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Juggler of Worlds Mass Market Paperback – June 2, 2009


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Frequently Bought Together

Juggler of Worlds + Destroyer of Worlds + Betrayer of Worlds (Fleet of Worlds)
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Science Fiction; Reprint edition (June 2, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765357844
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765357847
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #347,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

As an agent for the Amalgamated Regional Militia, Simon Ausfaller uses his innate paranoia to ferret out alien conspiracies and protect earth’s colonies from harm. He meets his match in the obsessively protective puppeteers, a race of two-headed extraterrestrials whose impermeable General Products spaceship hulls come with an expensive guarantee of safety. In his latest investigation, Ausfaller probes the reasons why one GP hull apparently failed to protect the humans inside and discovers that tidal waves from a neutron star had some part in their demise. The case quickly becomes more complicated, leading Ausfaller on a trail across multiple worlds that branches into an even deeper mystery—puppeteers everywhere are deserting their posts for unknown but ominous reasons that may also spell disaster for humans. In their second collaboration, Niven and Lerner return to the era of Known Space history predating human discovery of Niven’s iconic Ringworld. They clearly enjoy revisiting aliens familiar from Niven’s menagerie while spinning an elaborate tale of interplanetary intrigue. Their many fans will, too. --Carl Hays --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Niven and Lerner…clearly enjoy revisiting aliens familiar from Niven’s menagerie while spinning an elaborate tale of interplanetary intrigue.  Their many fans will, too.”--Booklist

"Niven and Lerner...adroitly expand upon familiar ground...and, at the same time, pour it into an entirely new bottle."--Starlog

"A lively prequel to Niven's 1970 classic, Ringworld. . . .  Fans of hard SF will be well rewarded."--Publishers Weekly on Fleet of Worlds
 
"Exceptional freshness and suspense . . .  full of startling revelations about human and puppeteer politics."--Booklist on Fleet of Worlds
 
"A far-future SF mystery/adventure set two centuries before the discovery of the Ringworld by humans. . . . . Intriguing human and alien characters and lucid scientific detail."--Library Journal on Fleet of Worlds
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Sadly, I think we'd have been better off without it.
Kathleen Lambert
I'm thrilled that Larry Niven and Edward M. Lerner have collaborated to produce these new prequels to Ringworld.
Todd V
In particular, the plot is excesively complicated and the story lacks dramatic focus.
R. Albin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 45 people found the following review helpful By E. M. Van Court VINE VOICE on October 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is a revisiting of a number of the "Known Space" stories, from the perspective of a professional paranoid. Sigmund Ausfaller is a UN law officer, and professional paranoid, albeit a natural paranoid rather than a chemically induced one, like some of his peers.

Sigmund gets a human face, as his sordid past is revealed, his romantic life is considered, and his fears for the human race are discussed. And the key question; 'is he paranoid enough' is addressed. Even uglier than his role as a paranoid cop is his background as... [say it in hushed tones] a revenuer. His girlfriend is industrial grade crazy (as bad as your story is, his takes the cake). And his worst paranoid concerns for humanity fall short of the reality.

I enjoyed it immensely. This one filled in the gaps between many of the 'Known Space' stories from a very different perspective, and shed light on the wherefores and whys behind the incidents described in other works. Because of this, the criticisms of recycled material are valid, as they included much earlier work, and invalid, as the material was needed to make the story work for someone who hadn't read any of this body of work earlier. And in the end, it heads off in a new direction.

An excellent addition to the "Known Space" series, and a worthwhile read.

E. M. Van Court
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39 of 42 people found the following review helpful By David A. Lessnau on October 14, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Niven and Lerner's "Juggler of Worlds" starts a bit before their Fleet of Worlds, intertwines with it (and with other works) for a stretch, and then finishes a tad after it. If you're going to read the pair, "Fleet of Worlds" should come first as the latter part of this book depends on what happened in the other book.

*Technically*, the writing, science and linkages to Niven's "Known Space" are very good. But, that linkage leads to this book's downfall. It feels more like a connect-the-dots chronicle than a story in its own right. Specifically, for two thirds of the book, there's really no explanation of why we're reading the book. It's just one thing after another relating to material in other Niven works with nothing explaining where THIS material is going. It's not until the last third of the book (after "Fleet of Worlds" ends) that anything resembling a motivation appears.

It pains me to have to rate the book down since it should have been a very good book. But, its choppiness and lack of motivation mean I can only rate it at an OK three stars out of 5.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Summary: This book stands out from its series by retelling many of Niven's old stories, most of which are collected in Crashlander, from the point of view of one of Niven's former background characters, Sigmund Ausfaller. As a result, it's much more like a collection of short stories than a novel. It's a lot of fun for fans of the Crashlander stories, but if you are reading this as part of the "Worlds" series and haven't read the earlier stories, definitely go get Crashlander and read that first.

Forty years or so ago, Larry Niven began writing a set of stories and novels set in "Known Space" - a portion of the milky way that was at least partially explored by the human race. Since then, he has occasionally let other writers into his playground, particularly in the The Man-Kzin Wars series.

This time, Niven has collaborated with Edward Lerner to write three books about the "Puppeteers", a race of technologically advanced herd animals, and their interactions with humanity.

The first book, Fleet of Worlds, re-introduces the Puppeteers fleet of five (now six) travelling planets for readers not familiar with them, and takes place largely on those planets, as does the third book, Destroyer of Worlds. This is the second in the series, and in some ways, the most daring.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By D. White on February 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover
What a waste of time. I love LN's earlier work, and I can understand that maybe he can use some extra money, but this rehash of earlier stories seemed like something knocked out for the money without Niven involved. That is, I couldn't escape the feeling that Niven had just given the right to recycle his old short stories to the other author, and that constituted the dual author credit. I didn't wind up with the impression that I'd read any new Niven writing at all. I feel like I was lured into this book somewhat under false pretenses.

Worst case would be to read this BEFORE you read the original short stories, since it features "spoilers" from an uninteresting viewpoint. So if you haven't read the old Niven books and stories, do so, and particularly do so before reading this one.

It isn't "known space" so much as "known plots".
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Tom Perkins on October 10, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I can't imagine how anyone could like reading this book. Having enjoyed Larry Niven's books in the past, I was surprised at the wooden writing in Juggler of Worlds. Nonetheless, I read it to the end, hoping Niven's magic would appear. It didn't.
The Kzinti hardly entered the plot, indeed I am not sure there was a plot. Niven took us to the puppeteers' home world, "Hearth", but didn't develop it. The Outsiders were active but we learned little about them.
At least, the grammar and spelling were good.
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