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Publisher's Summary

Eleven years have passed since SHEVA was discovered in human DNA, a retrovirus that caused mutations in the human genome and heralded the arrival of a new wave of genetically enhanced humans. Now these changed children have reached adolescence...and face a world that is outraged about their very existence. For these special youths are also ticking time bombs that could exterminate the "old" human race.

Fear and hatred of the virus children have made them a persecuted underclass, quarantined by the government, targeted by bounty hunters, and demonized by the population. But pockets of resistance have formed among those opposed to treating the children like dangerous diseases.

Scientists Kaye Lang and Mitch Rafelson are part of this small but determined minority. Once at the forefront of the discovery and study of the SHEVA outbreak, they now live as virtual exiles in the Virginia suburbs with their daughter, Stella, a bright, inquisitive virus child who is quickly maturing and eager to seek out others of her kind.

But for all their precautions, Kaye, Mitch, and Stella have not slipped below the government's radar. The agencies fanatically devoted to segregating and controlling the new-breed children monitor their every move, waiting for the opportunity to strike the next blow in their escalating war to preserve "humankind" at any cost.

©2003 Greg Bear (P)2003 Books on Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Bear's sure sense of character, his fluid prose style and the fascinating culture his 'Shevite' children begin to develop all make for serious SF of the highest order." (Publishers Weekly) "Top-shelf science fiction, thrilling and intellectually charged." (Amazon.com)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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  • Overall

Didn't grab me...

I couldn't get into this book. The premise was interesting and some of the characters were appealing but I felt like the story jumped around too much--and without enough transition from place to place or time to time. This gave the story a disjointed feeling for me.

I kept listening to this one, because I was curious about the outcome, but it was something I had to make myself do. Usually I look forward to walking or going for a drive because of the story I'm 'reading' but this one didn't grab me and I had to force myself to keep going.

I don't know how much of a difference it would have made to have read the other Darwin book (didn't realize there WAS a previous storyline) but if you haven't read it I don't really recommend this one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Don
  • Austin, TX, USA
  • 03-28-04

Okay, but...

I enjoyed the book. I had read Darwin's Radio so was interested in the follow-on. I did not like the direct attacks against Republicans, FoxNews, and Rush Limbaugh. With a little effort I'm sure the author could have found a way to not make his enemies of today his enemies of the future. Although the author tends to criticise fundamentalist Christians, one of his main characters spends a lot time communicating with who she believes is God. So, if you can get by the out-of-place political comment on current events the overall story is interesting and well-read.

20 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Science-driven plot; weirdly over-emoted reading

This book is a worthwhile sequel -- definitely worthwhile if you read and enjoyed the first book. I found the plot to be unconventional, lacking the traditional kinds of drama found in this genre, but I also found it quite engaging as it was, meandering through highs and lows without having a core conflict. The characters are interesting, and a number of them are developed enough to offer compelling subplots. Picking up with Kate and Mitch from the previous novel makes it easy to slide into caring about the characters.

The biggest drawback in this audiobook is the fact that the reader, whose voice is deep and clear, adopts a reading style in which virtually every sentence is read as though it is the most dramatic moment in the novel. This over-emoting is unbelievably distracting, at least at first, and makes it hard sometimes to stomach large doses of the audio. It's unfortunate, because it's not the most dramatic book -- and a straighter, more even-keeled delivery would fit the narrative well. However, in this case the producer got it wrong and gave terrible direction to the reader. It is this aspect alone that makes the audiobook hard to recommend.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Well...

Ok, just ok. Interesting story but hampered by apocalyptic narration, in my opinion. The narrator uses a continuous melodramatic tone that wears on me after a bit.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

disappointing

A trilogy that starts with detailed, if not realistic, science ends in mysticism. The afterword reveals the trilogy to be an argument for faith masquerading as hard science fiction. I will remember Greg Bear as a posuer to be avoided. Such bait and switch backdoor advocacy is extremely annoying.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jay
  • TRABUCO CANYON, CA, United States
  • 03-13-17

Excellent Sequel

Great performance! Satisfying culmination of an epic story. This is Greg Bear at his finest. an intricate story that is all the more frightening because it hinges on scientific fact and speculation.

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Kafwood
  • Ithaca, New York United States
  • 10-11-15

Scott Brick ruins another story

Will someone at Audible please tell Scott Brick, the narrator, to just READ and not act the story? PLEASE.

It's not only that Brick is bad at dramatic reading, it is also condescending. Does he think that the listeners are three-year-olds and want an overacted bedtime story?

He reduces the narrative to caricature. Listening to hours of phony accents and overblown emotions in every line is exhausting. If I were the author of this series, I'd consider getting counsel.

Although it's hard to dig out the actual text from the crush of poor and oversimplified narration, Darwin's Children is an engaging story especially for those with an anthropological or biological background.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Good book. ok performance.

Was surprised Scott Brick ' s performance was a bit lackluster. perhaps an issue of direction. story was good, though choppy time line at places.

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  • Performance
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  • Cindy
  • Olympia, Wa
  • 08-01-14

Sequel delivers

Enjoyed the first book, Darwin's Radio, and enjoyed the Darwin's Children just as much.

Good book, it went by quickly. I hope there will be another book that continues the story....

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Excellent.

6/5 Another riveting discovery for me. Good flow, edge of your seat with a great story. worth another listen. Exceptional.