Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “A Better World (Brilliance Saga, #2)” as Want to Read:
A Better World (Brilliance Saga, #2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

A Better World

(Brilliance Saga #2)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  16,885 ratings  ·  849 reviews
The brilliants changed everything.

Since 1980, 1% of the world has been born with gifts we’d only dreamed of. The ability to sense a person’s most intimate secrets, or predict the stock market, or move virtually unseen. For thirty years the world has struggled with a growing divide between the exceptional...and the rest of us.

Now a terrorist network led by brilliants has cr
Kindle Edition, 390 pages
Published June 17th 2014 by Thomas & Mercer
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Better World, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  16,885 ratings  ·  849 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of A Better World (Brilliance Saga, #2)
Jan 17, 2019 rated it liked it

3.5 stars

This 2nd book in the 'Brilliance' trilogy picks up right after the events in the first novel. To recap briefly: Starting in the 1980s, a small percentage of humans with unusual abilities began to be born - somewhat like the characters in the TV series 'Heroes.'

These extraordinary people - called brilliants, abnorms, or twists - cause fear in average people, who are concerned that the brilliants will take over the world and force everyone else to serve their needs. As a result, powerful
Apr 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Some spoilers for the first book in this series, Brilliance
"If it's any comfort to you, you're part of something bigger now. An essential part of the plan...This is how we build a better world."
Then he dropped the match
[killing an innocent truck driver who he had doused in gasoline]
"Building a better world is a bloody business... Because you're either us - or you're them."
The theme running through this book is the conflicting view of what a better world is. Is it a world where Brilliants d
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3.5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

I’ve actually not read the first book of the Brilliance Saga, but was reassured when told I could read A Better World without having to tackle Brilliance first. And that was absolutely correct. Not once did I feel lost or confused, thanks to a detailed recap of prior events in introduction chapters. As a new reader, that’s always appreciated (and I’m sure those familiar with the series might also find the reminders helpful, i
Rachel the Book Harlot
Jan 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Book 1.
"We are never more clever than in the creation of ways to destroy ourselves."

Marcus Sakey sure knows how to ramp up the suspense. It was all I could do not to skip to the end to find out what happens.

A Better World, Book 2 of the Brilliance Saga trilogy, isn't as action packed as Book 1, but it's still high on tension and suspense. Of course, there is action, but here the attention and focus is on maneuvering chess pieces on the board.

One main difference to Book 1 is that this one consi
Andrew Smith
Dec 11, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I picked up this sequel immediately after finishing Brilliance, which I'd really enjoyed. I thought the set-up had been just right for a follow up book so I was eagerly anticipating the continuation to see how the story would develop.

It picks up a month after the finale to the first book and one thing is immediately clear: despite attempts to summarise the key elements of Brilliance it really wouldn't be possible to read this book without having already digested the earlier one. There's just to
Feb 18, 2015 rated it liked it
Ah - (with apologies to anyone who lives in MA and Amber especially!) may I just observe that there is nothing quite like a snowy day & a nice apocalyptastic novel? Especially since the 9 inches of snow we got is now almost gone. I'm not sure how I ended up with the second book in a series, or how I failed to realize that this was a second book until I was about halfway through with it, but this is still pretty swell for all that. Sakey hints at things that have happened in the past such as Shan ...more
Adah Udechukwu
Aug 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved A Better World.
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)

Ok, so, here’s what we know. The “brilliants”, or abnorms, were first discovered in the early 80s, gifted folks who have startling abilities, folks whose intellects are far superior to normal people. Since then, we’ve made great advances in technology, thanks to these people. However, normal people feel…threatened, some more than others. Brilliant children are taken from their parents and put in academies, ostensibly to develop their talents, leaving their
Sakey definitely brought the cheese on this one, along with some really ridiculous plot developments.

Picking up six months after book one, Brilliance, former agent Nick Cooper is unemployed - happily so. He's taking every opportunity to catch up on lost time with his two kids and reconnect with his ex-wife... and connect with current love interest / part-time terrorist Shannon. In Brilliance, Cooper's do-gooder tendencies steered him toward doing the right thing - which was not the best thing -
May 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

In A Better World the action continues in Sakey's The Brilliance Saga, but the pacing is more in line with mainstream thrillers, with the majority of the action coming near the end of the book. While many of the characters from Brilliance are back, there are a few new characters that I felt connected to as well.

