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54 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This certainly lays down the gauntlet for other sci-fi writers.
Hamilton continues his story of humanity in the 36th century, leading his cast of bio-engineered characters across vividly imagined worlds into impossible situations that even their advanced technology and knowledge cannot protect them from.

* Plot
The book begins with the Commonwealth facing dual external threats from an invading alien fleet and an...
Published on 5 Oct 2008 by Me

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The flagging void
I am a fan of the Void trilogy, and if you are considering this second volume, so probably are you. It is, however, the weakest of the three. The plot, notably around Araminta, slows down notably, and the book is used to introduce characters that only come into their own in the next volume. There is probably too much on Edeard and Makkathran, not all of it action-packed...
Published 22 months ago by reader 451


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54 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This certainly lays down the gauntlet for other sci-fi writers., 5 Oct 2008
Hamilton continues his story of humanity in the 36th century, leading his cast of bio-engineered characters across vividly imagined worlds into impossible situations that even their advanced technology and knowledge cannot protect them from.

* Plot
The book begins with the Commonwealth facing dual external threats from an invading alien fleet and an expansion of the mysterious sun-eating "Void". Internally various factions are becoming increasingly brazen in their struggle to to advance their belief systems and gain control of people who can communicate with those living in the Void. However, the bulk of this book concentrates on recounting Inigo's dreams of life in the Void, a fantasy tale following the adventures of Edeard and his friends as they struggle against the gangs of Makkathran.

* Style
As usual, Hamilton's skill with imaginative composition of the sci-fi elements is excellent. The fantasy element is also very good. The split between these two elements is good insofar as the Void storyline could stand on its own, but it does limit coverage of the rest of the characters (there are about ten squeezed into a third of the book).

There are occasionally small spoilers which foreshadow events in Edeard's storyline. In some ways these enhance the suspense, in others they spoil it a bit and make some of the twists less shocking. However, the twists were still enjoyable with various clues about the factions' agendas slowly woven together... to leave us waiting for the next book.

I was not expecting this to extend to a trilogy and I'm a bit puzzled (in a good way) about how he's going to find enough material for a same-sized third book. On the other hand, this does seem to take the story away from a worrying deus ex machina ending, which is good (the mysterious Commonwealth "deterrent fleet" is surely a nod to critics).

* Characterisation
This is well done, and he has certainly taken criticism over certain elements to heart. Most of the main cast are well fleshed out, the author using our knowledge of them from Judas Unchained to avoid starting over. However, the imbalance in coverage hurts some of the secondary characters and some of them don't come across particularly well. I suspect the spot light will focus on them more in the next instalment.

Overall this is an enjoyable page-turner. Inventive, stylishly written, and even emotive (I still can't believe she did that to him!).
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant, 16 Nov 2008
By 
Adam Watson "hanuda101" (Belfast, Northern Ireland) - See all my reviews
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I just finished reading the Temporal Void last night, and I would implore anyone who has a mind for imaginative sprawling space operas to buy this book. It is a wonderful addition to Hamilton's established Commonwealth series, beginning chronologically with Pandoras Star and Judas Unchained (known collectively as the Commonwealth saga), and the Void trilogy, of which the Temporal Void is number 2.

The plot picks up directly after the end of Dreaming Void, with Justine escaping Centurion Station, immediately after the Void encroachment is triggered by the Second Dreamer's rejection of the Void entity known as a Skylord. Aaron, the ANA agent, is on Hanko with Inigo and his estranged wife Corrie Lyn, trying to escape before the world implodes from an m-sink which was driven into the planet. The threat of the Ocisen fleet is a constant danger, with a few nostalgic twists that I couldn't help but smile at, in particular the Ocisens very formidable ally, unknown as yet to the Navy. If you've read the Commonwealth saga, you will know what I mean. The book basically kicks off with most of the characters trying to escape certain death, (or capture, in Araminta's case).

There is also another vital aspect of the book which I find very engaging. The story of Edeard the Waterwalker is one of the best concepts I've seen in large scale sci fi such as is fitting to Hamilton's writing style. If you were to take out all the segments entitled "Inigo's Dream", from the first 2 books so far, you would have a thoroughly engaging stand alone fantasy novel. But the way it ties in with the rest of the storyline is a winner, expertly switching from the events in our Universe, and that of the Void.

The closing chapters supplied me with many memorable (and emotional) moments. Edeard's plight as he consolidates Makkrathan and drives out the gangs, amounts to a series of wonderfully fashioned events which I found immensely gripping, paying homage to Hamiliton's development of his characters within the Void.

