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Seeker (Alex Benedict #3)

3.89  ·  Rating Details ·  5,852 Ratings  ·  309 Reviews
The Barnes & Noble Review
Alex Benedict and his executive assistant, Chase Kolpath -- ambitious antiquities dealers from Jack McDevitt's A Talent for War (1989) and, more recently, Polaris -- are back in Seeker, a story in which the two antiquarians search for a legendary lost colony that is both a science fiction thriller and a remarkably complex mystery.

More than 9,00
Mass Market Paperback, 373 pages
Published October 31st 2006 by Ace (first published November 2005)
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Mar 25, 2013 Brad rated it really liked it
Good Grief. I just lost my review.

Here's a summary, alas.

'06 Nebula winner, equal parts Space Opera and Noir Mystery, but that really translates mostly into Future History Archeology, with a treasure-hunting bent, twists and turns, lots of interesting characters, and lost spacecraft and lost colonies.

Was I really happy about the last twist and the epilogue? Hell yes.

All this takes place about 10k in the future, but there's a legend of a lost colony gone 9k ago before the advent of FTL travel or
Jan 07, 2009 Michael rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Drooling idiots.
This was the Nebula Award winner for 2006, so I thought I'd be in for a treat. The premise sounded pretty good: 9,000 years in the future, two antiquities/salvage experts find a relic from a lost colony ship which leads to big adventure and lots of danger.

There are a lot of cool ideas about future technology. I especially liked the avatars of famous historical persons, assembled from all available data on the net. The alien-relations the humans have with the "Mutes" is fairly interesting — Human
Jan 15, 2009 Joe rated it it was amazing
First of all, this is the most entertaining science fiction novel I've read in ten years, since I discovered the Hyperion Cantos. I have read quite a bit of scifi, and this is among the best of the best. I honestly do not understand why there are not more five star reviews.

Here's why I loved it. It takes place in ten thousand years but it ascertains that human beings will be largely the same. History gets lost the older you go back. Lessons from history are still the same. Mystery begets interes
Seeker is the most original, interesting, and thoughtful of the Alex Benedict novels. Like the others, so long as you don't take it too seriously, you can have some fun reading it. I give this one four stars (instead of three like the others) because it has some really cool, original ideas woven in.

I'm not a big McDevitt fan, but I like the Alex Benedict novels. They're reasonably well crafted. Just think of this book as a little "roughage" for your mind.
Hugo Ortega
Jun 14, 2011 Hugo Ortega rated it really liked it
I stumbled onto this book when going over a list of Nebula Award winners. I must say as a sci-fi story it plays differently then most of the other books in the genre. It's a mix of Indiana Jones with Marco Polo set in the distant future. It's a "lost civilization" story where the main characters are treasure hunters looking for rare items from the distant past. The story takes place 10,000 years into the future; humans have been traveling in space for so long that space faring civilizations have ...more
Jul 03, 2012 Melanie rated it it was ok
I listened to the audio book, don't do that. The woman who reads this is terrible. There is no drama in her voice. She differentiates the different women characters by making them more or less breathy. That's just too much for me to stand.

I cannot believe this is a Nebula Award winner. At first the plot was fairly interesting, although there is a ton of info-dumping going on. But it kept going long past when it should and the ending was unfulfilling. Plus there is bad science.

I don't have the pa
Jun 26, 2014 Patricia rated it really liked it
Great mix of sci-fi, mystery and adventure.

Thes book remind me of a mix of Sherlock Holmes and Indiana Jones thrown into a sci-fi setting. (A mystery story set in the future, with an antiquities dealer as the main protagonist.) In this universe the human race has been in space for about 20,000 years. In that time many ships, colonies and valuable items have gone missing. Alex Benedict, with the help of Chase Kolpath, specializes in finding missing and valuable items.

Seeker is the story of Margol
Feb 26, 2010 Tamahome rated it liked it
Recommends it for: mystery/hard sf fans/fans of strong female characters
3.5 stars. Pretty good. Along the way I was wishing for more action, like in Engines of God, but the ending is really good. McDevitt has an above average amount of humanity in his books, and that kept me going.
Toby Udstuen
Apr 30, 2011 Toby Udstuen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
This is book three of the Benedict series. All the Alex Benidict books are set about 10,000 years in the future. So when one of Benedict clients come to him with a cup that came from a colony ship lost 9,000 years ago Alex sits up and takes notice. How did the cup get back to the known worlds? Where was the 9,000 year old ship it came from? Did the ship make it to it's mysterious destination? Is there a colony there now? These are the question Alex and his partner have to answer.

