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Publisher's Summary

The Reality Dysfunction by Peter F. Hamilton is the first in Night's Dawn, a sweeping galactic trilogy from the master of space opera.

In AD 2600 the human race is finally realizing its full potential. Hundreds of colonized planets across the galaxy host a multitude of wildly diverse cultures. Genetic engineering has pushed evolution far beyond nature's boundaries, defeating disease and producing extraordinary space-born creatures.

Huge fleets of sentient trader starships thrive on the wealth created by the industrialization of entire star systems. And throughout inhabited space, the Confederation Navy keeps the peace. A true golden age is within our grasp.

But now something has gone catastrophically wrong. On a primitive colony planet, a renegade criminal's chance encounter with an utterly alien entity unleashes the most primal of all our fears. An extinct race which inhabited the galaxy aeons ago called it the Reality Dysfunction, and it is the nightmare which has prowled beside us since the beginning of history.

The Reality Dysfunction is followed by The Neutronium Alchemist and The Naked God.

©2016 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2016 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Story

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

great story but the performance is strained

epic story but the storyteller does not pause, at all, at the paragraphs. this causes a little confusion when the story takes a new focus.

4 of 4 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

The narrator was really good, but

the edditing had let no space between scene shifts. This results in some confusion...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

Couldn't wait for it to end

Too many characters, convoluted plot, and too long. Perhaps if it was half as long I would have listened through to the end. Instead I deleted it and read the Wikipedia entry.

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

Interesting but jumpy storyline

Read it on paper first liked a lot. Hearing was not so good. Too much jumping between different storylines without clear reference.
Story was very interesting but too much sex, I think there was no chapter without it.

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

Great but complex plot

liked the story, but production left the narrator John Lee in a bad light.
In other productions John Lee is one of the Best.
It is very hard to follow the story because it is complex and because production left No time for pauses to switch between sub stories and scenes

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

Good combo

Great author, Peter F. Hamilton, and my favorite narrator, John Lee. Already read the book and now great to listen to it.

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

Incredible performance, long winded story

Would you try another book from Peter F. Hamilton and/or John Lee?

Yes, I have listened to all of the commonwealth saga and the chronicle of the fallers. Both of which, were series I couldn't stop myself from listening to, long into the night.

What could Peter F. Hamilton have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

There are wayyyyyyy to many flash cuts between critical scenes. Too many characters to follow, and entirely too much background provided for "historical reference."

Most of this could have been edited out, and five to six main players focused on. The fact there are entire chapters devoted to people who...at most..are minor players in the overall story just frustrated me.

Moreover, there were serious climax points, that, upon completion, cut to boring techno babble, or someone sitting at a bar on a planet 1000 light years away. Where the heck was the falling action, I don't care what mr sex captain is doing at the moment, I want to know what's happening in the huge battle on the other planet!!!

Which character – as performed by John Lee – was your favorite?

John Lee did a fantastic job on his entire performance. Literally, the one saving grace in my opinion.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The story line is quite intriguing, and the premise had me hooked for many chapters. It was the flow and constant jerks between scenes during climactic events that really wore me down.

Any additional comments?

If there were an abridged version of this audio book, I would definitely give it another go.

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

Worth every bit

I've read the book before and listening to it again was wonderful. While the narrator tends to give every character a slightly snobbish tone, and it takes some getting used to, he does a very good job with accents and emotion. Very well done now on to the next book!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ag Miller
  • 11-14-16

Outstanding but...

Great book and great narrative abs reading. However it's let down by one small but massive issue. Not enough of a pause between sections! This makes it easy to get confused as to who is saying what to whom or where the action is going on.

20 of 20 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • P Hardwick
  • 11-18-16

Great story spoiled by poor audio editing..

You really have to listen hard and be prepared to skip back. Whoever editing the sound removed every pause between scenes. Within a chapter the story is told from many perspectives. Without any pauses to e a change in scene they all merge in to one and you only realise after some time the scene has changed. Frustrating.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Eamonn
  • 03-09-18

Spoilt

Other reviews point out the editting problem - there are no gaps between chapters.
Why hasn’t it been resolved 9th March 2018
Could have been brilliant

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mrs. R. E. Chandler
  • 03-09-18

Great story, good narration, poor editing

The story is great - a sprawling space opera covering multiple viewpoints and locations. The use of bespoke terminology gets a little tiresome - e.g. far too many references to "neural nanonics" and "datavising". The narration is on the whole good - a good range of voices to cover the different characters, and read in an engaging manner.

