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Empire of Light (The Shoal Sequence, #3)
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Empire of Light (The Shoal Sequence #3)

3.73  ·  Rating Details ·  1,119 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
The third novel in the Shoal space opera series featuring Dakota Merrick continuing from Stealing Light and Nova War

The nova war has begun to spread as the Emissaries wage a fierce and reckless campaign, encroaching on the area of space occupied by humanity and forcing the Shoal into a desperate retreat. While Dakota goes in search of the entity responsible for creating th
Hardcover, 393 pages
Published July 2nd 2010 by Tor (first published June 24th 2010)
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Dirk Grobbelaar

When he closed his eyes, all he could see was stars scattered across the void like diamond dust.

Something I found particularly interesting about this trilogy was how the ante was upped considerably with each entry. This novel, which concludes the original Shoal trilogy, is no exception, with its bigger explosions, vaster distances travelled and greater odds to defeat.

‘I watched them use the energy of a nova,’ she explained, ‘just to power a signal to a swarm located in another galaxy.’
Both men s
Aaron Anderson
Lost interest about 20 percent in.
Mark Zieg
Aug 21, 2010 Mark Zieg rated it liked it
Shelves: post-college, widget
This finale is a must-read, if only to cap-off the excellent Nova War, but unfortunately it was not the strongest of the series. It really needed a major new plot point in the middle third -- some new world or species -- to break up a rather tedious journey that added little interest and distinctly overlapped similar events from the first book. However, the first and final thirds were both pretty good, and Gibson continued to pull in additional ideas and concepts (most drawn from established sci ...more
Martijn Lindeboom
Mar 26, 2013 Martijn Lindeboom rated it liked it
Empire of light is een zeer vermakelijk sfavontuur met geweldige aliens, bedreigingen en een paar memorabele karakters. Maar er zijn ook problemen: af en toe is de stijl hakkelig, alsof er niet genoeg geëdit is, sommige ontwikkelingen duren te lang, andere te kort en ik werd wat grumpy van de 'a little while later' manier van voortgang in het verhaal houden.

Het is zeker geen slecht boek, maar een topper zoals Stealing light is, is Empire helaas niet. Wie weet herpakt Gibson met Marauder dat nive
Jan 03, 2013 John rated it liked it
Shelves: sf-fantasy
Dakota and a small crew find and deliver to a certain well defended locale an ancient superweapon that just might stop the Emissaries from destroying much of the galaxy. I found myself skipping and skimming, because everything here is so predictable, and the characters seem to have done all their developing in previous episodes. Also, in grand cheating comic book tradition, Gibson keeps killing Dakota off and then miraculously reviving her. This volume finishes the sequence, and though there's a ...more
Gavin Brown
Dec 31, 2013 Gavin Brown rated it liked it
After thoroughly enjoying books 1& 2, the 3rd installment of this trilogy was a real disappointment. So much so that I didn't finish it. I felt cheated by big jumps in the plot, and the complete absence of previously prominent characters.

It isn't badly written, but as the final installment of this trilogy, it isn't worthy. Maybe I'll come back to it, but with so many other books on my to-read list it can wait a while.
James Cox
Sep 17, 2015 James Cox rated it liked it
This was good. I'm looking forward to book 4 and the last in the series.
Robert Dietze
Feb 28, 2017 Robert Dietze rated it it was ok
Meh finish to a space opera. First book was nice, second book very interesting.
Think action packed Hollywood movie trilogy with heavy power creep.
What I liked about the trilogy: interesting world, innovative alien species, some passages really grip and do not let you stop reading.
What I did not like: forgettable characters, several plot developments that smell of deus-ex-machina / plot holes, last book was a chore to finish.
Feb 21, 2017 Rebbecca rated it really liked it
This was good. I'm looking forward to book 4 and the last in the series
SciFi Kindle
Like a lot of threequels, this read isn’t for those who haven’t already digested the previous installment novels. Not only do many of the background conflicts and events rely on an understanding of those books, but the history between the major characters is found there, too. This is no criticism, however. A lot of series these days try too hard to be a ‘big tent’ for an expanding readership, that early chapters drag with exposition and ‘catch-me-up’ material. If Tolkien felt compelled to do thi ...more
Apr 24, 2012 Coan rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 03, 2016 Laurel rated it it was amazing
If the previous two books were pretty large in terms of scale and scope, well, the series just got bigger with this one. This time Corso and Dakota are on the trail of the Mos Hadroch, some type of weapon that should stop the nova war between the Shoal and the Emissaries. And to get hold of it, they need one of the few humans who know anything at all about the Mos Hadroch, namely Ty Whitecloud. What's so special about him, you wonder? Like Corso, he's a scientist, or perhaps more of an anthropol ...more
Jul 15, 2010 Liviu rated it it was amazing
Empire Light was a very good ending to the Shoal trilogy with a hook for another book set in the same milieu some 3000 years later; the novel recreates somewhat the structure of Stealing Light, when after preliminaries, it comes down to Dakota and Julian to save the day again on a starship in enemy territory, while Trader is still around for his usual mischief

