Centuries in the past, mankind fought a seemingly unbeatable adversary from sector to sector across the Spiral Arm until the war ground to a standstill and the Enemy withdrew. Believing that they had won, the citizens of the galaxy rebuilt. The Inner Worlds, which had escaped the worst of the war's ravages, became even more insular, while the Rim worlds adopted a free and easy way with law and order. Now, hundreds of years after their withdrawal, the Enemy is back - and this time they'll be satisfied with nothing less than the extinction of the galaxy.
©2004 Sharon Lee and Steve Miller (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
A 50-something who loves sci-fi, cozy mysteries, thrillers, an occasional romance, and any genre if it is a good story. And especially if it makes me laugh! No vampires or zombies though - these are NOT sci-fi!
The Liaden Universe is a full and complex one. This tale starts with the original Cantra yos Phelium, and M Jela and his Tree. Yes, the tree is a character in this story as much as any other character. I will say that I enjoyed this book much more in audio than in print, which I don't often say! The narration is excellent, because it isn't over-dramatic, but is just enough to differentiate between characters.
This download also has a conversation between the narrator and Steve Miller. Don't skip it! It gives a lot of insight into what goes into narrating an audiobook, as well as learning a bit about how Steve and Sharon write their books. As well as the good news that a sequel to Balance of Trade is coming!
Crystal Soldier is the chronologically first book in the Liaden Universe series from Sharon Lee and Steve Miller. It was, however, written several years after the first published volume (Agent of Change) and is thus on Audible as part of the "Books of Before" sequence.
Crystal Soldier tells the story of M. Jela and Cantra yos'Phelium, as well as the original Tree of Korval's Tree and Dragon. This is very much a prequel to the later events of Clan Korval, and leads naturally to the next book, Crystal Dragon and the migration to Liad to escape the total destruction of the universe.
If you're new to the Liaden Universe, you have a choice of how best to read the books. Personally, I prefer strict chronological order, but a valid argument can be made for published order as well, since that is how others have discovered this fascinating universe. If you're inclined that way, then start with the Agent of Change sequence first, and loop back to the earlier books when you're ready.
The narrator for this three book set of Before books is Kevin T. Collins, and he does an excellent job. Each character has a distinctive voice, but the distinction is subtle and doesn't interfere with the narrative. This was my first book with Mr. Collins as narrator, but I'll be searching out more. Well done.
1*=I didn't like it..... 2*=It was OK...... 3*=It was good but I will never read it again.......... 4*=Maybe I will read it again in the future.............. 5*=I will definitely read it again(maybe more than once)
The first book was tough in the beginning.
Don't misunderstand me the book drawn my attention from the very first minutes, but all the time I had a feeling like it's dragging it's heels.
14 hours is too much, it should've been 5 or 6 at the most, but the story was interesting, the narration also matched the tempo of the book so Kevin T. Collins fits to this book.
But to make sure I will get the second book. Read my next review soon.
I've never a Liaden book or a book from the authors. This far future sci-fi tale was interesting, the pace was constant, and the universe interesting. While this novel didn't excite me terribly, but it kept my attention and there are some interesting ideas that are in the background that will clearly be major elements of future books as this book was written after but takes place before the main series of books. I will look forward to reading them.
I've downloaded quite a few sci-fi series and I would have to say that so far this is my favorite. The narrative stays fresh and there is enough detail that you can really get involved with the story and no too much detail that it becomes tedious. I am very much looking forward to the next book in the series.
I would listen to Crystal Soldier again because many elements it sets up continue to recur throught the Liaden series. Although I have read most of the Liaden books more than once, I had forgotten where some things came from. In addition, Sharon Lee's language is outstanding, and lends itself extremely well to being read aloud.
In the Liaden universe, this book and its sequel are genuinely different. Metaphorically, they serve the same role as The Hobbit served relative to The Lord of the rings.
Kevin Collins is workmanlike.
I would never listen to any book in one sitting.
The Liaden universe is, in many ways, as well thought through as Tolkien, but the actual writing is more tersely poetic. It offers insights into human connections in an exotic and beautiful package.
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