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Abaddon's Gate (The Expanse #3)

4.16  ·  Rating Details  ·  22,711 Ratings  ·  1,541 Reviews
For generations, the solar system – Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt – was humanity’s great frontier. Until now. The alien artefact working through its program under the clouds of Venus has emerged to build a massive structure outside the orbit of Uranus: a gate that leads into a starless dark.

Jim Holden and the crew of the Rocinante are part of a vast flotilla of scienti
Paperback, UK, 539 pages
Published June 4th 2013 by Orbit (first published 2013)
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Aj We don't know that the slow zone is enforced inside the station, and since it's a security measure meant to protect against the ships it makes sense…moreWe don't know that the slow zone is enforced inside the station, and since it's a security measure meant to protect against the ships it makes sense that it would only be outside.
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Aj It's not a bed it's a crash couch. It's job is to dampen inertia during burns. There's multiple paragraphs in all three books describing how it works.…moreIt's not a bed it's a crash couch. It's job is to dampen inertia during burns. There's multiple paragraphs in all three books describing how it works. Including several descriptions of it's limitations in the first book when they are chasing ceres. It's able to keep you alive during high g maneuvers at up to 7g. The ships were mostly going well under the limit, meaning they weren't going faster than the couch could compensate for. The ships that were going closer to the limit stop responding after the slow down, implying every one is dead. (less)
The Republic of Thieves by Scott LynchA Memory of Light by Robert JordanEmperor of Thorns by Mark  LawrenceThe Daylight War by Peter V. BrettThe Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Can't Wait Sci-Fi/Fantasy of 2013
17th out of 621 books — 3,265 voters
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil GaimanAncillary Justice by Ann LeckieThe Best of All Possible Worlds by Karen LordAbaddon's Gate by James S.A. CoreyDivinity and The Python by Bonnie  Randall
2013 Speculative Fiction
4th out of 127 books — 101 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Mar 14, 2016 Kemper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, space, aliens, 2015, expanse
There’s a utopian idea in some sci-fi like Star Trek that humanity exploring space will bring out the best in us as a species. I think that anyone who believes that hasn’t paid enough attention to what we are actually like. That’s one of the big reasons that I’m loving this series. It shows that people suck whether they’re on Earth, Mars, a moon, an asteroid, a spaceship, or exploring an alien construct built by an ancient protomolecule.

This third book in the Expanse series picks up shortly aft
Per Gunnar
I do not think I have read a book series before which have gone from really great to really disappointing in one go like this one just did. There is nothing wrong with the writing itself. It is as good as before. It is the content, the story itself, which is simply disappointing as far as I am concerned.

Apart from Holden and his crew all the nice characters from the previous book like Bobby and the likable bitch Avasarala are gone. The new ones introduced are nowhere near those that we lost in t
Jun 05, 2013 Matthew rated it it was amazing
I've been waiting for this book since I finished the previous book in the series. I've been actively anticipating it for the past few months. I've been hungering after it for the past week or so. So, with all those high expectations, did Abaddon's Gate live up to my hopes?

Why, yes. Yes, it did.

It had everything I could hope for in a science fiction novel. Great characters: check. Great worldbuilding: check. Awesome journeys through the depths of space into mysterious... things: check. Pulse-poun
Feb 16, 2016 Carol. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Corey, series completionists
Recommended to Carol. by: Algernon
Shelves: sci-fi, male-lead
Three and a half stars.

Just for funsies, I'm going to leave the last paragraph of my full review:

Strangely, for all the focus on the McGuffin Ring, there’s very little focus on the science, mechanics and impact of the Ring. It remains a philosophical point. At the finale, I felt like the book turned into an Aesop’s fable, action scenes notwithstanding. However, Miller’s provides an excellent summation with his pronouncement, “I keep warning you. Doors and corners, kid. That’s where they get you
John Carter McKnight
Jun 17, 2013 John Carter McKnight rated it it was amazing
I'm simply gobsmacked. The first two volumes were terrific and really good respectively, but they didn't prepare me for the gut-wrenching brilliance of this volume. This deserves to be ranked as one of the classics of military SF, religious SF and space opera, all at once.

The characterization here is stunning: one of the viewpoint characters is the "main villain," and if there were nothing but her internal perspective, this would be some first-rate writing. Add on the trilogy heroes, a lesbian
Travis Weir
Sep 11, 2013 Travis Weir rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi
I'm utterly flabbergasted at all of the 5 star ratings that this book received. It truly was not even close to a 5 star effort. I for one am shocked at the bollocks the authors made of things in this, the third part of The Expanse.

Where do I start ?

The first two books were truly brilliant, and Caliban's War ended with a dandy of a cliffhanger with the protomolecule in full threat and Miller making his mysterious comeback. With regards to taking advantage of the protomolecule threat, and all of t
Nov 01, 2013 Algernon rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013

If humanity were capable of being satisfied, then they'll still be living in trees and eating bugs out of one another's fur. Anna had walked on a moon of Jupiter. She'd look up through a dome-covered sky at the great red spot, close enough to see the swirls and eddies of a storm larger than her home world. She'd tasted water thawed from ice as old as the solar system itself. And it was that human dissatisfaction, that human audacity that had put her there.

