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Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse 1) by James S.…

Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse 1) (edition 2011)

by James S. A. Corey

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1,034678,169 (3.87)50
Title:Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse 1)
Authors:James S. A. Corey
Info:Orbit (2011), Paperback, 592 pages
Collections:Your library, Fiction

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Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey

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Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
I really liked this book. A lot. As in, I pushed my bedtime back to read one more chapter. Snuck in reading sessions in between household chores. Ignored other tasks in favor of Leviathan Wakes... Yes, I'm tired. Sleep deprived. If only I could read rather than, oh, go to work.

Four stars or five? Such a hard call.

Is this book amazing? I don't know if I'd go that far... but I thought it was really, really good. I don't read detective fiction, but I sure loved this element in Leviathan Wakes. Miller was an interesting (flawed, thoughtful, human) character, and I enjoyed each of his chapters. Jim Holden was also good - space cowboy with an ethical flair....

I liked how these two characters played off each other. They're both brilliant and idiotic. Idealistic and jaded. Selfish and utterly selfless.

Sometimes "space operas" are hard for me. I want to like them, but often they're just... too much. Here, though, it's closer to home. Our solar system, our little piece of the sky. Just close enough to make sense to me. ( )
  ThePortPorts | Sep 24, 2014 |
Leviathan Wakes is high-drama space opera, almost a throw-back to old school science fiction, when the universe was vast and welcoming and humanity seemed poised on the brink of harnessing and exploring its mysteries. The sub-genre has fallen out of favor recently as it has become less and less likely that we will be launching any kind of space-colonization programs any time soon. This is unfortunate, because it was these kinds of stories that awakened the minds of past generations and kindled the desire to mount the kind of space programs that were undertaken in the 1960s.
The story itself also incorporates aspects of a detective drama and some elements of horror. Some ships are attacked by unknown persons for unknown reasons, which triggers a war between Mars and the Outer Planets Alliance, which is a loose organization of “Belters”, those living on space stations, ships and asteroids in the belt. Captain James Holden, one of the main POV characters of the novel, is a refugee from one of the destroyed ships. He is an idealist who leads his small crew to discover answers about who began this conflict and who keeps trying to blow them up. Detective Miller, the other POV character, is a police officer on the space station Ceres, and is investigating the link between a missing heiress who ran away from Earth to join the Outer Planets Alliance, the current interplanetary conflict.
The action is fast-paced, due to the fact that people keep trying to blow each other up. Unlike a lot of other space operas, most of the conflict is between factions of humans, instead of humanity uniting to blow up aliens, which lends a different sort of feel to the drama. However, I’m interested to find out more about the protomolecule and its ‘alien’ intelligence and mission.
The characters are rather thin and archetypal (the hard-boiled detective with a past and nothing to lose, the idealistic pretty boy ship captain with a righteous mission, the shady corporate sociopath, the female first mate who mostly acts like a dude but is just barely woman enough to become a love interest for the captain, the wise-cracking and foul-mouthed ship’s mechanic, and the focused former military genius ship’s navigator…), but there is enough dynamism and unpredictability in the characters’ actions to keep interest. The focus is not on the characters’ personal and internal journeys, it’s about the action, which is probably fine for most fans of the sub-genre.
This is the first book in a 4-volume series which also includes two additional novellas. I was sent volume 4 as part of an early review program, but after reading the first few chapters, decided I needed to be aware of the backstory. I will certainly be reading the rest of the books in this series, but I’m not sure I’d be as compelled to continue if it weren’t for this fact. ( )
  EmScape | Sep 24, 2014 |
I want to give the 3.5 stars. Not because four is too many, but because I'm not sure whether it really is as good as it seemed or if I was just jonesing really hard for solidly written space opera.

As far as the big scifi plot arc goes, this good was engaging on each page while working towards something bigger. The two protagonists may have been a wee bit archetypical, especially the noir-private-dick-in-space one. (A fedora? Literally holding his hat in his hand?!?) Still,I have no complaints about how these pieces were used by the authors to tell an interesting story that connected to larger questions about humanity, how we make choices, and what our future might be.

Like most good scifi, the book is really more about the present than the future, but what makes this one work is that the future is strange yet believable and the take-home lessons for today aren't trite. ( )
  nnschiller | Sep 18, 2014 |
I have been trying for years to find a space opera book that I could read and enjoy without feeling like I was working and suffering to get through it and this was that book.

This was very well written and plotted and I found the authors writing style to be very engaging, intelligent and approachable with characters and a universe I found easy to care about. I liked how it switched back and forth between the experiences of two distinct characters, and I liked how short each chapter was. I feel that helped with such a long book, you didn’t really have to much time to get either tired of one perspective or confused and loose track of the other.

The political situation felt very believable to me, as did the science and the technology. At no point did I feel handwavium was going on and I was able to follow and understand how the technology seemed to work.

If I had any problems with this book is that there were periods that just lagged and it felt overlong, though I honestly couldn’t say what I would have trimmed or cut out, it all seemed to fit so well. While reading I mostly found myself unwilling to stop and put it down but conversely once I did put it down I rarely felt compelled to pick it back up. But once I did I was sucked in again. Usually when I find myself distracted from a book and not feeling compelled to keep reading I tend to give up but in this case I just kept plugging away and I’m glad I did, it was well worth it and I am very curious about where this series is going in the future. ( )
  Kellswitch | Sep 15, 2014 |
Good space opera. ( )
  TadAD | Aug 21, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
James S. A. Coreyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abraham, DanielAuthorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Franck, TyAuthorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Benshoff, KirkCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dociu, DanielCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Jayné and Kat, who encourage me
to daydream about spaceships
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The Scopuli has been taken eight days ago, and Julie Mao was finally ready to be shot.
"Sure," Holden said. "I just needed to feel sorry for myself for a minute there. Let's go get killed by the mafia."
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316129089, Paperback)

Humanity has colonized the solar system - Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond - but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for - and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations - and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:48:40 -0400)

When Captain Jim Holden's ice miner stumbles across a derelict, abandoned ship, he uncovers a secret that threatens to throw the entire system into war. Attacked by a stealth ship belonging to the Mars fleet, Holden must find a way to uncover the motivesbehind the attack, stop a war and find the truth behind a vast conspiracy that threatens the entire human race.… (more)

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