Nemesis Games by James S.A. Corey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Shit. I said everything I wanted to say in my old review. It's still a stirring adventure for each of the characters as they split up and eventually came back together.
Truly a character-driven novel this time, though. Not much alien stuff. Just humans doing the god-awful crap they do. :)
This was one hell of an easy read. I got sucked back into the characters as if I had never left and was delighted to see that they shone brighter than in several of the previous novels. They're back in the Solar System. The main crew got a hell of a lot of face time. If it isn't enough that this qualifies as a wonderful character-driven adventure, then rest assured. It's still all about the big ideas, big events, and big space.
The pacing is near perfect on this one. I never once had to force myself to pay closer attention. Indeed, the revelations kept everything pumping. Every character is evolving, growing older or wiser. The novel has struck a perfect balance in this. Hell, I'm just tickled pink that it turned out to be a better novel than Cibola Burn. There weren't any moments where I wondered why we were spending time on one thing or another instead of the big action. The threads in this novel were woven so nicely that I swear I saw a bow. What was inside, you ask? Oh, Bobby is back! And don't forget Fred or our absolute favorite foul-mouthed politician. It was a perfect gift for me, the reader, and I've got to shout out to Daniel and Ty: "Thank you!"
This is fifth novel in the Expanse is so very worthy, I have to say it easily nudges out the third and forth novels in being my favorites, but it does somewhat lack in the sense of grand mystery that those had developed. I mean the grand scope of mystery, the big scary objects, or the ominous death of so many intelligent species. Instead, we've got very human tragedy and a very interesting power grab in the local system, not to mention mysteries closer to home for our main characters which feel more important, somehow, than the mind-blowing ones.
I can easily say this satisfied my deep craving for truly excellent space opera. So many tend to have holes that that suck my attention into the void, requiring me to spend a ton of reaction mass to get back on track. It's a delight to have one that shows me so much love.
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