Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

This is a pretty standard space opera style of a book.

A sort of parliamentary monarchy has been in power for thousands of years. The hereditary ruler is an Emperox, who apparently has the final word in all decisions. The current Emperox dies at the beginning of the book. His son has died earlier in an accident and the ruler will be the illegitimate daughter of the former ruler, who comes to the position of power fairly unprepared.

The human worlds (which all except one are space habitats, not planets) are connected with a “flow,” a fairly poorly understood natural phenomena which enables faster-than-light travel, but it appears that there will be changes coming and the flow will no longer behave like it has behaved for thousands of years. And if you think about the name of the book, you might have an idea of what will most likely happen. As all trade depends on interconnectivity and monopolies, it is very likely that most of the habitats will not survive separately. Will this be the end of humanity?

This book is, to a great degree, the setup for what will happen – but a lot happens in it also. There is action, deaths, drama, humor, and interesting personalities. The writing wasn’t the best I have seen, not as eloquent as in most of last year’s Hugo nominees, but this style of book doesn’t need the most literary style at all. I'm waiting for the next parts.

336 pp.

No comments: