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17
4.2 out of 5 stars
The Recollection
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
To be honest with you I hadn't read any of Gareth's work prior to this so I wasn't exactly sure what I was going to get. What unfurled in this book was a story of redemption, a story of adventure and one of mystery that all blends together to give a real shot of the Sci-Fi with touches of Futurama, a dash of Star Trek and a good helping of Star Wars. Its fun, it has some decent prose, but for me it's the characters within that really make this a story to remember.

Other than that it is a great piece of escapism and a universe that I hope to return to at some point to see what the future has in store for those who have boldly gone.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 11 January 2012
I've been reading Gareth's fiction for a few years now, from his early online stories, to his poll winning stories in Interzone and his debut novel Silversands. He's been one to watch in the UK SF scene for a while and this is his calling card to an international audience.

I won't go into the plot, as the twists and turns of the different plot strands are part of the joys of this book. Suffice to say it rattles along at a fair old pace, and is tightly plotted. What I will talk about is Gareth's writing, which is fantastic throughout. This is lean, modern prose with just the right attention to detail. A lot of SF books these days are 600 page breezeblocks, often due to extended diversions and sometimes slack prose, but Gareth has kept The Recollection tight and focused. The far-flung future of The Recollection is beautifully realised, but not over egged, and it's also a vaguely recognisable future too which is a nice touch. Yes, light-speed travel and sensawunda technology are in abundance, but it also feels like it might just be around the corner. Which for a couple of the protagonists it is!

The characters are well delineated, believable with human drives, emotions and flaws. The love triangles are particularly well executed. One aspect of Gareth's fiction I really enjoy is his use of strong female characters, and for that reason I think that this would be a book of real interest to the under-represented female SF readers, as well as us blokes.

Gareth also uses the tropes of the genre to good effect so it all feels familiar and yet new and fresh - and this is because he doesn't get lost in the technology or the aliens, but focuses on the human stories that are couched in the immersive setting.

This is one of the finest SF novels I've read recently, without a doubt. At the end I was longing for a sequel, and in fact I could see this developing into a series that the author dips back into every couple of years, like Iain M. Banks' Culture novels.

If you like SF, of any sub-genre, you have to buy this book.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 19 December 2011
A friend recommended this book and although science fiction is a genre outside my comfort zone, using the Look Inside feature on this site, I read the first page and was instantly compelled to buy and download it.

With the first chapter set in modern day London it was immediately accessible. The way the chapters were short, and alternating story-lines made for captivating reading as I was always left wanting to know what happened.

I particularly liked the way that futuristic, complicated notions of time travel etc. were explained in a way I found easy to understand.

When I finished The Recollection, I was left a little lost, I had been so wanting to get to the end to find out what happened but once I'd finished it the story and characters had so engrossed me for weeks that I felt empty and found myself missing the characters and wondering about them.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 21 November 2012
Any easy read and quite good topics, nothing totally new in Sc-Fi;
but nicely told and a good enjoyable read.

I would like to check out this authors other works after reading this excellent piece of work

Well done that man!
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I've been gushing to everyone I know (and even people I don't) about this book since I read it, urging them to buy it. Now I've come here to do the same. The Recollection gave me the purest escapist hit I've experienced in a long time, it did just what I want all of the sci-fi I read to do: took me a long way away from home, thrilled me with some brilliant concepts and made me forget about real life for a few precious hours. The writing is slick and deeply satisfying, the characters well-drawn and the heroine Kat is simply ace. Loved it.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 26 September 2011
Seldom I read such a vivid, poignant SF novel, full of characters you care about and of intriguing scientific speculations.Kat recalls to me the heroine of "Diving into the Wreck" of Catryn Rusch, and i simply loved the adventurous, emotionally driven couple Ed and Alice in their mazy galactic tour through the portals! Gareth Powell is an author to follow!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 January 2013
Top notch sci fi. Believeable characters and situations just how I like it. Looking forward to reading more by this author.
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