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On the Oceans of Eternity: A Novel of the Change (Island in the Sea of Time #3)

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  3,413 Ratings  ·  111 Reviews
Ten years ago, inhabitants of the twentieth century and the Bronze Age were tossed together by the Event. But as two worlds converge, only one can be the victor in a battle to lead this strange new world.
ebook, 640 pages
Published April 1st 2000 by Roc
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(showing 1-30)
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Nov 05, 2007 Craig rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
OK. So I'm done now. It was painful to finish the series, but hey, I'm adicted to reading.

Stirling does not cover himself with glory in this series. There are some interesting characters, and the basic story is quite good, but the pacing is awful, there are stretches of description and inner-monologues that are interminable, and the sheer number of characters Stirling is trying do justice to is unmanageable.

Considering this is the guy who wrote The General series, he's ALREADY dealt with the who
Kat  Hooper
Sep 30, 2014 Kat Hooper rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
On the Oceans of Eternity is the final novel in S.M. Stirling’s NANTUCKET series. In the first novel, Island in the Sea of Time, which I really enjoyed, a strange electrical storm caused the entire island of Nantucket to be transported back in time to 1300 B.C. It was entertaining to watch the island’s citizens make this discovery and deal with the resulting personal, cultural, economic and political changes. Then, one of the citizens, William Walker, decided to use his modern knowledge and tech ...more
Joel Judge
I had very mixed feelings about this book. At first I was really annoyed with the none to subtle rehash of the film Zulu. I cannot for the life of me comprehend what the author was thinking by simply rehashing scenes from a 1964 film. Enjoyed the film but did not enjoy having it plagiarised in print.

From then on the book improved marginally. I liked the premise of the series, but thought its execution was flawed. The world building was weak and not enough time was devoted to fleshing out the ma
Sep 01, 2009 Thomas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whatever it's faults, this series is EPIC and slavish to the minutest detail of war, sailing, and tactics. I will never forget Marian Alston and Swindapa, the fightin'est lesbian couple known to modern literature! I'd even go so far as to say Marian is on of the top ten characters in any Fantasy/SciFi I've ever read...I can smell her sweat as I write this!

This third book was really good, though the side-stories were a bit much sometimes. (The California side story almost seemed like filler, as i
Jun 13, 2014 jammastere rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So I will just start with if you haven't read the first two books you will be totally lost if you try to pick this one up. You HAVE to start with book #1. That is the way the series was written.

I loved the series overall. It is a great mix between time travel and alternate history and fantasy all rolled into one series. If you want a summary of the book read the jacket flap:) I will say that if you are the kind of person who wants everything simple or all story threads wrapped up at the end of a
Mar 25, 2011 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a pretty good ending to this series. I honestly saw the ending coming quite a long way off so that was a bit of a disappointment, but that is ok. What I liked about this book (and the series) was the melding of historical figures (Odysseus was in this novel) and modern technology. You also really get a feel for what humans have learned (not just tech wise) in the last 3500 years (for those reading this that are asking what I mean I say read the series). My only real criticism of the boo ...more
Strona po stronie
Again, I liked the first book better. It's definitely not because of the number of new characters (I actually find them quite refreshing) and not because of the frequent POV changes (they may be a bit distracting, but one can get used to them). So, no. It's just that both the second book and the third one focus mainly on battles and I prefer the culture clash and other such tidbits (like (view spoiler)). Personal preference.

Anyway, it's
CV Rick
Well I finished the series. I deserve a certificate of completion.

Cookie cutter characters - all good and talented or all evil and relentless. Myopic viewpoint in love with modern innovation by rejecting modern sensibilities. Annoying internal speeches. But the plot was fast and engaging.

I wonder if Stirling believes that people speak in hackneyed similes? I wonder if he knows that good people can be bad - or bad at things. I wonder if he's met a bad person who does good.


