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The Gabble - And Other Stories (Polity) Paperback – 2 Sep 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Tor; Reprints edition (2 Sept. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330528483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330528481
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.5 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 104,120 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Excellent, all of it well-worth reading. If you haven't yet read your way through this series, I envy you; if you have, go get your copy of The Gabble and Other Stories right now before it sells out in hardcover!' -- Green Man Review

'Fans of Asher's Polity future history will not be disappointed.' -- The Guardian

'For the established fan this collection makes a great addition and fills out some the Polity universe you've come to know and love. For the newcomer to Neal Asher, you've a treat in store as this will serve as a nice introduction to his work and a neat signpost as to what part of Asher's universe to read next.' -- Sci-Fi-London

'If you've never sampled the delights of Asher's work then this collection would be a very good place to start.'
-- SciFiNow

'Thirteen marvellously inventive and action-packed short stories.' -- Fantasy Book Critic

'economical, crisp and frequently fiendishly clever. The stories featuring...dangerous aliens who `speak' in a nonsensical language, are particularly impressive'
-- BBC Focus --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

'Thirteen marvellously inventive and action-packed short stories.' --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Ed.F VINE VOICE on 10 Nov. 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I make no secret of being a big fan of Neal Ashers work and this collection of short works set in the Polity universe hasn't changed my opinion one bit. It's excellent. This collection sheds more light on some of the minor characters of the Polity novels, the Gabbleducks and Hooders, Geronamid, Erlin etc and adds more moments of drama and back-story to some and fleshes out the personas of others. There isn't a single weak story in this lot but if I was asked to pick the best, I'd go for "Softly spake the Gabbleduck" which was a claustrophobic chase story with a nicely packaged ending.

One quick note, and no fault of the Author, the longest story in the collection, "Alien Archeology" was also published in the recent "The Mammoth Book of Best New SF 21" anthology edited by Gardner Dozois, which effectively made a 1/4 of the book redundant for me.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have read this book before, so obviously I think that it's well worth having in your library, a very good collection of stories that adds to the Polity series,I love the Gabble duck and I can't help but to smile while I am reading about them, I am sure you will too.
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Format: Paperback
Compared to Asher's one other collection, The Engineer ReConditioned, this volume has a better focus on the Polity universe. If you're used to any Asher novel, then you'll be happy to know that his short stories contain the exact same elements as his larger works. Unlike Asher's novels, however, is the inclusion of some steamy sex scenes in three of the ten stories. Considering Asher's thousands of pages of novel text without any sex scenes I can remember, the inclusion of sex in the short stories is odd... perhaps the stories were too dry and needed to be lubricated to give them that certain "oomph."

These stories also represent an author finding his niche as a science ficiton writer. Sometimes called "post-cyberpunk" but really just action/horror/noir, the author can see the author settling into the niche which has made him famous... and so deep in the pit that I don't think the author could ever redefine himself. Whereas his previous collection was dating from 1995-2001, this collection mainly includes stories from 2001-2008.

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Softly Spoke the Gabbleduck (2005 novelette) - 3/5 - Incestuous siblings on homicide safari: Tameera, Tholan, and his assistant Anders hire a safari guide on the planet Myral. When Tameera snipes a C-grade sentient and later becomes abducted by the hextet of Sheq, the shagging siblings take revenge upon the Sheq, and the assistant and the safari guide who have witnessed the crime. When the gabbleduck appears in the shrouded mist of a valley waterfall, someone is bound to die.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've never read anything of Neal Asher before so bought this book on spec - it was cheap in the kindle store... His writing is clear and pulls you through and well rounded universe at an enjoyable pace.

The book is a collection of short stories that have now left me wanting more of the Polity universe and to find out more about the Gabble-duck...
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Format: Paperback
These short story collections often leave the reader with a somewhat empty feeling in that they can promise much but fail to deliver. This is certainly an exception.

Asher is a cyberpunk/hard scifi writer who can mix it with the best of them. The Gabble is an example of perfect weighting, with stories superbly executed and no padding whatsoever. Set in the Polity universe this collection is eminently readable as a standalone or as part of the wider sequence, without recourse to dense technobabble or any other weak literary device. Asher's frequently humorous style, naming the vicious alien predator which is central to several of these stories, a Gabbleduck is an example of a humanising touch that scifi needs to be truly enjoyable and believable.

Another glorious read from Neal Asher, who is fast becoming top of my list as an essential author to follow.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I stumbled into Neal Asher by mistake, I love the Culture books by Iain Banks and bought my first Asher/ Polity book on that basis. This is a neat collection of short stories that surround the Polity. Thoroughly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally, the truth about gabbleducks - maybe. This fills in a few gaps in the main series of books, and opens up a few more. These are complete, well written stories, not a quick moneyspinner, as many short story collections based on a series of novels are. Fans will approve, new readers will get a taster, and may also become addicted to the worlds of the Polity.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
These short stories are great and just as good as the longer 'novel' format. They, also, for fans of the polity series, give some background events that are important in the main story line. As an example, there is a short that gives extra information on Penny Black which explained some aspects of that character.
If you're into the whole AI/polity scenario then this is a must read book.
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