©1996 Dan Simmons; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
Everything about this series Is perfect. wonderful ending, expansive futurism, sci-fi at its best. The narrator nails the performance with some of the widest range of expression I've heard. This may be my most favorite series I've read and I cannot recommend it enough.
Simmons' writing makes you feel like you are there, a silent observer witnessing true events. I feel that the best books convince me absolutely that what I'm reading is true instead of fiction and I had that feeling deeply throughout the series.
There is so much depth and intrigue within the philosophies explored that I feel I must re read the series soon. I cannot believe I considered myself a well read Sci-fi enthusiast before I got ahold of these books.
Just finished all 4 books in audible format. The narration is among the best I have encountered and t scales up excellently at 3x speed. Overall the 4 books span a great galactic empire replete with political, military and social upheaval. There is ample use of temporal paradox and a memorable cast of characters. The author interweaves a healthy mix of social commentary with far future demographic crisis which both serves as a reminder of mortal humanity while also suggesting risks and opportunities for the evolution of our species. There is a good reason Simmons' masterpiece is often listed next to Dune as among the best sci fi epics of all time. It did not disappoint! Thank you Mr Simmons!
Okay, I loved the entire series. It's over, but now that it's over, I want to find something else that is as good. The story is every bit of what I like about Sci-fi. It's smart, it's funny and it's human. The tribulations are 'out there' but Simmons makes a compelling story that was unique and different and the 'out there' while balancing on, "Can that really happen?" I feel like all that is good sci-fi. It's a book you can read twice and still find dimensions you had missed in the first reading. Well worth the time. Enjoy. I did.
You are going to get this book because you read/listened to the first three (even though book 3 really ended fine). At 29 hours this thing is all over the place. Half is descriptions that really just distract from the story. The other half is speaking in riddles. I just don't understand.
I guess I just don't get how half the galaxy wants to capture this young girl and she's practicing architecture for four years? Really. Raul is like a puppy dog following her around and she speaks in riddles for all her answers. I started to dislike Anea's character because there was nothing to like. She gives you nothing.
I'm on the fence about starting another series by Dan Simmons. First three books were really good. The fourth was a clunker.
The idea of traveling through Farcasters really allows Simmons to create whatever type of world he wants. Raul has to go back through a handful and hearing about other areas and these strange worlds is always interesting.
Forget the symbolism... I would cut the whole Buddha (hours and hours) scenario and even the Old Earth stuff with the pupils of Wright. It gets old and it gets old fast. The story doesn't progress in these areas. And, I'm find with the religion in the first three books but Simmons does lay it on pretty heavy here.
You are going to listen/read this book. I get it. But, the vast majority of the reviews are correct in that it just feels different (maybe it was the long period between books for Simmons).
I have never turned an Audible title off as much as this one. Forcing myself to finish it for the sake of finishing.
I've just finished listening to the Contos for the second time. It's such a great story! Dan Simmons deserves all the praise in the world for creating such a wonderfully entertaining journey.
Sometimes hokum, but more often than not this book is absolutely transcendent and beautiful. If you rolled your eyes during "Interstellar's" more sentimental scenes then you'll find some groan-inducing lines in this book. However, the great characters and the incredible detail with which the events are described make up for any shortcomings.
This book is a joy to experience and Victor Bevine's excellent performance is one of the reasons why it's so enjoyable.
The story is presented to us as a monograph written by one of the main characters, Raul Endymion. One of the major plot points is why Raul is able to present the thoughts and actions of people far removed from him in his narrative. From a practical perspective this allows Simmons to use the voice of one of his characters as the narrator while avoiding the constraints of writing in the first person. At its core the plot is a love story about Raul and the other principle protagonist, Arena. While this relationship is central to the plot this book is not a romance novel. Interestingly, even though the tropes of the SciFi genre are well represented, this book does not read like most SciFi novels. But these tropes are really just garnish for a story that's concerned with something deaper.
If you haven't read the other books in the Hyperion Cantos then you should not start with this one. This story is a direct continuation of "Endymion" but depends heavily on the events of the first two novels in the series.
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