It's worth 3 sta
Jan 18, 2009 ilaanya rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: post-apocolyptic
Oh my, does Stirling love details. Seriously, I'm not going to learn how to captain a ship by reading your book. I know starboard and port. I really don't need to know anything else. I don't even know half the words you are using. Because it couldn't hold my attention, it was hard to get through this book even though the author's other series, Dies the Fire, is one of my favorites.
Oct 29, 2009 Yarrow rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
i could cry for the wasted potential of this series. such good ideas. such a strong beginning. such a stupid useless pointless plot. war war war, nothing but war, only war. it degrades the characters. it has no purpose; there's so much *else* he could have done with the time travel. this is probably the worst Stirling book i've ever read.
I really wanted to like this book but after about 200 pages I had to give up. I just couldn't read more than a page at a time.
John Dye
I read this book three times now, and mostly for the 'stranger in a strange land' elements.

Here are the bits I admire. He worked very hard on the historical details, trying to get the bits on the Hittites, the Babylonians, and the varying tribes correct as well as adding bits of language. One has to wonder exactly how long that all took. The research must have been MASSIVE.

Unlike some of the reviewers, I liked the smaller characters a hell of a lot more interesting that most of the main characte
Jun 05, 2017 Baglady rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wplc-holdings
more interesting than the 2nd in the series, although there were as many battles they weren't repetitious, and there was more culture/societal description. Of course the ultimate ending is predictable, but how it got there was somewhat of a surprise. Written in a way that previews a possible follow-on book, but I'm not sure I'd want to read that. Three is enough
I have enjoyed listening to the Island in the Sea of Time series. It is a solid 3 star read which has as many positives as well as negatives. It verges on a 4 star in some respects but there are significant reasons that hold this down to 3 stars.

The first novel ‘Island in the Sea of Time’ does a great job of setting up the world, characters and drawing the reader into the story. It is a more discrete story which spends most of its time in a few well drawn locations.

The second novel ‘Against the
Laurie Flood nuzzolilo
love the series
Mike Honaker
its a good book but not as good as the first two
Jonathan Palfrey
This final volume of the trilogy tells the story of only one year, from 10 to 11 AE (After the Event), but it's a crowded and bloody year of full-scale war in various parts of Europe and the Middle East. In fact, there's too much war for my taste, although there's room in this long book for much else to happen between battles, including irrelevant digressions.

If you've read the second volume, you won't be surprised by the war in Tartessos or the siege of Troy, but there are some surprises in sto
Aug 30, 2012 Banner rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, time-travel
On the Oceans of Eternity review

This whole series was really a mixed bag for me. There were several things about the series I enjoyed, but as I came to the end I couldn't help but think of what might have been.

There maybe a slight spoiler in what follows, read carefully but I think you'll be ok, since I'm just giving my opinion.

If your reading this review I assume that you have read the first two books (or your just curious and want to see what might wait ahead if you do start the series...I do
I thoroughly enjoyed the entire "Event" series (first two: Island In The Sea Of Time, Against the Tide of Years)
As with all of Stirling's work, the premise is ridiculous: in this series, the entire island of Nantucket has been mysteriously transported back to roughly 1250 BC. But the exposition is excellent, with compelling characters, great pacing, and imaginative but believable plotting once the premise is accepted.
In this final book, the Nantucketers press their war against the rebel sociopat
Christopher Perry
I loved the Nantucket series as a whole. And though book 3 has some issues I am still a fan. The biggest thing, and it is an annoyance, is that I have read a decent amount of Stirling. The companion Emberverse series just keeps going and going. So why, when this series clearly should have been 4 books did Stirling cram so much stuff into book 3? Maybe there wasn't enough linear material for book 4? Or maybe he was in a hurry to get the Emberverse material out there. But whatever the case, the 2n ...more
After the third large-ish book this was kind of like an old friend. The story was thought provoking as I went about my day(s), I kept thinking, "could I make that from scratch if I had to?" Usually my answer was no way. The shear amount of research and knowledge Stirling had to accumulate to write this book is impressive. From metalurgy to sailing to farming to antique weapons. Unfortunately he probably did a bit too much research, I enjoyed a huge amount of the details but there is a tipping p ...more
Tufty McTavish
I like time travel stories, and this alternative history flavour was mostly very enjoyable. It's also meticulously detailed, complex and interwoven. And so many characters. "Who's he again?" I often wondered.

