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Babylon's Ashes (The Expanse #6)

4.18  ·  Rating Details ·  4,502 Ratings  ·  434 Reviews
The Free Navy – a violent group of Belters in black-market military ships – has crippled the Earth and begun a campaign of piracy and violence among the outer planets. The colony ships heading for the thousand new worlds on the far side of the alien ring gates are easy prey, and no single navy remains strong enough to protect them.

James Holden and his crew know the strengt
Hardcover, UK, 538 pages
Published December 6th 2016 by Orbit
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Tim People are just rating their excitement over its eventual release. But sometimes advanced readers copies are released early (to book reviewers and…morePeople are just rating their excitement over its eventual release. But sometimes advanced readers copies are released early (to book reviewers and book sellers...I read Leviathan wakes five months before its release date)(less)

Community Reviews

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Barnes & Noble review:
Two stars is not awful, but it's a definite step down from the ratings I gave to earlier books in the series like Cibola Burn and Nemesis Games. So was this book, sadly. It's not bad, but it's not nearly as good as I was hoping for.

What went wrong?

1. The villain is lame

Marko is the bad guy. In the last book, he destroyed the Earth and killed 15,000,000,000 human beings. In this book, he is the world's least competent military commander and basically just an insecure, loser ex-boyfriend. He doesn
Dec 23, 2016 Kemper rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi, space, expanse, 2016
“My life has become a single on-going revelation that I haven’t been cynical enough.”

This is the kind of cheery thought one is apt to have when facing a narcissistic megalomaniac who has gained power by convincing some people that all their problems can be blamed on other groups while setting humanity on a self-destructive path it may not be able to recover from.

Geez, I thought I read science-fiction to escape reality.

The Expanse series took an epic dark turn in the last one, and this book is ma
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

The Expanse has become one of my favorite series in recent years, and it is no exaggeration to say that it has only gotten better with every new book. Of course, the one problem with this pattern is that it works much like gravity—what goes up must come down, after all. And yet, I say this doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. In fact, I’d argue that after a major plot event, it’s important to dial things back a bit
Dec 23, 2016 Mike rated it it was amazing
While this is technically the sixth book in the excellent Expanse series I view it more like book 5.5 as it is the continuation of Nemesis Game. It has all the same cast of characters and immediately continues the story while all the other books in the series had a time jump between them as well as a unique plot line. This is by no means a knock to this book as the story it and Nemesis Game was trying to tell needs an expansive space (see what I did there) to do it justice.

First off this was a s
Dec 29, 2016 Efka rated it really liked it
Babylon’s Ashes is a long awaited new book in the Expanse series, and hell yeah, it was worth the waiting. Though, first of all what needs to be said is that unlike the previous books of the series, Babylon’s Ashes are more like a direct sequence of Nemesis Games, as the plot and narrative picks up at the same moment it ended in the 5th book, unlike the four earlier books that had different and separate stories. It’s not a bad thing thou, just that it would have been more comfortable reading bot ...more
Jan 15, 2017 MadProfessah rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017-read
Overall Around 4.5 Stars.

Still awesome but for the first time in my reading of the series I was not overwhelmed. with enthusiasm at the end. After the stakes for the entire human race grew as large as they possibly could in the previous book there was bound to be a let down in this book, and there was (to me).

There is still a LOT of action (space battles!) but after our characters survived ridiculous odds in Book 5 (Nemesis Games) I never really believed that they would be killed in Book 6 regar
Melissa Campbell
Jan 12, 2017 Melissa Campbell rated it it was amazing
I barely survived waiting until June for this book and now the release date is pushed until November...! What, to coincide with the 2nd season of the show and try to sell more books? Wtf !?!?
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
Dec 05, 2016 Rachel (TheShadesofOrange) rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction, arcs
4.5 Stars - Video Review:

Babylon's Ashes picks up where Nemesis Games ends, providing much needed follow up to the unresolved issues from the previous book. One of the best aspects of this sequel in the scope of the storylines within this expanding universe. Unlike previous books in the series, the authors do not restrict the chapters to four primary character perspectives. Instead, this new novel includes a rotating cast of characters to show the widening scope of t
Solid wrapup to events in Nemesis Games. Early part of novel concentrates more on some previous secondary characters, with the last half returning to Holden & Rosinante's crew. Probably because it's wrapping up the 2nd Expanse trilogy, it didn't introduce any new "wow" factors or raise any interesting new social/moral issues.
Tudor Vlad
Dec 11, 2016 Tudor Vlad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
I had a totally different idea about what this entry in the series was gonna be about, I'm going to avoid the word disappointing because it was not, I liked it a lot but I had hoped it was going to move from the conflict in the belt faster and focus on what, I think, we all want to know. (view spoiler) It made sense though, Nemesis Game changed the political landscape of the solar system so rad ...more
I hate to say this, but this book was a disappointment. I have loved this series since it was originally released, and still do, but this one did not live up to the level of previous books.

