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Publisher's Summary

Necessity: the sequel to the acclaimed The Just City and The Philosopher Kings, Jo Walton's tales of gods, humans, and what they have to learn from one another.

More than 65 years ago, Pallas Athena founded the Just City on an island in the Eastern Mediterranean, placing it centuries before the Trojan War, populating it with teachers and children from throughout human history and committing it to building a society based on the principles of Plato's Republic. Among the city's children was Pytheas, secretly the god Apollo in human form.

Sixty years ago the Just City schismed into five cities, each devoted to a different version of the original vision. Forty years ago the five cities managed to bring their squabbles to a close. But in consequence of their struggle, their existence finally came to the attention of Zeus, who can't allow them to remain in deep antiquity, changing the course of human history. Convinced by Apollo to spare the cities, Zeus instead moved everything on the island to the planet Plato, circling its own distant sun.

Now, more than a generation has passed. The cities are flourishing on Plato and even trading with multiple alien species. Then, on the same day, two things happen. Pytheas dies as a human, returning immediately as Apollo in his full glory. And there's suddenly a human ship in orbit around Plato - a ship from Earth.

©2016 Jo Walton (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Necessity

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Lost opportunity to explore new cultures?

I was very excited to start book 3 as our favorite characters living out the Republic were now on an a brand new planet surrounded by alien cultures. This created so many opportunities to discover how these new civilizations would react to human beings and how the Greek gods were represented in their cultures. Unfortunately, very little of the book is dedicated to this topic and even less to the modern day humans making contact. Book 3 feels about half as full of an overall story as books 1-2. The time taken to delve into the sentience of the workers and their pursuit of excellence brings my review from 3 to 4 stars as this is very well done.

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  • J COBURN
  • 09-01-19

The conclusion to a must-read trilogy

You will be glad you digested these books. Superb! Genre-defying! A most astounding piece of writing.