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Chasm City (Revelation Space 0.3)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  15,276 Ratings  ·  606 Reviews
The once-utopian Chasm City -a doomed human settlement on an otherwise inhospitable planet- has been overrun by a virus known as the Melding Plague, capable of infecting any body, organic or computerized. Now, with the entire city corrupted -from the people to the very buildings they inhabit- only the most wretched sort of existence remains. For security operative Tanner M ...more
Paperback, 528 pages
Published January 10th 2002 by Gollancz (first published 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Kevin Kelsey
“How long would you have to live; how much good would you need to do, to compensate for one act of pure evil you’d committed as a younger man?”

Very, very good. One of those books that I massively enjoy having read, past tense, but ultimately didn’t enjoy while reading. It slogs, and turns its wheels for about 200 pages in the middle, but I see now why it was necessary, and it ultimately pays off in strides.

Strong similarities to Iain M. BanksUse of Weapons, except that it didn’t rely on a rev
...more
Scott
Nov 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have you ever read for so long that your shoulder seizes up, and you have to stretch, but you do it one arm at a time so you can keep reading with your other hand? That happened to me while reading Chasm City. Even physical pain could not make me put this book down- I was getting to work half awake from my late nights with this one, and hanging out for my lunch breaks so I could race through a few more pages.

While the rest of the Revelation Space series deals with big ticket narrative items- One
...more
Apatt
Oct 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“I’ve been sent here to kill someone who probably doesn’t deserve it, and my only justification for it is some absurd adherence to a code of honour no one here understands or even respects.”
While reading the book I was a little bothered by the protagonist's motivation which did not make a lot of sense to me. Suddenly Alastair Reynolds addressed my problem directly and things begin to fall into place. This book is a very intricately plotted sf novel with strong element of a noir thriller, but
...more
David Sven
Jun 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, favourites
Chasm City. Originally settled by self-replicating robots carrying the genetic material to construct humans on site ahead of a more conventional colonisation. A city built around a chasm that spews gas and steam that is harnessed to generate energy and atmosphere. A city that experienced a 200 year utopia known as the Belle Epoche where technology advanced to the stage where implants and nanotechnology made immortality viable. A city where buildings were grown and designed by nano machinery. A c ...more
j
Is this what a China Miéville novel would be like if China Miéville wasn't so much with the prose? Because like China, Alastair Reynolds is totally horny for the Big Idea (and perhaps even better than him at actually providing a sort of logical justification for all the weird and wacky world-building he does, though that simply might be a circumstance of his preferred genre -- hard sci-fi -- more or less demanding that kind of effort from an author.) (Also he is an ex-scientist of some sort.)

So,
...more
Sarah Anne
Reasons not to listen to this audiobook while assembling cabinets:

1. That moment when a big reveal happens and you say "HOLY SHIT!!!!" tends to make people panic.
2. You have to take the cabinet apart and reassemble it. Twice.

This was absolutely amazing! The main character, Tanner, is an assassin who is on the trail of a man that he intends to kill for revenge. Throughout the book Tanner is also flashing back on this crucified martyr named Sky. Through this we get to see who Sky was and how the c
...more
Stuart
Chasm City: Gothic cyberpunk at its dark best
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature
Chasm City (2001) is the fourth Alastair Reynolds book I’ve read in his REVELATION SPACE series, though it is a stand-alone and a much better book. The main trilogy (Revelation Space, Redemption Ark, Absolution Gap) featured a lot of good hard SF world-building, but was heavily weighed down by clunky characters, dialogue, and extremely bloated page-count. While Chasm City is not any shorter at around 700 pages, i
...more
Ben Babcock
We all have triggers, certain topics in our beloved genres that instantly make us sit up and pay attention. Artificial intelligence is one such trigger for me; identity is another. (Both touch on philosophy of the mind, a field that fascinates me, and I suspect this is why they intrigue me.) There is scant AI in Chasm City, but there is plenty of reflection on identity and the ramifications of using technology to alter one’s identity. As every other review notes, this book is part of the Revelat ...more
Ian
The family's godfather sat back in his plush leather recliner and calmly ordered the hit, like the man who was about to be murdered was nothing more than a bug to be squashed …

The crack sniper squinted through his gun's sight, aligning the target's forehead in the crosshairs, and pulled the trigger with no second thoughts or remorse …

The muck and grime of the city's underworld didn't alarm him at all, as he trudged through the rain-flooded streets in search of his prey …

Come one, come all, see t
...more
Princessjay
This novel tried my patience. It was a struggle to plough through these 600+ pages, with seemingly no payoff at the end to warrant reams and reams of not-particularly-active "action" and a plot twist that could be seen a thousand miles away.

Too much description, scenery-setting, exposition, people talking without purpose. Too many damned words that contributes little to the reader's understanding of the world, its history, etc. Ultimate fail: what should be background overwhelms the foreground.

