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Hyperion Audiobook

Hyperion

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Publisher's Summary

On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it.

In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all. On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope - and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands.

©1989 Dan Simmons; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

Hugo Award, Best Novel, 1990
Locus Award, Best Novel, 1990
"Dan Simmons has the Midas touch: Every genre he writes - whether SF, horror, mystery, historical, or thriller - he turns to gold. Hyperion and The Fall Of Hyperion set a new standard for grand-scale science fiction." (Kevin J. Anderson, author of The Saga of Seven Suns)
"Dan Simmons was a star from the outset. It was the Hyperion books that made him a superstar. The man, quite simply, is what we in the trade call a writer's writer." (Mike Resnick, Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author)
Each of [the pilgrim's] stories would make a superb novella on its own. (The New York Times Book Review, Gerald Jonas)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (10723 )
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4.3 (8770 )
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4.4 (8722 )
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Performance
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  •  
    mix579 Sudbury, MA 02-27-16
    mix579 Sudbury, MA 02-27-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    35
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    65
    22
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    Story
    "I understand why it's a classic, but..."

    After reading it way back when it was first published in print, I recently listened to the audiobook version and had pretty much the same reaction to it. I feel almost obligated to admire the author for his skillful weaving of a complex, multi-layered web of tales, all written in totally different styles, each of them contributing in an ingenious way to our understanding of the world that forms the backdrop to this story. Really, really well done, and I fully understand why this book is a sci-fi classic.

    Alas, in the end it all sort of falls flat for me, a classic example of arts for art's sake. Some of the tales are gripping (Detective, Poet, Soldier, ) but the others just meander on without much purpose (in particular the Consul's tale). At times it feels like a sophomore in English studies trying to squeeze as many "big" words, as many memes as possible into a paragraph to impress the professor. If someone had seriously edited the book and cut 25% out, it would have been a masterpiece. Well, there's still the issue that it really ends just when it's about to become really interesting. I'm not huge fan of blatant cliffhangers books that leave essentially everything open and bring nothing to a (at least partial) conclusion.

    The narration cast is outstanding. Having different characters narrated by different actors works extremely well here.The person reading the poet is brilliant!

    15 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Darwin8u Mesa, AZ, United States 06-04-12
    Darwin8u Mesa, AZ, United States 06-04-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17510
    ratings
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    812
    807
    FOLLOWERS
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    3693
    19
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    Story
    "BIG S, Big F, Science Fiction"

    John Keats
    John Keats
    John
    Please get your Shrike on.

    This SF novel absolutely surpassed my expectations. I loved the framing (see: The Canterbury Tales); loved the multiple styles and voices; loved the complexity; and loved the characters. There were times when I could hear echos of Isaac Asimov's The Foundation Trilogy and Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles. Anyway, it was brilliantly executed BIG S, Big F, Science Fiction.

    38 of 49 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Carolina Beach, NC, United States 05-30-09
    Richard Carolina Beach, NC, United States 05-30-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    93
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    25
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    "Uncertain but maybe..."

    I wanted to like this book so much. I love long books, I love a series of long books. Overall, however, I'm very disappointed. Simmons is a very good writer, uses language well, etc. I don't mind the sex scenes, although they seem at times gratuitous and don';t add much to the characters, and may just be a bit much. The pilgrim's individual stories, for the most part, were good and, as another reviewer said, one (in my case the story of Rachel growing younger and losing her memories) was very emotionally moving for me. And I agree that one of the stories (the last one, I think) was a bit confusing and not very interesting. I frequently felt like I was not paying as close attention as I wanted to, and finally realized that what kept running through my head was "When does the REAL story start?" It does seem like this is a giant "back story" telling how these characters got to where they are presently. I would have preferred at least starting the action with what (I presume) is in the second book, and then flashback to these backstories, but that is a personal preference.

    The ending is not what I'd want, but I guess the author and all the readers knew a sequel (or many) were coming. It didn't disappoint me nearly as much as Stephen King's ending to the Dark Tower series, but then again I enjoyed every single thing in the Dark Tower series EXCEPT the ending, so it's a little different matter.

    I'm putting any further downloads of this series on hold for the moment. I might actually re-listen to part or all of Hyperion (fast-forwarding occasionally) and then decide if I want more.

    33 of 43 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine Sandy Hook, CT, United States 01-27-13
    Christine Sandy Hook, CT, United States 01-27-13 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    107
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    373
    75
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    9
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Befuddled"

    This story is clumsily populated with anachronisms, and non-essentials juxtaposed with obvious scientific understanding.

