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The risen empire by Scott Westerfeld
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The risen empire (original 2003; edition 2003)

by Scott Westerfeld

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4671122,413 (3.91)32
Member:TeaandChocolate
Title:The risen empire
Authors:Scott Westerfeld
Info:New York : Tor, 2003.
Collections:Your library
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Tags:science fiction, TBR

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The Risen Empire by Scott Westerfeld (2003)

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OMG are you fucking serious? Nothing happens in this book. NOTHING.

Okay, fine, technically, someone, who I THINK is meant to be the hero, decides not to commit ritual suicide. That's the big thing. There are, like, seventeen different Big Important Secrets raised, and none of them are resolved (the Risen Emperor's Secret, literally, that's what it's called, springs to mind).

It's a really bad sign when I am most interested in the inner life of a semi-sentient house. This doesn't QUITE fall into the category of "Man Builds Stuff And Gets Lots of Pussy" (TMDavid) but that is only because Westerfeld is visibly (legibly?) bored by stupid squishy humans and their lack of plastic and metal parts.

Why this book got all the accolades it did, I do not understand. ( )
  cricketbats | Mar 30, 2013 |
I usually love Westerfeld books, so this came as a huge surprise! I don't usually read science fiction, but I took a risk because it's Westerfeld, and I have mixed feelings.

The book is rather confusing at first. Not only does it flash between characters at lightening pace, but it also flashes between two separate time periods 10 years apart. Once I had finally settled into this style, it was really neat to see the story from different perspectives, but I'll admit it took a while to get used to.

Westerfeld doesn't disappoint when it comes to the worlds that he creates. The book is full of amazing technology and creative imagery. There are multiple societies in the story, and he manages to create believable and enjoyable technologies and belief systems for each. I was intrigued by the Rix and their following of the Compound Mind, but also drawn in by the tensions of the Imperials and Securalists. The book provides a really interesting complexity between religion and politics that surrounds the Empire.

One thing that surprised me about this book is the description of physical gore that occurs. I haven't seen this in other novels by this author, but I will admit that despite making me a bit squeamish, they added to the intensity of the story and made it feel much more authentic!

In sum, The Risen Empire is not a book for me, but still holds Westerfeld's amazing writing talent. It creates amazing worlds and technologies, and may prove to be interesting for other readers! :) ( )
  Katharine_Ann | May 31, 2012 |
I didn't enjoy this as much as I've enjoyed Westerfeld's YA books, but I think that's mostly because there's a pretty fine line about exactly how much sci-fi I like in my sci-fi. So I'm not a huge fan of Space operas. The Risen Empire took me a little while to get into, and I never felt fully engaged throughout the book. ( )
  flemmily | Mar 9, 2010 |
I liked this book, though I'm not going to run out to grab the next one. As much as I love Westerfeld's writing, being manipulated irritates me and the end of this book is a cliffhanger that neglected to answer basic questions posed in the book, questions that I felt really should have been answered. ( )
  bluesalamanders | Feb 28, 2010 |
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Epigraph
There is no greater tactical disadvantage than the presence of precious noncombatants. Civilians, historical treasures, hostages: treat them as already lost.
---Anonymous 167
Dedication
TO SLK

for years of summer
First words
The five small craft passed from shadow, emerging with the suddenness of coins thrown into sunlight.
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Disambiguation notice
The UK (Orbit, ISBN 1841493724) edition called "The Risen Empire" includes both books published in the US as "The Risen Empire" and "The Killing of Worlds" - so be sure to keep that edition with the omnibus, and the others separate.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765319985, Paperback)

From the acclaimed #1 New York Times bestselling author of Evolution’s Darling (Philip K. Dick Award special citation and a New York Times notable book) and Uglies, Pretties, and Specials, comes a sweeping epic. The Risen Empire is the first great space opera of the twenty-first century.

The undead Emperor has ruled his mighty interstellar empire of eighty human worlds for sixteen hundred years. Because he can grant a form of eternal life-after-death, creating an elite known as the Risen, his power is absolute. He and his sister, the Child Empress, who is eternally a little girl, are worshipped as living gods.

The Rix are machine-augmented humans who worship very different gods: AI compound minds of planetary size. Cool, relentless fanatics, their only goal is to propagate such AIs. They seek to end the Emperor’s prolonged rule, and supplant it with an eternal cybernetic dynasty. They begin by taking the Child Empress hostage. Captain Laurent Zai of the Imperial Frigate Lynx is tasked with her rescue.

Separated by light years, bound by an unlikely love, Zai and pacifist Senator Nara Oxham must both face the challenge of the Rix, and both will hold the fate of the empire in their hands.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:20:12 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

When the empire is challenged by a band of machine-augmented humans who seek to put their own gods in control by kidnapping the Immortal Child Empress, captain Laurent Zal of the Imperial Frigate Lynx is charged with her rescue.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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