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Galactic North

(Revelation Space #collection)

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  7,222 ratings  ·  286 reviews
With eight short stories and novellas--including three original to this collection--Galactic North imparts the centuries-spanning events that have produced the dark and turbulent world of Revelation Space.
Hardcover, 343 pages
Published June 5th 2007 by Ace Books (first published October 19th 2006)
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Average rating 4.11  · 
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 ·  7,222 ratings  ·  286 reviews

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Galactic North: Reynolds excels at shorter lengths
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature
Having read all the full-length novels in Alastair Reynolds’ REVELATION SPACE series, I knew I’d eventually get to his shorter works set in the same dark and complex universe. The main novels are Revelation Space, Redemption Ark, Chasm City, Absolution Gap, and The Prefect. Reynolds has produced a detailed future history, inspired by works such as Bruce Sterling’s Schismatrix, Larry Niven’s KNOWN SPACE, and
Manuel Antão
Oct 19, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

SF will not become SciFi: "Galactic North" by Alastair Reynolds

Is SF becoming SciFi? I hope not.

Dumbing down is the order of the day. Our marketing and publishing departments no longer want to see SF in SciFi, maybe because it couldn’t be labeled, but I think, like many others, because so long as they called it “SciFi” they had to give scifi. Now that they’re calling it “SyFy”, they can put on anything. The name isn’t a promise, it’s
David Sven
Jul 18, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, anthologies
While I'm still working through the audio of Redemption Ark I thought I might check out some of the Rev Space short stories he published earlier in this collection.

I'm glad I decided to read these in publication order because there is some crossover between the stories as well as the the two shorts in Diamond Dogs Turquoise Days. I was able to appreciate cameo appearances from characters who were written earlier which would otherwise just appeared random.

I think this is an excellent collection
Great addition to Revelation Space universe.

Even if not all stories are related to the trilogy, they are set in the same universe and bring in some new details related to some of the events and concepts used in the series.

> Great Wall of Mars - the story of Clavain from way back when he became a Conjoiner, set in the events on Mars and also his first encounter with Felka. A beautiful story about honour and betrayal. 5/5

> Glacial - gripping tale about Clavain's mission on Diadem, an Eart
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Galactic North" by Alastair Reynolds is a selection of 8 short stories set in Reynolds' "Revelation Space" universe. All of the stories are good. ...more
Apr 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Revelation Space
Galactic North is a fantastic collection of short stories taking place in Alistair Reynolds' Revelation Space setting. I would recommend reading the main Revelation Space series prior to Galactic North. Familiarity with the main characters almost seems necessary to appreciate these stories. Below are my impressions of each story.

Great Wall of Mars - This story is also part of "Beyond the Aquila Rift: The best of Alistair Reynolds". I read this story once prior to reading the main series, and aga
I'm supremely happy to know that Reynolds as a short story writer is just as good as Reynolds as a novelist. Some of the stories were unabashedly nostalgic for me, but others, such as the last one, Galactic North, really bit deep into my subconscious and wouldn't let go. I wanted more and more of that one, but there were a few others that even verged on the mythical. I'm thinking of a certain medical ship, not to mention a fascination of worms.

Strangely enough, I got a lot out of the afterward,
Jan Bednarczuk
Jul 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't get enough of the Revelation Space universe. I just can't. This future history feels almost as real and detailed and nuanced to me at this point as real history does.

I've already read most of the novels in this series, and with some trepidation moved on to this collection of short stories. So many authors who excel in longer forms do poorly with short stories, and vice versa.

I needn't have worried. Reynolds is, if anything, even more skilled at the short story format; perhaps because i
Jul 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good mixed bag, but the 1999 story Galactic North is fascinating as it is the map of most of the stories from Revelation Space. Weather is the best of the bunch.

Great Wall of Mars (2000) - 4.5 star
Great stuff. Fast pacing, good characters, short but wonderful early days of Revelation Space

Glacial (2001) - 4.5 star
Wonderful continuation of Clavain and Galiana, this time on an ice world, with a murder mystery. Truly great stuff.

