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Great North Road Audiobook

Great North Road

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Publisher's Summary

A century from now, thanks to a technology allowing instantaneous travel across light-years, humanity has solved its energy shortages, cleaned up the environment, and created far-flung colony worlds. The keys to this empire belong to the powerful North family - composed of successive generations of clones. Yet these clones are not identical. For one thing, genetic errors have crept in with each generation. For another, the original three clone "brothers" have gone their separate ways, and the branches of the family are now friendly rivals more than allies. 

Or maybe not so friendly. At least that's what the murder of a North clone in the English city of Newcastle suggests to Detective Sidney Hurst. Sid is a solid investigator who'd like nothing better than to hand off this hot potato of a case. The way he figures it, whether he solves the crime or not, he'll make enough enemies to ruin his career. Yet Sid's case is about to take an unexpected turn: Because the circumstances of the murder bear an uncanny resemblance to a killing that took place years ago on the planet St. Libra, where a North clone and his entire household were slaughtered in cold blood.

The convicted slayer, Angela Tramelo, has always claimed her innocence. And now it seems she may have been right. Because only the St. Libra killer could have committed the Newcastle crime. Problem is, Angela also claims that the murderer was an alien monster. 

Now Sid must navigate through a Byzantine minefield of competing interests within the police department and the world's political and economic elite...all the while hunting down a brutal killer poised to strike again. And on St. Libra, Angela, newly released from prison, joins a mission to hunt down the elusive alien, only to learn that the line between hunter and hunted is a thin one.

©2012 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2013 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"It's a perfect introduction to his gifts for character design, dialogue, and sheer, big-idea-driven storytelling." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1792 )
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Performance
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  •  
    neil FORT PIERCE, FL, United States 07-29-13
    neil FORT PIERCE, FL, United States 07-29-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    419
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    "Ultimately, disappointing."

    This novel had lots of potential...suspense, good imagining, nice snaky plot and, starting off, at least, characters whose actions seemed to stem from natural human motives. Some pretty original sounding stuff, to boot.
    Its a long, long listen. So when the intricacies start beginning to resolve, one has put in
    a lot of hours of involved listening. I was waiting, almost eagerly, to get to the end stages.
    About halfway through, the author began throwing in junk but not enough to make me stop. By the last third, it all went south. What I seemed to end up with was pure, trite, drivel... a) another boring ecological lecture about humanity's unrelenting destruction of nature,, b) another female super hero who beats up the monster with ninja style moves c) the main protagonist, female, who changes from a complete uber rich, selfish, dishonest, decietful, sociopath (fairly interesting) into ...someone else whose loving, brave, hard working, selfless soul must have been transplanted secretly without the reader's knowledge because any reader will be hard put to figure out how she ended up with it, much less whether the story ever made clear why she deserved it. d) most males except for the uber rich ones and one cop are mostly depicted as basically dumb, simple and incompetent, who play only one note...sex..and e) an ending more reminiscent of "Its A Wonderful Life" than any decent sci fi I've come across. Overall, although I have read or listened to several books by this author and found one or two good ones, (so I believe the author has some skill), this one ends up being an ode to political correctness and easy fixes. I found it both disappointing and dishonest. Fortunately, the reader was very good or I would have ditched the thing 2/3s of the way through.

    12 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jc Kool 01-27-15
    Jc Kool 01-27-15 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Ok storyline...not as good as previous books"

    Very long and drawn out with too much time spent on explaining unimportant details. Good book to fill time...too long.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alan 04-22-14
    Alan 04-22-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I wish this was 2 different books"

    This very long audible book encompasses two novels. One is a well-written and well-plotted mystery that launches the book. (Great narration, too) The police detective characters are great and the way they solve the mystery is smartly written and plotted. The other part is basic horror story: Isolated team gets picked off one by one by knife wielding monster that stalks them. Cue scary music. And why do characters go out in a blizzard by themselves to get slaughtered again and again? Be warned: How the horror story resolves itself may make you scream: WTF! I can't help but wonder if the publisher was screaming at the author: "Finish the bloody thing already."

