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Banner of Souls

3.53 of 5 stars 3.53  ·  rating details  ·  168 ratings  ·  19 reviews
One of Spectra's most imaginative and talented authors now takes us on a phantasmagoric journey into a strange future fueled by haunt-tech: a technology which works by harnessing energy from of the realm of the dead. But who are the mysterious race known as the Kami who brought haunt-tech to earth? Saviors from another world, or something else entirely? And how does the ch ...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published September 28th 2004 by Spectra (first published 2004)
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You very rarely encounter, even in science fiction, technology sufficiently advanced as to seem magic. Most of us use tools daily without understanding how they work, so a rocket-ship or laser-pistol isn't really very different, if you know what it does. [Book:Banner of Souls] is a bit like what might have happened if the person who interrupted Samuel Taylor Coleridge mid-way through Xanadu had given him two tabs of acid and sent him straight back to his desk.

The science in this book manages to
El universo creado por Liz Williams es complejo y extraño. La historia ocurre en un futuro lejano, en el que el ser humano ha conquistado todo el Sistema Solar y ha evolucionado (o mutado) en forma artificial, al punto que ya casi no existen hombres ni nacimientos "naturales": gran parte de las humanas se gestan en cámaras de incubación y hay una gran variedad de cruces entre humanas y animales (muchos de ellos extintos).

El Sistema Solar es regido con mano de hierro por el matriarcado marciano.

Excellent gothic-sf set in the Winterstrike universe but earlier timewise.

It was easier for me to get into this novel since I read first Winterstrike so I was familiar with haunt-space, kappas, the Matriarchies of Mars and the general setup of that universe.

While Earth is mostly water and relatively backward, the Matriarchy of Memnos on Mars is all powerful, though the distant, secretive and tech-advanced Nightshade planetoid at the edge of the Solar system is starting to meddle in the affai
I had a hard time reading this book. It's one of the few science fiction books where I couldn't hold my suspension of disbelief.

Forget the haunt-tech bringing the spirits of the underworld back to life to serve in machinery. I'll buy that, I'll buy a time travelling 9 year old, I'll buy that all the males are dead and that people on Mars believe that they colonized Earth rather than vice versa.

But. This is a civilization which can jump from Pluto to Earth, and they don't have ubiquitous e-mail.
Dec 21, 2008 Angela rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: sf
I'd been meaning to read Liz Williams's Banner of Souls for quite a while now, and only now just got around to it. It was worth the wait, by and large.

The most attention-getting thing about the book is definitely the fact that it's set in a distant future where the solar system is populated by an entirely female society--but that isn't even the point of the plot, so don't go in expecting it to be an anti-male screed. It isn't. What the plot is about is how the Martian warrior Dreams-of-War must
This was.... an ambitious story - possibly too ambitions - but I will give it this: It's the first time I have ever seen a man-hating, racist, genderist, speciesist, bad humored, standoffish woman portrayed successfully as a heroic character.

In a world where the male half of just about every species is considered obsolete and unnecessary, several women journey out to save humanity in a mind bendingly alien world. If you can last long enough through the alieness, I found the story to be quite
Mike Hedley
A good read, and less confusing, in many ways, than Winterstrike which I've just finished. I do take issue with Williams'less than appropriate knowledge of machinery and weapons- and Earth being flooded to the extent that Tibet is an island simply isn't realistic- there isn't enough water on the planet, with all the icecaps melted, to submerge the continents. Parts of Australia have never been under water in the entire history of the Earth, 4.6 billion years. How can the European Alps turn into ...more
This is a fascinating, complicated book with an interesting story and some excellent world building. The way Williams tosses the reader into the world she has created and then slowly reveals its complexities as the tale progresses is beautifully done.

However, for me there was something lacking. I'm not exactly sure what it was, but I think I'll have to go with 'soul' or 'emotion'. That's what got it a relatively low rating from me.

All the same, I recommend it to others for the spectacular world
Nicholas Whyte[return][return]Basically very good. Teetered on the edge of being too complex for late-night reading (I seem to have spent most of the last week feeling very sleepy) but I managed. Far future setting, almost all characters are women (hardly any men left alive), vibrant Mars vs failing Earth, nanotechnology, advanced military tech and also raising the dead. Will buy more by her.
I love strong heroes, and Dreams-of-War will remain one of my favorites. She is skilled, determined, and armed with some of the coolest weaponry I've come across in fiction. Williams is so good at setting up adventure that I wonder where she's been all my life. She is one of the few writers that I can favorably compare to the likes of Iain M. Banks and Dan Simmons. Thus far, "Banner of Souls" is my favorite from her growing repertoire.
Weird but good book about far, far off future with the inhabitants of Mars and Earth being all female. Dream of Wars is the warrior from Mars with the sentinent armor that protects her but is also connected somehow to “haunt tech” the technology from Nightshade that is never really explained in the book.
Kelly Flanagan
Although I liked this book. I found it was a hard read. I was constantly putting it down for days on end to read other books, only coming back to it when I was done the others. Knowing now that there are other books based in this "universe", I'm not sure if I will return to it again or not.
A bit uneven book but still different enough world,characters to be a good read.

Not the best choice if you haven't read Liz Williams before. She shows still potential with the two books of her i have read.
Recommended for a book group I'm in, I had to bail out at page 78. I didn't care about the one dimensional characters - I was forcing myself to pick it up and taking great pleasure in putting it down. Life's too short.
Amanda Meggs
Couldn't be bothered finishing it. I have trouble reading books where I don't find the characters appealing. There wasn't any depth or enough feeling.
Hard to get into. Too descriptive- sort of Farscape kind of super alien stry. Too many ailiens to keep track of without a golossery or something.
Zac Hegwood
Cool story from a feminist perspective. Every character is female, and very different. This is how you write women.
Goodie. In the hospital it brought me healing ... removing me entirely from my circumstances. How cool is that?
Mar 17, 2008 Rachael rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Very cool book. All female worlds. Travel between earth and mars.
Zuzana marked it as to-read
May 12, 2015
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There is more than one author with this name

Liz Williams is a British science fiction writer. Her first novel, The Ghost Sister was published in 2001. Both this novel and her next, Empire of Bones (2002) were nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award.[1] She is also the author of the Inspector Chen series.

She is the daughter of a stage magician and a Gothic novelist. She holds a PhD in Philosophy of
More about Liz Williams...
Snake Agent (Detective Inspector Chen #1) The Demon and the City (Detective Inspector Chen #2) Precious Dragon (Detective Inspector Chen #3) The Shadow Pavilion (Detective Inspector Chen, #4) The Poison Master

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