A Spy in Europa (1997) - 3.5 star
A short but interesting spy story,
Neal Asher
Feb 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I just finished Galactic North the other day, and am now looking forward to reading The Prefect. It’s nice to be once again reminded why I enjoyed reading his Revelation Space series. A few of the stories in here I’d read before (was The Great Wall of Mars in Interzone?) but I still enjoyed them second time around. The story Galactic North seemed a bit disjointed, but I still enjoyed the big space and huge breadths of time. All of it: huge Gothic spaceships, weapons like dangerous beasts lurchin ...more
Apr 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent collection, solid all around, with some fascinating early history of the transhuman factions in the Revelation Space universe. Reynolds is every bit as masterful at crafting shorter works as full length novels, weaving incredibly engaging story lines against the backdrop of a fascinating universe populated with enigmatic trans human factions. His gritty, often dark, vision of the future is wrapped in just enough hard science and amazing inventiveness, and told with a sharp edged prose, ...more
Galactic North is a collection of short stories from Alastair Reynolds, all set in the Revelation Space universe. I have not read the main series, but I have read the odd short story here and there, which gave me some understanding. Although this collection can be read without any prior knowledge, it is best read after the series for full enjoyment.

Great Wall of Mars was a two-star rating. It’s a story that had me curious, and I believe I would have enjoyed it more if I’d read the Revelation Spa
Great Wall of Mars provides more background for Nevil Clavain, his dealings with Galiana, Felka and the Conjoiners and how he became one himself as well as some early Revelation Space universe history. A great story about war, diplomacy and betrayal. (5 stars)

Glacial also features Clavain and partly deals with his attempts to adjust to being a Conjoiner. But it's first and foremost a Whodunit mystery and a pretty good one at that. The 'icy' atmosphere of a planet approaching an ice age adds to t
Sep 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
I'm not a fan of short stories, but this collection proves two points: a) Alastair Reynolds knows what he's doing and boy can he write them, and b) I enjoyed them perhaps more than the original Revelation Space series. Great collection! ...more
Aug 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
There's just nobody like Alastair. I've had this on my shelf for a while, and I was worried that I might have forgotten crucial finer details from the Revelation Space trilogy and Chasm City in the post-interim, but I just trusted the process and got immersed in the Ultras and Conjoiners and Demarchists and my mind boggled all over again at the possibilities of the far future's centuries-long traveling and free-exchange of identities across flesh, machinery, plagues and space. The afterword with ...more
Reynolds writes short stories as naturally as he does long and engaging space opera. And especially because all these stories fit in the Revelation Space universe, they add a lot of depth to the stories that we know and love. Each story in this series adds something to a thread that was left dangling during the main sequence of books.
Lars Dradrach
Dec 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: e-book
A mixed bag of sweets.

Reynolds returns to the Revelation Space Universe with a collection of 8 more or less stand alone stories.