There's some looseness to the editing, so the author tends to repeat himself in different ways (voiding. Let's just say that one came up time, and time again). Sometimes the pace resets abruptly and we cover older details in plot dumps. A massively relevant plot device got built up obliquely
Jan 21, 2014 Balkron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, reviewed, own
My Rating Scale:
1 Star - Horrible book, It was so bad I stopped reading it. I have not read the whole book and wont
2 Star - Bad book, I forced myself to finish it and do NOT recommend. I can't believe I read it once
3 Star - Average book, Was entertaining but nothing special. No plans to ever re-read
4 Star - Good Book, Was a really good book and I would recommend. I am Likely to re-read this book
5 Star - GREAT book, A great story and well written. I can't wait for the next book. I Will Re-Read th
Jan 11, 2008 Sheena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Stephanie
Recommended to Sheena by: Stephanie
Shelves: fantasy
This was one LONG book! The third in the Nantucket trilogy set in an alternate past where only a few present day people are sent back in time. Fantastic alternate history!

As much as I enjoyed it I think that there were a few too many side stories. There was an expedition to California that could have had it's own book. While the war fought in this installment was fought on many fronts, there were a few that were too elaborate with characters easily lost between chapters. There was so much going
Jul 28, 2011 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another enjoyable book but it ends very anti-climactically and suddenly, I felt kinda cheated. It feels like too many loose ends are not tied up. I feel like the villians deserved a better ending. Of course, in real life things can be anti-climatic as well. It just seemed to tie up a little too easily for my taste.

It seems that the author goes out of his way to understand every culture really well and represent them according to what we have learned about them. Who knows how accurate that real
J.D. Heskin
All three books in this series are pretty good, but it's obvious that in this book the author decided that for some reason it was his calling to use nearly every word in the thesaurus, especially those that haven't gotten enough use in print then string them into sentences more complex and elaborate than perhaps even the love-child of Shakespeare & Joyce might attempt.

On the upside, it was interesting to learn that apparently all the residents of Nantucket are PhD-level history scholars who
Apr 04, 2011 Kathy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
Stirling is hands down one of my favorite authors. I enjoyed this whole series - with a bit of an exception in this book. For the first two books, and half of this one, I had become very invested in this world - and I honestly felt a bit cheated at the end. Things were tied up quickly, and I felt that we were left hanging with several intriguing and promising story lines. If the series had continued, the score would have been higher - but since it finished with this book I really felt that the s ...more
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Jan 26, 2013 Ryan Fitzpatrick rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
After really enjoying the first two entries of this trilogy, I was greatly looking forward to its conclusion in this volume. But the pacing, number of plots, and number of characters seemed to completely get away from Stirling and, as a result, this book took me roughly 6 months to read, as I kept putting it down for other things, then coming back to it for a bit here and there until losing my patience again... The core of the story was good - but there was too much minutiae, too many disparate ...more
Sep 21, 2015 Mark rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Thank goodness that's over! Book one was a great start to the series I really enjoyed it, book two was okay and it felt like a middle book and left you wanting more, but this one, book three, it is tedious beyond belief and in need of a major edit just to cut at least 200 of the 600 odd pages because boy does it drag, then end when you finally get here is such a let down. A wholly unsatisfying ending to the series, a real shame.
The only interesting story arc was the character the treks across th
Kurt Vosper
Feb 04, 2013 Kurt Vosper rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The conclusion of the Islander series by Stirling certainly did not disappoint, for me at least. It continued the wonderful tale of modern people dumped back in time and forced to adapt and survive. A small majority turned evil early on and the building conflicts were wrapped up nicely with a tricky loose thread thrown in there in case the author ever feels the need to go back. There is certainly quite a bit to explore if he ever does go back but I enjoyed this series a lot. I would be most inte ...more
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Stephen Michael Stirling is a French-born Canadian-American science fiction and fantasy author. Stirling is probably best known for his Draka series of alternate history novels and the more recent time travel/alternate history Nantucket series and Emberverse series.

(personal website: source)

I’m a writer by trade, born in France but Canadian by origin and American by naturalizat
More about S.M. Stirling...

Other Books in the Series

Island in the Sea of Time (3 books)
  • Island in the Sea of Time (Nantucket, #1)
  • Against the Tide of Years (Nantucket, #2)

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