But, and it's a big but, why are Audible so useless at putting in pauses between scene changes? Far too many audiobooks have this crucial flaw - and it makes listening to a multi-viewpoint book very difficult and confusing. Seriously, all you need is a 2 second gap when the viewpoint changes. That's all. Please, editors, listen up and take note.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Ben
  • 09-24-17

Great story of true Galactic scale.

a very exciting story which is a must for any sci-fi fan. A story that requires your full attention to keep track of the various characters, threads and arcs.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ag Samson
  • 06-23-17

This man can write

Whether science fiction is your passion or philosophical debate is more your speed, PFH really makes you think as he weaves a seriously detailed narrative, populated with complex characters, around the fundamental problem that has bothered the human race since we first evolved from the apes. Incredible story telling.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • neil
  • 02-15-17

Great book, audio is poorly edited

The story is great and so is the narration, it's just that there is no pause when the scene changes which makes it sometimes difficult to follow

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Justin
  • 01-13-17

amazing, but...

truly amazing, epic, enthralling story.
only problem is that the pauses between when the story jumps between characters and locations can be very very short. the pause between chapters is perfect.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • TomE
  • 10-04-16

I can't listen to this!

I tried, but the narration was so bad I had to give up! first book I've ever given up on and I listen to about 50 per year!

the story seems confusing, but this may be bacause I just struggled to concentrate. the narrator sounds so weird, like he is reading in a second language or this is the first time he has ever read out loud.

not for me. some other reviewers seem ok with it, so I would definitely recommend listening to a sample first!

12 of 18 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
  • Neil Ellis
  • 10-15-16

Worth the wait

I have been waiting for these on the UK store for years now as they have been out in the USA for a while! But despite the wait the books are well worth it, an epic space drama story with gripping events and characters we all care about, a superb balance a possible tech, adult fun and hard science.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • james olive
  • 11-16-16

epic

so much vivid detail and advanced ideas for a 1996 book. voice acting was perfect as usual

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Linda
  • 10-19-16

Loving it!

What made the experience of listening to The Reality Dysfunction the most enjoyable?

Giving voice to the characters, can't imagine this series ever getting made into a movie.

What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

His perfect pronunciation of the quite complex writing style. His narration took time to get used to but now I'm loving it.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes!

Any additional comments?

Can't wait to listen to the other Hamilton books.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Katy
  • 06-14-17

author got his genres mixed

flashes of brilliant scifi imagination ruined by too many characters with not enough characterization to keep them all flowing. also the scifi was ruined by crossing over into the fantasy and horror genre. took 6 hours to get into the story then by the last 4 hours i realize that the next installment of the trilogy will be a demon zombie apocalypse. Sadly what I was hoping would be a great value scifi trilogy,is turning into a demon fantasy, cant stick with it. no space opera. too hard core.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • jason heap
  • 07-11-18

heavy duty listening

it was a long listen but besides a few flat hours it was deep enough and drivento keep me going until the end.

interesting concepts. I will listen to the next book after a break

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Chris
  • 07-10-18

Another Great Peter F story

Technical point, narration left no gap or pause between separate "scenes" which was a bit disorienting.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 06-08-18

loved it

so large and wonderful it doesnt cease to amaze the scale of imagination in this story

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 05-22-18

Detailed and sumptuous story

Taking into account that different people like different things, still a bit of a wooden performance from the narrator, but please do not let that put you off this series. Peter F. Hamilton is a brilliant writer, and has many titles to his name, not one can be called a boring, or tedious read. His grasp of vocabulary and sheer scope of his storytelling is a fantastic way to satisfy even the more jaded sci-fi fans. His efforts will inspire, awe, and hit you in the feels with his grand character development, shining delivery, and (combat) waspish sharpness in his depictions of scenes and attention to detail. Not to be missed!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • thefinn
  • 05-01-18

Awesome book.

What made the experience of listening to The Reality Dysfunction the most enjoyable?

Very interesting - if odd - storyline, well written and a great narrator.

What did you like best about this story?

The very different storyline - for a sci-fi.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The space battle was kind fun.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Alex Young
  • 02-13-18

Great story, poorly read

I loved the story, an epic apocalyptic tale and am looking forward to the next book in the trilogy. The reading was good except for one major criticism which is that there was no pause for page breaks. The author changes scenes regularly throughout the chapters and without appropriate pauses at paragraph/page breaks it makes it very hard to follow!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jamie
  • 12-24-17

Sci fi opera with great narration

I've read the series before but had listened to padoras star on audible and John Lee's narration is superb on both series.