I continue to make my way through the solar system, guided by the hands of James S.A. Corey, and as seen through the eyes of the crew of the Rocinante; Jim Holden, Naomi Nagata, Amos Burton, and Alex Kamal.
Nemesis Games is a bit different than the other books in the series, the main reason being that finally we get to see the story from the points of view of the four crew members. I have been wanting to read a story where we got to see their perspectives, so when I scrolled through the contents page and saw that the only names there were Holden, Nagata, Burton, and Kamal I was excited by the prospect.
My joy was shortlived though.
The story is indeed told from the crew’s various points of view, but rather than those points of view looking at the same event happening in front of the four of them, the characters are spread right across the solar system, and spend very little time together.
Okay, I thought, I can get on board with that.
Turns out I couldn’t get on board with that.
My eReader gives me a percentage mark to tell me how far I am through a book, and it wasn’t until it got to 48% through this one that the story started getting interesting. Things start to pick up from that point but then the suspension of disbelief is hurt by the plot armour of the characters. Any attempts at tension are released by a feeling of “here we go again, a main character is in an impossible situation, but I’m sure they’ll get out of it”.
I don’t know if I am hitting Expanse fatigue, or if it is starting to be a genuine issue with what has, up to here, been a great series. I’m not saying the authors need to get all Game of Thrones on the storyline, but with four more books set to be released I feel like genuine fear and uncertainty need to be injected into the story.
Don’t get me wrong, the series is great, and I highly recommend it, but I think Nemesis Games might be the weakest entry so far.
I have been racking my brains trying to recall how it was that I came across this book series, and I cannot for the life of me remember. It might have had something to do with it being made into a TV series, or it might have been mentioned on a podcast, but whatever the case, I am glad that know about it because it is great.
The series is called The Expanse and I recently completed book 1, Leviathan Wakes and got completely swept up in it. On the cover is a quote from George R. R. Martin, the creator of the A Song of Ice and Fire series, the basis for the TV show Game of Thrones, and he refers to it as a space opera, and I have to say, it is a really good description.
The series is set in the future, and Leviathan Wakes opens at a time when humans have perfected travel within the solar system and have colonised Mars and a number of moons and asteroids. Work is being done to travel beyond the solar system, but for now the billions of humans are spreading themselves around inside it. A young lady goes missing and a cop is tasked with finding her, and elsewhere the crew of an ice hauler are called to assist with a distress signal, and so begins a rollicking ride that switches between the points of view of two main characters as the story develops around them.
What I enjoyed about it is that a lot of it is believable and is based in some sort of logical setting that could probably happen in our human future. There are no laser fights, widely known galaxy, or stasis couches, no, it all makes sense and makes you feel like you are seeing a glimpse of a real future where humans have a lot figured out but are still finding their way, and not some wild fantasy – it’s more Interstellar than it is Star Trek.
It’s very well done, and I ploughed through the book at a good pace. In fact, I am already close to halfway through book two already!