Tom Dreyfus is a Prefect, a law enforcement officer with the Panoply. His beat is the multifaceted utopian society of the Glitter Band, that vast swirl of space habitats orbiting the planet Yellowstone, the teeming hub of a human interstellar empire spanning many worlds. His current case: investigating a murderous attack against one of the habitats that left 900 people dead, a crime that appalls even a hardened cop like Dreyfus. But then his investigation uncovers something far more serious than mass slaughter---a covert plot by an enigmatic entity who seeks nothing less than total control of the Glitter Band. Before long, the Panoply detectives are fighting against something worse than tyranny, in a struggle that will lead to more devastation and more death. And Dreyfus will discover that to save what is precious, you may have to destroy it.
©2008 Alastair Reynolds (P)2011 Tantor
"A fascinating hybrid of space opera, police procedural and character study.... This is solid British SF adventure, evoking echoes of le Carre and Sayers with a liberal dash of Doctor Who." (Publishers Weekly)
I have listened to many of Alastair Reynolds books on Audible, he has created a highly detailed and intriguing universe containing interesting characters and places. The life breath of this universe is the continuity from story to story, that thread of recognition contain in names and places from previous stories, as you listen to each new story. This is just one small aspect of why I look forward to each new installment.
The character of Field Prefect Dryfus as the hard driving cop with the moral imperative to protect the citizens of the Glitter band from the impending collision of a twisted destiny forge by the leftover remnant of an experiment gone badly, is one of Reynolds best.
The performance of each story by John Lee is enthralling, each character uniquely endowed with personality through the force of his vocal nuances.
Dune. Paul Atreides and the fight protect and free that planet.
To many to pick just one!
Just the feeling of awe in this expanding universe.
I was thoroughly enraptured by this story. It's a good old-fashioned detective story with a sci-fi twist. The narration was wonderful, giving the characters their own life.
Narrator John Lee is remarkable: He can suck the life out of any good story. Lee has a deep voice and a fine accent, but those cannot make up for his random inflections, uneven reading style, and complete lack of voice characterization.
I would suggest buying the print copy of this book. Avoid John Lee's narration at all costs.
I think it was an excellent story. It started a bit slow though, but it gradually picked up. It did take a bit to get used the accent of the narrator, but it still was a nice listen.
When Jane gets decapitated in order to remove the Scarab. And when Dryfuss meets the Clockmaker.
I'm going to have to say Gafney. He made me see his sneers without ever seeing him. Second is Sparva.
I only have a handful of Sci-Fi to rank it with and I would put this at about the mid point... if I could ignore the narration, I could give it better marks.
The narration was the sticking point for me on this audiobook. Lee gives very little life to most of the characters and his accent lends itself to about two-three variations. His pauses between between words became predictable and were kept between characters. It really became annoying.
Annoyance at times... but again, due to the narration. Not sure why people enjoy Lee so much. But I have not heard any of his other work... maybe it is just me.
The Prefect is a great sci-fi story. The tech is really inventive. The plot is unique. Some of the character interaction is a little bit unbelievable and at times brings what should be a climatic pace down to a crawl. I attribute this partly to the narration.
But which Prefect?
Maybe Dune, due to the Plans within Plans aspect of the plot. However, it's been a very long time since I read that so the comparison is probably imperfect.
The conversation with the Clockmaker.
Nothing's as simple as it seems.
For followers of the Revelation Space series, this book gives some cultural background on the Glitter Band and the Demarchists in general.
What can I say. Great story, great characters, great writer.What more could you want?Thanks Alastair. Your writing has hooked my 12 year old on sci fi. Nurds rule!
Elder Statesman Doctor
Only somewhat. There were a lot of good parts but there was also some significant weakness in some of the structure. Specifically there were multiple times when things went wrong for the 'good guys' in unrealistic ways. For example, a doctor going in to see a dangerous criminal patient with no guards to back him up, or when people are taken hostage by someone, but apparently the entire police authority does not have any automatic processes that would notice or detect this is happening in a much more technologically advanced society than ours. Or the lack of ability in a police operating theater for a surgeon to just speak up and immediately request security to rush to where he is for protection or to apprehend the criminal!
Multiple moments of anxiety and suspense.
Excellent voice control, captures differences in voice for different characters well.
Audible screwed up the placement of this as part of a series. They have it listed as #5 in the series. It SHOULD BE # 1, or listed as a prequel, as all the action in this occurs Before the action in Volumes 1 through 4 !
I have enjoyed all but one of Alastair Reynolds' books (Absolution Gap being the one exception). If you have liked any of his other books, you will enjoy this one, too. You almost always feel you're there in his stories, this is no exception -- you imagine you are on this not so alien world, along for the adventure.
John Lee does an excellent job, as always. One of my favorite narrators.
The concept of this book was great. The narrator was good as well.
I found the characters a bit simple ...... The lead character was overly right all the time ... it got a bit annoying ..... The ending was abrupt that left me asking myself what just happened..... it ended so quickly ...
Even with my negative comments i did enjoy the book .. I guess I enjoyed it enough that I wanted it to be just that much better
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