While this did take me a lot longer to read than the previous entries in the series I still really enjoyed it! I think the pacing here threw me off asWhile this did take me a lot longer to read than the previous entries in the series I still really enjoyed it! I think the pacing here threw me off as each of the Rocinante's crew takes on their own POV (first time for three of them, so that was a lot of fun!) and the narrative gets spread between them.
I liked finally getting into the heads of these characters that I've been following since the first book, especially since this was the first time the series really went deep into the past of Amos, Alex and Naomi. Holden has his own chapters here, but the place this mainly shines is the POVs of the other three. It was nice to see Holden actually grow up some more as this went on. Plus, some of my favorites return to play some big parts in the plot again, like Bobbie and Avasarala!
(view spoiler)[I think maybe part of the reason this took me longer is I was somewhat disappointed by the lack of the Protomolecule plot being in here aside from a little bit with the sample being stolen from Fred and of course the epilogue. I was really missing Miller's presence in here. Still, this had some pretty universe-changing shocks in it. I'm looking forward to seeing where the death of Earth is going to be leading. (hide spoiler)]...more
This series really has a habit of each book having an entirely different feel from the others yet still feeling completely appropriate for the seriesThis series really has a habit of each book having an entirely different feel from the others yet still feeling completely appropriate for the series as a whole. Cibola Burn tackles the colonization of new planets and the conflicts between various factions of humans as everyone scrambles to have the "rights" to entire planets.
I wasn't feeling the two of the extra POVs as much in this as some of the previous books, although it did improve as the book went on. It took about half the book for me to want to read anything from Elvi's POV, especially the awkward lovesick period she got stuck in, although she did improve as it went on. I'll give the authors credit--she was pretty realistic in terms of how awkwardly anxious people can be. Basia was also a bit of a mess to read at times, although I did enjoy his character arc.
I really had a lot of fun reading about the new planet! (view spoiler)[Plus, the protomolecule stuff is always interesting. I'll be curious to see where the lore of that goes now that Miller seems to be out of the picture for good. I was really sad to see that happen... (hide spoiler)]...more
A continuation of the Old Man's War series but without the usual cast of characters, which was actually a refreshing change. I enjoy John Perry, JaneA continuation of the Old Man's War series but without the usual cast of characters, which was actually a refreshing change. I enjoy John Perry, Jane Sagan and Zoe but they don't give a broad view of the universe politics. This isn't to say it's an entirely new cast of characters, although I'll admit it took me a while to realize Harry Wilson was one of the "Old Farts" from the first book!
This having been published as a serial made for some weird storytelling and pacing at times, since each episode has it's own start and conclusion that make them satisfying little reads on their own while all tying into a greater universe-wide conspiracy. There's a lot of different things going on, but they all tie together really well as they mostly follow the diplomatic exploits of the same crew.
That ending definitely is leaving me wanting more! I'd been expecting about 30 more pages when it suddenly cut off, not realizing there were two short stories at the end of the book thrown in as "extras." Things tie up satisfying enough but there's a lot left to wonder about....more
I'm not normally big on the idea of doing a "sequel" in a series as a re-telling of the previous book but from a different POV, but considering this wI'm not normally big on the idea of doing a "sequel" in a series as a re-telling of the previous book but from a different POV, but considering this was Zoe's take on the events of The Last Colony I was pretty excited to dive into this. There were a few points in The Last Colony I wished had been gone into with more detail but couldn't with it being from John's perspective, and this did a great job of telling its own story without doing a ton of re-treads of scenes I'd already read from his perspective since Zoe spends a lot of time doing her own things.
I loved the tone of Zoe and her best friend, Gretchen. They were spot on for smart, snarky teens and reminded me a lot of my own friends in high school. He even got that right level of pretension that comes with being a teen and being smart, especially with the poetry of Enzo.
Definitely worth a read for fans of the series and I loved seeing Zoe take charge so much! It's always refreshing to see science fiction with a female lead that's allowed to actually take the lead....more
Really effective prequel to the Lunar Chronicles that delves into the motivations and history of Levana, the "evil queen" of the series. This did a grReally effective prequel to the Lunar Chronicles that delves into the motivations and history of Levana, the "evil queen" of the series. This did a great job of making me feel both bad for her circumstances growing up and disliking her even more. Definitely a must-read for fans of the series....more
What a fun read! I'd had this sitting on my Nook for quite some time after picking it up on a sale and I'm glad I finally got around to it. Even withWhat a fun read! I'd had this sitting on my Nook for quite some time after picking it up on a sale and I'm glad I finally got around to it. Even with all the technobabble, it was a pretty quick read as it was fairly hard to put down. For most of the book the pacing is pretty frenetic. There are a few slowdown periods as Mark has to work on projects, but behind it all there's always a sense of urgency.
There's definitely a level of suspension of disbelief needed to read this. While the author clearly did a lot of research and put a lot of effort into the science, the book does rely a lot on dumb luck. This is generally true for a lot of these survival style stories so I'm fine with that, even if it does feel pretty fantastical at times. It didn't detract from the uncertainty or enjoyment for me.