I don't read many series myself so I'm not familiar with the story-telling overlap that needs to occur. With that said, I found the multiple rehashes from the prior novel did no
Apr 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Sakey's A BETTER WORLD (book 2 of the Brilliance saga)is a great follow-up to BRILLIANCE. The characters become more dimensional and real, the pace builds to an even more intense level, and hidden agendas are revealed (maybe?). BRILLIANCE & A BETTER WORLD offer a highly imaginative take on an alternate reality where society continues to fear/hate anyone who is different, or at least not fitting the 'normal' mold. The power struggles, hidden agendas, and devaluation of human life clearly continue ...more
Mar 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Meh. I wasn't in love with this one. Good but it felt flatter than the first. Second book in the series, moved the story forward but without much cool factor. Will read the third but somewhat less excited and I won't grab it right away in hopes a break will make it more cool when I pick it up.
Jul 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: library, 2014
A disappointing sequel to Brillance. Nothing seems to happen. The first book was worthwhile because it was like a pretty good action movie and because it introduced interesting characters. A Better World doesn't have much in the way of action. It also introduces about one new character with powers, and then solves that problem in a way that doesn't really make sense. I don't believe that Cooper could (view spoiler) ...more
It’s been almost a year exactly since I read (and loved!) the first book in Sakey’s Brilliance series, Brilliance. Needless to say, I have been looking forward to this one since finishing the first book’s last page. Sakey captures audience with his unique alternate reality. In 1981, an emergence of special genius called “brilliants” changes society completely and changes the world. Nick Cooper, brilliant and hero, continues to be the main focus of the series, but Sakey introduces some new and sy ...more
Lisa B.
Jun 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
My Thoughts

A small percent of the population has been born with very unusual abilities. Referred to as brilliants, abnormals or abnorms, some folks in the regular population are threatened by the idea that the abnorms will take over the world. This story is the continuing struggle between the abnorms and the norms.

I loved the first book in this saga, and was thrilled to be given the opportunity to read book two. A Better World did not disappoint. Action packed and fast paced, this had great susp
Jan 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
a worthy follow up to brilliance with a lot of action and socio-political intrigue
Therin Knite
Mar 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
(view spoiler) ...more
Aug 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Nick Cooper knew there would be heavy consequences from releasing the video proving the President was behind one of the worst terrorist attacks in US history and not the Brilliant framed for it. But things seem to be worse than he thought, especially when he discovers that his actions set off a chain of events that has brought them even closer to civil war. Nick hopes that his new role as an aid to the new President will help, but he quickly realizes that politicians all have their own agendas a ...more
Larry H
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Full disclosure: I received an advance readers copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.

When you read a series of books, you always hope that the next book will be as strong if not stronger than the one that preceded it. Marcus Sakey's dazzling, creative Brilliance was one of the best books I read last year, so while I was tremendously excited to read A Better World, the second book in Sakey's Brilliance Saga, I was also a little hesitant. Could it live up to my (perha
Albert Riehle
Jun 26, 2014 rated it liked it
I was really looking forward to this second installment of the series but frankly, throughout most of it, I found the pace of the original to be lacking and that was a big problem for me. I've read some of Sakey's other books where pace was a problem and it seems he fell into that trap, once again. In fairness, the final third of the book goes down like a cool glass of lemonade on a hot summer's day with a pace and excitement that are really great, but in retrospect, so much of the buildup to th ...more
Mar 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed, netgalley
"A Better World" picks up a few weeks after the end of "Brilliance". While this book would probably work as a standalone, it will make a lot more sense if you read "Brilliance" first. Important events in the first book are described in this book, but in a fragmented manner. While I enjoyed this book, I liked the first one more. It raised interesting issues that aren't really advanced in the second book.

Nick Cooper, the brilliant who works for the government, is still trying to save the world, pr
Jul 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: thriller
I liked the action in this second book in the Brilliance trilogy, where there is a war brewing between the Brilliants (top 1% of the population) and the rest of the population. While it is not necessary to read the first book, many of the characters return and some of their motivation is rooted in the first book. Nick Cooper is semi-retired when he is recruited by the new President as an independent advisor, where he finds himself in cabinet level meetings, preaching restraint against the terror ...more
Gareth Otton
Jun 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
A Better World is the enjoyable sequel to Brilliance.

I'd like to start this review by stating that I really enjoyed this book and it was a worthy sequel to an opening novel that I hold in high regard. However, as much as I enjoyed it there were some rising flaws that niggled at me throughout the book.

Lets start with the good.

