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Redemption Ark (Revelation Space Book 2) [Kindle Edition]

Alastair Reynolds
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $8.99
Kindle Price: $7.30
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Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

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Book Description

This stunning sequel to Revelation Space begins late in the twenty-sixth century. The human race has advanced enough to accidentally trigger alien machines designed to detect intelligent life--and destroy it.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

With this complex, thoughtful sequel to his highly praised Revelation Space (2001), British author Reynolds confirms his place among the leaders of the hard-science space-opera renaissance. Spreading from star to star, humanity has split into different, competing factions. Late in the 26th century, the group-mind Conjoiners are defeating their main rivals, the Demarchists. Unfortunately, the Conjoiners' space exploration has attracted the notice of an ancient swarm of machines that calls itself the Inhibitors and that exists to destroy all biological intelligence. The Conjoiners don't believe they can fight this new foe, so they intend to run away and let the Inhibitors wipe out the other human tribes. One Conjoiner warrior, the centuries-old Clavain, rebels against this heartless tactic, but he must negotiate with a fragmented, distrustful mob of possible allies while pursued by his former cohorts. The novel forces readers to process an outrageous amount of information-but that's only fair, since the characters are challenged to do the same. As they extend themselves outward, they also have a chance to gain more understanding of themselves as human beings and more ability to interact meaningfully. It's rare to find a writer with sufficient nerve and stamina to write novels that are big enough to justify using words like "revelation" and "redemption." Reynolds pulls it off.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Reynolds' latest is a large, sprawling tale of war, politics, ideology (including religion), and alien invasion. It starts with the return to base, after 200 years, of an exploration ship filled with corpses. Its central characters are the investigators trying to find what or who killed the ship's occupants: A human (using the term loosely) enemy? Aliens? A nanotech plague? As the investigation proceeds, Reynolds introduces a galaxy's worth of technology and politics, the latter including the faction fight that gives the book its title. Like Reynolds' previous books, this one can be considered a technothriller set in the future, with technology extrapolated from the current states of biotech and artificial intelligence. Human nature is not envisioned as having changed much at all, however, no matter how much intelligence may be augmented. Despite a quite intricate plot, skilled narrative technique and well-developed characters make this a novel most readers will find absorbing and comprehensible. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • File Size: 1151 KB
  • Print Length: 708 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 044101173X
  • Publisher: Ace (May 25, 2004)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,865 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
81 of 83 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Warning-Reviews Below Contain Spoilers September 8, 2003
Just a warning to anyone reading the reviews below. These reviewers tell you specific facts about the ending of the book.
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40 of 48 people found the following review helpful
One of the best things about Alastair Reynolds is that he is a practicing astronomer who really knows what he is talking about when it comes to space and planetary motion. If Reynolds makes up something that is not realistic by today's standards he is at least basing it on the current theories of space and time. This is why a science major like myself would appreciate reading his fiction more than most of the pop that found in the sci-fi section of today's book store.
However, there are many problems with Redemption Ark. It was far less enjoyable to read then either Chasm city or Revelation Space. The strength of Reynolds writing comes largely from his was imagination that is not too far detached from realistic outlook on scientific principles of today (such as our inability to achieve the speed of light). He presents us a whole new and exciting world of the future, the world that is based on the assumption of human race having the intelligence to propagate its survival by colonizing space. The setting Reynolds presented was so convincing and intriguing that it made Revelation Space almost like an ethnographic account of new cultures as well as a novel at the same time. Chasm city had some of the same element but Redemption Ark had almost nothing new. Once again we find ourselves in the same world but we are no longer impressed by it, but find ourselves in a familiar territory.
Writer's style also started wearing off in its ingenuity. Reading Redemption Ark felt like being supplied with tiny spoons of interesting plot points drifting amid empty conversational and narration filler. It is if we are feed the relevant information at more or less constant rate as we progressed towards the end.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Almost fantastic June 28, 2003
Who wouldn't love a plot like this? 4 km-long starship, "Nostalgia for Infinity", gradually being absorbed by the super-technovirus, the Melding Plague and/or the ship's former Captain, his mind now having merged with said Plague. The way-to-cool Triumvir Ilia Volyova trying to get control of 33 mysterious Hell-Class weapons in order to direct a pre-emptive strike against the galaxy's most fearsome menace, the soulless Inhibitor-machines, bent on extinguishing 'outbreaks' of starfaring, intelligent life. Meanwhile her associate Khouri (who survived Revelation Space!)attempting to organize the evacuation of 200.000 people from Resurgam before the Inhibitors can finish the ultimate doomsday weapon of their own, made out of the Delta Parvonis system's biggest planet! And on top of this: two competing factions of the ultra-advanced, hive-minded Conjoiners, one led by the old war-hero, Nevil Clavain, the other by his adversary, the scary cyborg woman, Skade, race towards Resurgam to reclaim the weapons for their own, more or less, righteous purposes. And that's just scratchin' the surface! This book is an incredibly cool scifi-read with more than its share of incredibly cool - and even some quite sympathetic characters (like the tormented Clavain, and the unwilling trader-turned-heroine, Antoinette Bax). Not very 'deep' characters, mind you, but they never really were in 99% of all scifi I read, so I don't mind.
What I *do* mind, however, is that the story seems strangely unfinished by the end of it. Many of the sketchy interrelations between the characters (such as between Khouri and Volyova) are barely resolved, if at all. Too many interesting characters (such as Clavain's lost love, Galiana - and to a large extent: Bax) are just left in plot limbo.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unusual sequel June 18, 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
"Redemption Ark" is billed as a sequel to Mr. Reynolds's intriguing "Revelation Space, and in some sense it is; but it's much more than that. It brings back a few of the characters--and settings--of its predecessor, but it veers off in a totally unexpected direction. The author introduces plenty of new characters--human, machine, and combinations of the two--and new puzzles. The conflicted warrior Nevil Clavain assumes the hero's role and Skade (of the detachable head) serves as his bizarre opponent.

