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The Neutronium Alchemist (Night's Dawn, #2)
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The Neutronium Alchemist (Night's Dawn #2)

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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  9,935 ratings  ·  185 reviews
The ancient menace has finally escaped from Lalonde, shattering the Confederation's peaceful existence. Those who succumbed to it have acquired godlike powers, but now follow a far from divine gospel as they advance inexorably from world to world.


On planets and asteroids, individuals battle for survival against the strange and brutal forces unleashed upon the universe. G
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Paperback, 1137 pages
Published December 10th 2008 by Orbit (first published January 1st 1997)
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Dirk Grobbelaar

Unity infected them with strength

The Night’s Dawn trilogy is enormously ambitious. It’s a brobdingnagian story, to be sure, and the very fact that Hamilton even comes close to pulling it off is very, very impressive. I still have to read the final installment, but things look right cozy from here. On the other hand, I don’t care a whole lot for the way he holds his readers hostage: was that a cliffhanger or what?

Thematically, the story does strike a few weird chords, but it’s all cool. The dead
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Apatt
I read the The Reality Dysfunction, the first book of the Night's Dawn Trilogy in August 2012, I just finished this second volume The Neutronium Alchemist on December 13, 2013. So more than one year has elapsed since reading the first one. With a leaky memory like mine a lot of details have fallen by the wayside during the intervening period. Going back to reread the 1000+ pages of The Reality Dysfunction is out of the question. I considered reading up summaries in Wikipedia or some other web s ...more
Ethan
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Trilogy

I had some misgiving about the first book, The Reality Dysfunction, especially concerning the sexual politics in what was supposed to be, in some sense, utopian science fiction (see my review ).

Happily, a lot of the stuff I didn't like about the first one is absent or at least toned down a lot in the second one. I learned to accept that this universe isn't supposed to be utopian, and I've been much happier for it. Maybe that was more a marketin
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Amanda
I think I'm going to have to do a more thorough review later. At this point, I'm just going to focus on mechanics.

I like this book. And this series. Honestly, I do. However, I'm at the point where I really think that the whole Night's Dawn series was actually written as one big tome of an epic, and the publishers decided to break it into three (or six, as you decided to buy them) novels just for the sake of the spine. And geez, what a doorstopper a 3500 page book would be anyway. There are just
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Fred Hughes
An epic space opera about the here and the hereafter and what happens when souls from the hereafter (called the beyond in the book) come back and possess the bodies of the living.

The Kavanagh sisters, Louise and Genevieve, know they have to leave Norfolk after they narrowly miss being possessed like the rest of their family. With the help of Fletcher Christian (of Mutiny on the Bounty infamy) they do eventually get off the planet.

In New California most of the 40 million inhabitants are possessed
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Kevin
Previously, on Night's Dawn Trilogy:

Satanists: Hail Satan!
Curious, wandering energy-matrix being: Hmmm? What's all this now? No, no, NOOO!
*some continuum is ruptured, allowing for the return of tortured souls to possess the living an exhibit abilities like: causing technology to fail around them, manipulating appearances/matter, torturing the living so they can be possessed, and eventually whisking the planet they have taken over out of the universe! They are the possessed!*
Galactic Confederatio
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Nico
This took me a real long time to finish...1,2k pages Peter F. Hamilton. But it was totally worth it. After the huge setup of the world and the many, many story arcs and characters in the first book, this one felt really fluent right from the start.
The story is just monumental epic and it's easy to lose track of what is happening where.
I'm not really a fan of the reality disjunction concept, but interested to see where Hamilton will lead the story in the third book.
William
Apr 05, 2015 William rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 16+
My laundry list:

1. This 2nd book (1997) of the Nights Dawn trilogy suffers badly in it's first 1/4 by repeats of "fantasy" battles between humans and the magically-overpowered Possessed on the ground. (I do not like magic and fantasy mixed into my Sci-Fi at all)

2. The choice of the author to resurrect historical villains (and even heroes) of the past was a very bad one: Al Capone, Christian Fletcher, etc, are comedically overwritten and are simply slaps in the face of serious sci-fi readers. I m
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Robert
Too long, too slow, too many characters: There was just enough additional mystery added for me to want to read the final volume.
Peter
The second part in the night's dawn trilogy. It the first book the dead returned. In this second book you see how the non possessed try to fight back against the dead who due to their nature seem to have a lot of advances in the struggle.

