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Destroyer of Worlds (Fleet of Worlds #3)

3.96  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,411 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
Worlds closer to the galatic core than Known Space are --or were-- home to intelligent speciers. Some learned of the core explosion in time to flee. Destroyer of Worlds opens in 2670, ten years after Juggler of Worlds closes; with refugee species fleeing in an armada of ramscoops in the direction of the Fleet of Worlds. The onrushing aliens are recognized as a threat; they ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 436 pages
Published November 2nd 2010 by Tor Science Fiction (first published October 21st 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,341)
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There is a lot to like in this third of four in a recent prequel series to Ringworld, which was published in 1970. We get a rich story of different alien species working their way toward effective cooperation despite mutual fears over motives. They all feel the threat of another psychotically aggressive species, the Pak, whose massive fleet of ships are headed their way while wreaking a path of destruction. The result is a lot of fun with alternative minds, their interesting strengths and techno ...more
Feb 07, 2010 Kathleen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, how long has it been since I read a Larry Niven book? I think I might have stopped after The Ringworld Throne, which would mean 1996? Long time. Anyway, this is a cracking good hard sci-fi read, with familiar races such as the Puppeteers, the Pak Protectors, and a species new to me, the Gw'oth all concerned with fleeing an explosion at the core of the galaxy. Since I've been away from Niven's work for so long, none of the little story holes that others mention in their reviews really bother ...more
How many literary series have lasted for 40+ years. The 'Known Space' series started in the mid-60s. Niven has maintained it, fresh, with a sub-set of new collaborations with Edward Lerner, focused on the 'Ringworld' subplot. It's classic Niven. For the new reader, you need to minimally read 'Ringworld' and also if possible include 'Tales of Known Space'. Great novels.

Aug 28, 2010 Andres rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sonyreader
Niven is just getting better and better, and Known Space is his most entertaining playground. In this new series, co-written by Lerner, he not only revisits Known Space, but also ties together subplots from all the prior Known Space novels in a seamless fashion. He builds the whole plot of these new books out of snippets and side stories from his prior work, to the point where one is almost convinced that he had planned these later books before even starting the Known Space tales from 20 and mor ...more
Jul 07, 2011 Becky rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, this was just what I needed after reading something emotionally challenging. Reliably delivered the Niven cocktail of fast-moving plot, great alien species, plausible science, and 3D-enough characters.

I don't read a whole lot of science fiction anymore, and when I do, I have very little patience for flat characters, stiff writing, cheap plot devices, etc. Fortunately, Destroyer of Worlds is well-crafted. It doesn't say a whole lot of deep things about human nature or the state of the univ
Feb 27, 2010 Karina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Interesting. I enjoyed the story. I liked the Gwo'th, and I'm still curious about them, because in the book we sort of don't get to see much from their perspective... There's a bit of ambiguity about them. Are they as dangerous as the Puppeteers think or do they have a sense of loyalty? Are they just looking to gain knowledge about the advanced technology, or are they helping to solve the problem common to all involved? Both.
William Bentrim
Jan 30, 2014 William Bentrim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This book follows Fleet of Worlds but there may be books in between. Sigmund Ausfaller appears again in this book. He was a Puppeteer paranoid in earlier books. He is yanked out of known space by Nessus as a buffer or "wild" human to protect the now separate colonists. The PAK are reintroduced to the story line and the focus of the story is the avoidance of the PAK.

This is a very similar cast to the Fleet of Worlds with the exception of the PAK and Sigmund who have populated previous Niven book
Jan 11, 2014 Bob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robyn Blaber
Once again, I've started a trilogy at the end. This book is set in the center of Niven's universe, a galaxy with a half dozen major space-faring races including humans. As an installment, perhaps this book is brilliant, but unfortunately as a novel it doesn't hold its own. The action has to pause continually to explain the back-story behind a character or the pseudo-science behind a technology and when we get back to the story we behold the back-story being manipulated in a new way that saves th ...more
Oct 15, 2013 Ric rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(I think the compulsion to re-read Niven's Known Space stories is finally fading, thankfully. But not without the optimism that pervades the fictional universe spilling over into my reality. Perhaps, that was what this jag was all about after all, a search for meaning, a walk on the bright side.)

