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Starcraft: Evolution

(StarCraft #5)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  495 ratings  ·  64 reviews
In StarCraft: Evolution, the war between the terrans, the protoss, and the zerg has been over for years, but the fight for peace is still being waged. As the Terran Dominion struggles to recover from the ravages of war, Emperor Valerian Mengsk has no intention of ruling in the same bloody manner as his father, the late Arcturus. Instead of seeking vengeance, Valerian is de ...more
Hardcover, 349 pages
Published November 15th 2016 by Del Rey Books
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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  495 ratings  ·  64 reviews

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Phillip III
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have been reading Timothy Zahn books since he started putting out Star Wars novels. There is not one book that he has ever written that has ever disappointed me. STARCRAFT: Evolution is no exception. I do, however, have a confession. I am not a gamer. I've heard of Starcraft, but . . . When I was reading this book, I'll admit, I was Google-Imaging the monsters. Not that Zahn didn't describe everything wonderfully, but because I knew there would be a ton of images out on the net. And there was. ...more
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was ok
The whole thing reads like a decent fanfic authored by your resident Dungeon Master/Michael Bay fan: the most this book made sense was at the fightscenes. The descriptions are sometimes awkward and overdone; characters seem to have this uncanny ability to read the situation perfectly and even make sense of what each other are thinking; by the time the third act twist comes into play, it is not as much shown as speculated by one of the main characters, with various leaps of logic, which only work ...more
Alexander Sedge
Jan 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Timothy Zahn is a wizard. This is the only explanation. First Thrawn, now this? He has a true talent for taking established settings and adding new material that both fits the flavor and enriches the original format in unique and exciting ways.

Any time you get "expanded universe" material, especially in book format, you're going to encounter a bit of pandering - obviously, because it needs to appeal to both fans and non-fans - and when writing a story based on a strategy video game, this often c
Nov 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm a long-time fan of Timothy Zahn and Starcraft both, so I read this with high expectations, and I wasn't disappointed.

I worried that the book would either a) assume too much knowledge of game lore I'm not up-to-date on, or b) be dragged down by having to recap/explain a lot for the sake of those unfamiliar with the lore. I'm happy to say it goes to neither extreme. The timeline in the back of the book was sufficient to refresh my memory on the major events of the first two games and to fill i
Apr 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
For a video game tie-in, this was quite good, Zahn really captures the atmosphere and actually makes great use of individual unit types, technologies, and characters from the games. The plot itself is rather contained, taking place mostly on a single planet, but it ties into something that was teased at the end of Legacy of the Void and spins it in an interesting way.
Sean Goh
Feb 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Helps to have played Legacy of the Void (significant number of references to units from that expansion), or the games in general. Good solid characters, even if the plot is a little thin. Fans of the series are sure to be pleased.
Jan 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: space-opera-read
I received an advance copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. And I am WAY overdue.

This book was thoroughly enjoyable. Not a fantastic piece of literature, mind you. But a pretty fast paced page turner. The characters were all unique, with their own voices and personalities and with clear motivations and actions that were true to their character. The overall plot, when compared to the type of story that StarCraft is as a whole, is a little shallow. That being said, the myster
Giovanni Tonussi
Mar 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
The war amongst different races has devastated them, and preventing new conflicts is the only way to survive. These are the unspoken words that no zerg, protoss, or human will tell each other, but they will walk a tight line to avoid battling again.

