To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average. Instead, our system considers things like how recent a review is and if the reviewer bought the item on Amazon. It also analyzes reviews to verify trustworthiness.
Review this product
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
4.0 out of 5 starsA pleasure
Reviewed in the United States on May 31, 2020
It's such a pleasure to read a well written, well plotted rollicking space opera tale with good world building. This is part of a series, but I read it without reading the first two and I think I got the gist of it. I loved Faye, such a great character, and I loved the ooloms, and the idea of being a proctor. I also loved the peacock tales and all the other amazing things that Gardner created for us. I'm off to read the next book. I read this years ago (I think I bought it in 2015 and reread in just now, 2020) and it doesn't feel at all dated as some books can. It's still fresh and clean and interesting. Happy escape. I'm off to reread the next books...
1.0 out of 5 starsBEWARE - LOTS OF TYPOS IN THE KINDLE EDITION!!!!! (Book is rated FIVE STARS)
Reviewed in the United States on July 29, 2016
This book is one of my favorites out of the League of Peoples series by James Alan Gardner (my other favorite is 'Hunted'). IT ACTUALLY DESERVES FIVE STARS. I've reread it so much my paperback was falling apart = decided to buy a Kindle version.
Here is the reason I'm giving it ONE STAR: The Kindle version is __FULL OF TYPOS(!!!)__ that are not in the original (paperback) version.
I immediately contacted Amazon with the problem but apparently they still (almost a year later) have *NOT* posted a yellow triangular mark saying "quality issues reported" which you can find on some of the other Kindle books. Which means the publisher has not been notified/alerted. Amazon told me they would replace my Kindle edition as "soon as they fixed the problem with a newer (presumably typo-free) edition". UGH. I guess that's not happening any time soon.
I was planning on swapping out most of my paperbacks to a Kindle edition.....but I just looked up another book I wanted.....and THAT had a "quality issue" notice as well so I guess I'll save my money for now. *sigh*
"Fe` leejemm...you hear the thunder...you do what decency requires, what's obviously right. It's a concept sadly lacking in modern society. Yet It's eloquently expressed in the first few pages of the book. Combined with the enforced inability to commit murder, either by intention or neglect, You'd think the universe would be a paradise...Not so much, mostly because people are people, whether they have pink skin, tow legs and two arms, or globular ears that make them look like mickey mouse, or six insectile legs, or space altering peacock fields. For all that it is technically the third in the series, it was actually the first I read...and it left a lasting impression. The most important thing I took away from this book is that we're all messed up in some way...learning how to move on, and striving to be more than just another messed up individual is what makes us sentient beings...what, for want of a better analogy, makes us both human and humane.
5.0 out of 5 starsExcellent mystery story set in the League of Peoples universe
Reviewed in the United States on September 8, 2007
_Vigilant_ by James Alan Gardner is set in the same universe as his earlier work, _Expendable_. Though one of the characters from that earlier book makes reappearance, the novel largely focuses instead on new characters. Instead of dealing with a deadly planet of no return and a Technocracy-wide conspiracy, _Vigilant_ is instead, at least at first, a murder mystery set on the colony world of Demoth.
The main protagonist is a woman by the name of Faye Smallwood. A very well developed character and in many ways quite different from the heroine of _Expendable_ (Festina Ramos, who is a character in this book as well), we are treated in the first part of the book to a rather well-fleshed out account of her earlier years, which while at first seemingly serving only to make the character more vivid, the reader later discovers actually provides valuable clues to later events in the novel. Faye grew up as the daughter of a doctor in a mining town, one of several thousand human colonists invited by the planet's majority species, the Ooloms. The Ooloms it seems, while human-like in many ways, have a number of differences, particularly adaptations for gliding and limited flight (lighter bones, flying squirrel-like glider membranes) as well as a few other interesting features (such as a largely involuntary chameleon-like ability to change color). They also have a strong aversion to being underground (one character described them as "arboreal with a vengeance"), so humans were invited to come and run their mining operations.
By some unknown method a very deadly disease ravages the Ooloms, killing the vast majority of them. Crippling the Oolom medical infrastructure and vastly overwhelming the human colonists who do their best to help, most of the humans (who are completely immune to the disease) basically run huge hospices in outdoor tents, doing their best to keep their friends and neighbors comfortable and desperately trying to find a cure for the disease. Faye as a child grows up with this, spending days and weeks caring for sick and dying Ooloms, helping her dad and becoming friends with an Oolom who is a member of the Vigil, all defining moments for her life.
