Winner of the Hugo Award for Best Series!
Brimming with Chambers' signature blend of heart-warming character relationships and dazzling adventure, Record of a Spaceborn few is the third standalone installment of the Wayfarers series, set in the sprawling universe of the Galactic Commons, and following a new motley crew on a journey to another corner corner of the cosmos—one often mentioned, but not yet explored.
Return to the sprawling universe of the Galactic Commons, as humans, artificial intelligence, aliens, and some beings yet undiscovered explore what it means to be a community in this exciting third adventure in the acclaimed and multi-award-nominated science fiction Wayfarers series, brimming with heartwarming characters and dazzling space adventure.
Hundreds of years ago, the last humans on Earth boarded the Exodus Fleet in search of a new home among the stars. After centuries spent wandering empty space, their descendants were eventually accepted by the well-established species that govern the Milky Way.
But that was long ago. Today, the Exodus Fleet is a living relic, the birthplace of many, yet a place few outsiders have ever visited. While the Exodans take great pride in their original community and traditions, their culture has been influenced by others beyond their bulkheads. As many Exodans leave for alien cities or terrestrial colonies, those who remain are left to ponder their own lives and futures: What is the purpose of a ship that has reached its destination? Why remain in space when there are habitable worlds available to live? What is the price of sustaining their carefully balanced way of life—and is it worth saving at all?
A young apprentice, a lifelong spacer with young children, a planet-raised traveler, an alien academic, a caretaker for the dead, and an Archivist whose mission is to ensure no one’s story is forgotten, wrestle with these profound universal questions. The answers may seem small on the galactic scale, but to these individuals, it could mean everything.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Becky Chambers' science-fiction universe is less about flash-bang space battles and more about bringing a new level of inclusivity to the genre. The third installment of her Wayfarers series weaves six individual stories into a humorous, deeply moving tale about love, tradition, and belonging. By delving into up-to-the-minute topics like immigration, gender, and race, Record of a Spaceborn Few shows just how crucial equality and coexistence is…in every time and dimension. Keep the tissues handy; Chambers' rich, fascinating characters touched us in ways we didn’t expect.
The delightful third book set in Chambers's Galactic Commons universe (after A Close and Common Orbit) takes place in and around the Exodan Fleet, the set of generation ships in which humankind left an ecologically destroyed Earth. Following humans' entry into the Galactic Commons, the Exodan ships were granted a star to orbit and given a lot of new alien technology. The effects of these things on the Exodan culture, which prioritizes resource conservation and does not use money, are far-reaching. A mother tries to deal with her daughter's new fears after a horrific disaster; a young man from a planetary colony tries to emigrate to the Fleet; an alien ethnologist comes to study the Exodan ways of life. The multiple narrators and seemingly unrelated plot lines converge thematically into an intensely powerful and multifaceted meditation on time, history, change, and memory, leavened with a welcome touch of humor. The characters are distinct and lovable, each shedding light on a different facet of the Fleet. Chambers uses the interconnections inevitable in such a small society to provide moments of both horrific pain and soaring grace, and to make it clear that those things are inextricably intermingled. This is a superb work from one of the genre's rising stars.
A Nice Lore Dive into the Universe of the Wayfarer Series
I loved how this book answered so many questions I had about the Exodans and the Fleet. I didn’t realize how much I wanted to know about the history of the humans that left Earth until I was eagerly reading through each chapter. I appreciate the effort to have the reader experience many different life experiences surrounding the Fleet, but I felt that the connections these characters had by the end of the novel felt a bit off. I don’t feel that the events that took place warranted as strong of an emotional bond as some of the characters managed to have, though I recognize the challenge in trying to tie together those stories at all. Because of this, some of the harder hitting monologues fell a bit flat with me (namely Isabel’s speech to Kip near the end). In all, it was a fascinating dive into the lore and amazing world building of the Wayfarer series, but don’t go in expecting the same emotional punches as the first two books in the series.
I have now devoured this book and the two prior books in the series. I always tire of series and reading three is a large exception to the rule. Her juxtaposition of humans among many species has provided her the opportunity to explore ideas large and small on novel platforms. Young and old, brilliant and average, familiar and anything but…. Great fun. Easy reading. Deep thoughts. I’ve been reading science fiction for a very long time. This is an easy 5 stars. Try it.
One of the best books I have ever read
I have read a lot of books. This book moved me in a way few books have. I have marked up passages to save for my children to read when they are older.
While science fiction - Becky Chambers captures life (and death) so well. She answers the question, what’s the point of it all.
I feel like I am better person for having read this, and it changed me.