Book three of the Expanse series offer
Mar 03, 2016 Sanaa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
[4 Stars] This one wasn't quite as good as the first in the series. I think the ending really picked up, but the beginning was fairly meh. It's also strange because this book has a large scope, but everything takes place in fairly close quarters. It gave a different kind of feel to the book than the other two, not bad, but it made me feel less connected to the characters, particularly Melba. I really loved Anna and Bull, but I feel like Bull's story was just left hanging if you know what I mean. ...more
Milo (Bane of Kings)
The Full Review:

“There are some series that I wish could go on forever, and The Expanse is one that fulfils that category. James SA Corey delivers another stunning entry with Abaddon’s Gate, and therefore Book Four cannot come fast enough.” ~The Founding Fields

James SA Corey is the penname of Daniel Abraham & Ty Frank, for those people who do not already know – if you’ve been following the series or at least have read the first volume, then you’ll
Mr. Matt
Jul 04, 2015 Mr. Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, 2015, aliens
The mystery of the protomolecule seems to be finally unraveled at the end of book two. The alien artifact hi-jacked Venus to build a massive ring out beyond Uranus; however, questions remain. What is the purpose of the gate? What does it do? Earth, Mars and the OPA send what remains of their navies along with premier scientists, spiritual leaders and even artists to investigate. With Holden there too trouble starts almost immediately.

Clarissa Mao, the daughter of Jules-Pierre Mao and the owner o
David Sven
Jun 16, 2013 David Sven rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Holden and the crew of the Rocinante are back and ready to save the solar system once again in another popcorn devouring, action, blockbuster style space opera.

The protomolecule has built a large structure in space. Nobody knows what it does but Earth, the Martians and the OPA all want a piece of it. Everybody whose anybody from Governments to religious celebrities to the media wants a look see - and the crew of the Rocinante is there ready to cash in when they receives an offer they can't refus
Apr 01, 2016 Robyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
A solid middle book that get us to a seriously interesting place.
Mar 06, 2016 Justine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Another solid addition to the series. The format of adding new POV characters while also following the core characters continues to work well and keeps the story fresh. I'm looking forward to the next installment!
Jun 08, 2013 Donna rated it it was amazing
Wow. This was a great start to my summer reading. I thought the first book, Leviathan Wakes, was great, the second book, Caliban's War, was even better and this one was a fabulous ending for the trilogy.

I had the luxury of diving into it on a three day, 1600 mile road trip with my husband doing all the driving. You know the book is good when he would pipe up with "Could you fill up my water bottle, please" and (on the inside anyway) I'm all grumbling "Really? Again? You drink too much water and
Mar 13, 2016 Brandon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, syfy, 2016
When we last left things, whatever the Protomolecule had been doing on Venus following Eros Station’s crash landing appears to have come to an end. The bad news? Well, it sort of constructed this giant mysterious mechanical ring that drifted off into space and made its way into Uranus’ (heh heh) orbit. No one knows what it is, or what its intentions are, so several ships from Mars, Earth and the OPA (Outer Planets Alliance) have decided to park their ships in front of it and just sort of.. wait ...more
Oct 18, 2013 Ric rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Space opera done well can be very good indeed. And in the first two books of this series, the authors caught the right seam and mined it. The alien protomolecule was a malevolent entity that drove the narratives forward like an eight-cylinder engine. In this 3rd book, the alien has risen out of Venus and formed a ring in the outer solar system. Again another intriguing SFnal concept that provides impetus, at least for the first part of Book 3. Various parties head for the ring, including the mai ...more
Jun 19, 2013 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, read-2013
5 Stars

Strip this series down to what matters most… James SA Corey(the pen name of Daniel Abraham & Ty Frank) have written a science fiction series in a way that matters most, it is so much freaking fun to read. Each book has upped the ante on the weight of the issues, on the creativity of the bad guys, and also the fun factor that Holden and his cohorts have brought to the game. The crew of the Rocinante are now my favorite space fearing Scooby gang.

Some criticize the different pacing of e
Jul 21, 2013 Darnell rated it it was ok
Wait! Wait! Something doesn't make sense.


If the alien computer system created a "slow zone" that changed the laws of physics and created a speed limit, then a Marine lobbed a grenade at an alien security thing which caused the speed limit to instantly change which lead to so horrific casualties in the human fleet because nothing could move faster than a lobbed grenade, then how in the hell is the final third of the book a huge gun battle? Did I miss the part where Miller made bullets
Jun 16, 2013 Janet rated it liked it
Arg this book is frustrating. I enjoyed Leviathan Wakes, and was excited to see how the world developed. Caliban's War I thought really delivered on that promise, introducing characters far more interesting then the first book and expanding the world. This book...not so much.

There are two glaring issues with this book. The first is Melba. I can't think of another word other than obvious. From the moment she is introduced, it's both incoherent with what was established in the last two books, and
Sep 18, 2014 Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Can't get enough of this series. It has continued to capture my attention. My involvement with the main characters couldn't be stronger. It reminds me greatly of how I felt reading about Royce and Haydrian in the Riyia series. Total immersion.

