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Jack the Bodiless (Galactic Milieu Trilogy #1)

4.12  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,189 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
Pan edition paperback fine In stock shipped from our UK warehouse
Paperback, 495 pages
Published August 13th 1992 by Pan Books (first published 1991)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I was introduced to Julian May’s Galactic Milieu in her Saga of Pliocene Exile series (I’ve read three out of four and find them fabulous). So when I found the first two books of her Galactic Milieu trilogy at my local used book shop, I grabbed them fast and headed directly to the till.

Although I enjoyed this novel, I didn’t find it nearly as entrancing as the Pliocene books and it’s taken me a little while to figure out why. There are multiple points of view, which I’m okay with. I think what
I got hooked on this series and this entry, the first, did the trick. An unexpected story line that works really well even if you figure it all out in the first few pages. Very technical and intricate but leaves you wanting a lot more detail about all the powers that these characters possess and struggle with as an essential plot line.

The whole of the Remillard clan come across in human terms that strongly balances the obvious differences that makes them 'not like the others'.

If you start this T
Mara van Ness
Jun 17, 2013 Mara van Ness rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Galactic Milieu is probably my favourite series ever. I re-read all of them (including the prequels Surveillance and Metaconcert) every few years or so and they never disappoint. In my opinion, one of the strengths of this series is its characterisation. I adore Jack (who despite his physical state is so very very human), but I also love Rogi and Marc and Denis and Dorothea/Diamond Mask and basically all of the other characters. In some places the writing gets a bit tedious (I don't particularly ...more
Rod Lindsey
Jun 25, 2014 Rod Lindsey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first got this book, not knowing what it was about, because the title was interesting. I now own three copies, one a first edition, another a signed, numbered readers-edition. It is that good. On my first read, when it was over, I was hopeful for humanity, that someone could still write a book that good. I just re-read it and got goose bumps at the end. So very worth your time as a reader.
Brad Oster
Apr 12, 2010 Brad Oster rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the best series I have read. Though I read it back in the 80's, I have since re-read it a couple of times and I still find it engaging. Personal tastes I suppose...
Jan 01, 2013 Kathleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
read before June 1993
love this whole series, but especially liked this part of it
Lisa Eskra
Jan 17, 2010 Lisa Eskra rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Within the first 13 chapters I realized this book had a fatal flaw -- multiple personality disorder. Rogi is the protagonist, and he works in that regard. But there are at least a dozen other characters, many of them too minor to deserve a POV of their own. Due to this fact, I never felt a great connection to any of the characters. The reader never stays in the head of any of them long enough (with the sole exception of Rogi). The POV problem felt glaring, especially early on. I didn't like jump ...more
Hali Sowle
I first read this back in 1992 when it was published and felt it was one of the best sci-fi books I had read to that point. When I saw that it was released on the Kindle I scooped it, and the rest of the Galactic Milieu series, up and hoped it was as good as I remembered. It was. The book hasn't really grown old, the technology that she writes about is not out-dated, the central theme of the book -metaphysical powers, the effect of being a immature part of a galactic unity and the desire to stay ...more
Jun 06, 2013 Brent rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite books. This is the first one that sucked me into the Galactic Milieu series and then later into the Pliocene prequel series. So Jack the Bodiless is technically book #6 since its based in the future, but only if you look at like the stupid Star Wars re-numbering insanity lol. Actually its Pliocene 1-4, Intervention which is book 5 (though some countries broke it into two books) and then the Galactic Milieu which are books 6-8. (honestly I had to re-edit this as I confused myse ...more
Mar 27, 2011 Andreas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The scope of this saga spanning eight novels is staggering. A gate is opened to the past, specifically the Pliocene era. But it is a one-way trip. Adventurous souls travel back, and find a world unlike any they could imagine. Epic conflict rages between ancient races, and the future destiny of man is decided. The initial four books make up The Saga of Pliocene Exile.

* The Many-Coloured Land
* The Golden Torc
* The Nonborn King
* The Adversary

These can be read as a standalone series, but who wou
Jan 23, 2007 Maddie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sciencefiction
How can you go wrong with a book that starts with "It was a dark and stormy night..."? This is the first book of The Galactic Milieu Trilogy. In addition there is a set of prequels and post-quels to the trilogy.

I'm a sucker for good plot and this series definitely has it. In addition, it also has great humor, lots of big words (a dictionary by my side at all times), and impeccable research (who knew that you could still buy ice axes are REI in the year 2113?).

And so the first paragraph continu
Patrick Hadley
This book was kinda interesting. It was just good enough for me to finish, but when it was over I realized it was total garbage. Most of what happens in the middle of the book doesn't have any bearing whatsoever on the end or the beginning. It's about 300 pages of wasted words. If it weren't for the somewhat amusing character of Uncle Rogi, I would've given up on it long ago. As it stands, I started reading the second one, and I may never stop regretting that mistake.
Vicki Ellerhorst
I've read it before. Enjoyed it more now. Family and Science. What a combo. Hollywood should try this series. Don't know why they haven't. Humans & Exotics just trying to get along. A very sick little boy to worry about. And a Metapsychic bogyman to contend with. A trilogy that ends and circles around to begin with The Pliocene Exiles series. This trilogy starts with The Intervention duo and shouldn't be missed.
Dec 28, 2013 Ataahua rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The strongest of the four books in May's Galactic Milieu series, Jack the Bodiless packs a punch that will leave readers breathless. Brilliant plotting. (Note that the series starts with a prequel, Intervention.)
Earl Baugh
Feb 08, 2014 Earl Baugh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my all time favorite SF books. EXCELLENT!
This actually falls in the "middle" of the world Julian May has created, but it was an EXCELLENT place to dive in.
Jim Mcclanahan
Sep 28, 2015 Jim Mcclanahan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Characters were too self absorbed for me to get all the way through this. Then there's the prospect of two more lengthy novels. Couldn't make myself do it.
Mar 16, 2014 Kristeen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read
The entire series gets better each reading. Why isn't this a movie yet?
Chelsea Shotts
Jun 18, 2015 Chelsea Shotts rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book had crazy vocabulary and it took a bit to get into the story, but I couldn't stop reading. I ordered the second book in the series through my library and can't wait to find out more about the characters.

