An innovator praised as one of the inventors of "the new space opera", Peter F. Hamilton has also been hailed as the heir of such golden-age giants as Heinlein and Asimov. His star-spanning sagas are distinguished by deft plotting, engaging characters, provocative explorations of science and society, and soaring imaginative reach. Now, in one of the most eagerly anticipated offerings of the year, Hamilton brings his acclaimed Void trilogy to a stunning close.
Exposed as the Second Dreamer, Araminta has become the target of a galaxywide search by government agent Paula Myo and the psychopath known as the Cat, along with others equally determined to prevent - or facilitate - the pilgrimage of the Living Dream cult into the heart of the Void. An indestructible microuniverse, the Void may contain paradise, as the cultists believe, but it is also a deadly threat. For the miraculous reality that exists inside its boundaries demands energy - energy drawn from everything outside those boundaries: from planets, stars, galaxies...from everything that lives.
Meanwhile, the parallel story of Edeard, the Waterwalker, as told through a series of addictive dreams communicated to the gaiasphere via Inigo, the First Dreamer, continues to unfold. But now the inspirational tale of this idealistic young man takes a darker and more troubling turn as he finds himself faced with powerful new enemies - and temptations more powerful still.
With time running out, a repentant Inigo must decide whether to release Edeard's final dream: a dream whose message is scarcely less dangerous than the pilgrimage promises to be. And Araminta must choose whether to run from her unwanted responsibilities or face them down, with no guarantee of success or survival. But all these choices may be for naught if the monomaniacal Ilanthe, leader of the breakaway Accelerator Faction, is able to enter the Void. For it is not paradise she seeks there, but dominion.
Into the Void? Listen to more in the Void Trilogy.
©2010 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2010 Tantor
"Epic, multi-stranded, full of wonders." (SFX)
I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.
The Void series takes a LOT of concentration; it has many threads, timelines, dreamlines, and characters (several with multiple instances). Some of the themes are so wild that they cross from science fiction to fantasy then to philosophy. The author writes very intelligently and many of the characters are interesting and well developed. I enjoyed some of the themes and some of the characters but it is just way too much for three novels. By the end of the series quite a lot of stuff had happened, but due to the abstract nature of some subthemes I found it difficult to really care. This is a talented writer but I really prefer a little less. Judas Unchained was complex, but Judas was simple minded compared to the Void.
Like so many stories, I felt like the ending here left you wanting more. The majority of this book I felt was very good, but the final few chapters seem to overly rush events and after the conclusion of the main story arc I do not think enough time was spend on what happens to the main characters after. This is especially true with Edeard. Given the events that bring him into the final act, I would expect there to have been more about what he plans for his life. Also I was not a fan of what was done with Gor in the closing chapter. Other than that, I think this is still a great listen and if you have made it this far in the series then you own it to yourself to experience the ending.
I know...I know...Pandora's Star, Judas Unchained, and then The Void Trilogy. That equals almost 150 hours of time. However, this is, by far, the best collection of deeply developed characters, interesting plot, and well-thought out technical explanations of far-in-the-future technology ever rolled together into one story. You won't regret listening to a minute of it. Actually, you'll be upset that the story is over. Peter Hamilton is the God of Science Fiction (if science fiction allows such a thing). My kids will listen to these books. John Lee is the God of Narrators, too. Doesn't get any better than this!
The book is definitely worth the time (especially if you've already heard the other books), but the plot seemed to be a bit wangled.
Throughout the first two books of this series, the Edeard story line (from inside the Void) seemed to overshadow the far more numerous threads related to events happening outside the Void. Edeard's life in Makkathran was just more interesting and the growth of his psychic powers kept things fresh as he pursued his quest to achieve fulfillment. As his story line progressed it also provided much needed context to explain why the human Living Dream movement was willing to put the entire galaxy at risk with their pilgrimage into the Void. Despite numerous factions and alien species willing to go "all in" to stop them, Living Dream was prepared to do anything for a chance to achieve fulfillment. Would their pilgrimage trigger a Void expansion phase so large that the galaxy was consumed? Would anyone be able to stop them before they got there? With the stage finally set Peter F. Hamilton answers those questions and more as he concludes the series and unveils the mystery of the Void once and for all.
I have to say that I finally got into the "outside the Void" story lines in this one and that made this the best book of the series. All of the main characters and threads converge on the Void for the big finale and it is not obvious how it is going to play out until the very end. So many questions from this complex story finally get answered: Will Living Dream achieve fulfillment? If fulfillment is so great why does Inigo, the founder of Living Dream, think it is a bad idea to pursue it? Is fulfillment the same as going post-physical? Can the nature of the Void be changed so that it doesn't pose a threat to the galaxy any longer? If not, will the Void expand? If it does, can the expansion be controlled in some way? There are so many possible ways the story could go that you are driven to get to the conclusion as quickly as possible just so it can finally all make sense.
When it is all said and done it becomes obvious that the mystery of the Void itself is the main character and everyone else's story is related in some way. Luckily things are explained in detail and wrapped up nicely so you need not worry about being left hanging. You also need not be concerned about having to read any other books first. Although this trilogy is part of the same literary universe as the Commonwealth Saga series it is completely stand alone and complete. John Lee narrates many of the books in this universe and does a great job with all of them so listening instead of reading is a great option. If you are in the mood for some sci-fi on an epic scale with some fantasy thrown in for good measure then give this series a go and you too can experience the mystery of the Void for yourself.
I am a 67 yo disabled Vet who lives in N. Texas. I was a medic in the Army during the Viet Nam war, got an MS in ecology and just retired.
First, I've disliked the narrator's reading style throughout the trilogy. John Lee's method of reading, to me at least can only be described as "funereal". His voice deflects downward at the end of each sentence, and indeed, at times, if feels as if it's at the end of each phrase, a style of reading that I immediately found extremely annoying. Still, through the first two books, and into the thrid, the story carried me along, despite the reader.
Until the very end... The story became so contrived it seemed that Mr. Hamilton just wanted to end it. For maybe the third time in my life I failed to complete a book. Between the annoying narrrator and the deteriorating story line, I just simply couldn't get through it. It's really too bad. The trilogy was great up to the end. I'm sure the narrator's style didn't bother others. But for me his "style" was very annoying. In the end, I could only give this volume a 3 rating, and that was based more on the greatness of the over all trilogy, than this book standing alone.
I have to say, Peter Hamilton's writing style is very immersive. My complaint however, after waiting months and months, is that the ending is just plain crap. With all three volumes I listened to 70+ hours of storytelling. The ending felt as though it were thrown together in a ramshackle fashion. It seemed as though the author was looking at the word count and realized he had to wrap things up rather too quickly. He threw in the ending as a magical farce to an otherwise fun and fulfilling story. Surely Hamilton could have done a better job putting the final touches on this story rather than ending it with the abrupt surprise solution that he did. I was very disappointed and felt that I wasted my 70 hours getting to the end.
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