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Crystal Rain by Tobias S. Buckell
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Crystal Rain (original 2006; edition 2006)

by Tobias S. Buckell

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6353523,002 (3.55)42
Member:CharlesP
Title:Crystal Rain
Authors:Tobias S. Buckell
Info:Tor Books (2006), Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:To read
Rating:
Tags:FromShelfari

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Crystal Rain by Tobias S. Buckell (2006)

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» See also 42 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 35 (next | show all)
Rich, unusual worldbuilding and a great sense of menace driving the adventure. ( )
  eilonwy_anne | Mar 9, 2019 |
The Azteca have finally found a way across the Wicked High Mountains and are descending upon Capital City, slaughtering all the Nanagadans that get in their way. The young mayor of Capital City has plans, but all they will do is delay the Azteca. The Nanagandans' only hope is that the explorer John deBrun can find a mythical artifact from long ago, the Ma Wi Jung. Helping John is the bioengineered (to be AWESOME) Pepper, while an Azteca spy skulks undetected in hopes of hindering their quest.

The writing is simple and clunky, and I had a hard time with the Caribbean style dialog. (ex: "Only one airship now. But just you wait. Soon it go be another. And when they see where we is, they go build a boat to come for we.") That said, I adore Pepper, who is fearsome and gruesome and unstoppable, and this book delivers some great moments from him as well as a hint at who he was before. Best of all is the world-building. A colony that loses its tech over time and comes to revere its technologically advanced forefathers as gods is nothing new, but the alien spins Buckell adds to the story are scary and fascinating. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
An entertaining, quick-moving sci-fi adventure.
John deBrun suffers from amnesia. He has no idea where he's from or who he used to be. He was found by the inhabitants of Nanagada, descendants of Caribbean emigrants, and taken into their community. After time, he has made a rewarding life for himself, married a woman that he loves and had a son.

Do you think this peace and happiness is going to last? (All together now: "NO!")

Soon enough, it's discovered that the brutal and warlike Azteca have tunneled under the mountain range separating their territory from those of the Caribbean-style people. Invasion is imminent.

And suddenly, everyone seems to be interested in John deBrun. An Aztec double-agent wants to kidnap and torture him. Alien 'gods' known as Loa and Teotl, also imply that he's important. And then, the cyber-soldier Pepper shows up, claiming that he knows deBrun from a time back in his forgotten past.

Chaos is about to erupt...

OK, I can suspend disbelief to accept that Caribbean emigrants might preserve elements of their culture, as described here, for hundreds of years. However, there's absolutely no explanation provided here as to where the Aztecs (neo-Aztecs?) came from. That made me go "Hmm." (I felt the same way when reading the sequel to this book, Ragamuffin, which I accidentally read first).
The amnesia plot element is a bit played out.

Still, it's a fun and enjoyable story.


( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
Confusingly either an alternate Caribbean/Aztec set sci-fi or a steampunk militia fantasy without much world building. It tends to drift. Not written well and whilst I appreciate the dialogue was supposed to make you feel like they couldn't speak "English" well, it was just jarring and unnecessary. Didn't get that far, but apparently John's hand grows back once he regains his memory? Like a man with one hand can ever have a full memory? Or a full life? ( )
  Xleptodactylous | Apr 7, 2015 |
I passed on this book and its sequel, Ragamuffin, the first time I saw them. But recently I picked up the third book of the series, Sly Mongoose and really liked it. So I went back to read the first two books. The story isn't real original, I've read SF stories before about lost colonies. There is a lot of interesting back story in this, like the old-fathers who originally settled the planet and the war they fought to protect their new world from aliens. And the Caribbean culture of the people added a nice twist (although their dialog took some getting used to). I recommend this and both it's sequels. Read them in order though. ( )
  capewood | Dec 8, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tobias S. Buckellprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lockwood, ToddCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765350904, Paperback)

Long ago, so the stories say, the old-fathers came to Nanagada through a worm's hole in the sky. Looking for a new world to call their own, they brought with them a rich mélange of cultures, religions, and dialects from a far-off planet called Earth. Mighty were the old-fathers, with the power to shape the world to their liking---but that was many generations ago, and what was once known has long been lost. Steamboats and gas-filled blimps now traverse the planet, where people once looked up to see great silver cities in the sky.
 
Like his world, John deBrun has forgotten more than he remembers. Twenty-seven years ago, he washed up onto the shore of Nanagada with no memory of his past. Although he has made a new life for himself among the peaceful islanders, his soul remains haunted by unanswered questions about his own identity.
 
These mysteries take on new urgency when the fearsome Azteca storm over the Wicked High Mountains in search of fresh blood and hearts to feed their cruel, inhuman gods. Nanagada's only hope lies in a mythical artifact, the Ma Wi Jung, said to be hidden somewhere in the frozen north. And only John deBrun knows the device's secrets, even if he can't remember why or how!
 
Crystal Rain is the much-anticipated debut novel by one of science fiction's newest and most promising talents.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:21 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Long ago, so the stories say, the old-fathers came to Nanagada through a worm's hole in the sky. Looking for a new world to call their own, they brought with them a rich melange of cultures, religions, and dialects from a far-off planet called Earth. Mighty were the old-fathers, with the power to shape the world to their liking---but that was many generations ago, and what was once known has long been lost. Steamboats and gas-filled blimps now traverse the planet, where people once looked up to see great silver cities in the sky. Like his world, John deBrun has forgotten more than he remembers. Twenty-seven years ago, he washed up onto the shore of Nanagada with no memory of his past. Although he has made a new life for himself among the peaceful islanders, his soul remains haunted by unanswered questions about his own identity.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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