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The Stark Divide

(Liminal Sky #1)

by
4.19  ·  Rating details ·  63 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Some stories are epic.

The Earth is in a state of collapse, with wars breaking out over resources and an environment pushed to the edge by human greed.

Three living generation ships have been built with a combination of genetic mastery, artificial intelligence, technology, and raw materials harvested from the asteroid belt. This is the story of one of them—43 Ariadne, or For
...more
ebook, 284 pages
Published October 10th 2017 by DSP Publications
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Bob Milne
Oct 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: lgbtqa, space-opera
Although I don't read a science fiction anymore, I am still easily hooked by a cool concept and an interesting author. Even still, I nearly gave The Stark Divide as pass, but I'm glad I let my curiosity get the better of me, because J. Scott Coatsworth weaves a fantastic story.

First off, even though this a big story with a lot of world-building behind it, it never info-dump and never feels overwhelming. Coatsworth keeps the story well-balanced and well-paced, using flashbacks and memories to fil
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Lilyn G. | Sci-Fi & Scary

The Stark Divide was a nice quick read. It was definitely a book that I didn't want to put down unless I absolutely had to. It plays with some familiar ideas, but does so in such a way that it doesn't feel 'been there, done that'. In it, we've basically destroyed Earth, but we don't have FTL travel yet, so we can't quickly get to another planet. Naturally, that means we have to turn to colony spaceships in the meantime. And that leads me into what I liked most about the book. From the initial sh

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A.M. Leibowitz
I’ve read a number of books by the author, and I’ve enjoyed them. This one blows them all away. It is a phenomenal piece of writing that had my undivided attention from the first page.

There is so much in here that hits all my personal hot spots: World-building that slowly unfolds without a ton of expository text; flawed but likable characters; both subtle and overt references to favorite speculative fiction; action that’s low on both sex and violence; social themes; and a what-will-happen-next p
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Anna Butler
Oct 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a very interesting read. The premise of sentient spaceships isn't new, of course, nor is the idea of a space ark as the refuge of the remains of humanity. But when the 'ark' is a created world, Forever, complete with mountains, rivers and farms, all held within a space ship grown from a seed and inhabited with sentient, aware, intelligent AI with ambivalent motivation... that's a little different.

This is essentially a trilogy of interconnected novellas, with some reasonably large timesh
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Ryane
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was provided by J. Scott Coatsworth and read on behalf of Thorns & Ink.

Mr. Coatsworth continues to delight me with each book he writes. I am whisked off to reaches unknown, or reminded of places I’s like to see. He spins tales of longing, despair, faith (not always in the religious sense), and hope. Hope being the key feature of all of his stories. Hope keeps you young. Faith keeps you believing in hope. These are lessons we forget or we become too cynical to carry.

The research tha
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Pixie Mmgoodbookreviews
4 1/2 Hearts, Reviewed by Pixie for MM Good Book Reviews

The Stark Divide throws you into the stars as Earth races towards extinction. Humanity takes one last grasping chance to save themselves even as the world dies around them because of their stupidity, and even in the dying last breaths they continue throwing nuclear missiles at each other and condemning the entire species.

J. Scott Coatsworth has written an amazing science fiction novel that sends shivers down your spine because of the ring
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Jayne
Aug 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The author gifted an ARC of this novel for an honest and fair review. Publication date October 2017.

Sci-fi can be a little po-faced at times, or quirky to the point of artifice. It can be difficult to strike the balance between intelligent story-telling and dumbing down the science-y bits for the masses. This author has been on my radar for a while. I’ve read some of his short stories, but never a full-blown novel.

Basically, this is a story split into three parts, threaded together by three gene
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M.D.
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an absolute joy to read. The writing was clean and easy. The characters were fun and interesting and I loved the setting. I also enjoyed the mix of mostly Sci Fi with the touches of fantasy, that was great fun (in fact I kind of wanted to see more of that, especially in Part 3 with Andy). My only issue with this book (and it's not a bad thing) is the ending didn't feel like an ending. I wanted more. I knew going in this was a prequel for a larger story that will be coming out, but I did ...more
Serena Yates
Written in three parts – set in 2135, 2145, and 2165 – this novel is a sweeping vision of a future where humankind has no choice but to leave the dying Earth behind and look for a new home among the stars. Self-destruction through climate change, war, and the effects of human greed are the cause of this step, but as this series of three stories shows, humans have learned nothing even over a century from now and end up taking all their problems with them. While scientific advances make the invent ...more
Jax
This writing isn’t working for me. Not enough time spent on meaningful character development so I didn't care enough about any of them. And there’s too much head hopping. If you’re going to do multiple POVs, don’t switch so frequently. DNF@35%
Stephanie   GooglyEyes
While this book is interesting and intense, its also very slow (for me, at least)
I may come back to it, but for now, it is a DNF around 43%.
Kristin
Review rounded up to 3.5 stars.

