Brightness Reef (New Uplift Trilogy) Mass Market Paperback – 1 Oct 1996
|New from||Used from|
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"A captivating read.""--Star-Tribune, " Minneapolis
"Brin is a skillful storyteller.""--The Plain Dealer, " Cleveland
"Immensely appealing, leaving readers hungry for more.""--Publishers Weekly"
"Tremendously inventive, ambitious work.""--Kirkus Reviews"
"A captivating read."--Star-Tribune, Minneapolis
From the Inside Flap
David Brin's Uplift novels--"Sundiver, Hugo award winner "The Uplift War, and Hugo and Nebula winner "Startide Rising--are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction tales ever written. Now David Brin returns to this future universe for a new Uplift trilogy, packed with adventure, passion and wit.
The planet Jijo is forbidden to settlers, its ecology protected by guardians of the Five Galaxies. But over the centuries it "has been resettled, populated by refugees of six intelligent races. Together they have woven a new society in the wilderness, drawn together by their fear of Judgment Day, when the Five Galaxies will discover their illegal colony. Then a strange starship arrives on Jijo. Does it bring the long-dreaded judgment, or worse--a band of criminals willing to destroy the six races of Jijo in order to cover their own crimes?
Top customer reviews
I will not tell much more here about the subject because anything told can spoil the continuos flow of surprises and thrilling events that David Brin will give you in this (and in the following two) books. If you are searching for the "good old" science fiction, scientifically sound and which can give you the "sense of wonder", here you have a very good book. The Uplift universe of David Brin is the best thing I read in the last ten years; this trilogy is a real five-star recommendation for anyone. A bit inferior to "Startide Rising", but that was a six-star book.
Just a negative note: the five galaxies are addictive. You will end checking every other week to see if David Brin published something new...
The second Uplift trilogy, or the Jijoian Trilogy is set in a universe where species are raised to sentience by a Patron race, to whom they then owe one hundred thousand years of servitude as a thank you. Humanity, having already raised Chimps and Dolphins to sentience stumble out into the galaxy at large without a patron race, making them rare "wolflings" generally doomed for extinction lacking protection in what is often a dangerous and violent galactic society.
The majority of the trilogy is set on a Sooner colony called Jijo, where half a dozen outcast races live together striving to return to "blessed presentience" avoiding larger galactic society. The story follows this colony as the wider universe comes crashing in.
I tremendously enjoyed these books, they're well written with a wide range of characters. The galactic society is startling different from most simple Utopian or "mankind stands alone" situations often found in fiction. Groups centered on uplift clans or religious beliefs fight wars within the constraints of stability within the larger society. The differences between the collective cultures of the mixed races of Jijo and the interactions of the parent races out in the Five Galaxies form a large part of the subtext. Both the overarching plot and the development of each character is handled well and Brin doesn't leave minor loose ends dangling at the end of the tale. He has left himself with a few hooks for another series if he wants it though.
The 2nd and 3rd books of the Trilogy are Infinity's Shore (Uplift) and Heaven's Reach (Uplift).
Brightness Reef is the fourth novel in David Brin's Uplift Saga and the first in a closely-linked trilogy. Whilst the first three books were set in the same universe and shared some references, they were mostly stand-alone novels. This trilogy is a continuous storyline spanning three novels, and indeed serves as a sequel to the events of both Startide Rising and The Uplift War, though this does not become more apparent until the fifth and sixth books.
Brightness Reef was published nine years after The Uplift War and it's clear that Brin has become a stronger writer in the interim. His prose is smoother and more varied in this novel than the preceding books in the series. Brin abandons the straightforward POV structure of the first three books in favour of a more varied approach, mixing third-person limited narration with the first person accounts of the traeki Asx (which, given that traeki are actually gestalt entities consisting of several semi-autonomous lifeforms, is not as straightforward as it sounds) and the memoirs of the hoon Alvin as he and his friends attempt to build a bathysphere to explore an off-shore underwater trench.
Of the other main characters, we have an amnesiac who has lost the power of speech and understanding language through severe head trauma, but can still communicate via music; a girl from a primitive tribe interacting with both the more advanced races of the Slope and then the visiting aliens; and a number of other Jijoan characters representing a number of different ideological viewpoints as they argue over the way forward for their unique culture. Brin's characterisation has always been strong, but here, given the much larger cast size, he is forced to be more concise, building up characters, plots and events quite quickly (though never rushed) in comparison. He pulls this off, and it's interesting that although the events of this novel are restricted to one small geographical area on one planet with no scenes set in space at all, the large cast and shifting viewpoints give the novel a more epic feeling than even the space battle-heavy Startide Rising. In fact, given the low technology nature of the setting, Brightness Reef is probably the closest Brin has come to writing a fantasy novel, and based on this novel it's a setting that Brin would do very well in.
As well as individual characterisation, Brin has to create six (eight, counting the more animal-like glavers and noors) distinct species, along with their biology and culture, and show how they interact with one another. Brin excels at this kind of 'worldbuilding', making each race distinct and interesting. This is enhanced by giving us POV characters from several of these other races to further bring them to life.
The pace of the novel is brisk, but the large cast means that Brin gets a little bogged down in touching base with all of the POV characters on a regular basis (probably the cause of the novel expanding from one book to three, although it has to be said I doubt he'd have fitted the whole trilogy into one novel, particularly in the last book where events take on a truly cosmic scale), and the importance and relevance of all the characters is still unclear at this point. There's also a question on exactly how Brightness Reef fits in with the events of the preceding two novels, though this is made abundantly clear in the last few chapters as events build to a climax and the reader realises how Brin is bringing together storylines he had been working on for fifteen years by this point in a rather impressive manner.
Brightness Reef (****) features superior worldbuilding, an epic scope and a readable, varied prose style, but suffers in comparison to its two forebears due to some bloat and a number of cliffhanger endings. Nevertheless, it is a rich and enjoyable SF novel that leads directly into its sequel, Infinity's Shore. The novel is available now in the USA and, second-hand, in the UK.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews
I really cannot fault service like this :-)
I shall be using you again in the future.