Advance praise for Judas Unchained
“For flat-out huge widescreen all-engines-at-full I-dare-you-not-to-believe-it space opera, there is no one quite like Peter F. Hamilton.”
–Richard K. Morgan, author of Altered Carbon and Market Forces
Praise for Pandora’s Star
“Should be high on everyone’s reading list . . . You won’t be able to put it down.”
–Nancy Pearl, National Public Radio
“An imaginative and stunning tale of the perfect future threatened . . . a book of epic proportions not unlike Frank Herbert’s Dune or Isaac Asimov’s Foundation trilogy.”
“Recommended . . . A large cast of characters, each with his own story, brings depth and variety to this far-future saga.”
“Complex and engaging.”
The Barnes & Noble Review
In the grand tradition of Isaac Asimov's Foundation series and Frederik Pohl's Heechee chronicles, Peter F. Hamilton's shelf-bending Commonwealth Saga (begun in 2004's Pandora's Star) comes to its breathtaking conclusion as humankind, caught between two deadly alien enemies, must finally unite or perish…
In the 24th century, the human Intersolar Commonwealth -- which stretches across hundreds of planets -- is at war. The Prime, a seemingly unstoppable predatory alien race, is systematically invading and annexing Commonwealth planets. With options quickly running out, the Commonwealth Navy decides to use "doomsday" super-weapons… But an even bigger battle is being fought behind the scenes as people like Paula Myo, an intrepid Senate Security investigator, begin to uncover a highly implausible conspiracy involving the Starflyer, an enigmatic alien species with mind-control abilities that has supposedly been secretly manipulating humankind for centuries. With chaos quickly spreading through the Commonwealth, humanity's only hope is to somehow stop the Starflyer's silent assault -- but with so many humans acting as alien agents, is it even possible?
As readers have come to expect from Hamilton (The Night's Dawn trilogy, Fallen Dragon, et al.), nothing about Judas Unchained is small; this is a jaw-dropping blockbuster of a space opera filled with weighty concepts and themes (rejuvenation therapy, wormhole technology, etc.), far-flung action, and intrigue that encompasses dozens of worlds and features innumerable alien and human characters -- and enough plot twists to satisfy even the most discerning connoisseur of epic science fiction. Looking for a super-sized saga? Come and get it. Paul Goat Allen
Set in the 24th century, bestseller Hamilton's richly satisfying space opera is less a sequel to Pandora's Star (2004) than the second half of one dauntingly complicated, wonderfully imagined novel. The diverse human Commonwealth is fighting back against the implacably hostile mass-mind Prime, while discovering that agents of another hostile alien force are sabotaging war efforts. In a multitude of subplots, Hamilton adroitly leaps from the struggles of one engaging, quirky character to another. Meanwhile, the main action expands and the super-scientific weapons become increasingly terrible. Then the story shifts focus and presents a moral question: if it's now possible to wipe out the Prime, is it permissible to commit genocide? Hamilton demonstrates that humans not only can shape huge masses of data to their own ends but also can recognize when to stop doing so. Some of the people manage to transcend their small, personal concerns-sometimes. The density of detail may slow readers down, but the distinctive characters and the plot's headlong drive will pull them along. In more ways than one, this two-part work is monumental. (Feb. 28) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
In the 24th century, the Intersolar Commonwealth spans the galaxy, yet the powerful corporations and families that determine the Commonwealth's actions still engage in daily power struggles until threats from the predatory aliens known as "the Prime" and the elusive, mind-controlling entity called Starflyer force these disparate groups to join in solidarity. This conclusion to Pandora's Star ably balances a large and varied cast of human and nonhuman characters with a complex plot filled with personal drama, political intrigue, and nonstop action. This sf dynastic thriller is recommended for most libraries. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Continuation of Hamilton's behemoth of a space opera, the 900-plus page Pandora's Star (2004, not reviewed). In the 24th century, the creation and control of stable wormholes and wormhole-driven starships make space travel simple. Humanity, colonizing the galaxy like ripples in a pond, has founded the Commonwealth and its ruling Senate; the richest, most powerful families have become Dynasties; rejuvenation and memory preservation allow for immortality; physical enhancements, implanted body shields and weapons and sensory boosters are readily available. The SI, "sentient intelligence," or self-aware computers, have formed an understanding with humans and now occupy a planet from which humanity is barred. Bradley Johansson founded the Guardians, a propaganda/terrorist group with the purpose of warning the Commonwealth about the Starflyer, an enigmatic, hostile alien who secretly controls key people in the Senate, space navy and the Dynasties. Astronomer Dudley Bose discovered and later investigated the Dyson Pair, stars somehow hidden by force fields. Suddenly, the shields vanished, releasing the Primes, implacable, insensate aliens who immediately mounted a devastating invasion of the Commonwealth. Having captured and killed Bose, the Primes read his memories and downloaded them into a mindless individual, or "motile," but even in this strange body, a revivified Bose finds it easy to escape and eventually makes his way back to the Commonwealth, where he reveals that the aliens are actually a single consciousness called MorningLightMountain, distributed through billions of bodies. What with dozens of other plot threads, all this barely hints at the vast scope and complexity of Hamilton'sconstruct. Overstuffed yet often compelling, with dazzling action sequences, equally often merely ponderous, Hamilton's huge saga adheres to space-opera tropes with trancelike devotion: worth a try, but too long by half.