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[[ Download E-pub ]] ð Succession » Club Review Because the immortal Emperor can grant a form of eternal life after death, creating an elite known as the Risen, he has ruled the eighty worlds unchallenged for sixteen hundred years He and his sister, the Child Empress forever a little girl are worshipped as living gods No one can touch them no one but the Rix, machine augmented humans who worship very different gods AI compound minds encompassing entire planets The Rix are cool, relentless fanatics, and their only goal is to propagate such AIs throughout the galaxy They seek to end, by any means necessary, the Emperor s prolonged rule and supplant it with a cybernetic dynasty of their own They begin by assaulting the Imperial Palace on Legis XV and taking hostage the Child Empress Tasked with her rescue, brilliant tactician Captain Laurent Zai of the Imperial Frigate Lynx is well aware that failure constitutes an Error of Blood Yet when the mission goes badly wrong, he declines to commit ritual suicide, and instead takes on a suicide mission stopping the next thrust of the Rix invasion with just his own ship While combat rages among the stars, the newborn Rix compound mind expands through the global net on Legis XV and works to break the Imperial blockade And light years away, Captain Zai s lover, Senator Nara Oxham, suspects that the mind has discovered the Emperor s hidden weakness a dangerous secret for which he is willing to countenance the killing of worlds Includes The Risen Empire and The Killing of Worlds Jacket art by Stephan Martiniere Wow This author s imagination is staggering in its expanse A fun ride Guess I ll have to read the second title in the series. This book selected for review via poll The Risen Empire falls squarely within the wave of intelligent space opera contrasting with old fashioned Star Wars style science fantasy and stuff blowing up military sci fi that has been around for the last 2 3 decades See for example the works of Iain M Banks, Vernor Vinge, Alasdair Reynolds, Stephen Baxter etc Setting wise it blends dystopian cyberpunk themes a corrupt and oppressive regime with a dark secret, destructive ideological conflic This book selected for review via poll The Risen Empire falls squarely within the wave of intelligent space opera contrasting with old fashioned Star Wars style science fantasy and stuff blowing up military sci fi that has been around for the last 2 3 decades See for example the works of Iain M Banks, Vernor Vinge, Alasdair Reynolds, Stephen Baxter etc Setting wise it blends dystopian cyberpunk themes a corrupt and oppressive regime with a dark secret, destructive ideological conflicts, class divisions, artificial intelligence with elements that wouldn t be out of place in pulpier,old fashioned space opera undeath like immortality, mind reading, a soldier with near bullet time reflexes, forbidden romance or hi tech military sci fi These different elements are blended together in a way which like the recent comics series Saga, the first volume of which I recently reviewed avoids dissonance and promotes originality For example, the titular Empire superficially seems like a traditional anachronistic space opera setting, drawing on elements of the Roman Empire However, it breaks with a lot of the usual Feudalism In Space cliches, in particular lacking a titled nobility the resurrected citizens form a privileged class, but not one that resembles traditional fantasy historical nobles and with a Senate that resembles modern day democracies flavoured with advanced technology and clearly haspower than the Roman Senate did under the emperors.I recall reading a blog post where the author makes this clear, stating that he wanted to write cool Star Wars style space battles but with arealistic and thoughtful take on the technology involved On this front, the novel certainly delivers, presenting imaginative and well thought out technological ideas like microscopic remote piloted drones, starships that separate into widely spread components for battle, and artificial intelligence emerging from a planet s data network However, the technology doesn t dominate the plot, which is very character focused by space opera standards, dealing with the trauma and ambiguities of war and with understanding and romance across political divides and battle lines again, like Saga , with an unusual and diverse cast of characters.The characters, like the setting and technology, avoid traditional tropes or shift them into new forms Thus, for example, the dashing, decorated starship captain