The ultra-smart, soulless Pak (expanded braincase, bloodline monomania and all) have departed their home system in a bee swarm of ramships; in their wake lie the wasted planets of erst-while emerging ci
Apr 26, 2015 Ronald rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 15, 2014 Brad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maybe I'm just falling into a wonderful trap that was made by a Pak protector, but I loved being thrown into that particular worldview again. It gave me many months of delicious dreams in my college years, extrapolating and dreaming up new ways I might outsmart one. I know, hella unlikely, but still, what a rush. I am beginning to like this later collaboration better than the previous two, but maybe I'm just prejudiced in favor of the subject matter. Perhaps I'm just a huge Pak fiend. Who knows?
By and large I liked this book for much the same reasons as Juggler of Worlds. Part of the strength of Known Space as a setting is its depth, so there's plenty of room for more material. Lerner writes a very different sort of protagonist than Niven alone, and I still appreciated that contrast, even if it wasn't in such sharp relief as the previous book.

That said, the pacing was often a little jumpy, and the ending was very abrupt. Plenty of stuff had happened, but I wasn't left with the impressi
Mar 15, 2010 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Larry's Niven's novels of Knownspace
Recommended to Mark by: Dragon Page Cover to Cover podcast
This is not my favorite of Larry Niven Known-space novels but if you enjoyed Niven's novels set in the Known-space universe (Protector, A Gift from Earth, Ringworld (& sequels)) then Destroyer of Worlds is definitely a fun read.

Earlier novels in this series have a certain fatality and ruthlessness which gives them a little more edge than the Niven/Lerner collaborations. Put simply, you don't have to worry too much about losing your favorite characters. I think this puts the series more of a
Michael Perry
Apr 27, 2013 Michael Perry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had to fight myself to put this book down. I was captive from opening to closing. An extremely warlike race is headed to the worlds of the Concordance and New Terra as they flee the galactic explosion at the center of the Milky Way. With only a handful of ships and a couple of years, can the humans of New Terra save the World Fleet?

I've seen a lot of criticism about the Fleet books and story line. I haven't read Ringworld yet so I don't have the future stories in the way of the setup. So far t
Another decent book in the Fleet of Worlds series but my enjoyment of it was marred by a fundamental part of the premise (SPOILERS FOR EVENTS IN FIRST PART OF THE BOOK)...

If the galactic core explosion is taking place 20,000 light years from the portion of the galaxy where the Fleet of Worlds lies, how the heck are the light-speed-limited Pak even aware of it, much less fleeing it through that region of space? Simply put, without some sort of superluminal drive or sensors, the Pak can
Norman Howe
This return to Known Space brings together the Pak"," the Puppeteers"," and the super-science that make Larry Niven's tales so compelling.
Rex Libris
Feb 01, 2015 Rex Libris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another installment in the pre-Ringworld stories from the Citizen-New Terra side of the story. In this story the Fleet of Worlds and New Terra have to face an onslaught of real Pak protectors, feeling the explosion of the galactic core.
Sep 26, 2010 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Niven & Lerner's Destroyer of Worlds is a good continuation of the "worlds" series, focusing on Beowulf Schaffer, Nessus, and Baedeker. The interactions of the humans and Puppeteers with the Pak Protectors - and finally getting a satisfactory answer to what the hell Brennan was doing at the end of Protector (written in the early 70s) make this entirely worth reading if you're already a Niven fan. The ending of the novel is a little bit shaky and unsatisfying: it feels rushed and abrupt, but ...more
Sep 23, 2012 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Far more action-packed and amazing than the previous two books.
Not to say that the previous two were bad, they were both excellent. But they had some slow parts, and in comparison, this book never lets up.