The book is divided into three parts. Part One is the discovery of sentient AI’s and the birth of the generation ship. Part Two is the growth and development of the generation ship and the Cities therin, and Part Three is end/beginning of a new era. Each part advances the time line by decades, which kept the entire plot moving forward without getting bogged down in minutia.

Overall premise is Earth is on the brink of disaster – climate change has irrevocably alter
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Erica Robyn
The Stark Divide by J. Scott Coatsworth was a wonderfully written space adventure filled with suspense! I fell in love with the characters immediately and could not wait to see what was going to happen next.

When I logged on to Goodreads to mark this as finished, I was thrilled to see that it was labeled as book number one! I NEED to get my hands on a copy of The Rising Tide soon! I cannot wait to see where this story goes next!

Full disclosure: I was given a free copy of this book from the author
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Chris
5 out of 5 stars

Description ~

Some stories are epic.

The Earth is in a state of collapse, with wars breaking out over resources and an environment pushed to the edge by human greed.

Three living generation ships have been built with a combination of genetic mastery, artificial intelligence, technology, and raw materials harvested from the asteroid belt. This is the story of one of them—43 Ariadne, or Forever, as her inhabitants call her—a living world that carries the remaining hopes of humanity, a
...more
ButtonsMom2003
Jan 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic world-building, dynamic and enthralling story.

The Stark Divide is the type of book I never thought I'd read. I usually only read books with some type of romantic component. The romance doesn't have to be the center of the story but there must be a romance. Well, back in November 2017 J. Scott Coatsworth asked me if I'd review The Stark Divide for Xtreme Delusions. At the time I was just too busy to accept but he asked if I could do it in January and I said yes.

I was really nervous to
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Anne Barwell
Oct 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook, lgbtq
When I read a book by J. Scott Coatsworth I know I’m going to be treated to a story with fabulous world building, and interesting characters. The Stark Divide has all of that and more. One thing I really loved about this story is that although there are romances, they don’t drive it. Also it is populated by diverse characters with differing sexualities IE gay, straight, bi, and trans, which is accepted by this society in the future. The issues here aren’t that, but how mankind has ruined the Ear ...more
Daniel Mitton
Jan 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
(Originally reviewed for Love Bytes Reviews. Rated 4.5 out of 5.0 stars.)

Have you ever finished reading a book, gone on to do a bunch of projects during the day, and wanted to go back then to find out what happened next in that great story you read…only to remember you finished it already? Well, that’s what happened to me today. I just now was thinking that since I finished my ‘to do’ list, I had time to jump back into the story. But I can’t. It isn’t out yet!

As you’ve probably guessed by those
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Helena Stone
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What a treat to end the year with such a phenomenal book.

Some stories are epic indeed. And some stories just keep on getting better and more intriguing with each subsequent chapter and the introduction of every new character. The Stark Divide is such a book.

I’m not entirely sure how useful my review is going to be for dedicated readers of science fiction. I don’t read enough of it to be able to compare and am too flimsy on everything science to give a trustworthy opinion about that aspect for t
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Teresa
Sep 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Title: The Stark Divide
Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Publisher: DSP Publications
ISBN: 978-1-63533-833-1
Buy Link: https://www.dsppublications.com/books...
Reviewer: Teresa Fallen Angel
Blurb:
Liminal Sky 1
Some stories are epic.
The Earth is in a state of collapse, with wars breaking out over resources and an environment pushed to the edge by human greed.
Three living generation ships have been built with a combination of genetic mastery, artificial intelligence, technology, and raw materials harvested f
...more
Patrick Hayes
Nov 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a science fiction novel that focuses on the classic theme of colonization. I enjoyed it immensely.

Split into three sections (Seedling, Colony, and Refugee) and spanning thirty years, the book covers man's exodus into space as things on Earth are making the homeworld unfit for human life (global warming, war, etc.). Without spoiling the story, three characters' actions chart the course of human history.

There's a good bit of tense action in Seedling that would rival the best of any stori
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E.M. Hamill
Nov 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Stark Divide is a space opera on the level of David Brin's Heart of the Comet.

Coatsworth has assembled a cast of characters- human and AI- who leap from the page and make you care for them.

