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Cibola Burn

(The Expanse #4)

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  71,679 ratings  ·  3,949 reviews
The fourth novel in James S.A. Corey’s New York Times bestselling Expanse series

The gates have opened the way to thousands of habitable planets, and the land rush has begun. Settlers stream out from humanity's home planets in a vast, poorly controlled flood, landing on a new world. Among them, the Rocinante, haunted by the vast, posthuman network of the protomolecule as th
Hardcover, 581 pages
Published June 17th 2014 by Orbit
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Joshua Lense Good news everyone! Hachette Audio confirmed that a new version of Cibola Burn audio book narrated by Jefferson Mays will release March of this year! …moreGood news everyone! Hachette Audio confirmed that a new version of Cibola Burn audio book narrated by Jefferson Mays will release March of this year! proof:

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Average rating 4.18  · 
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 ·  71,679 ratings  ·  3,949 reviews

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Neil Hepworth
This book was the clunker to end all clunkers. The dud to end all duds. The turd in your soup, if you will. In other words, it was a bad book.

First of all, the book can’t figure out it’s own plot. Twenty pages in and the book thinks it’s going to be about immigration, evil corporations and land rights. Oh, but then it’s not. Halfway in and the book thinks it’s going to be about natural disasters. But then it’s about killer slugs and orbital decay?...neither of which was interesting. At the end,
Jul 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cibola Burn brings The Expanse back to its good form.

Cibola Burn, the fourth volume in The Expanse series, has often been said as the weakest book of the series. And after the previous books—Abaddon’s Gate and the novellas/short stories of the series which I’ve read so far— which left me disappointed, I was seriously scared this one would be even worse. As it turns out, I ended up enjoying it.

“Right,” Holden said. “No coffee. This is a terrible, terrible planet.”

Not only there’s no c
Mario the lone bookwolf
Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: corey-james-s-a
So what to do with all those other worlds?

A popular theme in Sci-Fi and something that has been described in two ways over the years in this forever evolving genre. Just as a plot vehicle, not in detail and just for the fun of it or in too much detail for the average reader (not you, of course, you are wonderful), the prime examples are Ben Bova's Grand Tour series and Kim Stanley Robinsons Mars trilogy, both so extreme that they are just something for the true hardcore fan. The Expanse has a pe
Aug 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
In The Expanse humanity has spread out among our solar system, and there have been decades of political tension and hostility among the people of Earth, Mars, and the Belters of the Outer Planetary Alliance. The events of the previous books have resulted in the unlocking of a system of wormhole gates that puts literally a thousand habitable new worlds and all their natural resources within reach.

All the people put their differences aside to begin a new golden age of peace and prosperity as they
Hannah Greendale
After taking almost three hundred pages to find its stride, Cibola Burn launches its readers into a tense, high-stakes adventure that lasts to the final page.
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
I loved it!

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Ahmad Sharabiani
Sep 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Cibola Burn (Expanse, #4), James S.A. Corey

Cibola Burn is a 2014 science fiction novel by James S. A. Corey (pen name of Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck) and the fourth book in The Expanse series.

After the events of Abaddon's Gate, humanity has gained access to thousands of new worlds and solar systems through the gate networks. At the start of Cibola Burn the United Nations, Martian, and Outer Planets Alliance governments have thus far restricted exploration and colonization efforts to one corpora
Dec 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The fourth Expanse novel is a bit of a sea change – though a perfectly logical progression from the game-changing events of Abaddon’s Gate. This time the crew of the Rocinante is tasked with mediating a potentially disastrous dispute between corporate interests and belter squatters on the first habitable world discovered on the other side of the ring.
Thrilling action, nail-biting suspense and complex characters are, by now, par for the course in what has become the most consistently and spectac
Jordan Rose
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
I finished it, due in large part because of my love for the Expanse series overall, as I devoured Leviathan Wakes thru Abaddon's Gate in short order. Cibola Burn, however, fell short of my expectations for many reasons, most of which have already been detailed in previous reviews.

First, the new characters. Basia's story arc was probably the most interesting of the newcomers yet, even still, I found myself becoming bored with his predictability. Havelock, for the most part, I found myself wanting
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
*** 4.25 ***

"... “It was astounding, Bobbie thought, how quickly humanity could go from What unimaginable intelligence fashioned these soul-wrenching wonders? to Well, since they’re not here, can I have their stuff?” ..."

