in normal clothes rather than his space suit that gives him familiarity and comfort.
Another brilliant trilogy, I can't wait to listen to the next !
"What an epic and it's only pt1"
Starts off with lots of individual stories to introduce characters, and there are quite na few significant characters to remember, then towards the end they start to collide together as the pace hots up. Brilliant plot and characters, plus thought provoking technology. Then it ends, AARGH where is part 2, no wifi, have to wait till I get home.
Toby Longworth's narration is one of the best, very clear, great timbre. Great range of accents that match the characters well. Unfortunately this is not carried through to pt2 & 3 as John Lee takes over. JL is quite good, but it is a bit of a shock when Oscar changes from a deep rich Afro-Caribbean accent to a fairly normal English accent.
Arraminta for taking responsibility for her life and getting on with it with a gusto. Adeard, all that power and stays reasonably uncorrupted and Mr Bovy, life as a multiple, that's different.
This is not a comedy, but there are a few laughs, not all are obvious.
Anybody else notice the couple of nods to HGTTG?
"Middle of 5 books narrated by different person...."
Middle of 5 novels.
Inappropriate for Toby Longworth to provide totally different character voices to the other 4 novels in the series.
Read it 3 times now it is so entertaining.
You have to find the original reading of this book by John Lee to get any consistency with the other 4 novels. I had to stop listening to Toby Longworth, after listening to John Lee's voices for the characters for the last 60 hours it made no sense for them to have totally different voices. Fortunately, John Lee returns for the final 2 novels.
"Loved the book. For me disappointing narration"
After listening to (and loving) Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained I was looking forward to the story continuing.
I haven't been disappointed at all by the story but I was very disappointed by Toby Longworth's narration. That's actually slightly unfair, I enjoyed his narration of the story but not of the characters. It doesn't help that the I'd just spent nearly 80 hours listening to John Lee voice many of the same characters however I found Longworth's style to be more fitting to fantasy rather than Sci Fi. I found his portrayal of the male characters to either make them seem overly camp, overly dumb or overly grandiose. The female characters were ok but not to my tastes.
I was very pleased to see that Lee returns to voice the following two books. I do not regret buying this book however I would have definitely preferred the same narrator throughout the whole series.
"This book and series is aweful"
I don't know what it is about certain modern science fiction authors that makes them think that they can get away with writing books with no plot, no character development, no scene and not investing the reader into the story. Why should I care?
I don't know why this style of writing is becoming popular, perhaps it makes it easier to transform the book into a movie if you simply have stuff happening all the time. You'd think that because things are happening all the time it will be dramatic and exciting but its not, its boring, there's no sense of tension except you praying that the characters will be killed off and something more interesting than what you are listening to will occur.
Its been a while that I read a science fiction book that is actually SCIENCE fiction. Its not good enough to set a book in the future and have advanced tech and call the book science fiction. There has to be some SCIENCE! How does this contraption work, what does it feel like to use it? There is enough science around now that you can have a good go at describing how a not yet possible device might work. Even if you get it wrong part of the fun of SCIENCE fiction is thinking about and discussing with friends whether such a device is possible. But since none of the devices are described in any detail you rob the reader/listener of that valuable imagination or thought process. This also doesn't inspire a young kid to think about science which should be a responsibility of a decent SCIENCE fiction author. What the author does is lazy, they will mention a device X that does Y and no description barely even mentioning what it might look like (and often not at all), why bother if the film producer can do all that for you?
You're in a ship, what does the ship look like? What does it feel like to be there, walk around in it, sit in the pilot's chair fly the ship? - you know, descriptive writing that makes people feel something about your universe. If your universe is destroyed why should I care? You haven't described it to me or made me feel anything for it.
The same thing extends to the characters, there is little or no character development, no development of the motivations behind what the characters do, I don't feel anything for the characters, they could all perish and why should I care?
There also doesn't seem to be a plot to this book, things just simply happen willy-nilly till you get to the end of the book and think so what? There doesn't seem to be any discipline in how this book is written. Jamming ideas, dialogue and events onto pages doesn't make a book.
The book also suffers from a dissociative disorder and I have listened to all the books in this series to the end and it feels like two worlds just jammed together with a poor sticking plaster, simply terrible.
I blame the publishers.
"Not sure about the narrator!"
I have been listening to Peter F Hamilton's books and most of these stories are the basic tale of good -v- evil. The worlds that Peter Hamilton has created using a mixture of science fact and science fiction to believable.
So far they have been narrated by John Lee and I have got used to his interpretations of the characters. It is a pity that Toby Longworth didn't listen to the previous audio books to keep some sort of continuity. The ones that jarred where Paula and Oscar.
Otherwise, he has a good voice.
If you listen to it while doing other things, you may have to replay as some of the story has facts that are absolutely essential.
The joy of PFH's books are the many characters and you have to keep your wits about you to know where you are. The characters are all believable. I loved the relationship between Hakim and Eddiard and Eddiard and his fellow constables.
Yes as in come cases the story moved so fast you had to listen quite hard but that is the style of the story.
When Eddiard's village was ransacked by the bandits.
"Peter F Hamilton does it again"
I am a big fan of Peter F Hamilton and The Void Trilogy does not disappoint. A big universe with characters that you feel you know.
"You may need to persevere with this one"
I am not a scifi fan, but this sounded interesting. After listening to the first half hour I fell asleep. On many, many consecutive nights the same thing happened until I decided that, as it had such a soporific effect, it was only worth bothering with when I couldn't sleep. However, as time went on I started to get really interested and it actually started to keep me awake wanting to know what was going to happen next. So much so, that I had to go back to the beginning to re-listen to all the bits I had slept through! I am now giving the second book in this series serious consideration. :-)
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