From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Shortlisted for this year's Arthur C. Clarke Award, this sweeping interplanetary adventure is also a thoughtful examination of human nature. The few people remaining on feudal 23rd-century Earth are obsessed with repairing the damaged ecosystem, while the near-anarchic Outers, who fled to the solar system's outer worlds, would rather probe the atmosphere of Saturn and grow gardens in vacuum. Earth tries to rein in the Outers with a campaign of intrigue, assassination and sabotage that culminates in bloody carnage. McAuley (Cowboy Angels
) moves deftly among five well-drawn characters in the thick of the action: a cloned spy, a hotshot pilot, a ruthless scientist, a bluntly independent biological engineer and an unscrupulous diplomat. They all, in different ways, must choose between the familiar and the new, struggling to reconcile conflicting desires. This compelling tale opens vast panoramas while confronting believable people with significant choices. (Sept.)
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"the fascinating inventiveness of the bio-engineered life-forms, the intricate detail of both the societies and habitats, the complex characters all amounted to a fabulous story. This is a book that has been carefully thought out and the author displays a wealth of knowledge on subjects such as bio-remediation and terraforming. It's a tale well worth taking the time to get into and enjoying McCauley's vision of the future." SF CROWSNEST "An impressively realised tale of competing ideologies that tackles pertinent questions. This is big, clever science fiction." BBC FOCUS "The author creates a magnificent sense of gravitas and wonder as he describes conflict. The ideas expounded are genuinely fascinating and well thought out. The stage is set for war and it is beautifully handled." SCI FI NOW "Few writers conjure futures as convincingly as McAuley: his latest novel deftly combines bold characterisation, a thorough understanding of political complexity, and excellent science." -- Eric Brown THE GUARDIAN "The Quiet War is a cleverly plotted book, laced with compelling science, and McAuley's scientific background shines through." BOOKGEEK.CO.UK "It's a complex, multilayered novel, almost an SF version of 'Bleak House' or 'Bonfire of the Vanities'. It's packed with great characters, breathtaking set pieces and intriguing SF ideas." -- Dave Golder SFX "Paul McAuley's new space epic finds him deep in Ken MacLeod territory. McAuley depicts his future plausibly." PRESS ASSOCIATON "With restrained brilliance, McAuley takes that hardy SF perennial, the interplanetary war, and shows us how one might actually develop. This novel shows off many of McAuley's strengths - his solid plotting, his command of scientific theory, his sense of the complex moral and political implications of each advance." -- Matt Bielby DEATHRAY "Combines the damn-the-torpedoes, full speed ahead narrative impetus of a Peter F Hamilton, with the detailed, even meticulous attention to world-building and character development that distinguished Kim Stanley Robinson's classic Mars sequence. McAuley has always been a stylish writer, but he outdoes himself here. The Quiet War marks Paul McAuley's triumphant return to full-bore space opera." -- Paul Witcover LOCUS
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