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Stealing light by Gary Gibson
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Stealing light (2007)

by Gary Gibson

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Shoal Sequence (1)

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362830,006 (3.4)12

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Didn't work for me at all. Came across as a mix of cyberpunk and wannabe Neal Asher, and failed. ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Dec 10, 2016 |
It's a moderately hard sci-fi... not much time is spent developing relationships or on character development. In fact, so little time is spent on characterization that it is very difficult to tell most of the main male characters apart. (There is only one female character so nobody to get her mixed up with, but she isn't even very different from the males...)

There are some alien life-forms, but they aren't really explored very much, other than brief interjections when they are the stimulant to cause the humans to do something... when their interventions are needed to motivate a character, they appear, then they conveniently drop out of the story until next time they are needed.

I didn't like the story very much, nor the characters, and even the sci-fi part of it wasn't very engaging or original. And some parts seemed choppy, almost like the book was abridged - occasionally the transitions were sudden and unexpected. I won't be reading any more in this series, and it is unlikely I'd read more by this author... his writing just isn't distinct enough to choose over all the other books out there. ( )
  crazybatcow | Oct 5, 2014 |
Beholden to a star-faring alien race called The Shoal for all of it's interstellar transport, humanity finds itself divided and perpetually powerless in the galactic community of Gibson's story. When a derelict ship of unknown but ancient origin is discovered, opportunists race to exploit it's secrets for humanity's "Escape", but wrapped up in the same technology that makes transluminal travel possible is a dark secret that The Shoal is determined to preserve. The protagonist, Dakota Merrick, is a fiercely independent pilot, and works to uncover the truth while being coerced into helping an ambitious politician claim the prize. I enjoyed the final chapters of climax and plot revelation, although it seemed a long slow narrative road to get there, with frequent moments of déjà vu dialog. However, knowing this is the first part of a trilogy of stories, I am optimistic that the subsequent stories will open up onto a vaster canvas of settings and characters, and with any luck, explore the Shoal and other alien races more closely. ( )
  SciFi-Kindle | Jan 29, 2014 |
I had previously read the second in this series and decided to read the series from the start. Things that hadn't made sense previously I now understood.

Good plot. Interesting characters. Some interesting concepts, though a bit unbelievable at times. ( )
  gregandlarry | Sep 27, 2013 |
This was a pretty good beach-read sci-fi, but (at least the first volume) falls short of being a classic. Take [b:Ghost in the Shell|35870|Ghost In The Shell Volume 1 2nd Edition|Masamune Shirow|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1168649319s/35870.jpg|829946]'s Motoko Kusanagi (or a female Case, for you [b:Neuromancer|22328|Neuromancer (Sprawl Trilogy, #1)|William Gibson|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1266452942s/22328.jpg|909457] fans) and drop her in the midst of a fast-moving interstellar intrigue along the lines of David Brin's Uplift Saga or Vernor Vinge's brilliant [b:Fire Upon the Deep|77711|A Fire Upon The Deep (Zones of Thought)|Vernor Vinge|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1170900383s/77711.jpg|1253374], add in a few choice elements from Herbert's Dune and Philip José Farmer's lost classic [b:The Unreasoning Mask|845599|The Unreasoning Mask|Philip José Farmer|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1178848314s/845599.jpg|953784], and you pretty much have it.

Sadly, this was not quite as good as most of those pioneering precursors, so if you haven't yet read Vinge or Farmer, I'd have to recommend you start with the best and work back from there. Otherwise, if you want a fairly fun and occasionally interesting view on FTL fish and starfaring Libertarians, this is certainly worth a browse.

Update: the sequels make it worth it :-) [b:Nova War|6635349|Nova War|Gary Gibson|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/514RmNg15EL._SL75_.jpg|6829759] expanded the ideas, action, and characters in a number of interesting ways, and even though the concluding [b:Empire of Light|1036574|Empire of Light|David Czuchlewski|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1180407597s/1036574.jpg|1022918] lost some of that momentum, it too added some clearly cool touches. Considered end-to-end, this is an outstanding sci-fi trilogy which brings together a lot of intriguing concepts, joined by occasionally awesome action sequences, and peopled by characters that actually grow over time. Nicely done. ( )
  mzieg | Apr 1, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gibson, GaryAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gibbons, LeeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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It was like waking up and finding you'd just sleepwalked through the gates of hell.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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"In the twenty-fifth century, only the alien race known as the Shoal possess the secret of (FTL), faster-than-light travel, giving them absolute control over all trade and exploration throughout the entire galaxy. Mankind has operated within their influence for two centuries, establishing a dozen human colony worlds scattered along the conventional Shoaler trade routes. Dakota Merrick, while serving as a military pilot, has witnessed atrocities for which this alien race is responsible. Piloting a civilian cargo ship, she is currently ferrying an exploration team to a star system containing a derelict starship. From its wreckage, her passengers hope to salvage a functioning FTL drive of mysteriously non-Shoal origin. But perhaps the Shoal are not yet ready to relinquish their monopoly over a technology they acquired through ancient genocide."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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