The authors of "The Expanse" series came through again! With a flair for storytelling and a well build set-up to a series starting from book one, "Cibola Burn" comes to us with a set of givens and expectations. The givens are the great world-building, characters we already k
Sep 04, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: sci-fi
This series as a whole is so poorly-named, that it borders on false advertising. For an ongoing story collectively called The Expanse, each successive book has become smaller, and smaller in scope. Leviathan Wakes had a solar system-wide war, with entire planetary bodies being irrevocably altered in the conflict. Caliban's War had virtually the same plot, but with some different characters, and felt lesser by its very derivative nature. Abaddon's Gate centered on an enclosed area of space, with ...more
Re-Read 9/25/18:

This second read went down SMOOTH. :) Sure, we're out of the Solar System and Holden is attempting to play peacemaker rather than the lone voice of truth, but what he's got on his shoulders is the one-eye'd king in the land of the blind syndrome... AND massive conflict. Not whole Powers breathing down his neck this time, but things get really hairy out on the frontier where law and order is played fast and loose.

Yep. It's a cowboy novel featuring slugs that blind you, a planet li
Mogsy (MMOGC)
Sep 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
4.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

The Expanse is probably my science fiction series right now, and I think Cibola Burn is the best installment yet.

Why, you ask? Well, unlike the previous books, which I felt started off slow but gradually built up to bigger and better action, Cibola Burn breaks this pattern and kicks things off right away with an explosive conflict you can’t ignore. The mysterious proto-molecule that somehow created a massive ring structu
Oct 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not on the same level as the previous installments but still good.
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
Nov 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
4.5 Stars
Spoiler discussion Video:

While not quite as strong as the first three books, I still really enjoyed this fourth novel. At this point, I just love spending time with recurring characters.

I was particularly intrigued by the political uncertainty outlined in the beginning of the novel. I really enjoy reading about the tension between the various interplanetary groups.

I found the new female a bit irritating because I find it frustrating to watch an educated wo
Oct 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot better than the last one, still some bits where I lost interest.

The regular cast is great. Alex and Naomi got bigger parts. Miller is back from the word salad either.

"You’re like Peter Pan, she says. When a child died, Peter Pan would fall halfway with them. So they wouldn’t be scared.

Weird. And that’s a kid’s story? Anyway, it’s not me, the investigator says (Miller), smiles at her. Holds her hand. I don’t go for half."

Although these guys don't have any problem with killing characters, I
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's utterly fitting that this fourth volume in the The Expanse series is about the exploration of an entirely new planet in another solar system since it is also the first book where I don't know what will happen because the TV show has not caught up to the book series yet.

After the protomolecule has built the Ring and humans have gone through, finding the station connecting us to all kinds of planetary systems, humans want to leave Sol and live some place else. The problem? Well, it's mostly
Mr. Matt
Jul 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, sci-fi, aliens
Just when I thought I was getting tired of the Expanse ... Cibola Burn takes humanity through the mysterious gates built by the protomolecule, to a thousand habitable worlds. The new worlds promise a rebirth for humanity. No more population controls, no more crowded, polluted planets, no more scraping a subsistence living in an air pocket on a planetoid. A thousand Edens await; however, as Detective Miller reminds us, you gotta watch the doors and corners.

Just because humanity made it to a new E
James Trevino
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
If I think of this as a stand alone sci-fi book it would probably get a 5 star rating. But this is part of The Expanse series and so far it is the weakest of them all. That should tell you how much I love this series.

Ciobola Burn is slower than the previous volumes and, just like them, it introduces a some new POVs next to the ones of the Roccinante crew. The problem here is that the new POVs all fail to some extent. Basia, Elvi and Havelock are interesting characters but they don't come out goo
Jan 21, 2021 rated it liked it
I fell off on my Expanse reading but I feel like this is a bit of a detour in the series and it's one I could have skipped. I had been excited to see what the first adventure after the Ring gate opened would be so I was primed to love this. Alas, I didn't.

Ilus/New Terra is the site of a land war between a group of Belters who make a colony in basically a land rush and a mining corporation. This is an interesting enough set up but not for an entire book. Holden and the crew of the Roci are prett
Executive Summary: This one felt very different from the rest of the series to me. Whether or not that is a good thing will largely depend on the reader I suspect.