All in all, I would thoroughly recommend this book, whether you've read Hamilton's books or not (though is you haven't you're going to be very confused). I will let something slip though, which I cannot contain, but it sets up the final installment nicely. If you don't want to know finish reading here. To be honest it was inevitable, but if you're wondering where the hell Ozzie's been all this time, you're guaranteed to pay him a visit in the 3rd book.

Congratulations Peter Hamilton. I cannot wait until the final book.

Adam
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52 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful continuation and very impressive novel, 29 Sep 2008
By 
Mark Chitty (North Wales) - See all my reviews
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The Centaurion Station, the base of the Void observation for countless millennia, is torn apart as the Raiel machines move to counter the Void's expansion. Justine, who is at the station as it is destroyed, makes a decision that will affect the whole of humanity; to enter the Void in an attempt to negotiate with the Skylord. Will the Second Dreamer be able to get her safe passage, even if it means exposing herself?

After rejecting the Skylord's offer Araminta now comes to the full realisation that she is indeed the Second Dreamer, the one Living Dream say is destined to lead them into the Void and the life they so desperately wish. However, along with this discovery Araminta now knows she is the target of everyone who wishes to use her to their own advantage. But she will not bow to the pressures put on her and is on the run, unsure where or who to turn to.

Paula is continuing her mission to track down Troblum who holds crucial information about the Accelerators and their plans. Desperate to get hard evidence, Paula tracks him down and comes to the very harsh realisation of how far the Accelerators are prepared to go to fulfill their plans. Meanwhile, the Ocisen Empire are on their way to Commonwealth space to enforce the threat they previously issued: cease the pilgrimage or face the consequences.

After his spectacular display of power and unwavering belief of what is right, Edeard now faces increasingly difficult obstacles in his bid to bring peace to Makkathran. With the gangs planning to undermine the Waterwalker he must stand for what he believes, even if it means unwanted political manoeuvring, and the events that take place in Makkathran lead down the path that will reveal the full potential of the Void.

Continuing from The Dreaming Void, The Temporal Void picks up events immediately following the revelations and keeps the sense of wonder and urgency we were left with. This helps in keeping the story going at a strong pace and it feels that all the groundwork laid in Dreaming is really starting to pay off.

The Commonwealth sections are particularly impressive. We still know what we were told in Dreaming - the Void is expanding, the Ocisens are one their way to stop the pilgrimage, the Second Dreamer knows she is communicating with the Skylord and many other things. What we are given is a situation that reached a climax and now the after effects are being felt. Throughout the whole of Temporal, the Commonwealth sections are consistently entertaining with a couple of nice surprises in there. There are also even less detours this time around which means we get a very nicely focused story.

The Void sections are just as enjoyably and Edeard's story continues in glorious fashion. We are now treated to a more confident Edeard and one who has gained both popularity and notoriety within Makkathran. His ideas are not something the council are used to and his stance against the criminals results in some interesting and page turning action. The powers within the Void exhibited by Edeard, both the ones he discovers and the ones he learns of through others, are amazing and go to show why so many Living Dream members want to pilgrimage to the Void.

This comes to the main revelation of the book: the true nature of the Void. Without giving anything away, the Void becomes a very appealing place to go to. It also effectively ties up that main sub plot, although I fully expect to see more of the Void in the last book with some very interesting things left hanging.

The characters carry through from Dreaming, but the Commonwealth ones do suffer a little in this volume, simply due to short time most of them are on the page. Where Dreaming was around a 60/40 split in favour of the Commonwealth, Temporal is 70/30 in favour of the Void. This gives a great follow through for Edeard and builds on what I think was the strongest element in Dreaming, and probably the strongest in Temporal too.

It's already been confirmed by Peter that The Evolutionary Void will return more to the Commonwealth, and with promises of it being larger again than Temporal I can barely wait the 18 months or so until its release. The setting up for Edeard's story done in Dreaming paid off very well in Temporal, but it feels that we're still awaiting that payoff for the Commonwealth and all the dangers now facing it.

There are a couple of bits that I wasn't entirely convinced about, but without giving away spoilers it's very difficult to put them into words. Nevertheless, these are small concerns that didn't affect my overall enjoyment. The format also follows the same principle of Dreaming - we get a chapter in the Commonwealth followed by another of Inigo's dreams of the Void. It works again this time around, although the size of the Void chapters can be huge, one coming to over a hundred pages.