The plot is based on the diplomacy between the leaders of the three races. Their worlds have been destroyed or burnt down, and their way of life completly modified because of the war, but now they celebrate a decade of peace. There are no alliances t
C.T. Phipps
Aug 13, 2018 rated it liked it
I love Timothy Zahn's writing but I feel like this was a book he was handed a little too many restrictions on and was too short to really let his talents display. Not every book can be the Thrawn Trilogy or even Cobra but this is just kind of paint-by-the-numbers. Nothing of real consequence happens in the novel and everything really amounts to a big misunderstanding plus a few bad faith actors. This isn't a spoiler since the truth is obvious from the beginning even though we never get the Zerg' ...more
Fouad Kazan
May 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
I bought this scifi novel, Star Craft: Evolution, written by Timothy Zahn hoping to “evolve” my writing. Boy was I in for a ride. The plot is well developed leaving little room to question the logic surrounding the story. Zerg, Protoss, and Human factions, throughout the book, attempt to put aside their pasts to forge a new and better future. Inter-species politics is what allured me onto this book; how species of severely different genomes have the same goal: to survive. The continuity of these ...more
Sep 15, 2018 rated it liked it
I have read the Thrawn trilogy from Timothy Zahn a long time ago and I loved it. I was pleasantly surprised to see a Starcraft story from him and as I do enjoy to play the game I have decided to give it a go. Nice character building, I was right away drawn to a few main figures but all in all a bit too black and white. The units and their capabilities have been well described and really gave me a good image of how it looks like on the battle field. This definitely enriched my gaming experience. ...more
Mar 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Zagara, Kerrigan's former 2nd in command and now the new Overqueen of the Zerg, requests Emperor Valerian Mengsk's presence on a planet called Gystt. Formerly purified by the Protoss, the planet is once again teeming with life! Neither Valerian nor Hierarch Artanis believe that the Zerg have turned over a new leaf and dedicated themselves to the creation of life instead of assimilation, so a small team is assembled to investigate.

This could easily have been a single-player campaign. It's written
Andrew Schiffer
Oct 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Such a rich depiction of future events in my favorite game of all times can only be awarded the five starts it deserve.

With masterful pen, Timothy Zahn has written and delivered a story of relatable characters, as well as including revelations about our well known characters from the Dominion, Daelam and Swarm factions.

Yet, more than a zerg-shredding tale, military flabbergasting terran filled, or spiritual-rilled protoss reflection, what you see here is the culmination of a cycle.

The dream made
Travis Richardson
Apr 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this novel quite a bit! I found the story compelling, and I really liked Timothy Zahn's vision of the world of Starcraft. Where this book really shines, in my opinion, are the fight scenes. Each battle had me on the edge of my seat. Zahn makes great use of incorporating various Starcraft units into the fights, along with their unique capabilities.

While I was really into the story, I did have a couple problems with it. For example, the protagonists of this book spend a lot of time specu
Feb 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of the games’ campaigns
This book contains spoilers for the end of StarCraft II, serving as an epilogue to the story of the games. I’d advise not reading it until you’ve finished the campaigns. If you’ve never played the games, I don’t understand why you would read this.

The story involves all three races, but is told entirely from the perspective of various Terran characters. The main characters are original to the book, a small team trying to figure out what’s going on on this one planet, though the leaders of all thr
Apr 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Bottom Line, a fun read for fans of the StarCrafts, but not without it's flaws. Picked this up at the library on my first trip this year. I was excited to read something by Timothy Zahn--I've never been particularly interested in video-game related franchises, but Zahn is consistent in his ability to take the reader on an adventure.

StarCraft's story has traditionally been Space Opera, so I thought that bringing the story down to the level of a few individuals was refreshing. I found myself wanti
Michael Hanscom
May 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Though I'd not read any of the StarCraft books before (nor played the game), in many ways this felt much like reading one of my Star Trek novels, only in a different universe. A comfortable, quick read, neither groundbreaking nor pedestrian. People more familiar with the universe may get a bit more out of the references to the in-universe history, but I never felt confused or like I was missing anything critical by not having more details. As an in-universe, connected-but-standalone novel, this ...more
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
This is the first book I’ve read by Timothy Zahn, and it was fantastic. For anyone who loves reading into the lore of their favorite games, this is a must read. The story is fast paced, and keeps you guessing the entire time. The book doesn’t need any prior knowledge about the rest of the universe it takes place in, but it could help. For those who haven’t played the game, there is an excellent timeline of the universe before the game at the end of the book, but before the author’s note.
James Elliott
Mar 08, 2017 rated it liked it
This was an impulse read I started at the library after noticing it on the shelf on a trip to pick up some other books. I’d had fun playing the game years ago, and enjoyed Zahn’s Deadman Switch in early high school. It was definitely a fun popcorn read, as can be evidenced by the fact that I’d finished it by the end of the day. ...more
Sabrina Alexander
Jun 28, 2017 rated it liked it
I was surprised to find myself engrossed. It's a light read with fairly stock characters (well, yeah, they're based on a video game) but it's quite well done. It doesn't hurt that Starcraft is one of my favorite games.

