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The Orphaned Worlds (Humanity's Fire, #2)
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The Orphaned Worlds (Humanity's Fire #2)

3.51 of 5 stars 3.51  ·  rating details  ·  670 ratings  ·  42 reviews
Darien is no longer a lost outpost of humanity, but the prize in an intergalactic power struggle. Hegemony forces control the planet, while Earth merely observes, rendered impotent by galactic politics. Yet Earth's ambassador to Darien will become a player in a greater conflict as there is more at stake than a turf war on a newly discovered world.

An ancient temple hides ac
Paperback, 480 pages
Published May 19th 2010 by Not Avail (first published April 22nd 2010)
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The troubled sequel to a better book. Not as good as the previous, but hopefully providing lots of 'set up' for the third and final part.
Matthew Hester
I'm not sure what's more upsetting; the fact that Cobley seemed to be trying to channel Kevin J Anderson in the way he tells this story, or the fact that he failed miserably.

I was very nervous coming into this book after finishing the first in the series, and it would seem my fears were justified. Not only was this a let down from the already mediocre debut, but his attempt to set up additional story-lines stumbled and failed.
Though the only positive I can say about the way he did create new sit
While I had very high expectations for the series debut, only to be partially fulfilled after an intriguing beginning followed by an almost fatal descent in costume-aliens pulp, my expectations were tempered for this one; still the novel managed to under-perform them with occasional snippets of brilliance with Banksian overtones and a lively engaging style, but with a very 50's like content which is far from the modern space opera standards

The many threads of the novel are uninspiring and with t
Surprise surprise, I actually liked this book better than the first book in the series, 'Seeds of Earth' The pace of the book is steady, except near the end where it seems a bit rushed. Mr Cobley does an admirable job filling in additional details, giving us a richer view of this big, complex universe he has created.

There are plots within plots, and it's amusing to see various groups of villains getting in the way of each other at times. There are hints here also, of a far more dangerous foe, on
Orphaned Worlds kept my interest long enough to finish it (and the third volume in the series), but the story was lacking in character development, the worldbuilding was a bit incoherent and the battle scenes didn't really hang together very well. I didn't really *care* about any of the characters, it was all just a bit meh.

Still, it's nice to find science fiction that I haven't read in the library. That's one of the reasons why libraries are worth keeping open - I don't mind wading my way thro
Dylan Harris
The language in this book is so appalling I found the thing impossible to read.

Most people, when they buy a cliché dictionary, use it to find annoying phrases to avoid. Mr. Cobley seems to have used one as a resource. Let me give you an idea of just how awful the thing is ... here are clichés from the preface:

- In the title, "has gone before"
- "ruthless ... enemy"
- "far away star system"
- "fertile ... world"
- "swathed in ... forest"
- "ancient secrets"

And that's just the first paragraph. Seriousl
Rowan Mulder
"The Orphaned Worlds" is the sequel to "The Seeds of the Earth" of the "Humanity's Fire" series. As such you can expect that it is an in-between book of a trilogy, meaning the story continues where the first one lefts of and orders the story in preparation of the third and final book. For those who've read the first book a while ago, the second book takes it easy on you by giving subtle reintroductions to the characters.

However being a book in the middle doesn't mean it needs to be bad. For inst
I read Mike Cobley's first epic space opera book, Seeds fo Earth, prior to its release last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. The Orphaned Worlds, the sequel and part two of the trilogy, was a highly anticipated release for this year and upon getting a copy through the post I made sure it was high on the list of to-read books. While not quite on the same level as Seeds of Earth, The Orphaned Worlds delivers a whole lot of action, adventure and politics on a canvas even bigger than the first novel! ...more
Cobley's done a great job of avoiding a dull, pointless middle book. Interesting tidbits that were dropped in the last book (in regards to the other two lost Human ships, hence the name of the book) are expanded upon wonderfully, answering plenty of questions while still managing to whet the appetite for more. Interesting new monkey wrenches are thrown into the mix with skill. Definitely looking forward to book three!
After reading Seeds of Earth I stated that the first third was too slow, and the last third too rushed. But that as I had started the series now, that I would persevere with the second and third book, as I want to know how the story ends.

The Orphaned Worlds pace was more even, the cast of characters developed more depth, but I continued to find them annoyingly stereotypical.

The continued development of the story, by telling it from a different persons view point in each chapter, although better
Extremely good read, I would recommend anyone of a harder sci-fi bent to read this series

This was an excellent middle book, it advanced the story nicely and never felt bogged down or reserved, there were some well executed reveals and there's enough foreshadowing for me to want to jump straight into the next one.
The characters are all well rounded and even minor characters generally have enough detail to relate to and none of them feel throw-away, even if they do catch it in short order.
The gala
Jane Plumridge
I found this book heavy going at the start mainly because there is so much to try and keep up with. Although I'd read the first book there was much more to get to grips with as the plot develops in numerous different ways and locations.