The biggest issue that I had was the response of Earth to the disaster. Where were all the Earthers who have been oppressing the Belters for generations? There were other things as well, which are harder to put my finger on, but the disaster on Earth is such a huge event that not addressing the response adequa
Jack +Master Passion Read+
Another year, another "Expanse" book by James S.A. Corey...and I couldn't be happier! Well, that's not true...I could be happier if these books came out quicker! That being said, I would never want the quality of this series to be compromised because of a rush job. So if it's a question of a longer wait between books or a less quality happy ass will wait as long as necessary.

It's strange to think that I've been reading this series since its initial launch. I'm not always quick to pick
Bruno Kulić
Dec 12, 2016 Bruno Kulić rated it it was amazing
It's amazing how far me and this series have come. It always had lovable characters and brilliant worldbuilding, but lately the plot and storytelling have finally caught up.

My problems with it in the past included weird pacing (slow buildup to a rushed ending) and POV choices. Well, I'm happy to say one of those has been resolved. We hear from basically every character who is alive at this point, including, but not limited to: the entire crew of the Roci, Bobbie, Prax, Anna AND AVASARALA! Becau
Dec 28, 2016 Katie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi
Let me start by saying I can't recommend these books enough. If you've only watched the Syfy series, you're missing out. It's not bad, and they have chosen the *perfect* Chrisjen Avasarala by casting Shohreh Aghdashloo (I heard her gravely, smoky voice through this whole book), but as with most stories, the books are better. There's just too many details to include in the tv series.

Humanity has spread out to the stars and has encountered the remnants of a long-dead (we assume) alien race that w
Dec 22, 2016 PrintOrRiot rated it it was ok
just not enough material/story/content to warrant a book. could have been covered by 2 chapters more in last book and prologue in #6.
this felt like a cleanup before the next story-arc.

and please please do no go down the road of: "we have so many characters that we need to mention them all in each book, 1 chapter each"
because then the coming books will be just boring and tedious.
I can't praise the Expanse series enough and it continues to hold me enraptured - Babylon's Ashes is marvellous. I savoured every page.

A review:
Jan 01, 2017 Steve rated it really liked it
Well… This is the first Expanse series novel that I actually had to feel the pain of waiting for. I came into this series (I hate to admit it) by hearing about the TV show on SyFy. I watched the first episode, found out it was a novel, and decided hmm I like reading about science fiction more than watching it… lets check it out… Five consecutively read books later, I closed Nemesis Games thinking…holy cripes it’s going to be a long year or so wait…
For those who haven’t begun the expanse, Babylon
Patrick St-Denis
Jan 09, 2017 Patrick St-Denis rated it really liked it
In my humble opinion, James S. A. Corey's Hugo-nominated and New York Times-bestselling Expanse sequence is the very best ongoing science fiction series on the market today! I've said it before and I'll say it again. Indeed, this is space opera on a grand scale and as good as anything written by genre powerhouses like Peter F. Hamilton, Iain M. Banks, Ian McDonald, and Alastair Reynolds. With the first three installments, Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck, the two authors behind this pseudonym, manag ...more
Artur Coelho
Dec 24, 2016 Artur Coelho rated it really liked it
Tenho sentimentos mistos em relação a este livro. É, por um lado, mais um da série Expanse, em modo space opera, excitante, plausível, e a trazer o melhor da FC enquanto espectáculo ao leitor. Por outro, é mais um da série Expanse, às voltas com as intrigas e guerras entre os habitantes de um sistema solar divido entre a Terra, Marte, a constelação de estações espaciais, asteróides e luas habitadas que forma a Cintura, com alguns laivos da expansão humana para lá dos limites do sistema solar med ...more
Jan 07, 2016 Lady*M marked it as to-read
We have a title? YES!
Dec 19, 2016 Mark rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
The Expanse gets more impressive with each passing volume. Here in the sixth book there is no exception, as we pick up with the aftermath of the space terrorists from book five conducting the worst assault in human history against the entire planet of Earth. There's no time for anyone, least of all Holden and company, to stop and catch their breath, because now the terrorists are calling themselves the Free Navy and they're hijacking all ships headed anywhere and trying to take control of humani ...more
Jan 11, 2017 Leo rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I have mix feeling about this book. On one hand, I agree with some other posts about this book, in that this was pretty much a continuation of the Nemesis Games. No new noteworthy characters or story arcs were introduced, but instead the book focused on the Marco / Holden drama to its absurd conclusion. Absurd, because by the time your reach the final battle, Marco has gone from be a dangerous and somewhat formidable foe, to a cartoonist (ala Wile E Coyote) villain.

