- Series: Succession (Book 1)
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: Tor Books; Reprint edition (July 22, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0765319985
- ISBN-13: 978-0765319982
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #687,071 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Risen Empire: Book One of Succession Paperback – July 22, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Westerfeld's (Evolution's Darling) exceptionally smart and empathetic novel, the first of two in a series, confirms the buzz that space opera is one of the most exciting branches of current SF. In an interstellar empire of 80 human worlds, ruled by an emperor who lets selected humans cheat death, tensions between most humans and the resurrected elite, aka the Risen, are increasing. The Rix, a cult of cyborgs who worship compound AI minds, hunger to liberate the empire's worlds from mere human control. When a Rix raiding party captures the emperor's sister, Capt. Laurent Zai of the Imperial Navy must save her. Viewpoint rapidly shifts from character to character and from a vast perspective to an extremely small one-that of the intelligence scouts Zai sends ahead of the rescue mission, nano-machines smaller than insects. Keeping the reader constantly off-balance, Westerfeld skillfully integrates extreme technologies with human characters.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The emperor, surrounded by his elite of those chosen to become undead, has ruled for 1,600 years, and the empire has become decadent, with the gap between the living and the Risen growing apace. Then the Rix--computer-augmented humans who revere planetary AI--kidnap the child empress on her own planet, Legis XV. Not only does this threaten the emperor's great secret, it is the furthest incursion into imperial space that the Rix have yet made. Captain Laurent Zai is charged to effect the empress' rescue--a dangerous, almost impossible task. Meanwhile, the woman he loves, a senator of the Secularist Party of the living and against the Risen, is enmeshed in the political consequences of the Rix invasion and the preparation for war. It doesn't take long for the Legis XV computers to become a compound mind a la the Rix and fight for survival, too. Westerfeld manages the action impeccably, and he leaves threads of plot hanging for a grand space-opera finale in a promised sequel. Regina Schroeder
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book reminded me so much of the Ender's Game series by Orson Scott Card.Ender's Game (Ender, Book 1)
All in all it was a really good book. Now, I must acquire the next one.
And a note about the cover. Who on earth chose that cover for the MMP? It looks like one of those books an old man reads, not something from Scott Westerfeld. I felt like I needed a book cover for reading in public. I felt like I needed to tell everyone that glanced at me and the book, "No! No! This isn't a book I lifted from my Grandpa. It's really cool. It isn't a book for old men, I swear!" I felt judged because of carrying this book's cover around. (All that was said jokingly, if you cannot tell. So don't hate mail me about the virtues of not caring what other people thing. Please and thank you.)
The way Mr. Westerfeld pulls off this brevity is by using a writing technique I'm very fond of. Instead of filling the pages with monologues about How Things Work or inserting conveniently-stupid characters who ask all the right questions, the author just lets the story do its thing. The book starts with a nail-biting battle and a hostage situation. Many other sci-fi books wouldn't have gotten to that part of the story until you were already 20% finished. Westerfeld just jumps right in. The nature of political factions, of weapons, of AI-worshipping cults is not laid bare by pages of plain explanation. Instead, you get to learn about these things as you read and on more than one occasion my preconceptions about a faction or race were challenged. I'm all about sinking my teeth into a great multi-book series, but then you have books like this that offer 90% of the same epic feel at a fraction of the length.
If there's anything "bad" about this book, it would be the ending. It ends on a massive cliffhanger, so I'll recommend to any interested reader that they buy The Risen Empire as well as The Killing of Worlds at the same time so that you can jump right into Book 2.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The book is told from the point of views of many many different characters, not a single one interesting, all lacking any...Read more