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  • Revelation Space

  • By: Alastair Reynolds
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 22 hrs and 12 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (1,412 ratings)

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Revelation Space cover art

Revelation Space

By: Alastair Reynolds
Narrated by: John Lee
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Summary

Nine hundred thousand years ago, something annihilated the Amarantin civilization just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight. Now one scientist, Dan Sylveste, will stop at nothing to solve the Amarantin riddle before ancient history repeats itself.

With no other resources at his disposal, Sylveste forges a dangerous alliance with the cyborg crew of the starship Nostalgia for Infinity. But as he closes in on the secret, a killer closes in on him because the Amarantin were destroyed for a reason. And if that reason is uncovered, the universe - and reality itself - could be irrevocably altered.

©2008 Alastair Reynolds (P)2008 Tantor

Critic reviews

"One of the best books of the year." ( Science Fiction Chronicle)
"Ferociously intelligent and imbued with a chilling logic - it may really be like this Out There." (Stephen Baxter, co-author of The Light of Other Days)

What listeners say about Revelation Space

Average customer ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

great book

narrator is good, I don't know why everyone else is so negative. Very well written book, enjoyed thoroughly.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Epic hard sci-fi

This is one of my favourite books. Reynolds has a real physics background, and his comfort with unthinkable scale and relatavistic distances. The plot is constructed like a steel trap, with massive stakes, and strong, memorable characters. If Christopher Nolan did a pure space opera, it would end up being like this. The characters are all brilliant, ruthless, terrifying competent types, which I love, but others might not. It's hardcore sci-fi though, so it's more like Greg Bear or Greg Egan than Isaac Asimov or Larry Niven.

John Lee does a competent enough job of the narration, but it's clear that he doesn't really understand what he's saying. He has a tendency to make all the characters sound like louche French philosophers drinking Pernod in a Parisian cafe circa 1913, even the Middle Eastern soldier Khouri and Russian engineer Volyova. Also, he uses the American pronunciation of words like process (with a short o) which seemed odd.

I also question the decision for a man to be the narrator. There are more important female than male characters here (Volyova, Khouri, The Madamoiselle, Pascale, Sluka, Sudjic etc.), and on balance I think I'd have preferred an actress.

This kvetching aside, he wasn't distracting or anything, so it's still a worthwhile purchase if the subject matter is your thing.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Love this author, story arc slow to gain momentum

Complex threads with a real sense of an epic storyscape.

Am starting book 2 now!

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

You just need to pay attention

Any additional comments?

There are some books that have very simple/predictable plot lines. You can casually listen to these on the move and not miss anything if you get distracted. By contrast Revelation Space requires listening effort, but is worth it. I initially listened too casually and about one and half hours in I had to accept that I did not really know what was going on, so... I started again. I am glad I did.The narration is very good, but you need to pay attention, particularly in the first third of the book, the scenes switch with no warning. In the end I enjoyed this aspect.Interesting story, good science and original.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

not bad, but looses its flow

not bad, but jumps from location to location with the reader barley taking a breath, so throws things and looses the flow

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brooding Space Opera

The first Alastair Reynolds book I've read/listened too, and I'd have to say I'm very impressed.

Revelation Space doesn't disappoint with plenty of weird twists and whacked-out concepts, it feels far-future.

Reynolds style is not dissimilar to the excellent Peter F Hamilton, though quicker paced. The story does jump about initially and can lead to some confusion, stick with it though, this one is totally worth the investment.

5/5

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Superb drama with many twists

A classic space opera! very detailed and well read. highly recommended! can't wait till the second volume.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • JP
  • 15-01-18

It was worth persisting with...

Any additional comments?

It took me a while to get to grips with the narration, but I'd heard so many good things about the book and in the end it was well worth persisting with. Particularly annoying was the habit of starting sentences loudly and tailing off at the end - at what volume do you set your headphones! Sorry, that's more than enough. That said, I found this a complex and ultimately very satisfying story and once I got into it, I was able to keep track of when and with whom the action was taking place. The author's scientific background comes through enough to make the sequences plausible without overloading with too much geeky detail and I just downloaded book 2.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Give me that old time Space Opera

I had forgotten how much fun Space Opera can be. Even though it was released in 2000 this novel has not really aged at all. BDOs, dead alien civilisations and some hints of the end times for humans...

Narration was good but the narrators attempts at accents for each character got a bit muddled at times.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

a solid scifi series

Thoroughly enjoyable! A nice balance between bright and dark overtones also neither too militaristic neither full of technobabble. I like this.

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