suffers from terrible injuries and post traumatic stress, the mind reading character finds itof a curse than a blessing, the genius character has a form of autism and is stuck as a menial worker, and the emergent artificial intelligence isn t homicidal or megalomaniacal Crucially, the narrative finds a lot of time for moments of genuine human emotion and warmth among the politics, hi tech excitement and explosions This authenticity allows the book to get away with an overall quite idealistic, optimistic outlook that shines through and doesn t jar with the darker andcynical elements.This is a little known general audience book by well known young adult author Scott Westerfeld I rate some of Westerfeld s YA books very highly in that category, particularly the Uglies series, which is probably the best I ve read out of the recent glut of dystopian fiction However, I rate The Risen Empire as easily the best of Westerfeld s books, which may simply be down to my falling outside the YA demographic but may also be because Westerfeld s imagination is freed from the perceived or actual limitations of writing for a younger audience It s disappointing that this great sci fi work isn t better known and promoted among fans of his YA work, and that he seems perhaps for financial reasons to be focusing on writing new YA fiction rather than general audience works like this obviously this may not be disappointing to fans of his other work Weltensturm vom f r mich unbekannten Autoren Scott Westerfeld ist eine beraus positive berraschung Aus der Zusammenfassung wird gar nicht richtig klar, auf was man sich als Leser einl sst aber das triff wohl auf die meisten Klappentexte zu Das Buch ist spannend geschrieben mit viel Liebe zum Detail Trotz seiner mehr als 800 Seiten habe ich es in einem Rutsch gelesen Etwas st rend fand ich zu Beginn die schnellen Wechsel zwischen den Kapiteln Ich hoffe, dieses Stilmittel setzt sich nicht Weltensturm vom f r mich unbekannten Autoren Scott Westerfeld ist eine beraus positive berraschung Aus der Zusammenfassung wird gar nicht richtig klar, auf was man sich als Leser einl sst aber das triff wohl auf die meisten Klappentexte zu Das Buch ist spannend geschrieben mit viel Liebe zum Detail Trotz seiner mehr als 800 Seiten habe ich es in einem Rutsch gelesen Etwas st rend fand ich zu Beginn die schnellen Wechsel zwischen den Kapiteln Ich hoffe, dieses Stilmittel setzt sich nicht durch In Weltensturm tut es nicht wirklich weh, aber das kann schnell nach hinten losgehen Insgesamt gibt es drei Schaupl tze Am Rande des Kaiserreiches k mpft Zai mit dem neuarigen Raumschiff Luchs gegen das Raumschiff der einfallenden Rix Auf dem Planeten Legis XV versucht die KI Alexander, den Planten zu bernehmen Und schlie lich tobt auf dem Heimatplaneten ein Machtkampf zwischen dem Kaiser und dem Senat Verbunden werden die Handlungen durch ein gemeinsames Element der Liebe Insgesamt klappt das ganz gut, wenn es auch an manchen Stellen ins Kitschige abgleitet.Von einem SF Roman erwartet man Ideen und von denen gibt es einige Sie sind nicht unbedingt neu, aber die Art und Weise, wie die Effekte beschrieben werden, wei zu begeistern Es gibt z.B verschiedene Arten von Gravitation, die f r Antigravfelder benutzt wird Man erf hrt nur grob wie sie funktionieren, daf r werden eindrucksvolle Beispiele genannt und mit den Gravitationsgeistern wird ein unangenehmer Nebeneffekt beschrieben, den wohl keiner gerne erleben m chte hnlich verh lt es sich mit den KI Drohnen Dabei handelt es sich um intelligente Miniaturdrohnen, die eine zerst rerische Wirkung auf Raumschiffe haben.Der H hepunkt war f r mich die Raumschlacht in der Mitte des Buches, die sich wohltuend von den blichen K mpfen absetzt Ein klassisches Duell mit Zeit f r Planung und fiesen Tricks und vielen Details Wow Der Hintergrund der Geschichte ist durchdacht, konnte mich aber nicht in ihren Bann ziehen Dazu erf hrt man zu wenig ber die Bewohner der 80 Welten, um st rkere Emotionen entwickeln zu k nnen Auf der anderen Seite ist es nicht unbedingt notwendig, die ganzen Informationen berhaupt zu bekommen Lieber nur einen Ausschnitt pr sentieren und die Geschichte f r sich wirken lassen.Kommen wir zu einem der Schwachpunkte der Geschichte den Charakteren Scott Westerfeld gibt sich gro e M he um ihnen Leben einzuhauchen, letzten Endes konnten sie mich nicht berzeugen Das f hrt zu einigen kleineren berraschungen, z.B was die Rix f r Gef hle entwickeln k nnen oder inwieweit sie sich ver ndern k nnen Interessant geraten ist die KI Alexander ein passender Name Zusammen mit der Rix hrd bildet er ein nahezu unschlagbares