    Despite all of this, I do love what Hamilton tries to accomplish in his novels. He imagines interesting new worlds with complex people. I also don't mind the back and forth of the narrative, as he jumps back into time to give the reader background stories on the various characters. In this case, it is partly to keep the reader guessing. He hides key clues by doling out details slowly.

    And, yes, I'll probably listen to another Hamilton story.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex Levine Florida, USA 07-01-13
    Alex Levine Florida, USA 07-01-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Hamilton at his baroque best"

    This is a wonderful, great sprawling sci-fi mystery book, and a great way to remember what you liked about Hamilton if you've been suffering from series-fatigue after some of his recent efforts. The classical elements (setting, plot, character) all come together in a delightful tangle.

    Setting and characters are greatly enhanced by the skillful narration of Toby Longworth, who gets to show off his range to superb effect. The array of UK accents is exactly what the author ordered, all internally consistent and consistent with the text. Even the American accents are at least credible--unusual in a British reader. Female characters sound female, male characters sound male. It's all precisely as it should be.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan CA, United States 06-07-14
    Ryan CA, United States 06-07-14 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    489
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    "Enjoy Peter Hamilton, but this one didn't take"

    I've read many other Peter Hamilton novels: the Commonwealth, Void and Greg Mandel series. Loved those, but this one just didn't take. I suggest any sci fi fans who've read nothing by Peter Hamilton start with those series and in that order. Only consider 'Great North Road' after that.

    At that point, my review to those folks would be that 'Great North Road' has all the elements of those previous efforts, but it was less interesting, developed, exciting and thought-provoking. In addition, it was mired in several large sections. I recommend giving it a pass.

    To end on that first point though - I very much enjoy the many other novels of Peter Hamilton, and look forward to more!

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Aliso Viejo, CA, United States 08-11-16
    John Aliso Viejo, CA, United States 08-11-16 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Get the abridged edition"

    If you like listening to grass grow, this book is for you. There are a few exciting moments and ideas here and there but having to mow through 36 hours to get them is not worth it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    anthony millersville, MD, United States 03-15-16
    anthony millersville, MD, United States 03-15-16 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I love Peter's work. but....."

    sloooooow to get moving. I've read most of his work. this is exceptionally slow. painfully so. I'm halfway through and I'm losing interest fast. the story line is blah. although the tech aspect is as impressive as I'd expect from this author the meat and potatoes is not here. the story line could have been developed better. the subject and ideas were great but I don't think they warrant 40ish hours to get the thing told. the narrator was his normal great self. the performance was the savior here.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Tulsa, OK, United States 08-23-15
    Mark Tulsa, OK, United States 08-23-15 Member Since 2011

    My books are water; those of the great geniuses are wine; (fortunately) everybody drinks water. - Mark Twain

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Too long, waste of time!"

    Ayn Rand thinks this novel should be compressed. I've read (not listened to) Atlas Shrugged, The Stand, and several other long novels. I've listened to many long novels as well. Sometimes as you progress through a long novel you start to get the feeling of being cheated, you've invested the time and now the author is getting too far fetched. That is my feeling on this novel, it could be a lot better if it was considerably shortened and condensed.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lee Chapel Hill, NC, United States 01-12-15
    Lee Chapel Hill, NC, United States 01-12-15 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I lasted about an hour"

    I really enjoyed Hamiltons Pandora Star series. I thought the setting was fun to learn about and the characters interesting and amusing, if sometimes a little two-dimensional. This, on the other hand, featured a tedious setting/culture, and characters I could care less about.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anderson Northglenn, CO, USA 09-07-14
    Anderson Northglenn, CO, USA 09-07-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Tried to like it"

    Sorry I just could not get into this book!! I have tried Hamilton books before and I don't think he a writer for me. This was his last chance. Will not buy a Hamilton book again.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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