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The Departure (The Owner) Paperback – February 5, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
It is a chilling world where people are classified after their usefulness to society. Zero-assets are more or less dumped to fetch for themselves. Usefulness is of course assigned by The Commission.
This is the world where this electrifying story takes place. Saul is a man with extraordinary skills and intellect but who can't remember what the things you put on your feet and walk in are. He wakes up in a box on the verge of incineration but escape bent on revenge. We get to follow his trail through what is left of Europe and Russia as he learns the world again. In a way this reminded me of a story by A. E. Van Vogt named Tyranpolis (aka Future Glitter from 1973) where the hero instead has a scientific breakthrough in an all-seeing kind of technology while Saul here goes for the AI interfaced brain that Neal seems so fond of (See Gridlinked).
The Yin of the story is a woman called Var who probably is Saul's lost sister. She struggles at the abandoned colony on Mars where the political officer is trying to kill off all none essential people to make the resources last longer.Read more ›
I think some of the Asher fans were disappointed because they were expecting "The Departure" to be another Polity-like novel with a fresh cast of characters. Well, it wasn't that at all: Asher completely broke the mold this time to create a darkly dystopian future more reminiscent of the works of Philip K. Dick and George Orwell. I highly recommend it to all fans of hard SF and look forward to the release of the next installment in the series.
Before purchasing it, I was shocked to see the relatively low ratings (for Asher) this book received, but decided to purchase it anyway on the basis of his previous work, and because of the political slant to many of the comments. I really detest the way so many reviewers these days criticize a book because they don't happen to agree with its political overtones, or vision of the future. You're going to slam a book because the all-knowing, all-powerful government of the future turns out not to be benign? Really? I suppose you slammed Orwell's 1984 as well? The whole point of science fiction is to explore alternate future realities, not to match a particular reader's personal view of how the world should be. If you don't like a book because it's too dark, or too optimistic, just say so. If you don't like the stated politics, just say so. But I don't think it's a good idea to rate science fiction novels on the basis of whether one happens to agree with the explored vision, and I really don't like the increasing pressure for even science fiction authors to champion social welfare and big government. Is there not a place, even in science fiction, to explore the possibility that it just might not be so wonderful?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This an amazing book. Very refreshing to read a book where the hero is still an anti-hero but not in the typical way. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Joshua B
This one is the best of the owner series. If you don't like dystopian future and graphic violence, sadistic and mean people, veer away. Neal Asher doesn't pull any punches. Read morePublished 4 months ago by SM
Ups, downs, tech, action, justice and plot twists. If you are into these, you will love this book. It is 1984 with technology and a conclusion leaving you scrambling for the next... Read morePublished 5 months ago by gav
Set in the near future, this first book in Asher's The Owner trilogy allows him to vent a few views on where current political, social and technological trends may be taking our... Read morePublished 8 months ago by DaddyMc
Neal Asher stories are always great. I try to read everything he writes. Usually more than once.Published 10 months ago by Robert J. Perry
I'm a fan of SF which deals with concepts taken to the edge. This book is definitely in that region, covering a world government combining all the worst of Nazi Germany and the... Read morePublished 10 months ago by W. Lee
While I appreciated the interesting and futuristic world presented by the author, the writing style did not capture my attention. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Frank Clowes