Book Reviews: Later books in a series
Posted on July 14, 2020 at 9:47 am by Gene Ambaum
Shadow Captain (The Revenger Series Book 2) by Alastair Reynolds. Orbit, 2019. 9780316555708. 423pp.
Think the age of exploration and pirates in space, in an original setting, a designed solar system created over the course of many past human civilizations (which is clarified more in this book than in any of the others by Reynolds that I’ve read). The ships in question mostly get from place to place via solar sails, and many of thse “baubles” they visit are rich with treasure from the past. Human habitats vary wildly in design and state of repair, and a bit of alien tech is around, too. It’s a lot of fun with great characters, including a truly tyrannical pirate and two sisters who run afowl of her in the first book. That book is Revenger. You should start with it. I can barely start to explain the second without ruining it.
And, holy crap! The third book in the trilogy is already out. Got to get a copy.
Network Effect (The Murderbot Diaries Book 5) by Martha Wells. Tor, 2020. 9781250229861. 352pp.
If you’ve read all four Murderbot novellas, I can report that the first novel in the series is just as entertaining. But it’s got a lot to do with a character we met in on of those books, so the less said the better.
If you haven’t heard of the series, the Murderbot in question was a killing machine for hire (part meat, part tech) that hacked its own governor module, and then used its freedom to secretly watch entertainment videos (it is obsessed) and then to make decisions that went against its programming to help/save the humans it liked. Great character. Start with All Systems Red.
The Last Emperox (The Interdependency Book 3) by John Scalzi. Tor, 2020. 320pp. 9780765389169.
The third book in this series by Scalzi, which is a fun read on part with the Old Man’s War books. A civilization that uses a network of interconnected wormholes to journey between its outposts faces a crisis when the network starts to collapse. Lots of swearing and political intrigue plus more than a little violence — this is one of the smoothest, fastest reads I’ve had in a long time, and utterly enjoyable. Start with The Collapsing Empire.
Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb Trilogy Book 2) by Tamsyn Muir. Tor, 2020. 9781250313225. 512pp.
This book isn’t as totally batshit and swear-y as the first book in the series, Gideon the Ninth, but it’s amazing nonetheless. A group of overpowered necromancers hide from a giant monster at the edge of the universe with their god king. Two of them are newbies. More than one of them is completely crazy. Requires utter trust that the author has not gone crazy, too, and that this is truly a sequel to the last book, which if you’re like me you loved so much. Tamsyn Muir, I trusted you, and I’m not sorry I did at all! I loved this one, too. Can’t wait for the third book!
Start with Gideon the Ninth, which I highly recommend for smart asses and anyone who loves smart-assery with swords.