While the whole trilogy is a great example of new space opera and it allows one an introduction at 1000 pages rather than deliving in PF
Feb 19, 2014 Jamie rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jenny Delandro
Dec 10, 2015 Jenny Delandro rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
There are shocks in this installment!
We learn who built the ships and Dakota learns their history.. she experiences years of learning in only moments of real time...
We find the universe is filled with manipulators and people with delusions of grandeur as well as ordinary folk
The real power seems to be the ones dismissed as only spaceships..
these ships who all respond to Dakota, who can communicate with their navigators and each other ..
Machine heads are treated with respect .. but some cope bett
Leigh Wright
Nov 24, 2015 Leigh Wright rated it liked it
An enjoyable end to this space opera trilogy. After some consideration, I'm giving this 3 stars. I like this series and would love to read more books set in this universe - in fact there is one more, and I'll be reading it before too long - so the 3 stars is a firm "I like it" rather than "it's was ok". But this third book in "The Shoal Sequence" didn't quite merit 4 stars, whereas the second book did.

In conclusion, I would recommend this series for sci-fi fans, especially space opera and alien
Arsen Zahray
Nov 19, 2013 Arsen Zahray rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andreea Pausan
Aug 28, 2013 Andreea Pausan rated it really liked it
Great finish of the series, when everything is revealed and new battles are fought. What I find extraordinary about this series is how Gibson sets the stage for the introduction of alien species and how believable they are. Even if it's the fish-like Shoal, the bat-like Bandati or the machine minds of the Magi ships, they are consistent and the fact that we can imagine them does not take away any of the strangeness or alienness they possess. More impressive is the ending, when Dakota, the frail, ...more
Jun 12, 2013 J. rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
This was a surprising, intelligent & entertaining trilogy. Charlie Norfolk did an amazing job with the narration throughout.

(view spoiler)

I just saw that there is a fourth book. I hope it begins a new t
Martin Waterhouse
Jan 25, 2013 Martin Waterhouse rated it liked it
Shelves: audio-books, scifi
I've enjoyed this trilogy - a great epic space opera with loads of alien tech, action and well written characters - but, unfortunately, this final part lost some pace and depth for me. All the colourful villains, ships and political intrigues got left behind (literally) as the core characters went off in search of the Big Weapon; and the journey just lasted way too long I'm afraid. I'd still recommend the series, but only as a fun slice of scifi escapism.
Feb 19, 2011 Mike rated it liked it
Have just finished all three books in the trilogy. Bought this on a whim and really enjoyed the ride. Very clever world building and believable characters. It's Space Opera, but of a superior kind and the scope is impressive (both in terms of time and space). My only complaint is that the ending seemed hurried and disjointed and was more concerned with setting the scene for the next trilogy than rounding off the storyline in an emotionally satisfying way.
Aug 02, 2016 Xeddicus rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sander Bollen
Apr 12, 2015 Sander Bollen rated it really liked it
The last installment of the Shoal series is as gripping as the second part. It's full with intrigue. The plot lines are not entirely unpredictable, but Gibson pulls it off decently enough. However, it does feel rushed. The ending is just too quick. It needs a few hundred pages extra. The attack on the Emissaries goes too well. I'd like to see a bit more struggle here.
Feb 23, 2013 Will rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this series. Although I hope the author does not continue as the last book started to use the same situations from the first book. Whereas you do not know what is happening in the first book, you do in the last. But really enjoyed it!
I.D. Martin
Aug 14, 2010 I.D. Martin rated it liked it
I enjoyed this because it tied up a lot of loose ends and had Gibson's usual flow which makes for easy reading. But the intensity of Stealing Light was there in patches only and some of the edginess of Dakota was gone. I'm not disappointed but the original promise of the series was diluted.
Nathan Hurst
Aug 30, 2010 Nathan Hurst rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Much of this book has been seen before, and turns into a 'who dunnit' quite swiftly. That's not to say it's not well crafted and enjoyable but you do tend to wonder where Gibson is going with the next book... and just how big his galactic weapons of mass destruction can actually get.
Tony Maddox
Nov 18, 2013 Tony Maddox rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
I was quite into the series going into the final book but I felt that the overall conclusion was a bit of a letdown. Still, the trilogy was entertaining and I'll definitely be reading more by Mr Gibson.
Oct 01, 2010 David rated it really liked it
Gibson does not disappoint his readers in this third installment of the Shoal series.
I won't spoil the story by summing it up, but it's interesting to note that this book will not be the last, so it's not a trilogy ;)
Dec 22, 2012 Michael rated it really liked it
So much better than the first two books. I devoured this one within a couple of days. Much more action and the pacing was very good. The cliffhanger ending is awesome too. Looking forward to more stories.
Jan 08, 2011 John rated it liked it
Only finished due to inate curiosity about just how he was going to end it and I wasn't dissappointed as I guessed it from a long way off.

I would not reccomend this series to anyone. unfortunately not one of my better reads.
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Gary Gibson's first novel, Angel Stations, was published in 2004. Interzone called it "dense and involving, puzzling and perplexing. It's unabashed science fiction, with an almost "Golden Age" feel to it ..."

His second novel was Against Gravity in 2005; the Guardian described it as "building on current trends to produce a convincing picture of the world in 2096."

Stealing Light was first published
More about Gary Gibson...

Other Books in the Series

The Shoal Sequence (4 books)
  • Stealing Light (The Shoal Sequence, #1)
  • Nova War (The Shoal Sequence, #2)
  • Marauder

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