Team.Gl cklicherweise hat man wenig Gelegenheit, ber die schwachen Charaktere weiter zu gr beln Interessant sind dabei besonders einige Themen, die eine Br cke zu uns schlagen Es gibt z.B einen Konflikt zwischen den Lebenden und den Toten ehemals Lebende, die durch einen Symbianten kein Schreibfehler am Leben erhalten werden , der mich stark an die Diskussionen zwischen Jugend vs Senioren erinnert hat Die alten M nner in der Politik bestimmen die Zukunft der Jugend Spannend ist auch das Thema, wie gro der Genpool sein muss um das berleben einer Rasse zu sichern Erkauft man sich mit dem Ausmerzen von Krankheiten vielleicht eine mangelnde Anpassungsf higkeit und muss sp ter einen gro en Preis daf r zahlen Wobei ich nicht glaube, dass f r einen stabilen Genpool Millionen von Menschen notwendig sein m ssen, wie Scott Westerfeld meint.Das Fehlen von wirklich neuen Ideen und die etwas stereotypen Charaktere dr cken auf die Gesamtwertung, aber allein schon wegen der Raumschlacht in der Mitte lohnt sich das Lesen Man wird spannend unterhalten und hat eine wunderbare Zeit Wer mal wieder unschl ssig vor dem B cherregal stehen sollte, braucht nicht lange zu berlegen und kann beruhigt zu Weltensturm greifen Some books take a while to really get going, and some books throw you into the action from page one This book was one of the latter It opens with a thrilling space battle with a completely unexpected twist, and had me completely hooked from the get go.This is hard science fiction as opposed to the science fantasy from authors such as Jack Vance , with space travel at percentage of lightspeed, advanced technologies that sound scientific and plausible, and a suitably advanced culture that is co Some books take a while to really get going, and some books throw you into the action from page one This book was one of the latter It opens with a thrilling space battle with a completely unexpected twist, and had me completely hooked from the get go.This is hard science fiction as opposed to the science fantasy from authors such as Jack Vance , with space travel at percentage of lightspeed, advanced technologies that sound scientific and plausible, and a suitably advanced culture that is completely believable One of the coolest technologies is the synesthetic implant that everyone receives as standard, and which allows data to be viewed through the other senses a human possesses Throughout the novel people see the real world in primary sight and have overlays in secondary and sometimes even tertiary sight, and it sounds pretty awesome I also loved how there are four types of gravity hard, easy, wicked and lovely You ll have to read the book for explanations of how they all work.At the centre of the novel is the Empire of eighty worlds, ruled by the Risen Emperor and his sister, the Child Empress The Emperor has done the impossible he has found a way to conquer death and grant eternal life by means of a symbiotic implant, though this implant only works on dead people This gift of immortality is controlled by the Emperor, and he has had absolute power over the eighty worlds for sixteen hundred years.In contrast to this are the Rix, enhanced humans who worship their planetary compound minds and wish to seed these AIs on every inhabited planet in the universe Caught in the middle is Captain Laurent Zai, who is tasked with rescuing the Empress when she is taken hostage by the Rix.This book has so much going for it that it s hard to pin it all down There is a thrilling space battle that takes up a big chunk of the book and at times takes place in microseconds, yet never gets boring There is a good dose of politics, contrasting the unbending traditionalism of the Risen and their grey worlds with the pinks those who believe that to be immortal is to be stagnant, and who would take the power away from the Risen There is romance, in the form of the relationship between Zai and his lover Nara Oxham, a Senator from one of the pink planets It introduces the concept of the Time Thief, the effect that the military experiences due to travelling throughout the universe at relativistic speeds In essence this means that if they spend two years travelling at, say, ten percent of the speed of light, ten years may have passed in absolute time Ten years relative to them could be fifty years absolute, so any family left at home will age and die long before they do.I usually prefer to read fantasy over sci fi, but when I do grab a sci fi novel, this is the kind of novel that does it for me Gripping from start to finish, and I can t wait to read the conclusion.More reviews at Silk Screen Views