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Pandora's Star (Commonwealth Saga) Paperback – 4 Mar 2005

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Product details

  • Paperback: 1149 pages
  • Publisher: Pan; New Edit/Cover edition (4 Mar. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330493310
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330493314
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 5 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (184 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 473,861 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Peter F. Hamilton was born in Rutland in 1960, and still lives near Rutland Water with his family. He began writing in 1987, and sold his first short story to Fear magazine in 1988. He has also been published in Interzone and the In Dreams and New Worlds anthologies, and several small-press publications. His work includes the Greg Mandel series, the Night's Dawn trilogy - which established him as Britain's bestselling writer of science fiction - and his critically acclaimed Void novels: The Dreaming Void, The Temporal Void and The Evolutionary Void. His novels and his handbook (a vital guide to the Night's Dawn trilogy) have sold almost two million copies worldwide.

Product Description


" The depth and clarity of the future Hamilton envisions is as complex and involving as they come." -- "Publishers Weekly "(starred review) " The author's expansive vision of the future combines action and intrigue on a panoramic scale." "-- Library Journal "" Astounding . . . Thrilling . . . Hamilton uses technology to excellent effect." "-- Science Fiction Age "" Shows how thought-provoking yet entertaining science fiction can be. Some of the best fiction . . . in years." "-- Midwest Book Review "" [Hamilton is] taking on one of sf's (and maybe all of literature' s) primal jobs: the creation of a world with the scale and complexity of the real one." -- "Locus "" [Hamilton is] a rare talent." "-- The Denver Post" "From the Hardcover edition." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

Britain's bestselling SF writer returns to outer space

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The star vanished from the center of the telescope's image in less time than a single human heartbeat. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

68 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Paul Gillingwater on 16 Feb. 2004
Format: Hardcover
Odd that Amazon considers it not yet published, as I just finished reading it this weekend after Amazon shipped a copy to me. Once again, Peter Hamilton has painted a broad canvas for his latest series of novels. Set in a relatively near future, but one in which wormhole travel to far stars is an everyday occurrence, where the elves are recognized as an off-world species who walk their own paths between the worlds, and a shadowy terrorist group, inspired by fears of a mysterious alien invader that no-one else believes to exist, Hamilton once again weaves dozens of individual stories into a seamless whole.
The "Pandora's Star" of the title refers to a mysterious cosmic event hundreds of light years away, beyond the reach of the wormhole technology, where two solar systems are suddenly enclosed instantly by a pair of massive force fields. This drives the major action in the book, with its usual massive space battles, detailed descriptions of alien species, complex politics and the tragedy and small triumphs of individual lives.
Hamilton has developed a star-spanning empire with new species, including his usual AI constructs and human memory archives, however this world is very different from the universe of the Neutronium Alchemist. There are the usual cliff-hangers at the end of this satisfying read, which make me certain to buy the sequel when it is released (hopefully this year!)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By D. Foley on 14 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
Engaging plot, well researched scientifically but could have easily been half the length. This and sequel would have made great single book. But far too many lengthy descriptions of towns, backgrounds, clothes !!! Also, although I'm happy with the idea of genofixing and 24th century cosmetic surgery... why oh why does every single girl have to be stunning? perfectly shaped athletic sculptured legs, pneumatic sex sessions lasting days!!
However I may complain, did read over 1000 pages in under a week so can't have been that bad! But please Mr Hamilton, if you're out there, I can't believe the future is just going to be packed with the vain, perfectly remodelled, ultra wealthy, apathetic, self-centred... oh and what's with diesel engines still around in 400 years time??
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A. Niemi on 22 April 2005
Format: Paperback
Just finished reading this book, and the last 100 pages was read in a hurry to find out how the escalating conflict between humans, the mysterious Starflyer and the Primes develops. Unfortunately, or maybe luckily, the story continues in the second and last installment, Judas Unchained. Hamilton has put together a fascinating, detailed and complex universe populated by believable people, technology and aliens. In the midst of the story the mythological Starflyer lurks. Believed to be a propaganda hoax of the guerilla group The Guardians, the Commonwealth of humans is not prepared for the encounter with the expansionist and hegemonic alien race of the Primes, an encounter which might be the result of the Starflyer's machinations. Central to the story is detective Paula Myo, who slowly starts to suspect that the Starflyer is very real. Parallell to the investigation of the Dyson Barrier containing two star systems and the following disastrous developments, Ozzie, one of the makers of the wormhole portals which are the premise of the star-spanning Commonwealth, travels the Silfen paths through mystical and strange worlds. The book spans 1000 pages and its multitude of characters can be confusing in the beginning. However, the previous reviewers have definitely missed out central parts of the plot by skipping chapters and characters. Both Myo and the Vernon family are important for the storyline, something which should be very clear at the end of the book. I eagerly look forward to the second book, Judas Unchained.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful By N. Caldecutt on 16 Feb. 2006
Format: Paperback
I am re-reading this first novel to be able to move on to the second, having forgotten some plot elements from my reading it a year ago.
To all those that say it is over long, I just say that this is space opera and there are many books out there that are over far too quickly. If you even begin to pick a book to read you must be doing so to envelope your self in a different world and storyline to that of your own life, so why should it not be all encompassing as PFH's works are. I do agree with some of the over long/boring passges, but aside from about 2 sections in this book ,the rest is necessary and adds to the allusion of space being BIG. He covers a lot of scifi basics in this but with good descriptive flair and originality, in a genre that has gone a little stale from other authors. I for one was hooked and read this again in 4 straight sessions.
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42 of 47 people found the following review helpful By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 22 Feb. 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What do you do when you have written the last truly great space opera of the 20th Century? If you are Peter F. Hamilton, the answer seems to be to try and write the first great space opera of the 21st. He may have been pipped to the post by Alastair Reynolds' Inhibitor series in that regard, but The Commonwealth Saga, starting with Pandora's Star to be concluded in Judas Unchained, is an extremely impressive piece of work. In his Night's Dawn Trilogy Hamilton populated his universe with starships swallowing the void in artificial wormholes. In Pandora's Star wormholes directly link planets together, meaning visiting another world is as simple as getting on a train. There are no starships and the Intersolar Commonwealth is a peaceful, stable society. When two stars 1200 light-years away disappear, the Commonwealth builds the first faster-than-light ship to investigate. As the title suggests, this isn't a great idea and soon the Commonwealth is under threat of annihilation. Like Night's Dawn, this new series is complex, richly populated with interesting characters and with an effortless style which pulls you in and makes you care about what's happening, a skill most hard SF authors lack (hello Gregory Benford!). The ending is shocking, the humour is impressive (especially the prologue which must rank as one of the best SF novel openings ever) and the 18-month wait for book two will be interminable. Extremely impressive.
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