• Artifact Space

  • By: Miles Cameron
  • Narrated by: Nneka Okoye
  • Length: 16 hrs and 51 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (231 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Out in the darkness of space, something is targeting the Greatships.

With their vast cargo holds and a crew that could fill a city, the Greatships are the lifeblood of human-occupied space, transporting an unimaginable volume - and value - of goods from City, the greatest human orbital, all the way to Tradepoint at the other, to trade for xenoglas with an unknowable alien species. 

It has always been Marca Nbaro's dream to achieve the near-impossible: escape her upbringing and venture into space.

All it took, to make her way onto the crew of the Greatship Athens, was thousands of hours in simulators, dedication and pawning or selling every scrap of her old life in order to forge a new one. But though she's made her way onboard with faked papers, leaving her old life - and scandals - behind isn't so easy. 

She may have just combined all the dangers of her former life, with all the perils of the new....

©2021 Miles Cameron (P)2021 Orion Publishing Group Limited

What listeners say about Artifact Space

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Exactly What You are Looking For

It’s a little difficult for me to review Miles Cameron’s books because I know the author and consider him a friend. So, spoiler free: Artifact Space is excellent far-future space science fiction. He has absolute command over the workings of a starship in a way that you will not read elsewhere. And it is empowering, like the way Patrick O’Brien writes about fighting ships in the age of sail. He doesn’t hold your hand, but you know you are in the hands of an author who has complete knowledge of how these things work.

A few notes:
1. Detail flows and is relevant. You learn how something works so you don’t have to deal with it later. Plus, Cameron has a navy background yet doesn’t feel he needs to inject jargon to prove his space navy chops. The chops are there. Plus, the tech he takes on in his universe have rules and these rules persist. That’s key.
2. Cameron has an interesting and original take on how interstellar economies work. When you have an author who actually appreciates mercantilism, capitalism, socialism, fair trade and applies them to a detailed and well-crafted universe you jump up and down that somebody has even addressed economics in science fiction. (Although he is wrong about capitalism.)
3. As a read, it is beautiful. It hits my spots for reasonableness and elegance of description and language. Cameron is a pro.
4. (for the Audible version) Nneka Okoye is my new favorite reader. I adore her accent and she just subtly alters her voice to define different characters. She nails the sci-fi elements. Perfection.
5. My one issue is with the main character point of view in this complicated story. In the course of a year our heroine becomes: an orphan, an escaped urchin, a streetwise operator, a murderer, the most junior officer on a starship with 5,000 people, a fighter pilot, an intelligence officer, an aide to the ship’s master, a commander of that ship in an emergency, a space marine, an expert swordsman (swordsperson), and the key component of every action that happens in the story. Oh, and she’s also a hidden princess. Which is what happens when you have one POV character. She has to be everywhere.

Fortunately, we like her. You will be rewarded by your read (or listen to, don’t miss the joy of Okoye’s voice) of Artifact Space. Cameron knows what he is doing.

13 people found this helpful

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A Pleasing & Fun Departure into Sci-Fi - Recommend

This is straight up, almost retro sci-fi book. Although I enjoy Mr. Cameron's more sword-based works--this is more "Navy-in-Space" fun. Great characters. Great combat and procedural sequences abound. The premise of a young, hardscrabble woman starting out her military career as a midshipman is not a new plot device....but the universe created and the sophistication of the issues confronted create a breath of fresh air in a genre that sees to many derivative stories. While It may border on YA, the underlying plot, particularly the antagonists, takes it up a couple of levels. (For fans, there is TASTE of sword work.) Also, I particularly enjoyed the performance.....It reminds me of "The Diamond Age: Or, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer" by Neal Stephenson, one of the best narrations ever.

12 people found this helpful

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Don't overlook this one!