I think part of why I really enjoyed this is Mark feels pretty human. The story is mostly told via log entries, and there's a lot of silliness to be found. I don't think a purely humorless character just trying to make it would have been nearly as gripping a read but the sometimes goofy language and moments like making up units of measurements like "ninja-pirates" because he got tired of using real terms made him feel far more real....more
A short and sweet entry from Sanderson. I liked the idea behind Stephen's special powers, but with how short this was it didn't leave much room to reaA short and sweet entry from Sanderson. I liked the idea behind Stephen's special powers, but with how short this was it didn't leave much room to really delve far into it. The action is so fast-paced in here that this really felt like it was over before it had truly begun. Definitely a fun little diversion, I'd just have liked to see it fleshed out more!...more
Swinging back to the perspective of John Perry, this tackles the dangers of founding a new colony amid the tensions of Perry's universe. This starts oSwinging back to the perspective of John Perry, this tackles the dangers of founding a new colony amid the tensions of Perry's universe. This starts off straightforward enough, with it looking like it will mainly be about settling on the planet itself and the dangers therein, but it quickly throws the story into a pretty intense political battle. Considering how much in-depth the politics got in the first two books, it's saying a lot that this felt even more so.
John Perry and Jane Sagan's relationship continues to be downright fascinating. I very much love this older, more settled version of them (and Zoe adds a lot to this family dynamic, as well).
This series is staying consistently great and surprising, especially the shocker of an ending that should have some pretty amazing changes for the universe. I'm glad to know there's two more in the series, especially since this included an author's note that this was the last book in the series planned back when it was first published. Glad he saw fit to return after something that should make for some pretty fascinating fodder....more
A fabulous follow-up to Old Man's War, tackling the concepts of identity and souls via cloning. While this is a sequel to Old Man's War, there's onlyA fabulous follow-up to Old Man's War, tackling the concepts of identity and souls via cloning. While this is a sequel to Old Man's War, there's only partial overlap with the characters--no John Perry this time around, but pretty quickly on Sagan plays a solid role in here.
Jared Dirac, engineered to trap a traitor, made for an interesting protagonist. In some ways, I preferred him to John from the previous entry in that he was such a blank slate of a character and through the novel he is seen growing. Definitely some solid character work watching his personality develop and morph, with some fairly interesting twists towards the end.
I loved getting an insider look into the Ghost Brigades, which was something that was fairly intriguing in the first but was much more in-depth here. Plus, there's more in-depth universe politics discussed in here, and it is pretty awesome to see detailed alien societies and their histories....more
After a slow start with some drawn-out high school drama, this kicks into a non-stop thriller. I struggled at the beginning--the constant brand name dAfter a slow start with some drawn-out high school drama, this kicks into a non-stop thriller. I struggled at the beginning--the constant brand name dropping and details about the rival friendship with Kaylee and not-so-interesting love interest Hunter felt drawn out. But, by the time the action starts, this all melts away into pointlessness as Mila's new life takes over.
This was a fun read that was pretty hard to put down with how much of a page-turner it got to be (it pulled out a lot of the cheap mini-cliffhanger chapter tricks). I never found there to be all that much depth to the characters or the story--Mila does grapple with the realization that she's not a human, but with how action-heavy things get she doesn't really have time to develop on this. None of the character relationships feel all that deep, either.
I'm definitely curious for the next book in the series--this was a fun diversion and I suspect the next book will be just as much so, with hopefully more in-depth character work....more
This tackles the interesting topic of parallel earths and what could be done with infinite resources, but I had a super hard time investing in here. TThis tackles the interesting topic of parallel earths and what could be done with infinite resources, but I had a super hard time investing in here. The subject was intriguing, the writing solid, and the characters weren't bland or anything... I just really had a hard time getting into this, and never really felt it clicked for me. It did feel like there was a certain lack of focus on a coherent storyline for much of this, which may have been my issue. Still, it's got some Pratchett wit and this was my first experience with anything involving Stephen Baxter--I'll be interesting in reading some more from him to see if his other books catch me better than this did....more
This jumps ta little in the timeline after the big cliffhanger of the previous book an throws in three new perspectives. I liked all three characters,This jumps ta little in the timeline after the big cliffhanger of the previous book an throws in three new perspectives. I liked all three characters, especially Anna, although I didn't feel like they were as strong a set of POVs as the previous book. I can't really criticize the book for that as both Bobbie and Avasarala are super hard to top.
What I really loved about this book is how many answers are finally given. I'd wondered if this would be a series that would string the mysteries along too long but happily this explains a fair number of things about the protomolecule and what happened after Eros crashed into Venus. Of course, in answering these things they opened up some new mysteries, but that's just more to look forward to....more
I'm really happy with the direction Corey took with this, the second in the Expanse series. Rather than only building on the events of Leviathan WakesI'm really happy with the direction Corey took with this, the second in the Expanse series. Rather than only building on the events of Leviathan Wakes, this has an entire storyline of its own with some new faces to further flesh out the universe of the Expanse. And, while doing this, there is actually enjoy of a refresher at the beginning of the book to actually jump straight into this without having read the first (recommended you do, because it's a good one).
I liked Holden a lot better this time around--I liked him well enough in the first book, but much preferred Miller. Holden's hardened up a little more this time, however, and doesn't come off quite so dopey and self-righteous. Plus, Prax and Bobbie were both solid characters to follow, and I did enjoy Prax's character development especially.
There isn't a huge amount to do with the mess that was left on Venus at the end of book one or the protomolecule, but there's a completely evil twist right at the end that makes me wish book three were out right at this moment. Bah, cliffhangers....more