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The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

The Collapsing Empire

by John Scalzi

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Interdependency (1)

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8665715,508 (3.9)69
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    Behind the Throne by K. B. Wagers (reading_fox)
    reading_fox: Both feature unexpected Empresses in a hard SF universe.

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» See also 69 mentions

English (56)  German (1)  All languages (57)
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
LOVED IT! Such a fun book. I love all of the world building (particularly the politics). Loved all of the characters (even the ones I hated). Kiva is my queen. Cannot wait for the next book in the series!!!
  tntbeckyford | Feb 16, 2019 |
More than a touch of Dune in this - powerful Houses, titled nobility, the importance of trade dominance, all that is missing is spice and sandworms. Oh, and Dune's ponderous mythology. This is a consciously modern piece of hard sci-fi, gritty, racy and expletive-laden. In the far future, an assortment of human colonies are connected by the Flow, a hyper-dimensional tunnel that connects planets who would otherwise be unreachable in normal space. However, a scientist has discovered that the Flow is collapsing, and soon all the planets of the Empire will be utterly cut off from one another. Three people - The newly crowned Emperox, the foul-mouthed, highly sexed Kiva Lagos and Marc Claremont, son of the scientist who has discovered the disaster about to happen, have to face the machinations of the greedy and corrupt House of Nohamapetan in order to prepare humanity as best that they can for the inevitable collapse of the Empire. This was a great read, fast-moving, clever and happily lightweight. I'm looking forward to the next episode in the series. ( )
  drmaf | Feb 12, 2019 |
There’s one really grating thing about this book - the narration and most of the characters are relentlessly flippant. It sort of kills suspension of disbelief when characters seem more amused than stressed by life-threatening situations. The novel seems obsessed with the idea of “cutting the shit” (indeed the exact words “cut the shit” appear verbatim six times): again and again and again we’re treated to scenes in which some sort of disingenuous conversation is cut short by one character gleefully declaring their desire to just get on with it. One wonders how the empire manages to maintain so many formal protocols when a disdain for formality seems to be the defining character quality of most of its inhabitants.

Underwhelming dialogue notwithstanding, it’s a fun and quick read, with at least one interesting idea - the “memory room” in which the emperox has full, unfiltered access to all the thoughts of all previous emperoxs. ( )
  brokensandals | Feb 7, 2019 |
Faster than light time travel being impossible, humans now travel through the universe using the Flow, a sort-of space current flowing between worlds. Without the Flow, the worlds would be isolated from each other, much like Earth was lost many years ago. The Interdependency was established as the government, and the emperox rules peacefully over all worlds. However, as Cardenia Wu-Patrick takes over as the new emperox from her dying father, she learns what Marce Claremont and his father, the Count of Claremont, have been researching for years at the behest of the old emperox - the Flow is failing. The Nohamapetan clan seems to have learned this as well and are scrambling to take advantage.

I love everything I’ve read by John Scalzi, and this book is no exception. He builds very inventive worlds and creates intriguing characters. His books are eminently readable; I feel as though I am flowing effortlessly along with the story. Scalzi’s writing is better with each book that I read. After finishing The Collapsing Empire, I immediately purchased the second book of the series, The Consuming Fire. The book is packed with strong female characters. My only criticism is that I felt the book ended somewhat abruptly, but I would guess that the sequel will be tied closely to the ending.

The Collapsing Empire was nominated for the 2018 Hugo and won the 2018 Locus SF award. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves SciFi, especially space opera. ( )
  rretzler | Jan 14, 2019 |
This is classical hard science fiction, with all that entails; faster than light travel between the stars, colonized planets in economic and political rivalry with one another, a galactic Empire with revolutionary elements in play.

There is really nothing that separates this work from hundreds just like it, in fact, it was so similar to the framework of Dune as to be almost derivative. Galactic Empire, guild merchants which control travel between planets, a mechanism for faster than light travel (the Flow vs. folding space), feudal “houses” (with Dukes and Counts) that control the various planets and trade sectors. If they “folded” space as opposed to utilizing the Flow, it could actually fit almost seamlessly into the Dune series of novels.

It is not a bad story, but in no way original. Of course, originality is hard to find in science fiction. If you are looking for perfectly acceptable, run of the mill science fiction, you could do worse. Lots of strong, female characters (in fact, almost exclusively strong, female characters) and an abundance of sex and profanity. This is book one of a series, so don’t expect any resolution. ( )
  santhony | Jan 14, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
Scalzi continues to be almost insufferably good at his brand of fun but think-y sci-fi adventure.

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Scalzi, JohnAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
SparthCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheaton, WilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Tom Doherty, specifically, and everyone at Tor generally. Thanks for believing in me. Here's to the next decade. (At least.)
First words
The mutineers would have gotten away with it, too, if it weren't for the collapse of the Flow.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Canonical DDC/MDS

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Faster than light travel is impossible--until the discovery of The Flow, an extradimensional field available at certain points in space-time, which can take us to other planets around other stars. Riding The Flow, humanity spreads to innumerable other worlds. Earth is forgotten. A new empire arises, the Interdependency, based on the doctrine that no one human outpost can survive without the others. It's a hedge against interstellar war--and, for the empire's rulers, a system of control. But when it's discovered that the entire Flow is moving, possibly separating all human worlds from one another forever, a scientist, a starship captain, and the emperox of the Interdependency must race to find out what can be salvaged from an empire on the brink of collapse. --… (more)

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