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Publisher's Summary

In novels such as Chasm City and Revelation Space, Alastair Reynolds established himself as an indisputable master of the far-flung intergalactic epic. Reynolds brings that same deceptively effortless mastery to the shorter fictional forms, a fact that Troika, his elegant, compulsively listenable new novella, amply demonstrates.

Troika tells the story of men and women confronting an enigma known as the Matryoshka, a vast alien construct whose periodic appearances have generated terror, wonder, and endless debate. During its third "apparition" in a remote corner of the galaxy, a trio of Russian cosmonauts approach this enigma and attempt to penetrate its mysteries. What they discover - and what they endure in the process - forms the centerpiece of an enthralling, constantly surprising narrative.

Troika is at once a wholly original account of First Contact and a meditation on time, history, and the essentially fluid nature of identity itself. Suspenseful, erudite, and gracefully written, it is a significant accomplishment in its own right and a welcome addition to a remarkable body of work.

©2011 Alastair Reynolds (P)2016 Alastair Reynolds

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

Slipping...

I have LONG been a fan of Alastair Reynolds' books, and I "Think" I have every book by Mr. Reynolds that Audible has (Yup, Just checked)... But the last few Reynolds' Books I have bought here have been more than a bit disappointing.

This one is set in Russia in the Future. It's 2 Hours and 54 Minutes long. Two Hours, 46 Minutes, and 56 Seconds, are ALL "Tedious Set-Up". For Two Hours, 46 Minutes, and 56 Seconds, it drones ON and ON and ON (NOT the Narrator's Fault! I think he did the best he could with the material he was presented to work with)... In the last 7+ minutes, JUST as you are SURE you're going to rate this one: "Limbo Low Stars", those last 7+ minutes 'kinda' save the entire book.

Is it worth the first Two Hours, 46 Minutes, and 56 Seconds to hear the sudden (and kinda weak) plot twist? You'd have to decide that for your yourself... However, if I had the choice of buying the book again, knowing what I know now, I wouldn't.

I actually felt happy when I heard that last 4 seconds with: "Audible Hopes You've Enjoyed This Program!" Because I thought "GREAT! Now I can get on with one of these other VERY GOOD books stacked up and waiting in my iPhone!"

At least it wasn't more "ELEPHANTS - IIIIN - SPAAAAACE" (Insert Dramatic Echoing on the word "SPAAAAACE").

I think I'll be taking a break from buying any more of Mr. Reynolds' Books until he gets back to writing books like "Pushing Ice", "Revelation Space", etc...

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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

One of those books that leaves you contemplative

If you could sum up Troika in three words, what would they be?

Not easily described

Who was your favorite character and why?

If you had read the book you would know how meaningless this question is.

Which character – as performed by Wayne June – was your favorite?

The artifact

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

Yes, but you might need a few mental breaks unless you are very up on theoretical cosmology.

Any additional comments?

Totally out of this universe yet surprisingly feasible (in a billion years). This is one of those books that changes the way you think, if only just a little. The Russian narration is not very convincing but the book is not about the characters.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Intriguing space mystery

The only negative about Alastair Reynolds Troika is that it's too short. Set in the near future after global economic and environmental collapse, a Russian team of cosmonauts has returned from investigating an alien artifact that left two of the three person team dead and the remaining cosmonaut mentally deranged. After escaping from the facility, he makes his way to the apartment of the astronomer who was involved with the artifact, but discredited due to her theories about its origins. The cosmonaut relates their exploration of the artifact that appears to confirm her suspicions.

The sci-fi elements are mainly confined to physics with futuristic manipulation of time, space, and matter. The revelation about the artifact's origin is both engrossing and disturbing at the same time. Ultimately, the tale is an exploration of the nature of reality and our ability to perceive it objectively.

The narration is quite well done with an excellent rendition of Russian accents.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent story

Great story, good narration.
My only comment is that Russians don't talk like they are depicted in the story. It's more like how English-speakers think how Russians speak among themselves. A bit more linguistic research should've been done for a first-person story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

One of the best short stories ever.

I wanted more.

Every good short story makes me long for more. Being unfamiliar with the work of Alastair Reynolds, I opted for a short story to start with. I will definitely be checking out more of his work.

Wayne June is a fantastic narrator! I will also be happy to hear him read ANY audio books moving forward.

I liked the premis of the story. It was a good mystery and I could honesty imagine it as a movie in my head.

The ending was not really what I expected.

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

Great story performed by the fantastic Wayne June.

Wayne June alone makes anything worth listening to. Adding to that an intriguing story with a intriguing premise and interesting framing makes this definitely worth a listen at least once!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Short, yet deep

If you could sum up Troika in three words, what would they be?

Short, yet deep

What other book might you compare Troika to and why?

The Rama series for the discovery of an object within a reasonably reachable distance from earth, being explored by humans in the hopes of understanding the universe.

Have you listened to any of Wayne June’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I am uncertain that I have previously, but I will seek him out in the future

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The reaction I would ascribe is the dilation of thought to include a concept that I have not often explored. A bit of laughing in hysteria and crying in realization.

Any additional comments?

Being an Alastair Reynolds fan, the only reason I hadn't listened to this previously is that it was so short. Today I found myself with the right amount of time to enjoy this story in one sitting. While the amount of content may seem light, the implications and the amount of thought put into it are nigh boundless. I hope that he comes back to this universe, even in short, episodic bursts, again soon!