I thoroughly enjoyed The Traitor Son Cycle series, which prompted me to try another read from Miles Cameron. I have to say he can write a space odyssey just as well as swords and sorcery.
This story centers around Marca Nbaro and her dream of flying, but achieving that dream is not an easy path, but one filled with hours and hours of hard work, along with deception. The reader joins in her quest, while learning the ins and outs of future space travel and trade. Its high tech without becoming so scientific that sometimes turns a novel into a text book, quickly losing my attention in the shuffle. As far as characters go, I want to hear more from them, the crew was fun and fascinating, right down to an eccentric AI. The ending swings a door wide open that I'll anxiously await to enter.
I enjoyed the talented narration of Nneka Okoye, whose voice seemed perfect for performing this space story of the future.

6 people found this helpful

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Excellent voicing, terrible pacing

The narrator has a gift for voicing the characters and would be a pleasure to listen to if not for her inability to take breaks between paragraphs. New ideas need a pause before moving forward to delineate a change of subject, but the narrator reads as if it’s all one really long run-on sentence. It partially ruined what I’d consider a good book.

4 people found this helpful

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The narrator made an average YA story great.

I really liked listening to the narrator, her style and voices made it easy to discern every character. I hope to hear more from her.

The story was an above-average YA romp with good pacing and plot. I look forward to the sequel.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent work

Great world building. Compelling characters. Gripping story. Perfect narrator for the material. More please! Soon?

2 people found this helpful

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This is what science fiction should aspire to.

I liked the story overall. I just thought that the writer from time to time had characters praising the main protagonist too often. I rolled my eyes after the 15 time someone gushed over how great she was. I liked the how space travel was explained and the hardship of going through different G's on board a ship going incredibly fast. I liked the how there was so many angles to the enemies attack on the Athens and how truly terrifying it would be to deal with conflicts with future tech. Emp's, hacking, bio weapons, nukes etc... Overall I thought the performance was good but it took me sometime to get used to the narration due to how fast and low she spoke at times.

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Can't get into it

I don't know why, but I just can't get into it. the start is boring because the reader doesn't know what is going on. Compare this to Peter F Hamilton who has equally crazy worlds and fictional words - Hamilton somehow helps the reader to understand the context as they go so that you never feel like "I am missing knowledge the characters have about the basic premise of what is going on". You do feel that way with this book, and it makes it hard to get into. Maybe if you power through it gets better, but it's easier to return the book and pick a different one.

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Childish story, weak narration

Purchased this book on the basis of the many positive recommendations, but I found it to be a simplistic story with unpleasant narration. The young woman protagonist comes across as silly despite an attempt to give her a shady background and 'amazing' space pilot skills, deadly close-combat ability, and a Mensa IQ, none of which are convincing. The narration just doesn't work for me: the reader's girlish voice might suit the character but not the story; her delivery is too fast and flat; and there is no sense of conviction in her voice, as though she's simply reading a script. The whole thing borders on YA aimed at girls. Definitely returning this one, and another book purcahsed at the same time by the same narrator, without even listening to it.

1 person found this helpful

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Miles Cameron is a Genius

There isn’t a better author alive for complex, captivating, and deliciously detailed fiction. His Traitor Son series was practically work of art. Now SciFi … and at the same level! He is my favorite author and I’ve read a huge number of books.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Gareth
  • 05-01-22

New author to me and I didn’t know what to expect

Went in blind and thoroughly enjoyed this adventure. The story raced along and kept me hooked the whole time whilst being excellently brought to life by Nneka Okoye’s incredibly skilled narration. I really hope there is a part 2!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Elaine Brien
  • 11-10-21

Disappointed

Overly long and ponderous adventure with a lead who can do no wrong, a superhero really. Expected so much more, won't be continuing with series unfortunately.

1 person found this helpful

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  • sean
  • 05-23-22

Brilliant

Miles Cameron is fast becoming one of my favourite authors. This book has maintained that opinion. I can't wait for the next installment.

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  • henrik
  • 03-17-22

Love it

The main character is a bit to perfect. But otherwise a great book. Very well read.

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  • Chris
  • 03-10-22

Brilliant book!