A
...more
Guillermo
Aug 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction


"How long would you have to live; how much good would you have to do, to compensate for one act of pure evil you'd committed as a younger man?"

Redemption. It seems to be one of Reynold's favorite themes. It was prevelant in the Revelation Space series, and it takes
center stage in Chasm City.

It's normal for Alastair's novels to push the 500 page mark, but unlike other works I've read in this genre, his stories
are lean and mean. This is the leanest and meanest story I've read of his. Although t
...more
Karl
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book Chasm City is the sequel to "REVELATION SPACE" and is a bit better than the first.
Negativni
Nov 21, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ovaj roman sam počeo čitati još u devetom mjesecu prošle godine misleći da je nastavak Revelation Space trilogije pa ga stavio sa strane kad sam shvatio da nije. Ipak, pošto se događa u istom svemiru, nastavio sam ga čitati usporedo s posljednjim romanom spomenute trilogije, ali onda sam oba ostavio na pola i čitao druge knjige. Ima razloga zašto je to tako. 

Početak je zanimljiv, ali nakon uvoda priča nikako da krene. A najviše me je smetalo često prepiričavanje događaja između likova. Čak i bez
...more
Jeraviz
Jan 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Una gozada de libro. 4.5 estrellas pero redondeo hacia arriba.
Primero de todo, creo que recomiendo leer Ciudad Abismo antes que Espacio Revelación. En esta novela Reynolds sienta las bases del universo que crea de una manera más fácil de entender y mejor estructurada que en Espacio Revelación y te prepara para lo que viene después.
En cuanto a la historia, es un libro con tantos giros y cambios de punto de vista que se necesita tiempo y tranquilidad para su lectura. El autor entremezcla 3 y 4 hil
...more
Cecily
I read this because Alistair Reynolds is my teenage son's favourite author. Although it is sometimes labelled as Revelation Space book 2, he reckoned this was the best book and has the advantage of being readable as a standalone story.

Although you could summarise it as a long chase story of hunter and hunted, it is a complex and well-written page turner (and there are quite a lot of pages), the main theme of which is the nature of identity and the effects of various ways of changing it (e.g. bo
...more
Efka
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cyberpunk fans, revelation space fans
Shelves: sci-fi
Kažkada seniai labai seniai, t.y., maždaug prieš porą metų, tik ką pabaigęs pagrindinę "Revelation Space" trilogiją, buvau pradėjęs ir šią knygą. Kaip ne kaip, ta trilogija man tikrai patiko, o "Bedugnės miestas" yra viena iš penkių šios serijos knygų, nors ir atskira bei su pagrindinės trilogijos siužetu nesusijusi. Kažkodėl vos po kelių puslapių numečiau ją į šoną: gal pradėjau skaityti kažką kito, gal tada Alastairo Reynoldso man jau buvo per daug, nežinau. Ką aš žinau, tai kad džiaugiuosi, j ...more
Jurgen_i
It's a great sci-fi book, maybe one of the best of this century. There are three main points, why it is so good.

1. First is a plot. It is interesting, captivating and consistant, but this isn't so important. Composition is. There are three story lines, from the first glance almost unconnected. But when they finally merge, you can see, how good Reynolds is. This composition is kind of quirky, but it makes the whole picture very beautiful.

2. This is hard sci-fi. Reynolds is a physicist, so his fic
...more
Ana-Maria Negrilă
Jul 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
Orașul abisului este un roman ce conține suficiente elemente din recuzita genului - știință, lumi exotice, conflicte intergalactice și violența aferentă. Lumea Orașului abisului este însă foarte bine dezvoltată și destul de coerentă, conținând detalii tehnice, dar și altele ce dau veridicitate (etnografie, mitologie, religie etc.). Din păcate, ca în multe cărți hard SF, personajele sunt deficitare, mai mult niște umbre ce populează mărețul spațiu imaginat. Pline de clișee, aceste umbre sunt mâna ...more
Lee
Once again Alastair Reynolds has me all over the place with my thoughts on his books. There are parts of this story that I throughly enjoyed and would happily give four stars and then there are great rafts of it that I found dull and couldn't wait for the chapter to end. Thus three stars is the result.

Chasm City has some Revelation Space theme to it, but you couldn't be faulted in thinking that there were two Alastair Reynolds in the authoring world. This story is told in such a different way t
...more
Mark Hebwood
Jan 08, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well. I must say I am impressed. It is not often that I find something truly new, and original. That is not in any way meant to be a glib statement - I think all of us who like to read can say that we have encountered many plot twists that are of a similar nature, many clever narrative modes which yet feel as if they pertain to a common class, many beautifully crafted and unique characters.

And yet, In Chasm City, Alastair served up something truly new (at least for me) and managed to deliver a r
...more
Bee
I tried reading Reynolds as a teen and HATED it. It left me cold and miserable. Now in my thirties I'm finding everything I've been looking for in space opera! Finally!