The Temporal Void delivers a lot of what space opera is good for, just not in huge amounts. Who will enjoy it will depend very heavily on what they thought of Edeard's story in Dreaming - if it's something they loved (like me) then Temporal will make them very happy indeed. But if it was the plot they least enjoyed then Temporal may not live up to their expectations. Either way, the stage has been set for an action packed and very promising conclusion. Another highly recommended novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Temporal Void, 26 Mar 2009
By 
F. Gamble (Uganda) - See all my reviews
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I awion't go into the plot lines as that gives away too much. But generic comments: As usual with Peter Hamilton's books they take a bit of getting into with multiple and swift changes of chracters. Most of teh characters are from the previous book and some from earlier series too which is great. The plot is typical Hamilton, hugely ranging, vast concepts, and civilisation endangering threats. This oen more than others of his ended with less thread tying and more loose ends leaving room for the next and final book in the trilogy whioch is eagerly awaited. I'm an admitted Hamilton fan and liek all his books, this is one of the best but others pip it at the post. He is maturing as an author and describes well rounded cahartcers. Funnily enough (or maybe not) I enjoyed the sections of the "Dream" more than the reality with the waterwalker growing in power and skill all through the storyline. Fully recommended but read the Dreaming Void first as it will make a lot more sense that way
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The flagging void, 6 Sep 2012
By 
reader 451 - See all my reviews
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I am a fan of the Void trilogy, and if you are considering this second volume, so probably are you. It is, however, the weakest of the three. The plot, notably around Araminta, slows down notably, and the book is used to introduce characters that only come into their own in the next volume. There is probably too much on Edeard and Makkathran, not all of it action-packed. This remains readable, however, and the third and final volume definitely justifies sticking with the series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The middle book of a trilogy, 11 Aug 2011
By 
Mr. A. N. Mcgill (London) - See all my reviews
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The Dreaming Void was very good indeed and as the story grows so do that characters, which is what you would expect. Only the story of The Waterwalker drags on. I became tired of the story line and although you need to know how his power grew and his life changed it just goes on too much. At least at the end of each Waterwalker section something happened to progress the plot. As for the chapters about the Commonwealth and ANA it all got a bit convoluted (not necessarily complicated).
Still this book was very enjoyable, which is worth knowing given anyone starting the Void Trilogy is likely to finish it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rise of the waterwalker, 11 Oct 2010
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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Following right on from The Dreaming Void (Void Trilogy) comes the second in a trilogy of space operas from Peter Hamilton.

Set in the same future history as some of his previous works. And featuring characters from them also. But you can get into this series without having read them, although you might get more out of this if you have.

Since this book starts pretty much where the last one left off and does nothing to bring new readers up to speed you shouldnt start with this one though.

Running for seven hundred and forty six pages and some very long chapters, this also follows the model of the previous book in that some chapters are set in the commonwealth as events transpire and various factions compete to go to the void. Or stop that from happening. And we also follow the story of Edeard, the waterwalker, who lived at a different time inside the void.

If it's been a while since you read the dreaming void then you'll find this takes about one hundred pages to get into, and those are full of names that may take some getting used to. But then things suddenly click.

The various factions in these sections are still competing to get what they want and there's so much going on it does get tricky to keep track of at points. However it's more focused than in the dreaming void because certain stories are progressing nicely. Not least that of Araminta, a lady who finds she has a bigger destiny than apartment design and marriage. With many people after her because she has a hidden ability she has to run for her life and her storyline is thus pretty involving.

But the bulk of the book does belong to Edeard, and these sections, also as they were in the first book, are more interesting. As he comes to grip with his power, with the way the city where he now lives works, with love, and with his quest to stop the power of the gangs, he remains a likeable character via his sheer nobility. These sections are very readable and some surprises await that do spark a reaction in the reader. Which is a mark of good writing.

All this is building up to greater revelations and the two sections are eventually tied together after a fashion. But one that leaves you unsure as to what might happen next.

A solid second book in the series that manages to move the story along well and develop it nicely. And set things up for the final volume. On the basis of this, that should hopefully deliver a good finale.

