- Series: Jean le Flambeur (Book 3)
- Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: Tor Books; Reprint edition (May 26, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0765381273
- ISBN-13: 978-0765381279
- Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #819,637 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Causal Angel (Jean le Flambeur) Paperback – May 26, 2015
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"A thrilling final ride...fans will walk away satisfied."―Publishers Weekly
About the Author
Born and raised in Finland, HANNU RAJANIEMI lives in Edinburgh, Scotland, where he is a founding director of a financial consultancy, ThinkTank Maths. He is the holder of several advanced degrees in mathematics and physics. Multilingual from an early age, he writes his science fiction in English. He is the author of The Quantum Thief, The Fractal Prince and The Causal Angel.
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Top Customer Reviews
Sticks to the hard-sci-fi, and made up word themes of the firsts, the largest issues being - as creative as the book still is - it doesn't add anything into the series.
The first creates a shockingly original world and characters, and possibly even more shockingly, the second novel builds on that, but adds entirely new scenery and high concepts.
This one sticks mostly to things established already in the first two, and therefore can feel a little bit more derivative.
Still, an effective and brilliant ending to the series, I was completely satisfied with the novel and the ending. I can't say that of a lot of series.
We get to see a LOT more of the Zoku/video game related clans, and fortunately I found those aspects fascinating.
If you haven't read the first, don't do yourself a disservice - go read them first. Although you could get some enjoyment out of this one, still, I'm sure, the author relies heavily on deep science, and throws his imagined concepts at you using in-world (ie: made up) terms that you are expected to eventually infer the meanings of from context.
Since I went one entire previous book with entirely the wrong idea about one of the major items discussed, I assume figuring some of these things out picking up the story at this point would be an exercise in futility!
One of the best series I've ever read. Period.
- read the first two books before tackling this one if you want to have any hope of following the story;
- don't worry, it's not you. He doesn't explain anything that is going on or any of the technology in play;
- just read and go with the flow - unless you are a post millennial, MMORPG nerd with dual PhDs in Quantum and Astrophysics, you're not going to understand most of the authors references, physics, or even how his world works.
That being said, the Quantum series is a very deep tale with a lot of layers and really, really big ideas. I did find the lack of any exposition, either about the back story or, more importantly, the technology of this post-singularity tale to be very distracting and I found myself either frantically doing offline research or just skimming through the story. The characters are great, particularly our hero Jean. The story does move along and imagery is awesome, if you can just take for granted what he is describing instead of trying to figure out how it all works.
If you happen to be a post-millennial Quantum/Astrophysicist, then enjoy!
Mieli finds herself among zoku at Saturn, Sobornost, infected by the All Defector gathers its gogols for an attack and Jean needs to infiltrate the Gun Club at Iapetus to steel his ship... Wait, are you lost? Then go find the first one, Quantum Thief, and buy it, because this vir is only for those with enough entanglement.
Book series often disappoint when a grand-scale idea or setting could not be wrapped up successfully, leaving you with a disappointing meh instead of a grand BOOM. Rajaniemi brilliantly avoids it: Causal Angel exits with a planetary-scale Gotterdammerung war, mind-twisting heists and a tender bittersweet ending. It's a Hauer's "Tears in Rain" monologue expanded into a book - a model space opera. But this is also the most clear and straightforward book out of three - if you got the ideas and vocabulary from the first two it would be as easy and enjoyable sailing as possible for a Le Flambeur series book. My only disappointment is in some unconcluded lines and unexplored opportunities (we don't meet any more Founders, etc). In the end this a perfect drug of a book - it leaves you with a huge withdrawal, longing for more, more, more.
Please don’t read this review (or the book) if you haven’t already read The Quantum Thief and The Fractal Prince. While there are no spoilers for those that have, there may be some for those that haven’t. Read them in order, you’ll be lost if you don’t.
One of the hallmarks of good writing is that we don’t simply learn about the world of the story, we inhabit it. We see the rolling grasslands of Rohan as we feel the wind from the White Mountains tousle our hair. We ride the waves in the HMS Surprise as we smell the salt tang in the air. We are swept away in the hustle and bustle of the streets of London as the Artful Dodger weaves around another set of legs to reach in another pocket. The books by Messrs. Tolkien, O’Brian and Dickens all are examples of following Anton Chekhov famous writing advice: “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” We see this as well in The Causal Angel. A brief example of a place description is in an introduction to the Gun Club Zoku headquarters: “We drink dark tea in the mahogany-panelled drawing room of the Gun Club Zoku’s copper-and-brass sky-train. It rides smoothly along the bright golden curve of the Club’s orbital ring around Iapetus, fast enough to create a cosy half a g of artificial gravity. Our view of the Saturnian moon’s surface through the large, circular viewports is spectacular. We are above the Cassini Regio, a reddish-brown birthmark that stains the white of the icy surface.” While this passage doesn’t provide enough for you to know about Zokus, let alone a Gun Club Zuko, it does provide a picture of where they gather: a bit of old-world and steampunk.
For full review, see: http://wp.me/p2XCwQ-19a