This was a damn good book. Interesting characters (with ridiculous layers of hidden personalities and memories that only get triggered at certain times and and and). Wonderful tech, and civilisations falling from the grace given them by their tech when the Melding Plague takes over everything above a certain complexity.

Decent act
...more
Swaps55
Aug 08, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sci-fi fans, sci-fi writers
This is the first alastair Reynolds book I read, and I was so blown off my ass I couldn't think straight for a few days. This guy has the perfect toolkit for writing science fiction: a background in astrophysics, an amazing imagination, a strong sense of character and a compelling plot with a deserving ending. What attracts me most to his writing is his uncanny grasp of human nature and human behavior, and what it would evolve into when projected into the future, when technological advancements ...more
Brad
There's something very important attached to modern, well-crafted space-opera. It's not precisely the way new and old tech drives the boundaries of plot, nor is it the very common feel of jaded semi-immortals gripping onto their lives in fascist drama. It's something hidden, an underlay of expectations that successfully build so much momentum that the text screams like a runaway train and it doesn't matter how much inane and crazy plot-twists crop up, because you're just left holding on to the r ...more
Tudor Ciocarlie
Chasm City is a rare breed - a complex well-integrated multi-layered plot and a page turner with satisfying pace right up to the end. It is a book that makes you wonder in delight but at the same time envelopes you in tension and mystery. It will engage with your mind and leave you very satisfied at the end.
MadProfessah
Feb 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who live Leviathan Wakes or Judas Unchained
Shelves: favorites
British science fiction master Alastair Reynolds has very quickly become one of my favorite authors and  Chasm City  is a big part of that. Although it is not formally in the Revelation Space trilogy of Revelation Space, Redemption Ark and Absolution Gap, it is set in the same universe as those other books, like The Prefect  and his short story collection Galactic North.

Specifically, Chasm City is located on the planet Yellowstone, which once featured the most advanced human civilization in Rey
...more
Jason
Dec 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5 Stars

Chasm City is now one of my favorite Alistair Reynolds novels. I have been a huge fan of his for a long time and I love all things Revelation Space. This standalone novel that is a pseudo prequel to the Revelation Space series is different from the rest.

This is a classic Alistair Reynolds novel that is a bit lighter in the hard science genre. This weekend is not a technical book or one filled with physics and mathematics. It is a space thriller and revenge novel that shows glimpses of spa
...more
Robert
Aug 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Claudia
Dec 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“How long would you have to live; how much good would you need to do, to compensate for one act of pure evil you’d committed as a younger man?”

The darkest in the Revelation universe so far, even horrifying one, with a brilliant crescendo in events and terrifying characters. I changed my feelings about the main one several times during reading, from pure hatred to pity and sympathy and now that I finished it, I have no idea whether I hate him or not.
“’Why would people want to experience somet
...more
Lightreads
I am so jaded: you read one book about plagues that eat nanotechnology, and religious experience as the result of an indoctrinal neurovirus, and the particular kind of psychosis that results from decades-long sublight space flights, you’ve read them all.

Particularly when you’ve actually read three, all by the same guy. Seriously, Alastair Reynolds, think about something else!

And this book is a mess anyway – bloated, terrible dialogue (seriously, the narrator of my audiobook did the best anyone
...more
Oscar
Esta novela de Alastair Reynolds, es la segunda incursión del autor en el Universo de Espacio Revelación, aunque puede leerse de manera independiente. Estamos ante una space-opera de corte clásico, en el que el sentido de la maravilla y la imaginación se encuentran a raudales, sobre todo en el primer tercio de la novela.

Tanner Mirabel es una asesino a sueldo que busca al asesino de la esposa de su jefe, para lo que tendrá que viajar a Ciudad Abismo en busca del culpable, de nombre Argent Reivich
...more
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Space Opera Fans : Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds 19 79 Jun 30, 2015 03:30AM  
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Content 8 34 Nov 27, 2014 05:09PM  
Who is the bad guy? 2 35 Jul 28, 2014 05:06AM  
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Alastair Reynolds, former scientist and now full-time writer. Most of what he writes is science fiction, with a strong concern for scientific verisimilitude (although he is prepared to break the rules for the sake of a good story). He has lived in England, Scotland and the Netherlands where he worked as an astrophysicist for the European Space Agency until 2004, but now makes his home back in his ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Revelation Space (6 books)
  • The Prefect (Prefect Dreyfus Emergency, #1)
  • Elysium Fire (Prefect Dreyfus Emergency, #2)
  • Revelation Space
  • Redemption Ark
  • Absolution Gap

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“There was something heartbreakingly beautiful about the lights of distant ships, I thought. It was something that touched both on human achievement and the vastness against which those achievements seemed so frail. It was the same thing whether the lights belonged to a caravel battling the swell on a stormy horizon or a diamond-hulled starship which had just sliced its way through interstellar space.” 14 likes
“Victory loses its meaning without the memory of what you've vanquished.” 5 likes
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