Some may wish to know that this contains some strong language and the occasional scene of a sexual nature.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Seven hundred pages of not a lot., 1 Sep 2009
By 
Davywavy2 - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Temporal Void (Paperback)
I've reviewed Hamilton's work before on Amazon, and given it five stars. A five star review isn't something I give out lightly and it has to be earned, but I'm still disappointed in the decline in quality between The Commonwealth Saga and this, the followup trilogy.
The thing is, this is the difficult middle book of a trilogy and the bridge is always the hardest to write but even so I do rather feel that more could have happened in the sheer number of pages I just forged my way through.
I don't know about you, but when I buy a big, thick book with a spaceship on the cover I kinda expect it to be mostly about spaceships. More than half, perhaps, would be a fair request. As it is, the lion's share of the book concerns the ongoing quasi-fantasy story of Edeard the policeman and and his war on crime in Makkathran. When someone asked me how on earth Hamilton managed to write so many words in so little time, I observed that he just took his time describing his character's sex lives and what they had for breakfast afterwards and then tacked plot development on afterwards, and a lot of the time it feels like that. Hamilton's oft-noted weakness in writing women is at its most obvious here and I struggle to think of a female character who is more than a first name, a stunning figure, and a voracious sexual appetite.
The saga of Edeard might make for a mildly diverting fantasy tale were it not for the fact that we're told how it ends quite early on, and so the only real drama comes from the Space Opera taking place around it and unfortunately this isn't overly dramatic either. Instead it really has the feel of the various characters going round and round in circles, marking time and being positioned for the finale without actually doing much.

Apart from having breakfast, that is. We learn a lot about far-future dietary choices.

If you haven't started this trilogy, I don't know if I can reasonably recommend it so far and I think Hamilton will have to pull something pretty spectacular out of his hat for the last book to redeem it. After the quality of the Commonwealth Saga, this book just feels like...filler.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good SF - bad fantasy-equivalent, 19 April 2010
By 
M. Sundström (Lund, Sweden) - See all my reviews
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Another Hamilton tome under the belt. The void trilogy is turning out to be tepid by Hamilton standard, though still engaging enough to have you read all three installments. The novelty of this trilogy is the introduction of a strand which is more fantasy than SF - and not really interesting fantasy either. We get to follow Edeard, a country hick who ends up in the big and somehow living city, shows distinguishing "magical" abilities, takes on a set of brawlers and big-wig politicians. The political machinations are, frankly, a bit of a drag, the social interactions in this feudal society with democratic elements likewise. A lot of pages in this strand come across as ho-hum, and ignorable. Even the fighting seems unusually unengaging, and it is easy to see why: Edeard has access to the writerly bane of a deux ex machina, one that will obligingly help him overcome anything and everything. How I would have loved this when I was 15! Superpowers that expand just as you need them, princesses that swoon before you, an adulating population! But of course I am not 15 any longer, and these dreams begin to look a little dated. I sometimes wonder whether Hamilton realises that his readership is changing; getting older. We are 17 years away from Mindstar Rising, and the teenagers who picked it up with trembling hands are now in their thirties. At least he has cut out the more explicit, and teeth-baringly awful, sex-scenes that so ruined the first installments, so that's something I suppose.

Now. The initial inspiration must have been to combine a fantasy streak with a hardcore SF streak (though it has in fact been done before. Anne McCaffrey's Dragonrider series had such elements for instance.). The trouble is that Hamilton's strength is so obviously the SF bits, and that the fantasy bits come across as (at least for this reader) little but nasty page-stealers. I found myself flipping pages, going, yeah, yeah, yeah Edeard, get out of my face so I can get some solid space battles. But certain proper space opera sub-narratives are just as Hamiltonian as I could desire, fast and furious and these easily made me click the pre-order button to get my paws on the upcoming final installment. Now what I am hoping for is for someone to nuke Edeard and the whole sordid Makkathran world in the first ten pages of the next book, followed by 600 pages of epic space mayhem. Kill your void darlings, Hamilton, and let's see what the fabled deterrence fleet can do. Oh, and let's see much more of the Sentient Intelligence. A no-holds-barred brawl between it and ANA:Governance: now that would be something.

2/5 (if that) for the fantasy parts; 4/5 for the proper space opera stuff.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars disappointing, 4 Jan 2010
By 
Mr. Stephen Parkin (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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I have read all Mr Hamilton's books and am a big fan.He certainly gives plenty of pages for the price. Perhaps I found the book a disappointment because Science Fantasy predominated over Science Fiction.Nevertheless,looking forward to last in the trilogy.
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The Temporal Void (Void Trilogy)
The Temporal Void (Void Trilogy) by Peter F. Hamilton (Hardcover - 24 Mar 2009)
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