Audio book: Erik Davies is OK. Originally I was pretty indifferent about the narrator change for this book. I was never particularly attached to Jefferson Mays. I had sort of of hoped that as this was the first book released in hardcover maybe the change was due to them getting a better reader.

Turns out that wasn't the case. For the m
Books with Brittany
Maybe 3.75⭐️ rounded up?
Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller
I love this series – the plot, the characters, the humor, the world building… all of it. I was excited for this one in particular because when I first started The Expanse a couple of years ago I thought it was only going to be a trilogy. Cibola Burn (and Nemesis Games) felt like bonus books. I’m super thrilled the story is not over!!!

As always, this Expanse book had an excellent mix of familiar and new POV characters – an element that has always kept these novels fresh and exciting for me. Of al
Jul 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I am a big fan of this series. Both the book and the show. Having watched the show I now realize that season 4 combines this book and the next. This book tells the part about what happened on the planet.

The gates are open. Mankind has access to thousands of new worlds. One has been settled by some rogue belters, but a UN force is en route to "officially" settle and study the planet. The Belters commit a terrorist act and blow up the shuttle. The ERC, the corporation that's charged with settling
Kevin Kelsey
Feb 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015, read-2016
A departure in their method of storytelling. It's nice to see that the authors aren't one trick ponies. In some ways this might be the strongest entry in the expanse yet. In other ways, it isn't quite as strong. I have a hard time placing my finger on why exactly, but it's not my favorite. I suspect that it will be a favorite for many though. It's wickedly fun, and a solid entry in a terrific series. Now the waiting for 'Nemesis Games' begins. ...more
“Space is too damn big”.

And yet somehow, it’s not big enough for a bunch of Belter colonists and an Earth-corp to leave each other alone…

This is the instalment of “The Expanse” that goes from space opera to spaghetti Western, with all the classic tropes: a desolate place where people try to make a decent living, a trigger-happy psychopath, a hostile environment, sabotage, explosions… In other words, tons of fun!

Spoilers from this point on if you haven’t read the three first books of the series.

Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
The fourth book in the Expanse Universe continues the tradition of reinventing the series with each new installment. If the first one was a mix of hard-boiled detective investigation and zombie apocalypse in space, the second was mostly about open warfare between the main three factions in the future Solar System (The Earth, Mars and the Outer Planets alliance), the third a homage to Arthur C Clarke Rama novels, the best way I can find to characterize the latest is "cowboys and aliens", wi
A new book in this exciting space opera means a new crisis for Holden and his crew to face. The gates to hundreds of new worlds have been flung open and mankind – not having actually earned this discovery through any effort of its own – is eager to charge through the door, taking all of its ingrained prejudices with it.

"A vast new frontier has opened up for us. We have the chance to create a new society, with untold riches beyond every gate. But this world has treasure, so instead of figuring o
Made it a little past 25%. I hate all of the POV characters. The plot has no depth or nuance. Everything escalates to violence at the drop of a hat, making the story boring and predictable. I hope the TV series improve on the book because there's so much potential.

Turns out that I lemmed the book right before it got good and interesting. I stick by some of my previous assertions (escalating to violence quickly, POV characters aren't great) but the story did find some urgency and complexit
Apr 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
I found the challenges of the planet, the scientists rushing around to save things, Holden's interactions with the protomolecule, the idea of a new frontier, etc all absolutely fascinating and lots of fun. But I didn't like the moustache-twirling evil villain (I found him unbelievable) or the lack of female viewpoints in this. (Elvi is a great character but also problematic.) Man oh man, though, I am looking forward to the next one! ...more
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Other books in the series

The Expanse (9 books)
  • Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse, #1)
  • Caliban's War (The Expanse, #2)
  • Abaddon's Gate (The Expanse, #3)
  • Nemesis Games (The Expanse, #5)
  • Babylon's Ashes (The Expanse, #6)
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Articles featuring this book

You probably know coauthors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck as James S.A. Corey—their shared pen name. And you probably know them from their wildly...
151 likes · 17 comments
“Right,” Holden said. “No coffee. This is a terrible, terrible planet.” 68 likes
“Later, when you're wishing we had this stuff, I am going to be merciless in my mockery. And then we'll die.” 34 likes
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