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(The Expanse #8.5)

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  1,450 ratings  ·  125 reviews

A novella set in the universe of James S. A. Corey's New York Times bestselling Expanse series, Auberon explores a new and alien world and the age-old dangers that humanity has carried with it to the stars. Now a Prime Original series.

Auberon is one of the first and most important colony worlds in humanity's reach, and the new conquering faction has come to claim it.

Kindle Edition, UK Edition, 63 pages
Published November 12th 2019 by Orbit
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Average rating 4.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,450 ratings  ·  125 reviews

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I'm giving this novella the benefit of the doubt. Independently, it has more or less the same quality as some of the other Expanse novellas like The Butcher of Anderson Station.

Similar with Strange Dogs, we are given yet another insight to Laconian characters, one of which was briefly mentioned in Tiamat's Wrath. Naomi visited Auberon quite a while in that novel so we also got a considerable amount of information about this system.

The characters - a Laconian governor and his scientist wife -
Kevin Kelsey
Nov 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2019
These Expanse novellas just keep getting better and better.
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, male-lead
Auberon audio excerpt
3m 47s — posted by the publisher:
The release date has been moved. It's NOVEMBER 12th now. :)

Wonderful news. So far James S.A Corey Expanse novellas haven't disappointed me.
Oh, Erich!
Auberon is a planet accessible through the ring gates that has a lush biome that grows native and Terran crops. The planet has 12 cities, each being in the million but also has many towns, farms, and more scattered around the planet.

Shaun Hutchinson
I quite enjoyed this novella. Nothing new or groundbreaking, but I could read little stories about the Laconians and the colony worlds all day long.
Nov 15, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-fiction, 2019, sf-f
Mmm. An oddity, not to mention a disappointment, coming straight off Tiamat's Wrath. Perhaps novellas like these would be more cohesive in a collection, giving insight into some of the quirkier corners of the Expanse, etc.
Stephen Richter
It is nice when your favorite authors throw a little bone out to you, the loyal readers.
Nov 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“It’s the basic problem with religion, be it Jesus or Vishnu or God Emperors. Ideological purity never survives contact with the enemy.”

It's nice to take a look at what happens in places where the main novels haven't taken us. Here we've got yet another laconian governor trying not to be overwhelmed by the daunting task of ruling a conquered planet. He'll have to give up his silly ideological superiority and compromise with the local crimelord.
A great read as always when it comes to the Expanse
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A new novella from the Expanse Universe. The story is set before Tiamat's Wrath (the most recent full length novel) as the Laconian Empire sets about consolidating it's power over the rest of humanities settlements, and follows a newly appointed Governor to Auberon, an important colony world.
This is one of the best Expanse novellas I have read. It isn't particularly like the main set of novels but is a lovely character study of colonialism and conquerors, and how the conqueror is as changed by
Nov 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some thoughts without spoilers: This novella is a pretty good addition to The Expanse series. If you are reading the series for the first time there is no reason to skip this one. Quick and easy little piece of world building that takes place between Persepolis Rising and Tiamat's Wrath. Its written at a quality in line with the rest of the series. I only give it four stars because its so short!

Full spoilers ahead for my thoughts on this book in relation to the series thus far (excluding
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: libro-fm
2.5 stars

This review is based on an ALC audiobook received for free from I am not being paid to review this book and what I write here is my own opinion. My rating scale is below.

James S.A. Corey once again offers audiences some supplemental reading. This novella is chronologically positioned between Tiamat's Wrath and the as-yet untitled ninth book in the series. At this point, the series has spanned canonical decades and the cast of characters has become immense, which makes diving
Nov 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read_in_2019
3 out of 5 Stars. Okay 3.5 ;-)

"Auberon" is a short bit of back story in the ongoing Expanse series, similar to the other novellas that have been released in between the main novels in the series. It is #8.5 in the series publication order, but falls more at about #7.5 in the series chronological order. It is its own independent little story, but as with much of the series, it means a lot more if you've read the other books before attempting to read this one. It deals with Auberon, one of the
Nov 15, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
While well written, unlike the other "short" books in the Expanse series, which filled in the back stories of major characters in the "long" books, this one seemed to have no real purpose, unless there is a demand for information about the home life of Laconian officials, of which I am unaware.
Radu Stanculescu
I liked both the story and the writing, but it felt too thin for me. Which is why I rarely care for short form fiction.
Nov 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Nice interstitial story
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Definitely one of the best novellas. It's nice to see how the other worlds are looking and great to catch up with an old friend of Amos. Some very choice lines in there.
Nelson Minar
Fun little story! It's short but sweet, an excellent musing on a particular kind of human frailty. Hardly sci-fi at all other than relying on the backstory of Laconia and a little bit of prosthetic robotics. Mostly just good ol' fashioned human foibles, deftly told.
Nov 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yeah buddy! Gimme well-written gritty interstellar politics any day of the damn week. I would’ve *loved* for this to be longer, but this makes the most of the novella form. If this fantastic story is indicative of the quality of the rest of Corey’s work, I will definitely have to check out the rest of the Expanse series!
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simple - just too short. Already longing for more
Anthony O'Connor
Nov 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short but sweet. Probably the last novella before The Expanse finishes up next year and this was a solid, if inessential, look at the nature of true believers vs. reality. Wry, knowing, engaging. I'm going to miss this series a great deal.
Nov 29, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one crept up on me, in all the best ways. I'll admit, my love for the series may not be what it once was, but I still hold the series up to being one of the better modern day science fiction series... but I feel there is a definite limit to how many books a series should have with a specific set of characters. I look back at the last 3 novels, and while I still can recount them separately, I'd be lying if many parts didn't blur together. And the impact of these events is lessened for each ...more
Dec 02, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was eagerly looking forward to this book and bought it on the day it was published. Having done so I found it to be pretty much as I expected and an enjoyable short read (roughly an hour or so).

