- Series: Luna (Book 1)
- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Tor Books; 1st edition (September 22, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0765375516
- ISBN-13: 978-0765375513
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.4 x 9.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 110 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #594,190 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Luna: New Moon Hardcover – September 22, 2015
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Praise for Luna: New Moon
“McDonald's never written a bad novel, but [Luna: New Moon] is a great one.” ―Cory Doctorow
"With an action narrative driving this political commentary, Luna is actually a fantastically fun read as well as an important one. " ―Los Angeles Review of Books
“McDonald creates a complex and fascinating civilization featuring believable technology, and the characters are fully developed, with individually gripping stories.” ―Publishers Weekly, starred review
"An engaging thriller... McDonald's portrait of a cutthroat society trying to survive in the deadliest of environments also make it one of the strongest science fiction novels of the year." ―The Chicago Tribune
"It’s a great scenario, lovingly detailed, and curiously attractive despite its current of unforgiving violence." ―The Wall Street Journal
"The best moon novel I’ve seen in many years. . . McDonald’s novel has some formidable SF stingers not far beneath its densely textured surface." ―Locus
"The story is innovative and fresh...has a feel of The Godfather meets A Song of Ice and Firemeets Ender’s Game." ―Portland Book Review
Praise for Luna: Wolf Moon
"Spare, simple, elegant when he needs to be...deep and meaty when he wants to be...[Mcdonald] does his work like an artisan pulling a sculpture from stone. " ―NPR
"Each of McDonald’s viewpoint characters is made human in fascinating and occasionally disturbing detail, and the solar system of the 22nd century is wonderfully delineated." ―Publishers Weekly, starred review
"The fights and vengeance that follow are more vicious and intricate than anything in Game of Thrones, full of great acts of self-sacrifice and viciousness alike, brave cavalry charges and last stands, cowardice and avarice." ―Boing Boing
"For all the enjoyable intrigue he concocts, McDonald never lets us forget that the Moon is a frontier that basically just wants to kill us." ―Chicago Tribune
About the Author
IAN MCDONALD was born in 1960 in Manchester, England, to an Irish mother and a Scottish father. He moved with his family to Northern Ireland in 1965. He has won the Locus Award, the British Science Fiction Association Award, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. He now lives in Belfast.
Top customer reviews
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Where this book really falls short, however, is the editing. Or, perhaps, the utter lack thereof. It is replete with grammatical errors, misspellings, continuity of detail flaws, and the full run of editing mistakes. There is at least one error per page, and that is inexcusable in a mass market work from the world's foremost publisher in the genre, Tor. It reads as though it wasn't edited at all before publication. The purpose of good editing is, first and foremost, to make the words disappear, so that the reader can be transported into this world. Any error jarringly brings the reader back into the present, makes the reader think about the form rather than the content. And that is a shame, because it detracts from the experience of the story.
Mr. McDonald, I salute your storytelling, but get a better editor.
Large chunks of Luna reminded me, in a very good way, of the first Dune book. There is that tight our-family-vs-their-family paranoia, scheming and dynastic maneuvering. There is the evil nemesis equivalent to Baron Harkonnen. The knife duels. The lunar environment is quite as deadly as Dune deserts.
None of this should be thought of as a copy, Luna runs with its own ideas and has its own vibe. But Dune, part 1, was an amazing story of feudal dynastic warfare and Luna follows the same logic because that logic makes sense. Luna layers its own capitalistic/libertarian/Brazilian sensibilities onto it and channels 21st century cyberpunk. I especially liked the "familiars", basically a personal AI that seems to be pretty much a logical evolution of a smartphone/digital assistant.
Outside of family ninja-ing, the culture is richly developed, with POV characters a la GoT ("the McKenzies always pay back, three times"). Like GoT, characters are richly developed and not all will survive. There are lots of references to sex, with occasional slightly graphic scenes (btw, a fair bit of those references concern gay sex) .
One thing I did miss, slightly, is that the initial down-at-heels dystopian thread merges into the mainline fairly early on. There is a fascinating subtheme to Luna, that of oxygen and water being strictly on a use-if-you-can-pay basis and what happens to the poor who can't. But that fades when the action mostly shifts to the rich feudal families. Seems like it might pop back up in book 2.
Speaking of which, this is book 1 and while it stops at a good spot, it is not a standalone story. Really looking forward to book 2.
p.s. Ian McDonald is a really good longtime SF author, but relatively unknown. A bit like GRRM before GoT - people in the know mostly love him, but his are not the SF books you're gonna find at the airport bookstall. I don't want to pigeonhole him, but, at a guess, I think that his being from Belfast is one of the reasons he lavishes so much attention on cultural details in conflicts, certainly that has been a major theme in many of his books.
I’ve seen several reviews which label it a mixture of The Godfather, Game of Thrones and Dune, set on the Moon. I really can’t improve on that. Five predominant families (The Five Dragons) relentlessly compete for economic and political supremacy in habitats on and under the lunar surface. There are some good “hard” science fiction concepts related to the intricacies involved with life in space and on the Moon, but the gist of the novel deals with interpersonal and family dynamics.
The major characters are a part of the Brazilian Corta family and the novel is filled with Portuguese terms and cultural references, which is a little bit overdone and inconvenient. Also, this is the first book of a two part series, so don’t expect any resolution at the end of the novel.