Clavain is intriguing: like the lonely private eyes of the hardboiled detective tradition, he doesn't always quite know what's going on; and his plans don't always work quite as designed. He battles the life-destroying Inhibitors (machine intelligences that want to "inhibit" intelligent life), the forces unleashed by Skade, and a few others as well. Spaceship captain Antoinette Bax and her mechanic and more than friend Xavier Liu, who are enlisted in Clavain's pickup army, supply the human factor. Their heads aren't detachable, and they don't deal in cosmic issues; they just want to survive. And then there's Scorpio--he's a . . . err, never mind. Best if you see for yourself.

There's plenty of great science here, too. The author, an astronomer by trade, instructs his readers on how to destroy a star, and how a starship might gain sentience of its own. And the author's technique is unorthodox, he writes as though he's saying to his audience, "look--we've all read space operas--we all know how battles go." So he pretty much shows you more of the befores and afters, and less of the action than do many authors. Some may be put off. I thought it was clever.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Good not great
Overarching world building is intriguing. Story line is occasionally strained and convoluted, with too much emphasis on forced character conflicts. Read more
Published 10 days ago by franetic
2.0 out of 5 stars Didn’t reach out to me!
I’ve read half a dozen Alastair Reynolds novels and became quite a fan of his. Chasm City and House of Suns stand out as his most remarkable achievements for me. Read more
Published 23 days ago by super antpod
5.0 out of 5 stars must read
Classic. Hard Sci - Fi with space opera genre.
Published 2 months ago by Cyaandi dove
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read.
great read. complex and entertaining from beginning to end. hard to put down once you start reading the book. set
Published 3 months ago by robert holzel
5.0 out of 5 stars awesome story. feels like a physics textbook in a ...
incredible book, awesome story.feels like a physics textbook in a novel, no bull just real hard sci fi. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Trikors
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent author in the style of the old masters (finally)
Second book after Revelation Space... excellent author in the style of the old masters (finally). Great book!
Published 5 months ago by Carmen
3.0 out of 5 stars a resounding episode.
This is an extension of the sequence comprising chasm city, revelation space. It successfully ties many of the aspects and themes together. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Gary Coughlan
5.0 out of 5 stars great series can't put it down
Love this series as soon as I finish one I'm ready for another! Can't wait to find out what happens next!
Published 6 months ago by ki33187
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely loved this book!
I have read Revelation Space & Chasm City. I enjoyed the first book better than Chasm City, but Redemption Ark was awesome. Nevil Clavain is my favorite character. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Redhead
4.0 out of 5 stars hard science fiction from an expert
Redemption Ark is set decades after Reynolds’s Revelation Space. It has been quite a while since I read Revelation Space, but a gentle recanting throughout this novel brought the... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Nigel Kirk
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More About the Author

Alastair Reynolds was born in Wales in 1966. He has a Ph.D. in astronomy. From 1991 until 2007, he lived in The Netherlands, where he was employed by The European Space Agency as an astrophysicist. He is now a full-time writer.

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