The world building is phenomenal. Living ships created to travel the stars with sustainable resources are the center of the story. Colin McAvery is the common thread throughout this book, and he is a compelling character who propels many of the events.

The story is told in a series of vignettes with signifi
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Erin
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
World-building at its best!

This novel is is pure, outstanding science fiction/fantasy. Like James Blish a few generations ago, J Scott Coatsworth gives us a new understanding of "seedling stars."

I cannot begin to describe the lush detail, the mind-blowing invention, the beauty and uniqueness of Coatsworth’s world. Every paragraph is rich and delicious as red velvet cake, hard and believable as “Ship’s Bone.” From the interplanetary ships that eat and breathe solar wind and space dust...to the Dr
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Nancy (The Avid Reader)
Three people, two men, Jackson Hammon, Colin McAvery and a woman, Dr. Anastasia Anatov are sent out into the universe on ship called the Dressler or Lex for short, a living ship to find a place to build a new Earth on as the people are destroying the old Earth.

Over the years more and more people come to live and help to create this new Earth that is called Forever. Dr. Anatov returns after many years on Earth hoping to get some closure or maybe to set things right for what happened all those yea
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Amy Mills
Pretty darn good. With more polished writing, it could have been excellent ... and I really wanted it to be excellent, for the writing to match the scope of the story. Nitpicking comments below the summaries, but I absolutely loved the world-building and the plot.

Part I: Three people in a living ship that starts to fall apart around them before their mission is done. Interesting misdirect with the cause.

Part II: Years later, the survivors of the first living ship come together.

Part III: As the
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Melanie
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Review

Rating: 5 stars out of 5

For the full review, visit http://wp.me/p220KL-bPy

From that Review: " Every now and again, a story comes along that you wish you could give more than the allotted 5 stars.  The Stark Divide by J. Scott Coatsworth is one of those novels. A science fiction saga, the first in a series, it's giant narrative footprint calls to mind  some of my favorite science fiction authors, from Arthur C. Clarke in it's clear, forward use of scienc
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Laurie
This book was sci-fi heaven for me! Original, well-structured, exciting, and just plain cool. The Earth’s resources are depleted and it’s on the verge of death. A few lucky individuals will attempt to create a living spaceship so they can find a new home among the stars. This story takes place over several generations. It’s a compelling tale that held me firmly in its grasp from beginning to end. Through many setbacks and a few catastrophes the sentient ship and its human cargo preservere. Even ...more
Elisabeth Hamill
What an adventure this is!

The Stark Divide is a space opera on the level of David Brin. Chatsworth has assembled a cast of characters- human and AI- who leap from the page and make you care for them.
The world building is phenomenal. Living ships created to travel the stars with sustainable resources are the center of the story. Colin McAvery is the common thread throughout this book, and he is a compelling character who propels many of the events. I will update this review when I have time to d
...more
Gina Stamper
Dec 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi
This novel really starts off with a bang and doesnt let up. Forever is a very strong lead and while I didn’t always agree with her decisions, I did like her overall as a character.
She has a lot to deal with over the course of this novel.
I loved the way Josh Coatsworth told the story. It was very well thought out and this really showed through the characters and setting.
A very wonderful and Suspenseful Sci-fi Novel.
You will definitely want to have plenty of allotted reading time before starting t
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Bailey Ember
Nov 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
A solid Sci-Fi Novel. The premise is unique, which made me excited to read it just from the synopsis. This is one of those stories that will start off with a bang and not let up until the very last page. It really keeps on a great pace throughout. Scott J. Coatsworth has really created an imaginative sci-fi novel with drama and surprises.

Being that it is the first in a series, there are unanswered questions. We will have to wait for the big answers, but the first installment itself was wrapped
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L.V. Lloyd
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A New Star in the Generation Ship sub-genre

My favourite book by J Scott Coatsworth (so far!). Such vivid, creative world building - I loved the concept of a conscious “world-mind” inside a bio-technical structure (no FTL flight in this book!). Although this is a science fiction book, not a romance, the characters are diverse and engaging. I sat glued to my screen!
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Scott lives with his husband in a leafy Sacramento, California suburb, in a cute yellow house with a pair of pink flamingoes in the front yard.

He has always been in the place between the here and now and the what could be. He started reading science fiction and fantasy at the tender age of nine, encouraged by his mother. But as he read the golden age classics and more modern works too, he started
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Other books in the series

Liminal Sky (2 books)
  • The Rising Tide (Liminal Sky, #2)