To the remote planet Spatterjay come three travellers with very different missions. Janer is directed there by the hornet Hive-mind; Erlin comes to find the sea captain who can teach her to live; and Keech - dead for 700 years - has unfinished business with a notorious criminal.
Spatterjay is a watery world where the human population inhabits the safety of the Dome and only the quasi-immortal hoopers are safe outside amidst a fearful range of voracious life-forms. Somewhere out there is Spatterjay Hoop himself, and monitor Keech cannot rest until he can bring this legendary renegade to justice for atrocious crimes committed centuries ago during the Prador Wars.
Keech does not realise that Hoop's body is running free on an island wilderness, while his living head is confined in a box on an Old Captain's ships. Nor does he know that the most brutal Prador of all is about to pay a visit, intent on wiping out all evidence of his wartime atrocities. Which means major hell is about to erupt in this chaotic waterscape.
Listen to more in the Spatterjay series.
©2009 Neal Asher (P)2010 Audible
audible listener!! :o)
I only wish that Neal Asher's Gridlinked books (written in the same universe but with different characters, although there is some overlap...) were also in audio.
For the uninitiated - Lots of AIs. Space travel through warping. Seriously funny & snarky writing. LOVE the characters. Spatterjay trilogy has very inventive life forms on the planet that are neat and drive the plot along. Highly recommended.
The opposite of bravery is not cowardice but conformity. --Robert Anthony Contentment is, after all, simply refined indolence. --Thomas C.
This is not a space opera like many of Asher's works, instead it's largely confined to one planet. And there is no Cormac, although it takes place in the same universe. If you're a fan of his other Cormac works, why listen to this one? Well, for one, the droids are among the best ones he's written in any of his stories.
And despite being largely planet bound there is tons of action & great characters. Good listen & a great intro to the rest of the spatterjay trilogy!
Plotting to take over the world since 1969
This was my first Neal Asher story; the authors style is very good, an interesting mix of science fiction, action adventure, space opera, humour, and horror.
The reader is also excellent, his wide range of voices is veery good. The choice of rural english accents may seem odd to american listeners but works very well. Sniper in particular is very well characterised.
The only real failure - as noted by other listeners - is the odd choice of the editor to not leave audible gaps when the character viewpoints change. Its not too distracting as it quickly becomes apparent, but still could do with changing.
This book has led me to listen go/read most of Neal Ashers novels. While they're not in any way mold breaking, they are ripping good yarns, entertaining, and with sufficient intellectual and emotional content to satisfy most readers.
I've now got to the end of the trilogy, and it has proved an interesting voyage. Personally I'd like to hear more of Sniper and 13 adventures, Mr Asher... more please!
The Skinner was a great story, happy to be moving on to Spatterjay, book 2, The Voyage of the Sable Keech. Many thanks to Neal Asher for this.
One of the best so far. Great SF world, its environment, and a satisfying story. Reader distinguishes the characters and makes the conversations seamless.
This book is a very interesting mixture of good science fiction and biological theory. The story is not easily predictable and the characters are rich. There are a lot of concepts I have not seen in other sci fi.
Mr. Gaminara's range of voice and accent is wonderful. He is a great reader. I will buy other books that he has narrated without knowing much of about them because I'm sure that he improves the experience of the story.
54 years old, blue collar worker, I like imported beer, when it is not hay fever season. Favorite authors; Card, King, Hobb, Koontz, Clarke, Iggulden, Silverberg, Michener, Krakauer
Spatterjay is mostly a water world. Almost every creature in the sea is deadly. The native humans, called hoopers, are almost immortal. They become immortal after one of the many leeches that inhabit the world bites them. The leeches fall from trees, swim in the ocean and can be as small as a bat or as large as a whale.
One of the main characters is a Zombie, he has been dead for 700 years. The book has leeches, sentient AI's, Supermen, a hive mind, a living head, a creature that acts as a sail for ships, rhinoworms, humans who are called blanks because they are mindless slaves to lobster like aliens called Pradors, a woman who lives in another woman's body, etc etc.
The action is constant and Asher's imagination is fantastic. There is lots and lots of gore. At the beginning of the book I was extremely excited and really thought I had found a new fantastic author. Toward the end I was getting worn out and was ready for the book to finish. I will be reading more of Asher's books, I just hope he shortens them a little.
As far as the production and the narrator, I was very disappointed. NA changes from one scene to another and then back again very quickly and often the scenes he is switching to have similar action going on, so I often got confused on what characters I was following. The narrator, who is following how the book is written, uses British accents, which combined with the changing scenes made it hard to follow. The zombie is actual called a reif, but they had to say reif about fifty times before I understood what he was saying.
If you like Card's book "Treason" or Harry Harrison's "West of Eden" or Koontz "Frankenstein" or "Moby Dick" you should like this book.
I had to bail-out early. It's like listening to a splatter flick; too bad since their may be a good story amidst the gore.
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