Full of startling revelations about the nature of known space, the puppeteers, the Pak, the Gwoth, Humans... Holy crap. The other books i made my way through casually, but this book i simply could not put it down. I went and ordered the final books today and i have only just finished this one l
Mar 07, 2015 Globalt38 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
Has been awhile since I read a Niven work so when I finally got around to this one and finished it - I was reminded of how good his Known Space works are! For anyone who is a fan of Larry Niven's, this series (This is 3rd of 4 1st - "Fleet of Worlds"; 2nd - "Juggler of Worlds"; 3rd - Destroyer of Worlds; and 4th - "Betrayer of Worlds") does a lot to help flesh out the Puppeteers and the Pak and fill in some holes you may have from the Ringworld and other Known Space stories (e.g. what happened t ...more
Bakun Alvin
Aug 24, 2015 Bakun Alvin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Real science fiction. The physics are believable, and the outcomes great and interesting.
Aug 08, 2010 Elgin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read all of the Ringworld series, so read this one too because it seemed to be related.
Over the years I have read quite a bit by Niven (and his various coauthors.) Some of the books have been outstanding (Ringworld, Lucifer's Hammer) but others far less enjoyable (Ringworld Engineers, The Integral Trees.) I rate this one as average. One thing I do like about Niven's Known Space stories is that he has created an interesting back drop for his writings and writes within the bounds he laid ou
May 05, 2014 A.N. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Paranoid ex-ARM-agent vs. sorry aliens.
E Goldberg
Should have known better! Lost my taste for existential crises. Not just an 'end of the world' scenario: It's an 'End of 3 or 4 species/civilizations' scenario. Have to be younger to really get into this. Good 'science' (i.e., 'hard' SF) and probably good insights into the psychology/sociology of the subject. Not what I would normally choose for entertainment / relaxation though.
Mar 16, 2013 Dan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 1/2 stars. A good recovery after the disappointing Juggler of Worlds. This book has a manageable number of characters and events are shown from a reasonable number of vantage points. The flow of time is reasonably consistent. All my objections to the previous book are not to be found here.

The story is very interesting and a very good read. Well worth it!
David Lum
Aug 24, 2012 David Lum rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Much better than I expected. I had pretty much given up on Niven, not having enjoyed the last several books of his that I read in the '90s. But I was quite entertained by this one. There's definitely something fascinating about Protectors, and I think anyone who remembers fondly the spooky Pak on the cover of the paperback Protector from the '80s will enjoy this one too.
Booth Babcock
3rd of the 4 Fleet of Worlds books by the other two, well-written and entertaining space opera set in his Known Space universe some time before the famous Ringworld saga. One book to go, the series is feeling somewhat stretched out to me, not much really seemed to happen in this book...we'll see if the final book adds significance to the evens of book 3.
Jun 10, 2012 Phyllis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fine example of modern space opera. While reading this, one thought comes to mind: Run! Except, of course, running isn't an option. Or, more accurately, you can run but you can't hide. So what can you do? Well, that would be the spoiler, wouldn't it?

Puppeteers, Gw'oth, Pak, have we got aliens, wonderful, fascinating aliens.

Really looking forward to book four.
May 02, 2012 Craig rated it liked it
I enjoyed reading this one very much; the development of the Worlds Fleet and Known Space was fascinating, the interplay of the various races and societies was done very well, and the characters and plot were extremely engaging. However, I was very much let-down by an abrupt ending that I felt left far too many issues unresolved and too many questions unanswered.
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Laurence van Cott Niven's best known work is Ringworld (Ringworld, #1) (1970), which received the Hugo, Locus, Ditmar, and Nebula awards. His work is primarily hard science fiction, using big science concepts and theoretical physics. The creation of thoroughly worked-out alien species, which are very different from humans both physically and mentally, is recognized as one of Niven's main strengths ...more
More about Larry Niven...

Other Books in the Series

Fleet of Worlds (5 books)
  • Fleet of Worlds
  • Juggler of Worlds
  • Betrayer of Worlds (Fleet of Worlds, #4)
  • Fate of Worlds: Return from the Ringworld (Ringworld, #5)

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