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Publisher's Summary

Elysium Fire is a smoldering tale of murderers, secret cultists, tampered memories, and unthinkable power, of bottomless corruption and overpowering idealism from the king of modern space opera.

Ten thousand city-state habitats orbit the planet Yellowstone, forming a near-perfect democratic human paradise.

But even utopia needs a police force. For the citizens of the Glitter Band that organization is Panoply, and the prefects are its operatives.

Prefect Tom Dreyfus has a new emergency on his hands. Across the habitats and their hundred million citizens, people are dying suddenly and randomly, victims of a bizarre and unprecedented malfunction of their neural implants. And these "melters" leave no clues behind as to the cause of their deaths....

As panic rises in the populace, a charismatic figure is sowing insurrection, convincing a small but growing number of habitats to break away from the Glitter Band and form their own independent colonies.

For more from Alastair Reynolds, check out:

Revenger

©2018 Alastair Reynolds (P)2018 Hachette Audio

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Zach
  • Smyrna, GA United States
  • 01-25-18

Reynolds fan left cold

There are things I love about Alastair Reynolds but this isn’t one of them.

It’s boring. If you’ve read “the Prefect” then you know what’s going to happen and this story offers nothing new in any category.

Normally, Reynolds’ imagination makes up for the story short comings. The thing is.. I was so looking forward to this book and have tried to make every allowance for it.

However..

This book stimulates in me the the void of any stimulation or interest in the story of itself.

The only reason I write this negative review is out of consideration for other Alastair Reynolds fans.

Save your credit and wait to see what other reviewers say.

25 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Oh what twisted minds we get...

... when we do it for a bet

The story's architecture is split between a coming-of-age antagonist duo and an enforcement system meant to ensure that the democratic system is secure for the populace on the asteroid ring, Glitter Band, around the planet Yellowstone.

The SciFi elements of the story mostly evolve around brain implants that can mentally reshape nano-material like Play-Doh, police bot-dogs that can unfold from a hip truncheon and virtual AI sentient holograms. However, these mostly play as backdrops to the race to find and stop what seems to be a pandemic in the making that threatens wreak havoc on an otherwise peaceful society.

In typical Alastair Reynolds fashion, he spends a considerable amount of time creating the world and the various set of characters who play key roles in the story. John Lee also expertly narrates these characters giving each a distinct voice including genders, adults and children.

There's lots of twists and turns along the way.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Meh...

It's like Alastair Reynolds but without any wow. good to revisit the glitter band and with familiar characters, but where's the sense of wonder...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Sorry but NO

Mr. Reynolds is a consumated master of the craft, but this books adds nothing to the Universe he created in the Chasm City / Shrouders novels
Better luck next time! We’ll keep reading you; one bad book does not kill your previous achievements, but House Of Suns had a better depth with the same background; actually, you should not use this structure again, people are going to begin noticing.
Hoping you have more in the Ultras for a near future, and yours faithfully,
Cristian Fernandez Falcon

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Classic Alastair Reynolds

There he is. The Alastair Reynolds I love and have missed. If you liked any of the Prefect / Chasam City novels, you won’t be disappointed in this one.

John Lee could read the dictionary to me and listen with wrapped bliss.

What are you waiting for, an invitation?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Very clever but less captivating than previous

I enjoyed this book. Characters very strong. Moral situations quite thought provoking. The glitter band setting shone somewhat dimmer than in previous works in the series. The story seems to have been constructed for the sake of the twists, not the other way around.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Still Glittering

All is not well in the thousands of obiting habitats know as the Glitter Band, circling the planet Yellowstone. Prefect Tom Dreyfus is investigating mysterious seemingly random deaths of occupants of the utopian society, searching for the cause of the malfunctioning neural implants. These implants in most of the citizens brains are used for rapid communication with each other and voting on issues. One by one peoples brains are frying and the body count is rising. In parallel runs a story taking place 30 years in the past with two twin brothers from a prominent family who have power to manipulate quick matter. It is clear they are being groomed for something but what? All we know is that it will tie in with the present mystery.

The Prefects normally investigate voting fraud and the present day murders are in the realm of their work. There is no common thread linking the victims. The who, what and why of these deaths is such a mystery Dreyfus will have to work fast to prevent wide spread panic. Still there is no love for the hard working Prefects as they are bullied and beaten throughout the story. Whiphounds, their only weapons, prove insufficient against mob violence.

I feel like there is so much going on in this book that sets the ground work for the changing of the fabulous Glitter Band utopia of peace and wealth into the future neighborhood gone to crap Rust Belt that may have to go back and re-read The Prefect, (now titled Aurora Rising) and Chasm City again. There are a few themes from the previous novel that continue. Dreyfus has to interview his best witness who is a the Beta versions of the dead and still keep his cool detachment from them even though she exudes all the humanity of their previous living counterparts. And again, the beta levels probe Dreyfus for information about himself and carefully turn the tables on him by asking questions he rather not answer. And my favorite and the most charming character from the previous book, Aurora, slithers back, offering Dreyfus help but at a price. I like the entire Revelation Space series although I really like this prequel which give us insight into what went wrong in the Glitter Band. This is a complex and intricate world but this book is basically a police procedural set in the future.

Corruption, memory erasing, riots, secret societies and melting brains. What's not to like? Excellent fast pace addition to the growing space opera. I would suggest reading the first book in this series, which came out 10 years ago now titled "Aurora Rising", before picking up this one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Such a disappointment?

The story was so boring and predictable. I really miss the Alistair of old. I don't think I can ever read another one of his books after this one. save your money and get something else.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Well rounded and fresh

Mr Reynolds has delivered a story with well developed and interesting characters and a completely fresh story in the revelation space universe. I can't wait for the next installment. Where will prefect Dryfus end up next? Will we find out more about the melding plague? A wild New turn?

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    5 out of 5 stars

a brilliant sequel to the Prefect,

Reynolds provides another brilliant installment to the Revelation Space Universe, this time a follow-up book to his magnificent work the prefect. This sequel continues the story of the glitter band and ties it slightly into events down in Chasm City. It definitely contains spoilers for the prefect, so read first the prefect and then this book. If you enjoy the police procedural story of the prefect, I believe you will find this book just as engaging.