This is my first foray into pro pubbed fan fiction. I don't know why I never thought to read some before, but I may make it a habit now.
Tran Khoa Bang
Jan 21, 2020 rated it liked it
An interesting read, but was rather mediocre overall. Though there were interesting ideas and characters, there were too many and all of their arcs became too shallow. The plot was also rather simple and straightforward. Ironically, it read like the plot of a videogame that was designed to further the gameplay more than anything.
I'm a big fan of Starcraft, I started playing it back in the 90's. And I love Timothy Zahn's work with the Star Wars novels, he is one of the best in the genre if you ask me. But this? This kinda fell short in my opinion. I mean it was entertaining and it looks good on my shelves, but really? I wasn't very invested in the story. I hate to say it but this is a book you can safely pass over.
Shanna Ramon
Apr 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Timothy Zahn never disappoints me. :) A note to first time star crafters: there is a timeline in the back of the book that I wish I had discovered earlier! haha! It's very helpful. This is a stand alone book, but there are TONS of references to the Starcraft world (since this is a huge story arc from what I understand).
Benjamin Espen
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Starcraft: Evolution
By Timothy Zahn
Del Rey Books, 2016
$28.00; 354 pages
ISBN 9780425284735

In general, I don't read videogame books for the same reason I don't watch videogame movies. With a few exceptions, they all suck. I picked this volume up because Timothy Zahn is one of my favorite authors, and I wanted to see if he could pull off a novel about the real-time strategy (RTS) game Starcraft.

To my pleasant and mild surprise, he did. I say mild, because I figured if anyone could do it, Zahn could
Freek Brouwer
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book was a nice change of pace from the other starcraft books saying this it does have a lot of action. Was realy enjoyable as audiobook great narator Christopher Ryan Grant. He made the characters come to life and painted a picture most epic.
Peter Asper
Jan 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For those who have played StarCraft and StarCraft II, this is a great read. Timothy Zahn strikes a good balance of not overwhelmingly using the established characters by instead placing his own characters in the foreground. The story was a real page-turner.
Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
As a long time Starcraft player and fan, this book was a great read. Some predicable moments, but a good continuation of the events of Legacy of the Void. If you have no idea what Starcraft is, this isn’t for you.
Marshall Layne
Feb 12, 2020 rated it liked it
Great adaptation of video (computer) game to print. There really isn’t a lot of suspense to this series, but Zahn makes the extermination of brain bugs fun by throwing in a pyrokinetic and a prisoner of war. Great for fans of the game. Everyone else may feel this adventure is a little flat.
Melvyn Foo
Jul 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
The dialogue is weak and character development is sketchy. Save for me being a fan of the game and the universe, I would have condemned this.
Patricia Litz
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
I am trying to get interested in Mr. Zahn's books. Maybe I should just go back to reading the Star War episodes.
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Timothy Zahn attended Michigan State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in physics in 1973. He then moved to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and achieved an M.S. degree in physics in 1975. While he was pursuing a doctorate in physics, his adviser became ill and died. Zahn never completed the doctorate. In 1975 he had begun writing science fiction as a hobby, and he bec ...more

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