This novel picks up pretty much exactly where the last novel left off and I am happy to say that the writing was just as good and you instantly flow back into the narrativ
This sequel to Brilliance is a bit slower paced and drops you off hard at the end to force buying the inevitable next book in the series, but it was still a fun read.

I did feel that this second of the trilogy relied more on formulaic stereotypes and that the character development completely stalled out. If anything, some of my favorite characters were less> interesting and nuanced in this installment. There was so much more he could have done with both Leahy and the President, IMO, and instead
Mads  Karlsen Baekkevold
Dec 28, 2014 rated it did not like it
This book is wet garbage. Not that Brilliance was great literature - but it was good, pulpy fun that I blazed through in 3 days. THIS one took me a month to slog through, and I only finished it out of grim determination. Not that it was worth it, what with the total cliffhanger ending: if Brilliance read like the screenplay to a mildly enjoyable sci-fi action film, this read like the pilot script to some shitty NBC adaptation of said film.

Almost no new, interesting characters or twists are intro
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have a habit of not realizing books are part of a series until after I get them from NetGalley; however, A Better World provided enough backstory scattered throughout the book that I didn't feel as if I'd missed anything. Although it's second in a series, it could really be a standalone.

A fellow blogger (thanks, Therin!) said they thought I'd enjoy this book and I absolutely did. Well-developed characters, a highly imaginative, suspenseful plot, concise writing, and superb pacing - I was hooke
Maria Tizon
Apr 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
It has been said that the earmark of a good sequel is its ability to stand alone. When I requested A Better World from NetGalley, I didn't realize it was part of a series. I decided to read the first few pages to see if it was readable with out the first installment of the Brilliance Saga. It didn't take long for me to get hooked. There are a lot of characters to follow in A Better World and Marcus Sakey weaves their stories together seamlessly. The stakes are high, as high as they can be. Coope ...more
Michael Rork
Jun 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Better than Brilliance. But there were definitely things that bugged me. Such as the rehashing of the first book, as if the author expected new readers to start on book 2, or that his readers wouldn't remember what happened in book 1. Also, a total cop out for one of the characters. I can't say more though, because it would be a spoiler.

Other than those things, I really enjoyed this book. It was interesting and took things from book one even further. It wasn't as predictable or clichéd.

The wri
John Boettcher
Jul 09, 2014 rated it liked it
While still a solid thriller, I thought it wasn't nearly as good as the first book. The story progressed, but seemed to have quite a few bits in the middle that were either slow, or very repetitive.

The characters also, had little development beyond what we were presented with in the first book. Easy and fun to read, yes, but the first installment set the bar a bit higher I think than what this one delivered.

Maybe it was due to the first book, but I thought that this one could have delivered a
Nerdette Podcast
Jul 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
The sequel to BRILLIANCE, and both are brilliant. Noir about spies with superpowers. That's all you need to know.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Enigma Cube
  • Wayward (Wayward Pines #2)
  • The Last Town (Wayward Pines, #3)
  • Pines (Wayward Pines, #1)
  • The Lost Colony (The Long Winter, #3)
  • The Last Monument
  • The Solar War (The Long Winter, #2)
  • The Complete Atopia Chronicles (Atopia Chronicles, #1-6, Atopia, #1)
  • Time Frame (Split Second, #2)
  • Rewinder (Rewinder #1)
  • The Dystopia Chronicles (Atopia, #2)
  • Winter World (The Long Winter, #1)
  • Deep Sky (Travis Chase, #3)
  • The Utopia Chronicles (Atopia, #3)
  • Showdown (The Galactic Cold War, #1.5)
  • Pilot Error (The Galactic Cold War, #0.5)
  • Augmented
  • Split Second (Split Second, #1)
See similar books…
Marcus Sakey is the bestselling author of nine novels, including the Brilliance Trilogy, which has sold more than a million copies.

His novel AFTERLIFE (July 18, 2017) is soon to be a major motion picture from Imagine Entertainment and producers Ron Howard and Brian Grazer. His novel Good People was made into a film starring James Franco and Kate Hudson.

Marcus lives in Chicago with his wife and dau

Other books in the series

Brilliance Saga (3 books)
  • Brilliance (Brilliance Saga, #1)
  • Written in Fire (Brilliance Saga, #3)

Related Articles

Myths and mayhem, the fantastical and the scientifically plausible, these are readers’ most popular sci-fi and fantasy novels published in the ...
135 likes · 28 comments
“Worry is a misuse of the imagination” 10 likes
“You want to change the world? Forget politics. Learn to code.” 7 likes
More quotes…