    The author, at times leaves the story behind, apparrently for no other reason than to showcase his abilities as a writer, The story moves extremly slowly, and the only reason that I trugded through it was the overwhelmingly positive reviews that it got and that I already spent the credit on it.

    In the end, it was worth the credit but just barely. as abruptly as the first book ended, I dont know that I am interested in the main characters enough to find out what happened to them. I may or may not get it.

    This has caused me to question the reviews that a book gets.

    43 of 56 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Stone San Diego 02-24-09
    Andrew Stone San Diego 02-24-09 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1470
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2673
    83
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    351
    0
    Overall
    "Very Slow Moving Quest..."

    I downloaded this book based on the high ranking and the number of reviews.

    The story is slow moving and does not get better in the end.

    After finishing the book, my only thought was it was the big waste time...




    30 of 39 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kat67 02-08-13
    kat67 02-08-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    80
    8
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Story
    "Really tried!"

    I really tried to like this book. Based on the reviews, I bought all 4 books of the series. At the end of the first book, I disliked all the characters and could not care less what happened. The other 3 books will remain unread.

    23 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    T. Mcpherson Illinois 02-13-09
    T. Mcpherson Illinois 02-13-09 Listener Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    122
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    50
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    "Definitely worth a listen."

    Excellent book. I've seen this title on the shelf, but I never picked it up. Once I noticed it was available from audible, I figured I'd give it a try. I was not disappointed. This was just an outstanding story. It was well read by the cast and Dan Simmons is at the top of his game as he weaves the different threads of the story together. Also, it is Unabridged!! Seriously, give it a try, I'm betting you won't be disappointed. If you are like me, you will be hooked and you will need to get the other 3 books in this series! Actually, if I ever get a free moment, I might try to read them as well as listen.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric Berger Houston, TX 03-21-09
    Eric Berger Houston, TX 03-21-09 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    171
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    203
    30
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    2
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    Overall
    "Great book"

    This was really an enjoyable read, and some of the pilgrims' tales were utterly captivating. Narration is good, not great.

    Highly recommended for those who can appreciate good storytelling and aren't looking for a run-of-the-mill thriller for those with short attention spans.

    My thanks to audible for bringing this book to the audio format.

    13 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. Parish 07-28-15
    G. Parish 07-28-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    323
    ratings
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    252
    249
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    Story
    "An unusual tale"

    This is one of the more unusual tales I have seen. I loved having different cast members reading each one, but was frustrated by the tale not ending in this book. In the end I want more.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anita 11-05-12
    Anita 11-05-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    70
    1
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    0
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    Story
    "Very good, strange ending"
    Would you listen to Hyperion again? Why?

    Yes. it's complicated in a good way. I think listening twice would make one understand the story/stories (and the characteres) better


    What other book might you compare Hyperion to and why?

    Canterbury tales


    Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

    The consul


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Thomas
    Leeds, United Kingdom
    8/11/11
    Overall
    "Brilliant!"

    On the book...
    I really liked this book - and have recently finished listening to all of the series. Iain M Banks is still my favourite sci-fi author, but I'd listened to all of his audio books and wanted some more epic contemporary sci-fi and people seemed to recommend this - and rightly so. As a whole the story is definitely epic, has great characters and a really great story. In this one, the sex scenes were a bit perverse and unnecessary. I could see the idea he was going for with it - but it didn't play out well really and was pretty cheesy at times. Other than that, the story is really good and well worth reading.

    On narration...
    I didn't really think much of the narrator - it sounded like English wasn't his first language maybe. He pronounced every single word - like 'to' and 'a' - fully, which - when you actually hear it done - is quite strange. He occasionally made little errors in pronunciation - saying the 'chasm' with a soft 'ch' sound - which is a bit weird - or maybe he just did the whole thing in one take without bothering to fix the error. He also pronounced 'Aargh' exactly as it is written, with a clear 'r' and then a hard 'g' sound on the end. No-one really says that when they scream - that's just obvious - again - weird. The thing I disliked the most though was his inability to portray anything other than a small range of emotions. Whenever he took on a woman's voice - there was one set tone - and any emotion - such as anger - was not portrayed at all - it was always just 'the soft woman tone'. The range of accents for the different characters was good - just a bit more attention to tone and emotion was needed.

    10 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • A P Smith
    Bath, B&NES England
    7/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great right up until the non-existant ending"

    I'm conflicted on this one. I really enjoyed each of the characters stories (up until the last one which jumped backwards and forwards in time for no apparent reason so much that it was hard to follow), and I was expecting the stories to be linked together in some clever way by the end of the book. However the stories as far as I can tell are not linked at all (other than by the fact that the characters have all been to Hyperion before).