As with the other novellas, it gives some interesting little side details to the main Expanse storyline. In this case it tells of the later life of a minor character (Amos's acquaintence Erich, first met in The Churn, another novella). It also gives an interesting tale of a culture clash between a
Alex Sarll
With the final Expanse novel a way out yet, here's another of the shorter, interstitial pieces of the tapestry to tide us over. It begins before the most recent novel, Tiamat's Wrath, with the Laconian empire still in in its pomp, and the new governor arriving at the eponymous colony planet, a biologically fortunate one which could be a huge boon to intergalactic humanity. Unlike previous Laconian POV characters, Rittenauer is happy, sane, genial, honest. Yes, he's also a representative of a ...more
Jason Heath
Dec 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rob Caswell
Nov 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At its core this novella is more a sociopolitical drama that just happens to be set against a scifi backdrop, but that said I found I quickly got engaged with the characters and their challenge in engaging a Laconian territorial leadership posting on a thorough corrupt world. It serves to illustrate how Laconian ideals may sound like a kind of elitist utopia, but when applied to the real world of human imperfections and vice, those principled behaviors can lose their footing with alarming speed. ...more
Paul Fagan
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another fantastic addition to this amazing series! The creativity of this writing team seems to know no bounds, as they create yet another intriguing and detailed world with fascinating characters.
There's the duty bound representative of the "bad guys" who seems to be a really good guy, almost Ned Starkian in his sense of honour; a wife who is driven by a need for scientific success becoming a vigilante in an effort to overcome corruption; and a great antihero who has made a few small
I am an absolute sucker for all things The Expanse. I'll read, listen to or watch anything related to this Universe, I swear.

This novella did not disappoint but it didn't wow me either. This one, as all The Expanse "short stories", expands on the universe and the happenings at large. You won't get to hear from your favorite characters, but learn more about other planets, other people living on them and their day-to-day.

Does this novella change anything for the story overall? I don't think so.
Nov 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dang, these novellas are way too short to bridge the gap between novel installments in The Expanse series. They are tantamount to a sip of water for a dehydrated wanderer lost in a desert. Regardless, a sip is better than nothing, so I welcome each novella, and revisit often. My expectation is to begin a re-read of the entire series, novellas included, in consecutive order in preparation for the final novel in the series. Most of my ducks are in a row, so as much as I dread the culmination of ...more
Stacy GeekRemixALot
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
The Expanse is one of my favorite book series ever, and I love how these novellas add so much flavor to the series without being directly tied to the main storylines. You can still read the series without them, but they're a great addition!

This one in particular really makes me so excited to read the next (and last!) main entry in the series, because I feel like it sets the stage for the upcoming conflict. Thinking over the other novellas as well, they've all been really enjoyable and have
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novella takes place more or less after events in Persepolis Rising. It is focused on the planet Auberon. The new governor and his wife arrive from Laconia to take over the government of the planet under the new regime. They discover that things are not quite as tidy as they were led to believe. For one thing, they have butted-heads with a one-armed man who is in charge of the essentially Black Market. The story emphasizes the fact that no matter how organized a take-over is, no matter how ...more
Costin Manda
Nov 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Nice of the two authors pen-named James S.A. Corey to publish a novella to assuage the thirst for a new The Expanse novel. Auberon is pretty good, but on a human level, rather than on a science-fiction one. You could imagine the same story in a French or Belgian colony in Africa with minimal changes.

The main focus is on the new Laconian governor of planet Auberon, arriving all smart and proud as the almighty representative of a regime that is rooted in discipline at all levels. Can he keep that
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“Laconia had always been the few and the pure against the many and the corrupt. Like the Spartans from whom they took their name, Laconians were severe within their group, both to forge the iron discipline that had led them to victory and to demonstrate to others the sincerity of their beliefs.” 0 likes
“It’s the basic problem with religion, be it Jesus or Vishnu or God Emperors. Ideological purity never survives contact with the enemy.” 0 likes
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