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Summary

Mary Robinette Kowal continues her Hugo and Nebula Award-winning Lady Astronaut series, following The Calculating Stars and The Fated Sky, with The Relentless Moon.  

The Earth is coming to the boiling point as the climate disaster of the meteor strike becomes more and more clear, but the political situation is already overheated. Riots and sabotage plague the space program. The IAC's goal of getting as many people as possible off Earth before it becomes uninhabitable is being threatened.  

Elma York is on her way to Mars, but the Moon colony is still being established. Her friend and fellow Lady Astronaut Nicole Wargin is thrilled to be one of those pioneer settlers, using her considerable flight and political skills to keep the program on track. But she is less happy that her husband, the governor of Kansas, is considering a run for president. 

©2020 Mary Robinette Kowal (P)2020 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Relentless Moon

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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Really not the best

As a general rule, authors should not read their own fiction. It needs professional talent. Mary Robinette Kowel proves this point with over the top vocal hamming.

The performance adversely affected the story but I felt there wasn't enough there anyway. This was no Lady Astronaut.

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one of the best series I've ever read

I cannot express how happy I am to have started this series on a whim.

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Bowled over by a cannot stop listening book

The first two books in the Lady Astronaut were good - I enjoyed them, like many other books. But this - the third in the series - was a very pleasant surprise because it is amazing.

A Sci-fi/Alternative history/Whodunnit/Spy novel this story crosses genres and has you desperately not wanting to stop listening all the way through.

And so well narrated - by the author.

One of the best audiobooks I have ever listened to.

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Tragedy strikes on the Moon colony

This third book in the Lady Astronauts series is told from the point of view of Nicole, astronaut, pilot, wife of politician Kenneth, and with quite a few other talents as well as challenges. "Earth first" terrorists strike both on Earth and, further on in the novel, also on the Lunar colony where Nicole has been sent to try to prevent terrorists, supposedly hidden among the crew or the members of the colony, from succeeding in their plans. Quite a few tragedies strike both on Earth and on the Moon, diseases, accidents and terrorist attacks injure or kill quite a few people, including important characters. All through this, even as communication with Earth is interrupted, Nicole and her colleagues / friends manage to work all the problems they are faced with, including inner struggles with self-esteem, diseases, injuries, discrimination, righteous anger and grief. It is both heartbreaking and heartening, and incredibly poignant, as, among other things, a contagious disease starts spreading in the colony, although the book was written when Covid19 did not exist yet. Readers also get occasional glimpses on the progress of the Mars expedition, and the epilogue seems to close that story too, though hopefully more details will be told in future stories. Great performance by the narrator of the audiobook, who is the author herself.

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Mary Robinette Kowal doesn't disappoint

No Elma? True but yet this is so good, suspenseful, funny and the audio version of a page turner. I really enjoy Robinette Kowal as a narrator too. She really does a great job bringing the story to life.

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Favourite

This was my favourite of the series. Loved the setting on both moon and earth, liked the tension and pacing too. The slightly alternate timeline setting is just so interesting.

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A great listen

Mary Robinette Kowal brings another Lady Astronaut novel to the table, although THE Lady Astronaut only has a vignette in the epilogue. it's a clever, thoughtful and beautifully written story that only has one minus point: a fairly weak ending. Otherwise, it is a gripping page turner that will keep you entertained throughout.

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A captivating insight into space

Mary Robinette's carefulness in how she portrays space, technology and facts lifts this sci-fi novel into space! Similarly, the way that she portrays personal struggles and social factors like race and gender lakes the story intriguing and exciting. Can't wait for the next one!

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Brilliant book - Superb Narration!!

This is utterly, utterly engrossing.

There are so many themes included in this wonderful continuation of the 'Lady Astronaut' series. Switching first person narrative is also a difficult thing to pull off but the author has succeeded admirably by creating new fully rounded characters to add to those of the first two books.

I have the kindle version too because sometimes I like to read on a bit faster but the audible version is far superior because of the extremely skilled narration.

It is also fascinating to see the parallels with this imagined history and the current climate change emergency.

