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Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse, #1)
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June Book Discussions > Leviathan Wakes (No Spoilers)

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Donna (donnahr) I finished the book and gave it 4 stars. Before more detailed discussion, I wanted to throw out a question. At one point in the book a character says "The stars are better off without us." That got me thinking. Sadly, I have a lot of sympathy for that view. Are we just going to spread our problems to the rest of the solar system, when we do make it out there? Will we be fighting wars over mining rights to the moon? Is the Star Trek future ever going to be a possibility? What do you think?


Charles (nogdog) I'm about half way through, and one of my issues -- by no means a show-stopper -- is the seeming paradox of a civilization with the ability to colonize a solar system still being so ineffective at dealing with social issues (or just being unwilling to?)

However, I'm not sure if the uncomfortable feeling it gives me is because I'd like to think better of the human race, or because, deep down, I think he's right.


Donna (donnahr) I know it's pessimistic but I think we already have many examples of our knowledge/technology level outpacing our ability to deal with the social/ethical aspects. I am torn between wanting so badly to know what the future of humanity holds because I think it is going to be so incredibly wonderful and on the other hand hoping I don't actually live long enough to see the s**t hit the fan. I'd like "post apocalyptic" to stay on the fiction shelf!


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Donna wrote: "Is the Star Trek future ever going to be a possibility?"

Maybe I'm just cynical, but the Star Trek future is more fantastical than elves and dwarves in tutus dancing to Swan Lake to an all orc orchestra.

Charles wrote: "...the seeming paradox of a civilization with the ability to colonize a solar system still being so ineffective at dealing with social issues (or just being unwilling to?)..."

I think this is the most realistic part of the novel that isn't heavy on realism. Where ever we are, where ever we will be, we're going to find some way to disagree and be dysfunctional. It could be race, politics, religion, or who wears high-heeled or low-heeled shoes. We're going to bicker.

Now Mormons and Methodists is space, that's odd. Or maybe that's the point.


James Jackson (JAJackson) I like the premise of being stuck in the solar system, makes this story stand out a little from the usual space opera crowd. The story does bog itself down in places and became dull for me, but was an easy read none the less. Still, gave it four stars as I enjoyed the story overall.


message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

I think that over the past few centuries, humanity has slowly been moving towards a more egalitarian view of ourselves as a species. But, each step forward has usually been preceded by a violent spasm. And, I think that we will always have those who will always try to get ahead through nefarious means.

So,we are getting better as a people and we're still exactly who we've always been. I think that even in the United Federation of Planets that there would still be criminal elements so long as humanity is human ....


message 7: by John (last edited Jun 15, 2012 09:59AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

John Baker (bakerjw) | 39 comments I loved the book. It was well written and I really felt a connection to Miller. As to the human discussion.

When you look at what it takes to survive in the harsh environment of space, you realize that the pettiness that is tolerated on a life supporting planet would never be tolerated out there. From a small mining enclave to a large colonizing ship, every task and decision needs to be analyzed as to how it affects the entire group. IMHO, if and when humans get to the point of extending away from near Earth space, those individuals will have to have their priorities in line.

I am of the belief that any colony that mankind ever establishes will have to have 100% freedom from decisions made on their behalf by Earth. Kind of like a kid that leaves home needs complete autonomy regardless of the investment that their parents made in them.


Donna (donnahr) John wrote: "I am of the belief that any colony that mankind ever establishes will have to have 100% freedom from decisions made on their behalf by Earth...."

Just yesterday I was reading this article about where space law stands at the moment:

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/cru...

Interesting stuff, as we move into the age of commercial space flights. According to the article, the 1967 "Outer Space Treaty", the one that has been ratified by the most countries, "made nations responsible for activities in outer space, including those conducted by private operators." I imagine getting global consensus on how to handle these issues will be about as easy as global consensus on climate change has been.


Charles (nogdog) I finally finished this: about equal parts of my busy schedule getting in the way and the book never really grabbing me enough to make me want to make time for it.

For me it ended up as a "tweener": good enough that its flaws bothered me more than they would in a lesser novel, as I felt it was on the cusp of being a really good book.

I liked that it explored a time neither "near future" nor "far future", but something in between the two. I liked the attempt to create interesting, complex characters, though at times I felt even the main characters got too one-dimensional. I thought the writing was generally good, but little things would pop up from time to time that yanked me out of the willing suspension of disbelief thing, like constantly referring to any food as "faux" or "fake" or "fungal"; not to mention the whole (view spoiler) thing.

All things considered, I guess I'll probably give it 3 GR stars as being worth reading, but not one I'll ever consider re-reading.


Donna (donnahr) I just finished the second book in the series, Caliban's War, and loved it. My review is here. I actually thought it was better than Leviathan's Wake. If you liked Leviathan's Wake at all, I don't think you'll be disappointed.


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