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Publisher's Summary

In the distant future, corporations have become sustainable communities with their own militaries, and corporate goals have essentially replaced political ideology. On a youthful, rebellious impulse, Lawrence joined the military of a corporation that he now recognizes to be ruthless and exploitative. His only hope for escape is to earn enough money to buy his place in a better corporation. When his platoon is sent to a distant colony to quell a local resistance effort, it seems like a stroke of amazing fortune, and Lawrence plans to rob the colony of their fabled gemstone, the Fallen Dragon, to get the money he needs. However, he soon discovers that the Fallen Dragon is not a gemstone at all but an alien life form that the local colonists have been protecting since it crashed in their area. Now Lawrence has to decide if he will steal the alien to exploit the use of its inherent biotechnical processes - which far exceed anything humans are capable of - or if he will help the Resistance get the alien home.

©2002 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2016 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"A fascinating, compulsively readable clash of hardware and ideals." ( Kirkus)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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Story

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

Another awesome book.

I loved his commonwealth series, and I love John Lee's narration. This book is a different universe, but still it was quite good. Hamilton and Lee knock it out of the park yet again.

There is one thing about Peter F Hamilton and John Lee though that bugs me and makes me have to pay more attention to the words and less to my imagination, and that is the shifts between scenes. It can be hard to realize when the narration has gone to another character, or even another time. Lee can be talking for a minute before I realize we are in a different scene. It may be the editor, or the book, or the narrator, but it is a definite issue that plagues most of the books Hamilton and Lee do.

Other than that, the technology is easily imagined, along with great characters and detailed scenery.

37 of 37 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Samuel
  • Novi, MI, United States
  • 04-08-17

Possibly my new favorite Hamilton novel

I looked into this simply because I have enjoyed Hamilton's work immensely in the past. I recently read the Nights Dawn trilogy, and while it was interesting, it left me feeling a bit let down compared to his other work.

However, this book was simply fantastic. It's like an evil mirror world of his Commonwealth Universe, and as a result has a certain allure to it that I was not expecting. I would highly recommend this to any fan of science fiction.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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

Great sci-fi concepts!

Great book with great Sci-Fi concepts. The story is quite slow to start with and I found that sometimes the viewpoint changed a bit too frequently with plot points being wrapped up quickly and without much explanation. This caused me to be a bit confused early on but I got the hang of it.

The Sci-Fi concepts are top notch, good for pondering post read. My favorite types of Sci-Fi are the ones that keep me thinking long after I've finished reading and Fallen Dragon definitely hit the mark. I found it to be a refreshing take on Sci-Fi with more of a grim, realist adaptation of regular tropes.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

one of my favorites

After over four decades avidly consuming science fiction novels, this one is one of my all-time favorites. This was my second time reading it. It is the one that made Peter F. Hamilton my favorite modern science fiction author, a decade or so ago.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Economically non-viable colonization universe

Fallen Dragon is a stand-alone Peter F Hamilton novel that relates a universe where space colonization is economically non-viable. The corporations that funded the initial efforts periodically conduct "asset realization" escapades which is a "nice" way of saying looting and plundering. The main plot concerns one such adventure where one mercenary plans for some extracurricular activity while a nascent rebel movement has been preparing to resist the invaders. At the same time, the mercenary's backstory unfolds to provides context for his actions as well as detailing the various societal evolutions of different humans that sometimes border on the alien.

The sci-fi elements are an interesting mix of military space weaponry and alien biota which complicates the establishment of human colonies. At the same time, Hamilton introduces truly alien life forms that almost defy engagement or interactions with humanity. Hamilton is exploring potential societal evolution that begins to glimpse the possible likely range of life and intelligence across the galaxy. If planetary colonization were economically unworkable as described, then the divergence of humanity would likely be a consequence.

John Lee delivers another superb narration especially given the range of characters as well as alien and post-human forms that are encountered. With the overlapping timelines, some close attention is required to correctly place events.

12 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Mostly Enjoyable

This is an entertaining story of dragons, a dead empire, and revolution against a star-faring, quasi-governing, mega-corporation and the soldiers it employed to help it subdue and pillage worlds in the n the name of “asset realization.” The one thing I really disliked about the book is the author’s overly frequent use of vulgar language, hence the four star rating.

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

perfect!!

I originally read this the old fashioned way. My uncle loaned it to me and I tried to read it, but it starts out slow. years later I finally sat down and gave it a real chance. I wish I hadn't waited so long. this book spans many years and many worlds. there are several characters it follows although it focuses mainly on Lawrence Newton and no complaints there he's a great character with a lot of flaws and a lot of redeeming qualities just trying to do the best he can. as for the narrator he nailed it. I really enjoyed his performance and it was a real treat reliving this book in a new way. if you like sci-fi at all read this book! you won't regret it.

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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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent

I really enjoyed this book. Having served in Iraq, the irony of the ethically justified "Asset Realization" really struck a chord. Hamilton creates a fascinating social scenario by developing the moral arguments that logically make sense, but produce a twisted reality. About 3/4 through the book, I thought there was way to much to work out, and that this must be the first book in a series. But the book rapidly wraps up in a dramatic crescendo that is very satisfying.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Boring!

The concept was good but between the Asimov type writing and the uninvolved narration (not bad narration, just boring) I never got involved with the characters nor did I care to listen to the entire story to finish the book. I'm sure there are fans who would enjoy this book but I just didn't care enough to even keep track of the characters and the storyline. Enh, just not my cuppa sci-fi.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Hyper detailed, to a fault

Good story, narrated well. But the author goes into such minute detail of the tech that it becomes a repair manual

4 of 5 people found this review helpful