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Vortex (Spin) Hardcover – July 5, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Spin
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; First Edition edition (July 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765323427
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765323422
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.5 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #945,700 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“ I'm not a big science fiction fan, but I'll read anything with a story and a low geek factor. Wilson is a hell of a storyteller, and the geek factor in his books is zero. Like Battlestar Galactica on TV, this is SF that doesn't know it's SF…. There's plenty of imagination here, as well as character and heart.” —Stephen King on Spin

“ An astonishingly successful mélange of SF thriller, growing-up saga, tender love story, father-son conflict, ecological parable, and apocalyptic fable in prose that sings the music of the spheres.” —Publishers Weekly , starred review on Spin

Spin is many things: psychological novel, technological thriller, apocalyptic picaresque, cosmological meditation. But it is, foremost, the first major SF novel of 2005, another triumph for Robert Charles Wilson in a long string of triumphs.” —Locus

“ Of all SF writers currently alive, Robert Charles Wilson may be the best at balancing cosmic drama with human drama.” —Locus

About the Author

Born in California, ROBERT CHARLES WILSON grew up in Canada. He is the author of many acclaimed SF novels including Darwinia, Blind Lake, Julian Comstock, and the Hugo Award–winning Spin.


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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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See all 67 customer reviews
This book reminds me of why I enjoy reading all of Robert Charles Wilson's novels!
orbops
Since Vortex is the final book in a loose trilogy that started with Spin and had Axis as a middle book, I will talk a little about its setup and recurring characters.
Liviu C. Suciu
This is a very well written book that's rich with character development and has a very compelling story.
Chad S. Groen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Chris Lee Mullins on July 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I think alot of people are going to be mildly disappointed with Vortex, but for all the wrong reasons. Some people will expect to gain some closure to the events of the first novel, Spin. What ever happened to Tyler? What ever became of Jason Lawton after the events of Spin came to a close? Others will expect a galaxy tripping event novel of Spin's magnitude. I started reading Vortex with the same expectations. And while those expectations were never met, what I got instead floored me.

As always, Wilson is concerned with his characters, first and foremost. Like all of his novels, Vortex is populated by isolated, folksy people clinging to one-another amidst world-changing, fantastic events. Characterization is thinner here than most of his previous work, but unlike those other novels (and this is saying alot), Wilson is working towards something bigger here. His aim is nothing less than finding Hope and Forgiveness within Heat Death.

There are usually only two kinds of sci-fi by Mr. Wilson. The hopeful variety such as Blind Lake, The Chronoliths, Bridge of Years, Julian Comstock and Spin. Then there's the hopeless, bleak kind like Bios and Axis. Here, Wilson's created a blend of both and absolutely nails it. Vortex is his premier work, in my humble opinion. I love The Chronoliths and Bridge of Years and I think Spin is a classic sci-fi novel. But what Wilson accomplishes here is tantamount to giving a hardcore athiest a reason to be spiritual. The last 40 pages of Vortex are an immense accomplishment. Maybe he hasn't tied all of the plot pieces together between Spin, Axis and Vortex, but he **has** tied them together thematically.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Justin S on July 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First and foremost, I have to say that everything I've read of Wilson's so far has been fantastic in its own unique way. Vortex is no different.

Wilson managed, yet again, to pique my interest in this story within the first few pages. He has a great way of introducing and developing characters to be believable, as well as people the reader comes to genuinely care about.
Overall I am more than satisfied with Vortex, although I wish it could have lasted just a little bit longer! Vortex is a story in and of itself, rooted in the world of Spin and Axis. Its focus is not on completing the story of either of the two previous books. Instead it focuses on human nature, and the characters all shared an underlying sense of isolation.

There were aspects of the story that took me by surprise, but it kept me on edge and made it difficult to put down. The last section of the book is the real kicker, and Wilson orchestrates it beautifully.

If you are a fan of Wilson's work, pick up Vortex, while it may not be quite what you expect, trust me when I say it won't disappoint. If you're knew to the world of the Spin, then I urge you start form the beginning and enjoy the journey.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Learner on July 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a fine conclusion to the Spin/Axis/Vortex trilogy.

Spin is one of the finest sci fi books I've read, Axis not so much, and Vortex falls in between the two.

A definite must-read for hard sci fi lovers. The ending is satisfying and wraps things up nicely, in a mind-blowing way a la Stephen Baxter. I personally find the world-view in Wilson's books a bit bleak and depressing, but if you are a fan then definitely check out this trilogy.

Some of the settings weren't too interesting to me, but the book keeps you reading by presenting interesting main characters, along with enough mystery and suspense and some other very interesting settings. If you don't appreciate a book like this, try writing one, and you'll realize what an accomplishment this is.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Nom de Guerre on August 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I really liked Spin. I thought RCW did a great job melding some very hard (and very, very interesting) sci fi with well-developed characters, the arc of whose lives we got to follow over a long period of time. I don't think it really needed a sequel--it felt kind of self-contained. But of course, there was a sequel, and as I've seen a lot of other reviewers say, Axis is a book you have to "suffer through" if you want to get to Vortex. I found Axis hugely disappointing, and considered not reading Vortex when it came out, but then I saw all the positive reviews and figured it was worth a try. It's got its pros and its cons. I'll lay out a few.

Pros:
1) It's engaging and a quick read. Partially that's because it's broken into short chapters and has relatively large print...but it also held my attention pretty well.
2) The concept (and I don't think this is giving anything away) of a "message in a bottle" sent back in time is kind of interesting. It gives the book a more complex (I think some have said "more literary") structure than you'd expect, but I think that only really becomes apparent at the very end of the book.
3) I felt the characters were a little more defined this time than they had been in Axis--though it's been years since I read Axis, so maybe not
4) The "hard sci fi" aspects of the book were certainly more interesting and better developed than the ones we saw in Axis
5) Some of the ethical issues at stake in the book (what makes for a good society? how do we deal with guilt? what is a conscience and what are its limitations?
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