“An imaginative and stunning tale of the perfect future threatened . . . a book of epic proportions not unlike Frank Herbert’s Dune or Isaac Asimov’s Foundation trilogy.”—SFRevu
The year is 2380. The Intersolar Commonwealth, a sphere of stars, contains more than six hundred worlds interconnected by a web of transport “tunnels” known as wormholes. At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth, astronomer Dudley Bose observes the impossible: over one thousand light-years away, a star . . . disappears. Since the location is too distant to reach by wormhole, the Second Chance, a faster-than-light starship commanded by Wilson Kime, a five-times-rejuvenated ex-NASA pilot, is dispatched to learn what has occurred and whether it represents a threat.
Opposed to the mission are the Guardians of Selfhood, led by Bradley Johansson. Shortly after the journey begins, Kime wonders if the crew of the Second Chance has been infiltrated. But soon enough he will have other worries. Halfway across the galaxy, something truly incredible is waiting: a deadly discovery whose unleashing will threaten to destroy the Commonwealth . . . and humanity itself.
“Should be high on everyone’s reading list . . . You won’t be able to put it down.”—Nancy Pearl, NPR
“Recommended . . . A large cast of characters, each with his own story, brings depth and variety to this far-future saga.”—Library Journal
Hamilton's exhilarating new opus proves that "intelligent space opera" isn't an oxymoron. By the 24th century, the vast human Commonwealth has spread from Earth via artificial wormholes. Various benign or seemingly indifferent alien races have been encountered during exploration of new planets, but an astronomer sparks curiosity by announcing that a pair of stars is enclosed by a mysterious energy barrier. Unfortunately, a space expedition discovers that the shield was created to imprison an insatiably greedy mass mind that sees any other race as a mortal threat. When the barrier somehow is lowered, the alien immediately attacks the largely unprepared Commonwealth, while humans begin wondering if yet another inhuman power has manipulated events that unleashed this threat. The author deftly juggles many characters in multiple plot lines, sometimes slowing down the action briefly, at other times racing forward. Revelations late in the book will have readers scurrying back to earlier pages to reinterpret what they initially thought. Not many SF writers are capable of tackling such a big project so confidently. In this respect, Hamilton (Fallen Dragon) resembles a less cheery but very tech-savvy and extremely paranoid Charles Dickens. Given the abrupt cliffhanger of an ending, some may prefer to save this massive installment until the story's conclusion, Judas Unleashed, appears next year. Anyone who begins this one, however, probably won't be able to put it down. (On sale Mar. 2)
Just finished this outstanding work. I found this author by searching for authors like issac Asimov. Mr Hamilton is not Asimov he is on a plain of his own. I am invested in this story and am ready to start book 2.
This complex narrative is just outstanding. I feel my words are failing to capture my admiration. As I found myself within the last 100 pages my heart rate accelerated as the story became fast and furious.
I have begun to purchase his other works. Well done sir!
World building, multiple plots and intriguing characters propel this sci-fi work to “Classic “ status.
Great Sci Fi
What a great book. Massive scale that includes the whole galaxy combined with dozens of fascinating characters, a future full of technology that is both off the charts and a logical outgrowth of where we are now. And psychologically realistic effects of that technology on humans. Sci fi at its best. A real classic.