Nathaniel's post provides a d
Storyline: 3/5
Characters: 4/5
Writing Style: 4/5
World: 2/5

I ended my review of Nemesis Games with a request for Abraham and Franck to focus less on simply getting through these middle volumes and to instead write solid science fiction stories. Although I'm sure they weren't listening to me, they did turn out a much more carefully written story free of those dumb plotholes and strains of credulity that typically mark space operas. This book sends the series on a slightly upward trend following tha
Executive Summary: This is the second book in a row I've given one of my rare 5-star ratings to, and the second year in a row that an Expanse book is my favorite read. If you haven't given this series a look yet, you really should!

Audiobook: Jefferson Mays once again does a great job. He reads with good inflection, volume and pace. He does a few voices for the characters, including an excellent job with Avasarala. This is definitely a series I plan to continue in audio so long as he's the narrat
Dec 20, 2016 Rusty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s been a while since I’ve read a fiction book. It’s a nice break from the mountain of non-fiction stuff I’ve been reading. But this comes at a good time for me, I have to admit that the liberal leaning political person that I am is more or less bummed out about the results of the most recent U.S. Presidential election. I fully expect the apocalypse to befall us all over the next few years.

Oh well, he had a good run.

So, like I said, this escape hit me at the perfect time. I wanted to check o
Jesse Billet
Jan 01, 2017 Jesse Billet rated it it was ok
As someone who is a big fan of the series I was utterly let down by this one. It feels like for the last two books the authors are starting to write for the show and not write the story. Page after page of meaningless exposition. Back story on characters we all ready know and have feeling toward one way or the other. I could honestly take a good 1/3 of this book away throw it an garbage and nothing would be different for the story. All that would be different is that you as the reader would get ...more
Dec 12, 2016 Jacob rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi
Upon finishing the fifth Expanse book, "Nemesis Games" I was blown away. It pulled off hte feat of being simultaneously the largest scale book in the series, and also the most intimate. After spending every book since the first one with four narrators on different sides of a conflict, "Nemesis Games" showed us the inner lives of the four main members of the crew of the Rocinante, framed against the biggest Expanse story yet. "Babylon's Ashes" changes the game again, expanding the scope and deepe ...more
Mike Voss
Dec 21, 2016 Mike Voss rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Too often, even in a series you've enjoyed immensely, you may find yourself returning to the very first entry as your favorite, "the best", upon review. That goes for both complete and incomplete series.

One example, although there are readers with varying mileage on this, is Frank Herbert's DUNE. If there's any consensus on Herbert's series, it's that he struggled from the first sequel to regain or surpass the greatness of DUNE itself. I find myself among the outliers, in that I found lots of wo
David Holmes
Dec 31, 2016 David Holmes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's really not much point in going into detail about who will like this book and who won't: the people who will read this book are exactly the people who read the first five books and liked them. The Expanse is a series that should be read in publication order, and Babylon's Ashes is a terrible starting point.

Instead, I'll just say for those of you who haven't read any of the books or seen any of the TV show: The Expanse is the biggest sci-fi phenomenon of this decade. It has some flaws that
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Other Books in the Series

The Expanse (9 books)
  • Leviathan Wakes (Expanse, #1)
  • Caliban's War (Expanse, #2)
  • Abaddon's Gate (Expanse, #3)
  • Cibola Burn (Expanse, #4)
  • Nemesis Games (Expanse, #5)
  • Persepolis Rising (Expanse, #7)
  • Untitled (Expanse, #8)
  • Untitled (Expanse, #9)

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“I thought if you told people facts, they'd draw their conclusions, and because the facts were true, the conclusions mostly would be too. But we don't run on facts. We run on stories about things. About people.” 5 likes
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