Dust

Elizabeth Bear
On a broken ship orbiting a doomed sun, dwellers have grown complacent with their aging metal world. But when a serving girl frees a captive noblewoman, the old order is about to change.... Ariane, Princess of the House of Rule, was known to be fiercely cold-blooded. But severing an angel’s wings on the battlefield—even after she had surrendered—proved her completely without honor. Captive, the angel Perceval waits for Ariane not only to finish her off—but to devour her very memories and mind. Surely her gruesome death will cause war between the houses—exactly as Ariane desires. But Ariane’s plan may yet be opposed, for Perceval at once recognizes the young servant charged with her care. Rien is the lost child: her sister. Soon they will escape, hoping to stop the impending war and save both their houses. But it is a perilous journey through the crumbling hulk of a dying ship, and they do not pass unnoticed. Because at the hub of their turning world waits Jacob Dust, all that remains of God, following the vapor wisp of the angel. And he knows they will meet very soon. From the Paperback edition.

Reviews

Reviewed: 2018-02-27

This reader's personal opinion, ©2018, all rights reserved, not to be quoted, clipped or used in any way by goodreads, Google Play, amazon.com or other commercial booksellers* 


This was an uneven read for me.  Had an air of From the Legend of Biel - Mary Staton, Zelazny's Amber books and thousands of SF&F with characters in episodes exploring about a derelict ship, space stations, worlds, dimensions,  or whatever — mostly the atmosphere of familiar reads was actually wonderful.

 

One of those books better in concept to me then in the actual read.  I get the deep issues like genetic manipulation, class struggles, etc.  Not really from the book description itself which was misleading.  The description of this book the next in series makes is better:

"For hundred of years, the generation ship Jacob’s Ladder—conceived of by a religious cult as an experiment in forced evolution—has drifted derelict in orbit around a pair of dying stars."

Others likely would rate higher; I'm not fond of too much wandering about places not developed enough to become interesting and not really adding to the storyline.  Too many introduced, then moved on from.  There was a story, but much was spent just one adventure after another inside ship parts.  

 

I might have DNF'ed except reading to catch up for a group read of book #2, Chill - Elizabeth Bear  and it was an interesting concept from a favorite author.  Never really got a sense of urgency.

 

I think the POV changes were handled well.  Felt sympathetic to many characters.  Some hiw just didn't really connect to the characters, though.  Leaving me with a story that ddn't prigress quickly and irritating scant hints at how evolution was working on the world's within world's that were spaceship environs.


*©2018.  All rights reserved except permission is granted to author or publisher (except Penumbra Publishing) to reprint/quote in whole or in part. I may also have cross-posted on The Reading Room, Libib, LibraryThing, and other sites including retailers like kobo and Barnes and Noble. Posting on any site does not grant that site permission to share with any third parties or indicate release of copyright.  

 

Ratings scale used:

★★★★★ = All Time Favorite 
★★★★½ = Extraordinary Book. Really Loved It.
★★★★☆ = Loved It.
★★★½☆ = Really Liked.
★★★☆☆ = Liked.
★★½☆☆ = Liked parts; parts only okay. Would read more by author.
★★☆☆☆ = Average.   Okay. 
★½☆☆☆ = Disliked or meh? but kept reading in hopes would improve.
★☆☆☆☆ = Loathed It. Possibly DNF and a torturous read.
½☆☆☆☆ = So vile was a DNF or should have been. Cannot imagine anyone liking.  (Might also be just an "uploaded" word spew or collection that should not be dignified by calling itself a "published book." If author is going batshit crazy in the blogosphere over reviews -- I now know why they are getting bad reviews.  Or maybe author should take remedial classes for language written in until basic concepts like using sentences sink in. Is author even old enough to sign a publishing contract or do they need a legal guardian to sign for them?)

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