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Rapture (Bel Dame Apocrypha) Paperback – 23 Oct 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 372 pages
  • Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing, Inc. (23 Oct 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781597804318
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597804318
  • ASIN: 1597804312
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 15.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,026,177 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Kameron Hurley currently hacks out a living as a marketing and advertising writer in Ohio. She's lived in Fairbanks, Alaska; Durban, South Africa; and Chicago, but grew up in and around Washington State. Her personal and professional exploits have taken her all around the world. She spent much of her roaring 20's traveling, pretending to learn how to box, and trying not to die spectacularly. Along the way, she justified her nomadic lifestyle by picking up degrees in history from the University of Alaska and the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal. Today she lives a comparatively boring life sustained by Coke Zero, Chipotle, low-carb cooking, and lots of words. She continues to work hard at not dying. Follow the fun at www.kameronhurley.com


Product Description

About the Author

Kameron Hurley currently hacks out a living as a marketing and advertising writer in Ohio. She's lived in Fairbanks, Alaska; Durban, South Africa; and Chicago, but grew up in and around Washington State. Her personal and professional exploits have taken her all around the world. She spent much of her roaring twenties traveling, pretending to learn how to box, and trying not to die spectacularly. Along the way, she justified her nomadic lifestyle by picking up degrees in history from the University of Alaska and the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal. Today she lives a comparatively boring life sustained by Coke Zero, Chipotle, low-carb cooking, and lots of words. She continues to work hard at not dying. Follow the fun at Kameronhurley.com

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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Huge ideas, hits the floor running and never leaves you afterward. Also, not for the soft-hearted : severed heads, cancers, organs traffic and a fun way of using insects, these books are the proof that women can write fast paced action sci-fi as fun as what Richard Morgan ans its Takeshi Kovacs books.
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Format: Paperback
Note: Some books which are part of a series can be read as standalone novels. However, to truly enjoy this book, I would recommend first having read its predecessors, God's War and Infidel.

The story picks up 6 years after the events of Infidel. The centuries-long war between Nasheen and Chenja is finally over -- but Nasheen is now overrun with thousands of restless and angry young men returned from the front with nowhere to go, and no way to make a living or even survive in what has long since became a matriarchal society. Unable to adjust to the massive changes in its demographics and already-dire economy, Nasheen is on the brink of civil war. When the man regarded as the young mens' leader is kidnapped, Nyx and her second-rate bounty-hunting team are hired to retrieve him before he is killed and his martyrdom lights the fuse on a rebellion ready to explode.

Once again, Nyx must scrape together a team for an impossible mission -- but she's also been saddled with a couple of Bel Dame escorts who are definitely spies and who almost certainly have their own agenda, which may not include the survival of Nyx and her associates.

This story brings back some characters who parted ways with Nyx in the previous book; their influence on events is not yet concluded. Their characters experience further evolution and gain added depth, even as they attempt to reconcile their conflicting feelings regarding Nyx while playing their own role in the events shaping their planet.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 13 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Good, but doesn't live up to Infidel's high standards 17 Oct 2012
By Earle M. Butler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Nyx is a protagonist who could've easily failed. A world-weary warrior, devastatingly competent, despised by most, and yet possessed of a certain soft side - it's been done before. Hurley pulls it off, in part by intelligently showing the effect that Nyx has on those around her. God's War is a good novel with unique, bugged out world-building, tense action, and some memorable characters. Infidel is a great novel, depicting the harrowing reunion of Nyx with her old crew, delivering more visceral violence, and asking some almost unanswerable ethical questions. Rapture is less effective than its two predecessors. Hurley has confessed that plotting is a weakness, but this is most apparent in Rapture, which sees Nyx extorted out of retirement to bring in another bounty.

The world-building has always been part of the appeal for me. Umayma, with its hostile environments, diversely grotesque insects, and constant warfare, is fascinating. Hurley has been accused of accidentally racist cultural appropriation, but I see her depiction of a centuries-long holy war between quasi-Muslims as being critical of religion in general, instead of targeting one group. As further revealed in Rapture, some nations in Umayma seem more Christian in nature, yet are just as dysfunctional. And the religious don't have a monopoly on violence - Nyx, an atheist, kills as much as anyone. Anyway, the world-building continues to shine in Rapture. As Nyx travels north, we gain access to the bizarre edges of Umayma, where blood-eating sand dominates the landscape and local potentates ride ant-driven chariots. We learn more about Umayma's history, and why it's turned out so bizarre. Wisely, Hurley continues to be economical in her approach to world-building, refusing to infodump and/or answer every question.