A Talent for War (Alex Benedict, #1) by Jack McDevitt Polaris (Alex Benedict, #2) by Jack McDevitt Seeker (Alex Benedict, #3) by Jack McDevitt The Devil's Eye (Alex Benedict, #4) by Jack McDevitt Echo (Alex Benedict, #5) by Jack McDevitt
Joe A
Dec 30, 2015 Joe A rated it really liked it
Another great McDevitt story. I would have rated it higher, except the narrator's voice started to get to me in the last 1/4 of the book.
Daniel Shellenbarger
Seeker is actually the third book in Jack McDevitt's Alex Benedict series, but I picked up "A Talent for War" (book 1) some time ago and couldn't build any interest before putting it down and my library didn't have "Polaris" (book 2), so when the urge took me to give McDevitt another shot, Seeker is where my attention landed. Anyway, the basic premise is that protagonist Alex Hunter and his assistant/narrator Chase are antiquarians (grave robbers if you prefer) in the far future (ca. 10,000 A.D. ...more
Oct 08, 2013 Alex rated it liked it
Did I tell you I finished the book "Seeker" by Jack McDevitt? Well... I did. It was a lot like "Polaris" and I liked both.

It's called "An Alex Benedict Novel" and certainly Alex is one of the main characters, but the entire novel is written in the first-person perspective NOT through Alex but through his lovely assistant, Chase Kolpath. As in Polaris, she does most of the work, though clearly she is only doing it because she is Alex's employee and he told her to do it, but she uses initiative an
Oct 28, 2009 Cal rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Absolutely everyone
I was introduced to Jack McDevitt when my spouse picked up [u:]A Talent for War[/u:] at the bookstore about eighteen months ago and didn't have time to read it before I ran out of new books and picked it up; I have devoured everything he's written voraciously since then. I prefer the Benedict books to the Hutchins books; Priscilla is kind of a whiner while Alex is a badass capitalist, and he twigs as kind of a warm and fuzzy David Xanatos-lite. Also, space mysteries. What's not to love?

Apr 24, 2008 Gloria rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Sci-Fi readers who like normal characters
Recommended to Gloria by: Genreflecting
Shelves: sci-fi
Similar to the familiar idea of searching for Atlantis, this novel's characters are searching for the lost civilization of Margolia. I'd just made the association that the main character and his assistant had a similar style and relationship as does Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson when I happened to glance at the book flap where I read that this novel is "a classic-style investigative tale with Alex serving as an amateur-sleuth Holmes and Chase as Watson." I guess this is testimony that my impres ...more
The premise of this book was interesting--the search for a 9,000 year old space ship and a lost civilization. Unfortunately I never totally connected to the characters. This is the third book in the Alex Benedict series and I haven't read the first two but the book was told in first person by Alex's assistant, Chase Colpath. Alex seemed almost a minor character, except when he comes in and takes all the credit for Chase's hard work.

I think my problem with the characters is that they are in fact
Sep 21, 2007 Marcia rated it liked it
Shelves: sciencefiction
An interstellar archaeological mystery, Seeker is the story of an antiquities dealer and more importantly, his assistant. A shady woman brings them an artifact she wants to sell, and as they track down the item's provenance, they stumble on to a larger mystery surrounding a lost spaceship and the people on board.

This is plot-driven science fiction in the Niven tradition - characters are given some development, but there is no question they're secondary to the plot. Fortunately the plot is engag
Phillip Hammond
Oct 02, 2014 Phillip Hammond rated it it was amazing
This was my first introduction to Jack McDevitt and I must say since then I've read about 10 of his novels. Probably my favorite line of his, the Alex Benedict novels in which Seeker is I believe #3, involve both science fiction (future societies) and good old fashion detective yarns. A man who can start a plot over a murder about a porcelain tea cup in a future with star drive and all that goes with it has something going for him. Not to mention he writes first person female.
You want a break fr
Aug 24, 2012 Craig rated it really liked it
Another excellent far-future interstellar archaeology novel in the Alex Benedict/Chase Kolpath series. I was particularly struck with the number of convincing characters that are introduced, and the large number of events that transpire; there's a big, sweeping epic contained in an average length novel. Another nice trait is that McDevitt doesn't explain everything that happens; he leaves it up to the reader to fill in some of the blanks, which is refreshing and occasionally challenging. This is ...more
Julie Davis
Jul 30, 2012 Julie Davis rated it liked it
As with Polaris (Alex Benedict #2) there is plenty of actual science fiction to go with the mystery that antiquities dealer Alex Benedict is determined to solve. Although it seems to me that these really should be called Chase Kolpath #2 since she is the narrator and seems to do most of the work.

