- Series: Salvation Sequence (Book 1)
- Hardcover: 576 pages
- Publisher: Del Rey (September 4, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0399178767
- ISBN-13: 978-0399178764
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.8 x 9.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 118 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Salvation: A Novel (Salvation Sequence) Hardcover – September 4, 2018
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“How far ‘space opera’ has come! The Old Masters of sci-fi would admire the scope and sweep of Salvation, but marvel even more at the amount of thought that now has to go into making futures plausible.”—The Wall Street Journal
“Dynamic, multifaceted characters, strong mind-expanding concepts, and impressive flair for language [make Salvation a] rare celestial event. . . . One of Britain’s bestselling sci-fi authors has launched an addictive new book as the initial stage of what is sure to be an intriguing new series called the Salvation Sequence.”—SyFyWire
“[A] vast, intricate sci-fi showstopper . . . The journey grips just as hard as the reveal.”—Daily Mail (U.K.)
“Peter Hamilton just keeps getting better and better with each book, more assured and more craftsmanly adroit, and more inventive. [Salvation is] a bravura performance from start to finish. . . . Hamilton is juggling chainsaws while simultaneously doing needlepoint over a shark tank. It’s a virtuoso treat, and I for one can hardly wait for Salvation Lost.”—Paul Di Filippo, Locus
“Peter F. Hamilton is known as one of the world’s greatest sci-fi writers for a reason. . . . Salvation is well worth the effort and a great introduction to some good old-fashioned space opera.”—Fantasy Book Review
“Packs a teeth-rattling wallop . . . Hamilton expertly keeps his audience coming back for more.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Exciting, wildly imaginative and quite possibly Hamilton’s best book to date.”—SFX
“Peter F. Hamilton smashes through the crazy battlefield of space opera like a giant all-conquering war-robot. His newest is loud, proud, and beyond epic. Accept no substitutes, this is the real deal. You need Salvation, my friend. Everyone needs salvation.”—Ian McDonald
“No one offers action-packed, meticulous, suspenseful, and consistent high-tech futures better than Peter Hamilton, and Salvation cranks all of that up five notches.”—David Brin
“A gripping novel from one of the modern masters, Salvation is a must-read not just for sci-fi fans but for anyone who loves a great story well told.”—Jason M. Hough
“Hamilton knows how to build a world, and he’s one of the best in the field at imagining complex societies. Just as important, though, he knows how to populate his future environments with real-seeming people whose lives extend beyond the page. Salvation is a twisty and hugely satisfying SF thriller that opens a portal on a new and exciting series.”—Alastair Reynolds
“Space-opera intrigue with a cold shock of an ending that makes the sequel a matter of urgency.”—Ken MacLeod
“The classic Hamilton cocktail of techno-thriller, far-future vision, and action adventure shaken to an intoxicating combination. This is a promising start to an ambitious new series.”—Justina Robson
About the Author
Peter F. Hamilton is the author of numerous novels, including A Night Without Stars, The Abyss Beyond Dreams, Great North Road, The Evolutionary Void, The Temporal Void, The Dreaming Void, Judas Unchained, Pandora’s Star, Misspent Youth, Fallen Dragon, and the acclaimed epic Night’s Dawn trilogy: The Reality Dysfunction, The Neutronium Alchemist, and The Naked God. He lives with his family in England.
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In many ways, this book resembles the first two Hyperion books, and in all of the best ways. There are 4 or 5 short stories (as a chapter), each telling a great story. A murder mystery, a spy thriller, assassins-vs-assassins, an idealistic society struggling with crimes they can't comprehend. So much of that is great.
There are problems though: First (and maybe I'm being politically incorrect) is the gender stuff. Various characters across the timelines are neither female nor male, but non-binary. To handle this, Hamilton uses a series of pronouns (hir, shie) that (for whatever reason) are extremely annoying to read. They would catch my eye as being spelling errors, and take me a second to process. It made those chapters just a bit less fun to read.
There's also the subplot taking place in the far-future that doesn't quite resonate (but maybe it'll get better). It started off with a brutally boring sporting event that went on way too long as an introduction to the main two characters in the future. I skipped a good 20 pages of whatever Quidditch/Rugby/Soccer sport they were playing and don't think I missed any important details.
Finally, in the main timeline for the 5 main characters, he bounces around which person we're following, and (for me) it was difficult to remember the characters until towards the end of the book (after we finished each of their short stories on how they ended up in the investigation).
But there's a lot of great stuff: What Peter F Hamilton does better than any other scifi author is take a core concept (in this case, portals), and fully explore it. It was crazy inventive to follow a murder mystery across 7 planets because some rich guy's house is really 7 different rooms, each on a different planet, connected by a portal. You can totally buy a rich person doing that. The use of the prison planet. The use of portals as a fancy garbage shoot.
So I'm going to read this series, and I'm sure it'll work out great, like all of his other epics. I'm sure I'll get used to the gender pronouns, I've learned the characters, and I'm anxious to see where the story goes.
Still the backstories are interesting and important for the main plot, and they also help to paint an interesting, convincing picture of the future, post-scarcity society (which does not feel that different from Hamilton’s Commonwealth society in his previous series). There are convincing aliens yet so far they are not as unforgettable and outright weird as Morninglightmountain in his Commonwealth books!
In addition there are chapters taking place in a very far future - the conflict that is brewing in the main storyline is still in full force AD 5000. This storyline is also compelling.
All in all a solid start, though perhaps I should have waited for book 2 before reading, because the ending is excellent and the story began to really pick up speed.
It is a bit heavy on the parallels to the Commonwealth - portals are everywhere, too (even more), and an alien race has infiltrated the human race in a near human form.
(not a spoiler as it happens very early in this book)
Some people complained about the slow background stories, but I felt they worked quite well as a set up.
The story is a little hard to describe well. A few important envoys take a journey to a distant star where an alien ship has crashed. On the way in a ground car (used to protect humankind of attack by portals), they all tell stories that are vital to the conclusion (in a little too convenient way).
Meanwhile, further into the future a group of teens are being raised to fight unnamed aliens, because humankind is being hunted by them, and is on the run. Those envoys are referred to as the Saints, in reverence.
The end is pretty great, and makes me sad that I have to wait for the next volume in the series...