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The Age Atomic [Paperback]

4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Angry Robot
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857663143
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857663146
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.7 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,541,078 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Adam Christopher was born in Auckland, New Zealand, and grew up watching Pertwee-era Doctor Who and listening to The Beatles, which isn't a bad start for a child of the 80s. In 2006, Adam moved to the North West of England.

Adam's fiction has appeared in Pantechnicon, Hub, and Dark Fiction Magazine, and in 2010 he won a Sir Julius Vogel award, New Zealand's highest science fiction honour.

When not writing Adam can be found drinking tea and obsessing over superhero comics and The Cure.


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as its predecessor 20 Jun 2013
By simon
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I loved the Empire State ,,, was a wonderful gem of a book ... couldnt wait for the sequel... but for me it fell little flat , lost a lot of its film noir styling imho which for me made the first one so damn cool
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I like it 23 April 2013
I've changed my mind about this book a couple of times reading it, but for me, it came good in the end. It is worth pointing out, though, that it's a bit different from Christopher's Empire State to which it is a sequel.

Like the earlier book, Age Atomic is set in the Empire State, a "pocket universe" that is a twisted copy of 50s New York City, and in New York itself. The hero of Empire State, PI Rad Bradley, returns. He is still living in the back of his shabby office, still walking the mean streets. However, this book doesn't have the noirish bite of the previous volume - it is more straightforward SF, albeit at the softer end of SF: there are robots, there is an airship, there are, er, more robots, there is NUCLEAR FUSION... and did I mention the robots?

It is a rollercoaster of a story, and to begin with I was a little disappointed at the lack of noir, and perhaps at the (slightly) forced plot, as Rad goes into action, saving the heroine, Jennifer (I'm still not quite sure how that came about). But the story soon begins to rattle along as twin threats emerge on both side of the rift that connects the Empire State and New York. There are forces at work engaging in a kind of arms race that mirrors the one the 1950s US is part of. The plotting has many twists and turns, and although simpler than that of Empire State, it keeps the pages turning - and I think the ending is rather better. Don't, though, look for much logic in the mechanics of the interlinked worlds or of the mysterious Director - as I said, this isn't hard SF, not even firm SF. It is what is is, an enjoyable romp.

At the end, Christopher seems to be setting up for another sequel, and I look forward to that.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Adam Christopher has grown as a writer, this is the third of his books I'v read, and his prose, ideas and structure have gone from strength to strength. The Age Atomic is a perfect sequel to The Empire State, but where as the first story was contained more to one world, here Adam has spread his wings and has brought in more of events from both worlds. The characters have become more rounded, story arcs that seem to be planned to run and run were opened up, promising a healthy future for both the Origin and the Pocket.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.1 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Boom Goes the Sequel 28 Mar 2013
By Wag The Fox - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
After reading Empire State and walking away with a lukewarm feeling, I was a little hesitant about picking up its sequel, The Age Atomic. The series was so well received by others, and it's a melding of genres I enjoy, I wondered if I just wasn't in the right mood to read something like Empire State. Well, I made sure to wait until I got a hankering for some genre-mashing goodness before picking up The Age Atomic.

The book starts out with Empire State quite literally in the winter of its discontent, as the Fissure which connected the pocket universe to the original New York City (at least the alternate version Christopher has invented) is gone and Empire State is growing colder and deader by the day. Rad Bradley, the rough-and-tumble private eye who served as the hero in the first book, returns and is on the case to find out why an army of robots is being held in storage and who is responsible. At his side is the equally capable Jennifer Jones who has motives of her own in rooting out the robot menace. Meanwhile, back in New York City, a ghostly woman once known as Ellen McHale has assumed control of an organization called Atoms for Peace, designed to assess and contain the threat posed by the existence of the Empire State.

The mosaic of robots, ghosts, superheroes, mad scientists, hard-boiled detectives, airships, and good ol' fashioned fisticuffs might be a lot to take in at once. And frankly, it felt a little too muddled when done in Empire State. But with The Age Atomic, it looks like Adam Christopher really has struck a balance with the universe he's created--or I finally started smoking from the same hookah as he. The visual of a robot army laying in wait was a cool one, especially of the foreboding it offers as a similar one is constructed in the original universe. And seeing two sets of villains, one of each universe, almost working in tandem to bring about the ruin of Empire State and everyone in it created all kinds of what-if scenarios.

Rad Bradley felt like a much stronger and more fully realized character than before, and Jennifer Jones as the newcomer (in so much that I don't recall her from the first book) added a new angle to the action, especially in the second half of the story. Plenty of old face from Empire State reappear, more than one thought a goner, so if you want to really appreciate every that is happening it's best to read the first book before attempting to dive into this one, because the plot really requires a familiarity with what's already happened. And if you can read the two book back-to-back, all the better.

There's lots of room for a third book in this universe, but all the loose ends are adequately addressed in the confines of this book, so worries of cliffhangers and unresolved issues are only fodder for the epilogue that teases a brand new dilemma. As for The Age Atomic, I offer a much heartier recommendation than I did with its predecessor and I'll be looking out for more for Adam Christopher.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Eh 28 April 2013
By Hope - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Slow start. The story didn't really get going until half-way through. But it was enjoyable enough that I finished it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Age Atomic 22 Jun 2014
By wc morrison - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Christopher is an amazing blender of hightech, old school and just great story-telling. William Gibson meets Doc Savage ! Perfect
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun. Bit rushed but worth it. 30 Nov 2013
By Mattxk - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Read this a while after the first so forgot the characters and their situations but managed to pick this up ok. Loved the character of Jennifer...maybe we will know more about her soon...
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Quite as Strong as the First Book 15 Aug 2013
By Rocky Sunico - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
NOTE: I was given a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion of the novel.

This book sort of picks up the action fairly quickly - not bothering to go with the sort of slower-burn that we had followed in the first book. That may or may not be a good thing since this was in fact a sequel so I suppose we didn't need to learn all that much about the Empire State this time around - just the need to move forward with the plot and figure out what the heck was going on. I did kind of miss this being a bit more like a detective story though - as much as there were still mysteries to be solved, we just sort of found out the answers instead of feeling the satisfaction of various clues coming together for a greater conclusion.

I think the book could have used a bit more development work - a bit more discussion about how the Empire State itself had changed after the events of the first book. I kind of wanted to better understand how life had initially continued on once the corruption in the city had been resolved and Wartime declared officially over. What made the Enemy stop sending their own forces against the Empire State? If Prohibition was over, where were all the resources for the additional goods coming in? Was regular trade happening with New York before the Fissure closed up or something? There were just so many unanswered questions that I feel a whole book could probably fit in-between the two written thus far. And that sort of annoyed me, but in a good way.

The core adventure this time around centered on robots on both sides of the fissure - hence the cover of the book. I'll leave it to you as a reader to find out just what robots have to do with this story, but it still made sense given the role robots played in the Empire State during Wartime. The nature of robots in this universe is always a little disturbing and Christopher made sure to build on that concept within this sequel.

But I did enjoy the story for the most part. It had a good dose of action and adventure to go all around, nefarious plots and complicated ploys to maneuver forces on both sides of the Fissure. And how one event links to another did make for interesting reading as well, although I think the ending could have used a bit more work. Things sort of got wrapped up a tad forcibly, in my opinion, and naturally a lot of this parallel universe business immediately had a lot of echoes with stories like that of TV's Fringe.

The Age Atomic is a great follow-up to Empire State, but not quite as strong. It's still a pretty good book that has a lot of high points, but be sure to read the first one before diving into this one given the lack of explicit world-building this time around.
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