As in the other McDevitt books I've read, the storyline is fairly straight-forward and pulled me through by dint of action and interesting discoveries. I actually was surprised by the villain in this on
Chris Jackson
Feb 10, 2016 Chris Jackson rated it really liked it
Very old-school SF here, and in a very good way. Far future treasure hunters seek a lost ship and the equally lost colony of emigrants that left earth thousands of years ago. Great pacing and characterization, wry wit, good tension buildup. Nicely done. This is the third in this series, so I'll be going back to start from the beginning. It's been a while since I've read something of this caliber. Simply enjoying reading...
Matthew Hester
Aug 15, 2011 Matthew Hester rated it really liked it
You can always tell the difference between a good book and a terrible one.
When an author can spend 150+ pages explaining the arduous efforts of a character researching the history of a cup, and you find yourself absolutely enthralled, you're reading a good book.

I've read novels that peg themselves as grand, epic space operas, where I couldn't even care one iota about a single character or story point.
Those were not good books.

This one was. Who knew a cup could be so interesting?

Servius  Heiner
Sep 10, 2010 Servius Heiner rated it liked it
An interesting concept. However the author seems to have used this book as a study in anti-climatic writing. A work of what not to do. .
Dec 20, 2011 Harvey rated it really liked it
I'm kind of torn between three stars and four stars but it kind of grew on me so I will give it the benefit of the doubt. Nice ending, even if you could see it coming.
Kevin Kelsey
Jun 24, 2012 Kevin Kelsey rated it it was amazing
Shelves: _library
Extremely good far future science fiction. It feels grounded on actual science, and has a phenomenal ending.
Feb 08, 2017 Kerry rated it really liked it
Published 2005. Entertaining and smooth.
Kristian_André Gallis
Very good!

Surprising and extraordinary! I enjoyed reading this book a lot. The best of the tree first books. Now I have to look for the next book in the series.
Jan 16, 2017 Senzanom rated it really liked it
These books are stand out in that they offer traditional scifi, mystery, and they don't overwhelm you with technical stuff, too much action, and no major gore or sex. It's not that this stuff can't be in a book, but rather, it's more that the author manages to capture all the enjoyable elements of the genre without having to include Hollywood elements to keep you interested. The story does it on its own. This is actually on of my favorite books in the series thus far.
Feb 09, 2012 Anrie rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the premise of this novel, an excellent mystery. According to Publisher's Weekly (as printed on the back of the book), it's a "riff on the familiar lost-colony theme". I've read a lot of science fiction in my life, but this is the first time I've read a novel that concerned a lost colony, so perhaps the novelty of it made me like it more than I otherwise would have.

The ending, the science of which might sound preposterous to some, didn't bother me, perhaps because it touches on
Sep 04, 2013 James rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi

A decent novel by Jack McDevitt, won a Nebula and all that. But what about the story?

This is an Alex Benedict novel, the second in a series, which I started first. Yeah, that’s me. I completed the Hutch series of books and wanted to continue with McDevitt in a similar universe, but 9,000 years later, when space travel is easy and “warping” (my word) to distant places is as easy as taking a boat across the Atlantic.

Plots and Contrivances:

Benedict is a treasure hunter and with his aide Cha
Apr 02, 2015 Daniel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
This review originally published in Looking For a Good Book. Rated 5.0 of 5

I've been familiar with the name of author Jack McDevitt, but I'd never read any of his works. I can't say how or when this book found its way in to my home, but it did and I chose to read it, and boy ... I sure am glad I did!

This is the third book in the Alex Benedict series and I've already ordered books one and two because this really sparked my interest.

Alex Benedict and his assistant/partner Chase Kolpath are antique
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Jack McDevitt is a former English teacher, naval officer, Philadelphia taxi driver, customs officer and motivational trainer. His work has been on the final ballot for the Nebula Awards for 12 of the past 13 years. His first novel, The Hercules Text, was published in the celebrated Ace Specials series and won the Philip K. Dick Special Award. In 1991, McDevitt won the first $10,000 UPC Internation ...more
More about Jack McDevitt...

Other Books in the Series

Alex Benedict (7 books)
  • A Talent for War (Alex Benedict, #1)
  • Polaris (Alex Benedict, #2)
  • The Devil's Eye (Alex Benedict, #4)
  • Echo (Alex Benedict, #5)
  • Firebird (Alex Benedict, #6)
  • Coming Home (Alex Benedict, #7)

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“Human existence is girt round with mystery: the narrow region of our experience is a small island in the midst of a boundless sea. To add to the mystery, the domain of our earthly existence is not only an island in infinite space, but also in infinite time. The past and the future are alike shrouded from us: we neither know the origin of anything which is, nor its final destination.” 2 likes
“Drink deep the cup of life; take it's dark wine into your soul. For it passes round the table only once.” 1 likes
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