It continues the Work of the first book in weaving and latterly bringing everything together nicely so that the scene is set for the final book. The more you read, the more you begin to piece things together and really begin to care about the main protagonists.

l c
An acceptable second. The first book enaged me not because it was novel (pun), but because it did tick all the 'right boxes'. Apocalyptic, galaxy spanning, mythical, organic vs. high tech, a 'cyber space', multiple dimensions, interwoven character narratives.
This carried on all these themes, but it feels a little flat. At this point, I probably will read the conclusion, and vaugley enjoy doing so in order to conclude the threads. That said, this is a suitable, casual, read. It's not a genre defy
Martin Waterhouse
Another enjoyable 18 hours spent with the wonderful David Thorpe narrating; his voice work is a pure joy. The story continues along well in this second installment and gets progressively darker, and although it was slightly plodding in places, there were enough twists and turns to keep me going. As with the first book in the series the writing feels a bit dated but it's still worth the effort - I reckon - as this is one big old multilayered universe Michael Cobley's crafted and there are creatur ...more
Good sequel to Seeds of Earth and setup for the next book in the trilogy.
Alrighty, started this one instead of the first book because this was more highly rated. But, I'm sorry if I'm too harsh on this, I draw the line at any book that wastes about 10 pages on "what has come before." I mean, seriously? We have to be dragged through 10 characters, 5 worlds, many spaceships to get to the Prologue? Any good writer would make that a moot point through the storytelling. So, yeah, not gonna read this one.
Daniel Cunningham
I wanted to like this more than I did, but all I can honestly give it is two stars. The first book was better, though still not great; the writing there was clunky, here in the second book it is grinding the gears.

Now I'm two books in and I know I'm going to read the third, just to finish. I have a weakness for hard sci-fi and space opera and the like... so fingers crossed.
Peter Higgs
Suffers a little from being the middle part of a trilogy, as it has a slight sense of things being shuffled into place for a grand finale. However, it felt a little more manageable than the first book because there was less of a frantic attempt to introduce numerous alien races and plot strands. Not bad overall, and I'm certainly keen to read how it all ends...
May 22, 2013 Ryan rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: tabled
Couldn't finish this one. Found myself finding reasons not to spend time reading. I didn't care about the characters and the plot pacing was achingly slow. Sorry, I really wanted to like this series, but I found the first book to be only average and this one went downhill from there. I was just never excited about it.
Tries to do way too many things with way too many separate threads. Virtually impossible to follow the story. Volume 1 was mich more tightly organized making me look forward to this installment. I will read #3, just because of my insatiable curiosity, but I sure hope it is easier to follow than this one.
Jim Mcanally
Disappointed by this sequel. Way too much going on and in way too much detail that it seemed bogged down. I kept waiting for it to pick up the pace set in the first book Seeds of Earth. I don't even plan on reading the next book in the series because of this crawling, convoluted book.
Zachary Wagoner
Good book. Took me a while to get through but that is more from taking a break from sci fi to read history. A good second book to a great space opera with many players and factions setting various plans into motion, with some nice twists and turns. On to the third book.
Andy Watson
Not worth the effort. Wish i had stopped during the mind numbing. "What has gone before". Also please authors note tell me its part 2 of a trilogy. Then i will wait and read it with the final part. Ok story but no real end point. Will not read any more.
Good fun! Just don't take it seriously.
Usually the middle of a trilogy sags and stumbles, but I found the 2nd book to be fast paced and exciting, giving us still more glimpsing of a chaotic and impressive future. Looking forward to the final chapter in this adventure!
Michel Meijer
DNF. I could be bothered by it anymore. After picking it up many times and putting it away just as many times, its enough. Mathematical plotlines, but worse than Kevin Anderson, boring characters, and no clear heading.
An excellent continuation of this trilogy... now I'll give myself a break by changing genres before getting to the final book of the series.
Derivative and patchy in the writting. No improvement on the first. I must be a glutton for punishment
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Mike Cobley was born in Leicester and has lived in Scotland since the age of seven. Although the Scottish cultural heritage informs much of his own outlook (egalitarian, argumentative yet amiable, and able to appreciate rain), he thinks of himself as a citizen of the world.

While studying engineering at Strathclyde University, he discovered the joys and risks of student life and pursued a sideline
More about Michael Cobley...

Other Books in the Series

Humanity's Fire (4 books)
  • The Seeds of Earth (Humanity's Fire, #1)
  • The Ascendant Stars (Humanity's Fire, #3)
  • Ancestral Machines
The Seeds of Earth (Humanity's Fire, #1) The Ascendant Stars (Humanity's Fire, #3) Shadowkings Shadowgod Shadowmasque

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