This suffers a bit from being the middle book in a trilogy phenomenon. The story starts in media res and there is not a real conclusion at the end. But in between the beginning and the end of this book you get over 1200 pages of cool situations, clever solutions
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Roddy Williams
‘NOT EVERY FALLEN ANGEL COMES FROM HEAVEN…

The ancient menace has finally escaped from Lalonde, shattering the Confederation’s peaceful existence. Those who succumbed to it have acquired godlike powers, but now follow a far from divine gospel as they advance inexorably from world to world.

On planets and asteroids, individuals battle for survival against the strange and brutal forces unleashed upon the Universe. Governments teeter on the brink of anarchy, the Confederation Navy is dangerously over
...more
Steve Rippington
The second part of the Nights Dawn Trilogy sets off at break-neck speed, starting straight after the events of the Reality Dysfunction. Peter F Hamilton introduces a whole new cast of interesting characters, including some quite funny historical figures, whilst developing the best characters from the first book! The number of characters in this book seems more manageable than in the first, making it much easier to keep track with who's doing what.

The writing is short and snappy, keeping the read
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Osamah
I only finished this book because I took it on a s personal challenge having invested 1500+ pages into the series. I'm willing to put up with the extremely slow world building of book 1 if it pays off in books 2 and 3, but based on 2 I doubt that the conclusion will be satisfying.

This book is a very slog. It's way too much soap opera. I started reading Hamilton with the Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained followed by The Void trilogy. If I had started with the Night's Dawn I doubt I'd have stuck
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Thomas
‘The Neutronium Alchemist’ demonstrates many things; drama, action, wit, intelligence but most of all it boasts staying power. I read and enjoyed ‘The Reality Dysfunction’ although I commented on how bloated it felt; incorporating many plot threads that went nowhere or weren’t developed upon. It’s a description I stand by, the first book in this trilogy could have been a much tighter more condense read, however those extra chapters weren’t just fat. Slowly but surely Peter F. Hamilton has been p ...more
Matt Schiariti
Really and truly awed. I've read authors with wild imaginations before but Peter F. Hamilton is on another level. He's to science fiction what Ken Follett (another favorite of mine) is to historical fiction/period pieces.

This book is so sprawling that I almost don't know how to review it! The novel's central plot is focused on Alkhad Mzu, which if you've read the Reality Dysfuntion you should recognize. Where she seemed to play a minor type roll in the first novel, her involvement in the story h
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Ryan
The second epic part of Hamilton's epic-length epic about an epic war in an epic science fiction future. Did I mention that it's epic? Because it is pretty epic. Perhaps too much so. Hamilton's space opera is filled with larger than life characters, dramatic escapes, technicolor explosions, super-future tech -- described in plenty of loving technobabble -- and plots within plots within plots.

(Spoilers follow)

Among the multiple plotlines, the central story is the rise of various factions of the
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David
If the second part of a trilogy is supposed to be the weakest link, this one is in no way disappointing. 1200 pages that didn't bring anything really new vs the first book of the serie, it just makes you long for the finale (which I just started reading) and hoping we're heading for a worthy conclusion. It might just be that the serie is too "high tech for the sake of high tech" for my taste, in which case I know I'll be disappointed by the third volume too - and then will have lost a looooooooo ...more
Mark Schlatter
A big step forward from the first book of the trilogy. Unlike the first book, there is much more exploration of the central premise (not given here to avoid spoilers) --- both philosophically and logistically. If I had seen more of this material in the first book, I wouldn't have waited a year to read the second book. Also, this volume ends on some great cliffhangers.

However, I still have problems following the extremely large cast. Often, names drift by while I'm reading and I hope I remember w
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Samir
This is book 2 of a trilogy (or books 3-4 of a hexology if you buy the paperbacks) and it continues the space opera starting with The Reality Dysfunction. I'm torn between giving it 2 stars or 3, because it was entertaining enough to keep reading, and I want to see what happens in the end, but wow this thing drags on. The book provides a handy "cast of characters" detailing exactly 150 names from the last book that you'll need to remember for this book. Call me simple, but I feel like the author ...more
Kenzie Lamar
This series was very hard for me to read. I loved Greg Mandel and wanted to love this series but in the end it left me confused at times, frustrated here and there, bored, and finally angry with the conclusion of the series. In the end I will say I just barely liked this series. It almost went the other direction for me. I can't really recommend it. The characters and ideas are interesting but the story was incredibly slow and boring. Marrying Sci-Fi with paranormal just didn't need to be in the ...more
Damon Smith
I really wanted to like this after the fantastic first book, equal parts horror and sci-fi. Yet, this 2nd part was pretty ridiculous. Al Capone coming back from the dead was quite a stupid idea I thought, and the bulk of the book was "run away from possessed, reach new planet, possessed catch up, run away from possessed" etc etc...