    Then the book just ends.

    Now I get that its the first of a series, but look at any of the great epic sci-fi series such as Foundation or Dune, and yes there is an ongoing story arc, but each book stands alone as a satisfying whole. This book reads like an introduction, there is no kind of conclusion, many questions are raised but none are answered, even partially. The Priests story in particular raised many questions, what are the cruciform lifeforms, how did they get there, how did they evolve, are they connected to the Shriek? I was hoping for at least some hints and answers by the end of the book, but there where none.

    I am now conflicted about whether to continue with the series. On the one hand I want answers to the questions raised by the first book and as I say I did enjoy the book up until the end, however on the other hand I am so annoyed that the author made no attempt at a satisfying ending to this book I am reluctant to spend more time and money on the series in case I'm left with a similar unsatisfied feeling at the end of every other book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mike
    6/4/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "No soul, no body and generally boring."

    This book was disappointing, it generally waffled in ridiculous detail when supposed to be told from a first person story telling perspective. This broke the illusion of people telling their stories for me. I cared little for the characters and the plot was bordering on juvenile with a mysterious boogie monster and random recounting of gratuitous sex to perk the audience out of their bored slumber.
    The voice performances were very good and well maintained the different personas. It's not their fault the story was rubbish.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mango Chutney
    UK
    11/5/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Hmm... Tried to like this. Have failed so far."
    What would have made Hyperion better?

    Well, if you have ever found yourself saying "please can you get to the point?", then you might struggle to get into this like I have struggled. The prologue and first chapters are intriguing, but once the first of 7 characters (a priest) began to tell his tale by referring to the diary of yet another priest - it dawned on me after listening for 2 hrs into the 'diary entries' that nothing of any note had actually happened yet! Unfortunately I then became really conscious of Dan Simmons' need to describe superfluous details and embellish nearly every object or vista with elaborate similes - all this just for diary entries!?If I had listened to this whilst kicking back, I might have not have objected, but in the car I just found myself getting bored so I've not even made it to the end of the priests tale.Might give it another go, but at the moment I'm not fussed about it.
    Maybe if it had started with someone other than the boring priest?


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Mark
    United Kingdom
    6/11/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "My new favourite book."

    I have been listening to Audiobooks for many years now. In all that time this is undoubtedly the best book I have "discovered" - absolute must for Science Fiction fans. If you just stumble across this review and like the genre then take a chance on this book (and the three following), I am sure you will not be disappointed.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tom
    West Wickham, United Kingdom
    11/19/09
    Overall
    "Brilliant and gripping story"

    I've little to add to what previous reviewers have said except that this is a truly superb audiobook. I was gripped from the word go, and was engrossed right the way through despite the book's length. Probably in the top two or three audibooks I've listened to this year. Narration is excellent. Strongly recommended.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs
    4/22/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dull!"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    No. This pilgrims progress style collection of linked short stories is painful. Multiple styles are applied, under a common context, but the characters were unsympathetic and the stories generally uninteresting. It is possible that it may just be dated but I think I am being generous. As if it wasn't a struggle to get through the dreary storylines the book had no proper conclusion and ended abruptly expecting the reader to move on to the next in the series. That's not going to happen.


    Would you recommend Hyperion to your friends? Why or why not?

    No. It is awful.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by the narrators?

    The one saving grace was the multiple narrators but it was mildly confusing and not enough to raise the product above lamentable.


    If this book were a film would you go see it?

    Definitely not


    Any additional comments?

    I don't really understand why everyone has raved about this book. It is dry, stilted and just plain dull. I have asked myself if I am just not a Sci-fi fan but this type of thing is just so much better from Issac Asimov or Iain M Banks

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Chris Storer2
    11/19/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "21 hours I will never get back"

    A real hotchpotch of narrators, the female voice grated after a while (practically every sentence she uttered end on an elongated syllable). This was a modern version of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and whilst half the stories kept interest the others palled. DON'T BOTHER

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Manchester
    11/17/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Phenomenal"

    Amazingly well recorded. The tales never get old - I'd recommend this to anyone with a sense of wonder

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • David
    11/6/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Utter tripe! abrupt ending without conclusion"

    Weak story consisting of a number of short tales. Difficult/ boring listening at times. Book ends before the revelation/ relationship is made clear.

    Had I known that there would be no conclusion, I would have abandoned this book by the third chapter.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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