Finally there should also be an extra star for the length of this novel, 17+ hours of immersion into the author's world is amazing value. Thankyou so much for continuing the series.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 23-09-20

Outstanding.

I’d originally been disappointed when I read that this latest novel in the Lady Astronaut series wouldn’t focus on Elma Yorke, the central character so far. How wrong I was.

This instalment of the series is a bit different in tone, in some ways feeling a good deal darker, as tensions escalate and characters face life or death consequences. This book a tightly plotted, close quarters espionage thriller on the moon; how can we say know to that?

Nicole Wargin is a fascinating and rounded character whose true depths are slowly revealed over the course of the novel, and the story is thrilling, heart-breaking, and exultant in all the right places.

A word should be said about the author doing her own narration: it’s amazing. Before listening, I had no idea that Mary Robinette Kowal is also a voice actor, now I’d rank her among my favourite audiobook narrators. She does an incredible job bringing the multinational cast of the book to life, and her performance as Nicole moved me to tears once or twice.

I can’t recommend this enough.

5 people found this helpful

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  • catnipRN
  • 18-07-20

5 stars is not enough!

I have waited for this book since I finished The Fated Sky back in 2018. The author is the narrator, and she is awesome! She has the ability to make you feel like you are there, living the story, experiencing the same emotions. While listening, I laughed, cried, gasped and had anger toward characters to the point that I felt like I was part of story. I look forward to more of her stories, both her own stories and those that she narrates.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Eric
  • 10-08-20

Good listen

This series is an excellent story-line that I highly recommend. The characters are exciting, and the story has a subtle forceful type of energy that will keep the listener engaged. 😀😀😀😀

3 people found this helpful

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  • Kate
  • 17-07-20

Awesome

Another great addition to the series. Really well written. I couldn't stop listening. Only sad that now I have to wait for the next one.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Gary Roelli
  • 26-10-20

Great continuation of the Lady Astronaut series

This is a great series very well performed by the author. It's an alternative history version of the exploration of space that was caused by the arrival of a meteor that will eventually kill all humans on earth. Very enjoyable characters among them Elma York and Nicole Wargin. This book "The Restless Moon" set in the early 1960's details the problems of going to space at a time when many on earth think they should concentrate efforts on earth alone. Nicole Wargin uses her experience as a spy during World War 2 to stop "Earth First" efforts to turn away from space. There's great tragedy and deceit. I hope very much the story continues in a 4th novel.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Mary Robinette Kowal
  • 22-07-20

Happenings on the moon during the Mars expedition

This covers what is happening on the moon during the Mars expedition. It does not all go smoothly as you could probably guess. I hope there is a book about what is happening on earth during the same time period.

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  • L. Rogers
  • 03-05-21

She says that this was written during interesting times

It shows.
I loved calculating stars, this one just is a little disappointing. Curious to see if she writes a fourth

1 person found this helpful

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  • Cheryl
  • 30-09-20

past and present

While the previous books could be read thinking historically and with the thought we were comfortably past certain prejudices and *isms, reading this with the current events and social unrest, prejudices and *isms was no longer comfortable as these things were obviously not in our past.

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  • Craig
  • 08-05-22

Amazing narration

This is a great story and amazing narration! I didn't expect the story to be about Nichole instead of Elma, but I really liked it anyway. I liked how we get a new perspective on other characters we've met before, like Nathaniel, Eugene, Helen, and Myrtle. Also the attention to detail with voices for each character, accents, pronunciation of other languages makes for a great listen.

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  • Efrat Kotzer Hassid
  • 14-04-22

Different yet still great :)

This book happens in parallel to the Fated Sky. It leaves THE Lady Astronaut and is told by her friend Nicole, the pilot/political wife from the Calculating Stars.
This time we get our beloved hard sci-fi in combination with a thriller, and the suspense is very real. In the last part I was looking for things to do that can be combined with listening.
Despite some superficial similarities in the beginning, Nicole is a different person than Elma, interesting in her own right.
Teaser : the epilog is the real sci-fi ;)
Go read and don't skip the acknowledgements & history :)