As previously mentioned, Rapture's plot is far from perfect. Nyx, living peacefully out in the Middle of Nowhere, is called out of retirement to track down an old employer/enemy. Her home country, Nasheen, is set to implode, now that the seemingly everlasting war is over. Personally, I'm somewhat wary of travelogues, and a large chunk of the book involves Nyx and crew trekking northward. As a character, Nyx is as good as ever, but it feels a bit as if we're treading over old ground. The handling of her relationships with others isn't really different from what we had in Infidel, where the interpersonal drama was more compelling. In particular, the handling of Nyx/Rhys will they/won't they is a little too familiar. Like in the previous books, the plot's resolution involves the revelation of political conspiracy. The problem is that we spend most of the book on a standard adventure, and when the plot winds down, all the intrigue is thrown at us in incomplete infodumps. The situation in Nasheen, bubbling on the verge of chaos with the war over and the vets home, should've been explored in greater detail throughout the novel.

Then we have Inaya, who's journeyed from meek self-loathing girl to confident, over-powered woman leading a shape-shifter's rebellion. In Rapture, there's a period where her story seems a little stagnant. She's stuck in one place, and Hurley doesn't give her anything terribly interesting to do. Inaya wants her rebellion to focus on peaceful tactics, and her enemies within the organization want to resort to violence. This is a conflict with potential, but many of Inaya's chapters are spent away from it.

Some will inevitably complain about the book's final pages, but I rather liked them. The end seemed appropriate in light of everything that had transpired. Ultimately, Rapture is an enjoyable book which continues the tradition of its predecessors. There's conflicted anti-heroes, unique world-building, politics, religion, and mystery. It's too bad that the plot is less inventive and less exciting than in God's War and Infidel, but Rapture is still a good book. Hurley's fans will enjoy it.

7/10
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Satisfactory if somewhat frustrating 21 Oct 2012
By J. Condell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Rapture is the third and final book in the Bel Dame Apocrypha. Is it everything we could have hoped for? Does it answer all of our questions? Does it close out the story of Nyx with a gigantic bang? Welllll....not exactly. But it's awfully good all the same. We find Nyx living in exile with an old mercenary buddy and her thirteen thirteen-year-olds. She's recruited for a special mission that even the bel dames can't be trusted with; rescue her old boss, Raine, from kidnappers who have taken him far north into the tractless desert. Trouble is, the last time Nyx saw Raine, she stuck a sword in him and left him for dead. And there are plenty of other complications, from the moony sixteen-year-old rich girl that follows one of her team members all the way from Ras Tieg to the red sand that comes to life when it smells blood and can strip the flesh from a body in under fifteen seconds. There's also the matter of the extremely deadly assassin on her tail, and the fifteen-foot centipedes that have this annoying habit of leaping out of sand dunes at inopportune moments. And those are just the minor problems.

Rapture suffers, oddly enough, from an overload of narrators. There are so many I had trouble keeping them straight. The many interweaving story lines do eventually come together in a huge and satisfying way, but by the time we get there we've lost one of the most interesting narrators (yes, she does show back up and surprise us, but where was she for half the book?) and another one has just stopped talking, though he continues to exist in someone else's narration. Is this fatal? No, just annoying, but annoying enough to be noticed, and anything annoying enough to be noticed is annoying enough to push me out of the story, which is also annoying. So I'm giving it a one-star deduction. But that shouldn't stop you from running right out to buy it as soon as it's released, because it's still a great read.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Strong Conclusion to an Excellent Series 14 Dec 2012
By Timothy C Allison - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
By now you should know what to expect from the Bel Dame Apocrypha. Bugs. Blood. Betrayal. Success that feels more like failure.

In Rapture, former bel dame Nyx is forced out of retirement in order to do one last job. This time, she has to retrieve a political leader & bring him back to Nasheen alive. As luck would have it, it happens to be someone she thought she had already killed. Her journey to retrieve this man takes her beyond the edges of civilization.

Hurley builds upon the strengths of her earlier novels. The world building, the characterizations, the tense action sequences are all here & even more developed than in the earlier novels. The main complaint about the earlier novels was the plotting. Here Hurley manages several seemingly unconnected storylines that ultimately join in to complete the story.

With the conclusion of the Bel Dame Apocrypha, Hurley may have written the best SF series of the new millennium. If one purpose of speculative fiction is to reflect and comment on present existence, few series tackle the problems of modern life in such an unflinching manner. Examining violence, religious intolerance, sexism and gender roles, and environmental collapse, Hurley deals with the significant issues of our time.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Good, but not the best 20 Mar 2013
By RF9928 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book feels a little off from the other two in the series. The basic story is the same with Nyx gathering a group and going to do a mission, but something just doesn't flow quite like the other two. That being said I still enjoyed it quite a lot and if you liked the first two book you should like it too.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Such a good book! 29 Jan 2013
By Patricia Knoll - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book continues the fascinating series- the world Hurley built is so interesting to me... bugs and magic, who knew? And the main character Nyx is so layered, kind of dysfunctional with a heart. Top notch writing, can't wait to find more by this author.
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