5 Stars - The great wall of mars & Weather - Reynolds at his best, strong stories and strong characters you care about.

4 Stars - Glacial - A murder mystery with the conjoiners

3 Stars - Nightingale - A strong story but a little to much horror and Doctor Moreau, not a style that fits Reynolds

3 Stars - Dilation Sleep

3 Stars - Galactic North - A century spanning epoch wi
Aug 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

In his career as a science fiction author, Alastair Reynolds has written many great stories and adventures - from novels, to novellas and short-stories - and managing through all these to create also and one of the best universes in the field. But, with the completion of the novels of the Revelation Space universe, it left behind a desire for something more.
Galactic North comes to change that, collecting eight stories in this beloved universe; eight adventures that takes us deep into known
Oct 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Once again, Alastair Reynolds demonstrates that he works better in long forms than in short forms, although this collection is hardly a wash, and only suffers in direct comparison with his novels. Opening with the one-two punch of "Great Wall of Mars" and "Glacial," Reynolds helps to fill in some of the early history of his Revelation Space universe, with both stories focusing on the exploits of Nevil Clavain. "A Spy in Europa" suffers by comparison; despite providing back-story surrounding the ...more
Alastair Reynolds has an imagination that spans a universe. An excellent collection of his, perhaps lesser known, short fiction.
Whether it's detective, espionage or plain horror. He effortlessly weaves it into the fabric of space and hard scifi. Especially the nightmarish Nightingale deserves a special mention. Can somebody PLEASE make this into a movie or at least an episode of 'Black Mirror'?
Not to be missed...
Fantasy Literature
Jun 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Reviewed by Stuart who says "Reynolds excels at shorter lengths". Read Stuart's review: ...more
Florin Pitea
Oct 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Liked it a lot, especially the title novella... And the Afterword.
Kevin Kelsey
Jun 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Relativity squeezed stars until they bled colour."

Terrific collection of most of the short fiction set in the Revelation Space universe. There isn't a sub 3/5 story in the bunch, with most being 4/5 or 5/5. They range from introspective character studies to science fiction horror. Standouts are Glacial, The Great Wall of Mars, Weather, and Nightingale.
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Every few years I give this one a re-read (and honestly, when I'm not re-reading Galactic North I'm definitely still thinking about it). ...more
Galactic North is an excellent set of short stories set in the Revelation Space universe. I read this after reading Revelation Space because I wanted to read the short stories featuring Galliana and Nevil Clavain, since they are characters in Redemption Ark (sequel to Revelation Space).

The Revelation Space universe is a stark and somber one. Space travel is long and it's filled with mysteries. There's often elements of horror to what characters in stories discover. Reynolds supports his universe
Pavlo Tverdokhlib
Sep 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epic-sci-fi
"Galactic North" is a collection of short stories that help to flesh out the Revelation Space Universe. Starting with the origin story of Nevill Clavain and the Conjoiner faction splintering off from Humanity and leaving the Solar system, and concluding with the epic story about the galaxy is transformed 4000 years in the future, the collection fills in some blanks, and adds a lot of colour to the world.

I did not re-read either "Chasm City" or the Revelation Space trilogy beforehand, so I can't
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Geoffrey Dow
Sometimes I really hate these star-ratings. I gave Galactic North only two stars not because I didn't enjoy - I did, and quite a lot; further, I've read the book before - but because, only a few weeks later, I can barely remember the stories within it.

Whether that fault lies with this reader, or somehow with the author, I'm really not sure. But there it is. I read it, enjoyed it, and promptly mostly forgot it. And yet, I'm certain that at some point, when I'm looking for space opera, I'll take t
Shabbeer Hassan
Jun 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
A great collection of short stories set in the Revelation Space universe. Some of the better ones are included in the much larger collection Beyond the Aquila Rift: The Best of Alastair Reynolds, but one short story which caught my attention was the titular - Galactic North. The imagination with which Reynolds infuses his stories is quite evident here.

My Rating - 4/5
Mike Gilbert
Sep 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
It’s great to read through the short stories that (usually) predate an authors major works. Books like “Galactic North” or “Burning Chrome” give us an insight into the fantastic worlds the authors create. Coupled with the fact that I read it while backpacking 45 miles through western high peaks of the ADK and I loved every minute. Except the last story but we’ll get to that.

The thing about short stories is that they are short, compact. There is nothing wasted. Every sentence has a purpose and is
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I'm Al, I used to be a space scientist, and now I'm a writer, although for a time the two careers ran in parallel. I started off publishing short stories in the British SF magazine Interzone in the early 90s, then eventually branched into novels. I write about a novel a year and try to write a few short stories as well. Some of my books and stories are set in a consistent future named after Revela ...more

Other books in the series

Revelation Space (3 books)
  • Revelation Space (Revelation Space, #1)
  • Redemption Ark (Revelation Space, #2)
  • Absolution Gap (Revelation Space, #3)

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