And yet, the pure terror of the threat that you felt in the first book is completely nullified in this book, as the humans enter negotiations with the possessed, as so
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Shay
First off, this series is truly a space opera. If you look at the reviews from people who didn't like this book, they all complain about this fact. There are tons of characters, settings, and plot lines. It's a lot to keep track of. You either enjoying reading science fiction this deep or you don't. Personally, I love it.

This book is the second in the series, and, as such, was much easier to get into than the first just because you understand Hamilton's world and terminology now. Naturally, som
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Emily
The only book I have finished between the Canada marathon and now is The Neutronium Alchemist, the sequel to The Reality Dysfunction. The main reason I kept reading is that the price/time ratio of these books can’t be beat--they cost the same as a mass market paperback and each one kept me busy for weeks. That said, the entertainment value is debatable. The second volume of the series had all the problems of the first, but it lacked the novelty of introducing new worlds and technologies. Some of ...more
Joakim Ruud
Peter F. Hamilton is a huge cheat. He will cheat with his characters and his setting in order to set up the events he wants to set up. Nowhere is there a sense that the events are flowing naturally from one point to another, it is all constrained by Hamilton's sometimes lack of imagination. The sham trial towards the end of the book was just the most egregious of these offenses.

Otherwise a sometimes riveting, sometimes pointless read where for all his faults Hamilton keeps dragging you along. To
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Michael
I started out loving The Night's Dawn Trilogy, lots of sex and violence, but as the hundreds of pages slogged by, I became more and more frustrated with the pacing of the whole series and the story lines that had nothing to do with the main plot. There are SO many characters that a hundred pages could go by without coming back to a particular character's story line (and in the meantime you've forgotten what happened to him/her). There were also far too many plot points that were only thrown in t ...more
Andrew
As a novel, The Neutronium Alchemist was not satisfying. Essentially, it is a cliffhanger stretched to one thousand pages, little more than busywork necessary to advance through the trilogy. If I had not come to this series long after it was published--giving me the option to read all three one after the other--I doubt I would have bothered waiting for the third. The investment of time and effort necessary to read this tome pays nothing--it is just a pause between the first and third novels. It ...more
Yulande Lindsay
This was one hell of a ride. I mean, the introduction of Al Capone! As a possessed! A refugee from the Mutiny on the Bounty. The search for Alkad Mzu, the ranks of the possessed swells. That chase scene near the end! Would watch this as a movie just to see that sequence. What an adventure and this is only the second in the trilogy!

Serious hard science fiction here, but issues dealing with spirituality, faith, good vs evil (the ambiguity of it)... a big book for big issues. Absolutely loved it. W
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Robert-Henry Koch
So far, so good. Am in the middle of the story. The shit has really hit the fan. A lot of the first part [the reality dysfunction] comes back to me in the same irksome way it did back in 2006.
Jimmy
Better than the first book in the trilogy, but I still can't get used to the authors writing style... It has gotten a bit more coherent, but I'm uncertain whether this is due to my getting used to it or the author actually thinking about what he's writing before sending to print. Found a few funny mistakes such as a person suddendly talking to him self instead of the person he's having a conversation with. (Person A "question to B" Person B "Answer to A" Person A "question to B" Person A "Answer ...more
Dark-Draco
Well, I'm not sure how it is possible to condense such a novel into one review, yet because I loved reading it so much, I suppose I'd better try!

This is a huge sequel. both in terms of pages to be read and by sheer scope. There is a myriad of plotlines and characters, all in some way having to survive and to fight the souls returning to possess the living. Yet this one is subtly different. While book one sets up the majority of the characters and the way that the Possessed return, book two focus
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Peter F. Hamilton is a British science fiction author. He is best known for writing space opera. As of the publication of his tenth novel in 2004, his works had sold over two million copies worldwide, making him Britain's biggest-selling science fiction author.
More about Peter F. Hamilton...

Other Books in the Series

Night's Dawn (3 books)
  • The Reality Dysfunction (Night's Dawn, #1)
  • The Naked God (Night's Dawn, #3)
Pandora's Star (Commonwealth Saga, #1) The Reality Dysfunction (Night's Dawn, #1) Judas Unchained (Commonwealth Saga, #2) The Dreaming Void (Void, #1) The Evolutionary Void (Void, #3)

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