I am getting on a plane, so not going to write anymore. Needless to say, starting book four as i cruise above Australia.
Apr 27, 2016 Efka rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I'll keep this one short:

First two books were undoubted 5*, so you must be wondering, why Abaddon's Gate gets only 3*. The main reasons are:
* Too long. It's the first book in the series, which has some unnecessary scenes and events, which generally lead to nothing;
* Some characters are weaker than those of 1&2 books;
* Lack of Rocinantes' crew;
* Very limited space of the plot.

On the bright side, for the first time in the series it has a villain's viewpoint. That was quite a pleasant change, a
Mar 12, 2016 Richard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi

The weakest of the three in the series I have read to date but it still comes up with the goods come the end. With three new viewpoints and some key plot elements coming along from the previous novels things take time to get moving, not too dissimilar to the last book in fact, but where the last book got going after the 25% mark this seemed to take well into 75% before it got to "can't put this down!" stage.

The main issue for me was the new viewpoints were lacking in comparison to the previo
Executive Summary: Not nearly as good as Caliban's War, but still quite enjoyable for me. Eagerly looking forward to Cibola Burn now.

Audio book: The quality is about the same as the previous two. Mr. Mays is a good, but not great reader.

One of the POV characters is Russian, but he doesn't read her that way. That'd be fine except that there are times when she interacts with other characters and he seems to deliver her lines with a bit of a Russian accent, so I don't really get the inconsistency
Tudor Ciocarlie
Jun 16, 2013 Tudor Ciocarlie rated it it was amazing
By far the best book of the Expanse series. Reading Abanddon's Gate is like watching a combination of the best episodes from Battlestar Galactica and Firefly. It has the big starship and all the gravitas of the Battlestar Galactic, but also a very humane and ironic captain, a bad-ass with a Vera kind of a gun, a woman engineer, a modified super-girl and even a preacher. It is not an easy feat, taking the zombie and crime-noir story from the first volume and guide it to the glorious and spectacul ...more
Tom Merritt
Jul 13, 2013 Tom Merritt rated it it was amazing
I'll admit I was unsure ant this one at first. I was very excited to head out with Holden and crew again but it to so,e effort to want to get to know Anna and Bull. But the end it was definitely worth it. As a fanboy I'd always want more of the Rocinante crew, but that work to get to know these characters definitely pays off with an emotional end.
Due to my large December tbr, reviews will resume probably in January. Quick review: Still very enjoyable, but not as good as the first two. It's more of a 3,5 stars. I didn't connect with the new povs as much as with Avasarala and Bobbie in Caliban's War and missed them.
Feb 03, 2015 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: chaplains in space, alien ghosts, mutinous security chiefs
I tend to skip around a lot between series - it's rare nowadays that I go straight from one book in a series to the next. But I happened to pick up Caliban's War and Abaddon's Gate together during one of Audible's frequent 2-for-1 sales, and I enjoyed the second book in the Expanse series so much that I just went straight into the third.

Abaddon's Gate picked up where Caliban's War left off: the alien protomolecule has been building a massive alien ring in the outer solar system, to unknown purpo
aPriL does feral sometimes
Feb 10, 2016 aPriL does feral sometimes rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
The Hebrew term Abaddon (Hebrew: אֲבַדּוֹן, 'Ǎḇaddōn), and its Greek equivalent Apollyon (Greek: Ἀπολλύων, Apollyon), appear in the Bible as a place of destruction and an angel, respectively. In the Hebrew Bible, abaddon is used with reference to a dwelling place of the dead, often appearing alongside the better-known term שאול (sheol). In the New Testament Book of Revelation, an angel called Abaddon is shown as the king of an army of locusts; his name is first transcribed in Greek (Revelation 9 ...more
This third novel in the Expanse series seems to lose puff the further up the gravity well it goes. The outstanding POV characters (über-marine Bobbie and potty-mouthed politician Avasarala) who gave so much color and vitality to Caliban's War are now gone. Also noticeably absent is a sense of wonder about an alien-constructed portal to who-knows-where opening at the edge of the solar system. Instead, the various contingents of Earth, Mars and Belters practically trip over each other in the scrum ...more
Mar 07, 2016 Scott rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, sci-fi
Damn! That was awesome in so many ways. The characters continue to make this series so kick ass, and we get introduced to some new ones that I enjoyed, especially Bull.

This series continues its rise up my favorites list, and it's definitely made me more interested in Sci-Fi as a result.
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Science Fiction A...: * Book 3: Abbadon's Gate 4 7 8 hours, 46 min ago  
Leviathan's Wake/Caliban's War Recap? 2 73 Mar 27, 2014 10:58AM  
The Not a Book Cl...: * AG: Finished! *Spoilers* 7 51 Feb 02, 2014 10:09AM  
The Not a Book Cl...: AG: New Characters (spoiler for first few chapters) 13 40 Jan 28, 2014 12:01PM  
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Other Books in the Series

The Expanse (9 books)
  • Leviathan Wakes (Expanse, #1)
  • Caliban's War (Expanse, #2)
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  • Babylon's Ashes (Expanse, #6)
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