A new Alex Benedict novel from "a master of describing otherworldly grandeur." (Denver Post)
Forty-one years ago the renowned physicist Chris Robin vanished. Before his disappearance, his fringe science theories about the existence of endless alternate universes had earned him both admirers and enemies.
Alex Benedict and Chase Kolpath discover that Robin had several...more
What it actually became was also interesting even if it was kind of an old hat in the SF world, but never mind... any discussion of alt ...more
Firebird the newest Alex Benedict novel by Jack McDevitt is a terrific read full of exciting scientific revelations, social intrigues, and fascinating looks into the past from the historical perspective of a man with a talent for finding valuable objects and dangerous answers. Antiquarian Alex Benedict and his assistant Chase Ko ...more
Mostly am surprised at how Chase is written so that she seems as if she never went on an investigation/adventure with Alex. Annoying. However, still very enjoyable.
I am reading this more out of a sense of duty and completion than of eager anticipation. That's surprising because I usually have no trouble jettisoning a series once it has become stale. I put it ...more
When it comes to science fiction, I don’t think I’m hard to please. Present a hopeful and believa ...more
I'm also not sure how to take a setting that's literally thousands of years in the future but in which so little appears to have changed. Even ...more
It's mostly a slow to moderately paced ride. The mystery itself -- a famous scientist who vanished decades ago -- becomes even stranger as the two protagonists investigate the past. There is a tense scene on a deserted (haunted?) planet, and reported sightings of myste ...more
This book lacks nerve, suspense, rhythm, in short everything that makes a book enjoyable to read. This is probably one of McDevitt's most annoying stories. Not because it is not interesting (it is, and not only a little!) but because its treatment is so slow and soporific.
Fortunately, the end of the novel offers some nice rewards to the reader exhausted by the philosophical discussion ...more
Since I have read A Talent for War in the early 90's I have been a big Jack McDevitt fan and his subsequent novels mostly worked out very well for me with the Academy series being a huge highlight opened by the superb The Engines of God which alongside A Talent for War still ranks in my highly recommended list of A++ sf novels.
Here are the opening lines of A Talent for War that made my list of memorable first lines and note the mystery and sense of history they exude:
THE AIR WAS ...more
Firebird opens with an interstellar ship inexplicably failing to arrive at its destination, then introduces the mysterious disappearance of a physicist who had been researching the disappearance of other interstellar sh ...more
Alex Benedict is an antiquities dealer ...more
This is one of the three weakest McDevitts I've read (or attempted). All three of these are Alex Benedict books. A pattern emerges.....
OK, slow learner. I like McDevitt, especially the Academy/Priscilla Hutchins books, but not this series.
The series lives with it’s capability to create and maintain the feeling of living in the far future and discovering things from The legendary past, which is still in the future for us.
McDevitt masterfully describes a future which in many ways are similar to our time, only far out in the galaxy. Talk shows on television, politics and the press are still the same and that recognition is probably the reason it’s so easy to ...more
Firebird, the sixth outing of Alex Benedict and his partner/starship pilot Chase Kolpath, is probably on of the best novels Jack McDevitt has written. The Alex Benedict novels are always entertaining, and for those out there who are not familiar with them, think Indiana Jones meets Sherlock Holmes in Star Trek (although with less action). Benedict is an antiquities dealer in the far, far future—14 000 years far future—that ends up investigating some sort of mystery surrounding an artifact that ...more
Alex and Chase work together in the FAR future - some nine thousand years from now, Alex makes a profit getting buyers and sellers of rare artifacts together. Sometimes he finds, and sells, his own treasures. His detractors, especially the archeologists, call him a tomb robber. The name-calling, and attacks on his integrity, can be a little hard ...more
I thought I was going to hate this book because it started out almost the same as "Polaris" and I said to myself, "Oh no! He's run out of ideas so he's recycling old ones!" but he eventually pulled out of that near-miss collision and wound up with a pretty good book.
The story: a famous physicist, Dr. Chris Rob ...more
This is #6 of Jack McDevitt’S Alex Benedict series, of which I have read #1 through #6. In fact, I just re-read it, because reviews of Coming Home seem to indicate that it will launch from some plot threads not fully resolved in Firebird. Here's the chronology:
#1 A Talent for War (1989)
#2 Polaris (2004)
#3 Seeker (2005)
#4 The Devil’s Eye (2008)
#5 Echo (2010)
#6 Firebird (2011)
#7 Coming Home (2014)
I noticed again how many details of the social culture of the Alex ...more
As the book opens, Alex is visited by the sister-in-law of a famous physicist who simply disappeared one day a few years earlier. The woman wanted to sell his things, and she wanted Alex to assess their value. But he understands innately that there’s a story in these ar ...more
The writing is good: good descriptions, well done action scenes, great characters. There isn't a lot violence type of action but it isn't needed in this type of story. I think McDevitt could get into his characters' minds and hearts more especially in danger scenes but still the mystery is a good one. The hints and clues that show up at ...more
Favorite Quo ...more
Anyhow, much much better effort on this one than the previous. He has won me back with this one.