After a rough-and-tumble later childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood, having tried many things Faye becomes a member of the Vigil, a planet-wide human-Oolom (much more human after the deadly pandemic) police organization, one charged with keeping an eye on all levels of government and authorized to enter any building, peruse any records, interview any government official, and even participate in local police criminal investigations. A key part of being a member of the Vigil is the implantation of a cybernetic device into the brain, something they call a link-seed, a device that allows any member of the Vigil to instantly research anything, anywhere, contact the worldwide computer called the world-soul that silently runs things behind the scenes, and all-in-all become better investigators.
As Demoth is a peaceful world and the practically galaxy-wide and nearly apparently omniscient League of Peoples rigidly enforces laws against non-sentient behavior (i.e. murder, ordering murder, indiscriminate use of deadly force, or knowingly aided individuals guilty of such acts), instantly killing any individuals guilty of such behavior once they leave the star system where the crime was committed (and sometimes punishing entire governments or species if the crime involves them), most of the time members of the Vigil work to expose government incompetence, short-sightedness, or corruption. However, someone it seems is targeting and killing members of the Vigil. Why? Who would do such a thing, run such huge risks and risk the wrath of the League?
Faye investigates, though as a new member of the Vigil she is blocked by her superiors, feeling that this task is well beyond her new abilities. When she finds that the Admiralty is interested in what is going on on Demoth and that possibly a missing archaeologist has uncovered long-lost alien technology on the planet, Faye finds herself trapped in a planet-wide mystery that has grave implications for all life on the planet.
A good book, I enjoyed the well-drawn out main character, the interesting Ooloms, the way Festina was portrayed as if shown through someone else's eyes, subtly different from how she appeared in _Expendable_, where she was the main character, the way many plot elements were tied together, and though not a major element, the nicely done alien ecology of Demoth.
4.0 out of 5 starsDans ce roman une épidémie dévaste un monde
Reviewed in France on April 29, 2014
Dans ce roman une épidémie dévaste un monde ( Demoth ) et efface des millions d’extraterrestres ( Ooloms ) alors qu’elle épargne les humains et c’est d’un scientifique humain que viendra pourtant le salut .
Il semblerait qu’une conspiration menace le destin des habitants de ce monde menacé par les ravages de cette « peste « et par des assassinats stratégiques et ciblés .
C’est un roman qui tient de l’enquête en contexte quasi paramilitaire avec une coloration environnement Alien suffisamment fonctionnelle et plaisante pour satisfaire les amateurs .
L’ensemble est une distraction honnête qui repose sur un sens du suspens qui est vraiment au point , sur un univers qui est riche et qui possède d’autres fondements que des clichés faciles . Comme c’est le cas dans cette suite de textes , il y a aussi de légères insuffisances assez récurrente , dans la caractérisation et dans les interactions des personnages entre eux , ainsi que dans certains dialogues qui viennent baisser régulièrement le niveau du texte de façons perceptibles même si ce n’est pas de façons criantes et tonitruantes .
Ceci confère à ce cycle une patine « light « c’est dommage mais néanmoins , c’est malgré tout un univers fonctionnel et attractif .
C’est un roman de guerre en fait . Une guerre biologique qui se réfère à des modes d’action en rapport avec ceux qui sont employées dans les conflit de type asymétrique .
Je mets quatre étoiles parce que ce texte , comme les deux autres que j’ai lu de l’auteur d’ailleurs , affiche des qualités certaines , alors que le « world building « notamment , est tout à fait de nature à satisfaire l’amateur d’univers exo planétaire le plus exigent .
Ce roman bénéficie d’ailleurs de beaucoup de commentaires très élogieux , un peu trop élogieux à mon avis , mais dans l’ensemble les atouts de ce roman sont aussi circonstanciés et indéniables mais ses quelques faiblesses sont également désagréablement patentes .
LE 4E DE COUVERTURE : Two species lived in peaceful coexistence on the planet Demoth until a deadly plague wiped out millions of the winged Ooloms while leaving humans untouched, helpless to do more than ease the suffering of their alien friends and neighbors. Faye Smallwood saw the horror firsthand, caring for the plague victims in her fahter's hospital. She was there when he discovered the cure that made him famous. She was also there when a freak accident killed him.
Desperate to escape her past, Faye joins the Vigil, a band of fiercely independent monitors charged with rooting out government corruption. To help in this struggle, her mind is linked to the powerful datasphere that regulates the planet...and suddenly, she receives a cryptic vision promising peace and healing. Instead, Faye becomes the target of unknown assassins in a sinister conspiracy that threatens to unleash a new and more deadly outbreak.
For humans and Ooloms were not the first species to inhabit Demoth. Somewhere in the ruins of long-abandoned settlements, something was left behind: an alien technology of unimaginable potential to build--or destroy. Enemy agents will stop at nothing to find it. Some of Faye's own people will kill to uncover its secret. With no one else to trust, she turns to the one person who can help unravel the mystery: Festina Ramos--explorer, outcast, ever-vigilant champion of those whom society deems expendable.