Don't bother reading this book if you don't plan on reading the whole series though, because none of the plot lines were wrapped up by the end of this book really, there's great development, lots of excitement, and many deaths, but every bit of new information leads to more questions;
Jul 29, 2013 Ria rated it it was amazing
Amazing book, so well written and such a gripping plot.
Intervention has happened and Earth is on the brink of being accepted into the Galactic milieu but things are not running smoothly, a metapsychic child is born to Teresa Kendall a member of the Remillard dynasty, he is an incredibly gifted being who is fighting for his own survival against medical odds as his body is fighting against him and only his mind is keeping him alive together with the help of medical science.
Uncle Rogi and Marc Rem
Sep 12, 2012 Ben rated it liked it
This is probably the third time I have read this book, possibly the fourth. It seems that it is a natural continuation of a cycle which begins with The Many-Colored Land and ends up with The Adversary. Inevitably, I want to read more and Intervention follows, which is also an excellent book.

Sadly, after all those great reads, Jack falls somewhat flat. To be sure, there are some vague glimpses of the overstory which are appreciated, and it is interesting to see the continuing story of Remillard f
Ward Bond
Jun 25, 2012 Ward Bond rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

In the year 2051, Earth stood on the brink of acceptance as full member of the Galactic Milieu, a confederation of worlds spread across the galaxy. Leading humanity was the powerful Remillard family, but somebodyor somethingknown only as "Fury" wanted them out of the way.
Only Rogi Remillard, the chosen tool of the most powerful alien being in the Milieu, and his nephew Marc, the greatest metapsychic yet born on Earth, knew about Fury. But even they were powerless to stop it when it began to kil

Alan Denham
Nov 08, 2012 Alan Denham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: just-paper
This is officially the first in the Galactic Milieu Trilogy. Readers may prefer to regard it as the equel to Intervention (my review here) or the sixth in Julian May's Saga (review here). Although it is officially 'first in the set' I do not recommend starting here. Quite strongly do not recommend!
That aside, provided you started the series somewhere else, this is a pretty good book. Some of the mind-powers scenarios tested my 'suspension of disbelief' pretty close to its limit (and that is th
Jul 15, 2014 Nathaniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Again, an excellent novel exploding with detail. Amazing characters, wonderfully descriptive and lush writing. It's a commitment to read, but well worth it.
Another slow burn. My goodness you need to have your wits about you to untangle the various relationships in the dynastic 3 generations and multicultural Remillard clan. If you can keep going for about 250 pages, you'll get Jon's birth, motorbikes, flames, naked brains and alien mating habits. Conversations between the baddies Hydra and Fury are well written, and now read like twitter conversations (bizarre).
Again well researched, but for a scifi fantasy it's hard work: I liken it to a mountain
Sep 30, 2015 Jenn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Before Reading: I first read this and Diamond Mask in the 90s as a teen thanks to my dad. But then I got grounded for bad grades and never got to read the last one. (Who else here has gotten grounded from books?? Lol) I recently started thinking about them again and asked my dad if he still had them. He did and had actually just reread them himself last year. I hope I enjoy it as much this time!
Jun 17, 2015 Fiona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love these books so much. Just as good this time round as the first time
April Moore
Jul 19, 2014 April Moore rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent, excellent story in a fascinating universe.
May 02, 2009 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This Sci/fi-fantasy series by Julian May gets top ranking from me for character development, virtuoso story telling, and an intricate if somewhat dated plot line. This particular volume of her 9 book series is perhaps my favorite, probably because most of it is narrated by the warm hearted, irascible, and quirky Uncle Rogi, who is so real he feels like someone I actually know rather than just a character in a book.

I probably re-read (or at least skim through) this entire series every 5 years or
Rob Carr
Nov 01, 2014 Rob Carr rated it really liked it
An interesting read. I had read an earlier series of May's which I really enjoyed so jumped when I saw this one. The first book holds promise for it being a good trilogy.
John Devlin
Simply the best space opera, and the best series of novels I've ever read. This is the first of the nine, and while the last three show signs of fatigue, these novels capture a cast of characters, and one in Marc Remillard, that are truly memorable. From the worlds and milieu May imagines to her evocative themes, the novels capture humanity with all its foibles and promise, and if you stick around for #6, you'll get the best plot twist in all of bookdom.
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Pseudonym Ian Thorne, J.C. May, Lee N. Falconer.
More about Julian May...

Other Books in the Series

Galactic Milieu Trilogy (4 books)
  • Diamond Mask (Galactic Milieu Trilogy, #2)
  • Intervention (Intervention #1-2)
  • Magnificat (Galactic Milieu Trilogy, #3)

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