I really liked this one. Excellently performed by Nneka, with a great variety of nuance in voices. The story itself was really well done. Yes, Umbaro is lucky at points, but I love all the different characters and their interactions together and that's the overriding thought when I think of the book. Can't wait for Deep Black!!

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  • JPA
  • 01-31-22

My new favourite scifi novel!

Brilliant narration drew me into this epic, gripping and real-feeling scifi.

It has all of Cameron's super settings, characters, history, and action. It almost felt like a historical fiction with the level of detail - which totally brings the lot to life - and yet wows you with the sheer scale and wonders of space.

Genuinely my favourite scifi novel for a long time, if not ever. I connected with it that much. Iain M Banks but with real characters you can connect a lot more with, imho.

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  • Mark Chitty
  • 01-19-22

A fantastic Space Opera

I'm hit and miss these days with long novels from new-to-me authors, but this one not only hit every note, it gave me a few more I didn't realise I needed. A very good build-up with some interesting characters that seem to carry the story along at quite the pace. Plenty to enjoy, and as the first book in this series it makes the follow-up a must-read.

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  • Mr
  • 12-12-21

Not a fan

I love my sci-fi and fantasy. I have also enjoyed other books by Miles Cameron but I found this dull, repetitive, and disappointing.

The first interesting part was in the last 40 minutes. The protagonist can do no wrong, the AI has an odd renaissance period accent.

There is plenty of focus on clothes, not really something I have ever cared about in a Sci-Fi book, and some of the character names annoy me. Apologies for the spelling but Quak-Quak? Seriously? Perhaps the character is some kind of androgynous android.

I found myself allowing this book to play out while I worked and had no interest in rewinding to see what I missed. There was no danger as our young protagonist can do everything on her own while describing her outfits and shyly accepting here medals.

Not for me, I returned it. Hate to do that to an Author I have nearly ten books from.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-17-21

loved it

great story, the main character is a little too good but i loved the feel of the ship and it's setting.

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  • Xavier
  • 08-31-21

Really enjoyed this book

Absolutely fabulous book. I wasn't sure if the Mr Cameron could move from historical fiction and fantasy into sci fi, but I needn't have worried. I was engaged from the first words, and immediately absorbed into the new world/universe he created. His love of Venice and the middle ages still shines through, but worked into a what felt like a truly original creation (but somehow still pulling together the best elements of Tom Swan, Horatio Hornblower, Honor Harrington, Master & Commander etc.) It was also the first book of his that I have read/listened to, where the lead protagonist is female. It seemed natural and I really enjoyed it.

I listened to the 16 odd hours across a single week, and was devastated when it ended. I await the sequel with impatience.

Nneka Okoye read the book well. I felt that some of the narration was a bit stilted, but then I also felt that parts were brilliantly done, so overall a very strong showing.

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  • Henry Fraser
  • 06-08-22

Fantastic spy procedural meets space opera meets period navy story

I’ve never come across a sci fi or fantasy author quite like Miles Cameron. He might be my favourite. He has a totally unique narrative rhythm, and a remarkable way of building worlds in ebbing and flowing waves of action and reflection. I normally don’t really go in for ‘procedurals’ but he explores the minutiae of routines, procedures and ‘the way things work’ in his worlds with such loving attention and verve I can’t help but he drawn in. In the traitor sun series it was the chivalry, courtly love and mind palace magic. In the masters and mages series it was the rhythm of study in the academy, of military campaign, and spying. Here it’s a coming of age tale set against the finest traditions of the navy… but in space, where spy plots and intrigue must fit around the rigours of acceleration and deceleration in space. Absolutely loved it and can’t wait for the second book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bryan Cairns
  • 10-17-21

Slow going which I couldn't complete

Got through a couple of hours and couldn't go on. The reader makes it sound like a kids book and the story is slow and dragged on.

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  • Turing Complete
  • 08-04-21

Engaging story, incredible narrator

A fast moving, engaging story that is wonderfully, almost lusciously, narrated. The story and narration came together beautifully. I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this as much as I did and now I want more!

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