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The Middle Kingdom (Chung Kuo) (Chung Kuo Series) Paperback – 18 Oct 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Corvus; Main edition (18 Oct. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848877315
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848877313
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 2.8 x 23.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 495,018 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"One of the masterpieces of the decade." --"Washington Post"

"The achievement of a master world-builder." --"Omni"

"Imagine a collaboration between James Clavell and Frank Herbert and the result might be something very much like Chung Kuo . . . smart, involving, entertaining." --"San Francisco Chronicle"

..".an excellent novel and series that I can't recommend enough." --BookGateway.com

About the Author

David Wingrove is the Hugo Award-winning co-author (with Brian Aldiss) of The Trillion Year Spree: The History of Science Fiction. He is also the co-author of the first three MYST books - novelisations of one of the world's bestselling computer games. He lives in north London with his wife and four daughters.


Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
2196. For more than a century, the Earth has been under the rule of Chung Kuo, a world-spanning civilisation founded by a Chinese warlord using advanced technology. That warlord was later deposed by the T'ang, seven senior rulers who feared his insanity. The T'ang now rule a strictly hierarchical world at peace, but one where the powers of the privileged few are built on a pyramid of oppression and strictly-enforced order. With thirty-six billion people packed into the vast, continent-spanning cities of 'ice' (a nanotech-based material with super-strong properties), the dangers of chaos are all too apparent.

But there is growing discontent in Chung Kuo. Wealthy industrialists and ambitious scientists want change and growth to prevent stagnation. The enforcers of order will not stand for this. When the Minister of the Edict, whose job it is to prevent any drastic change to the order of things, is assassinated, it becomes clear that a war is coming. The War of Two Directions, which could spell a new dawn for humanity or spell its utter extinction.

The Middle Kingdom is the third novel in David Wingrove's revamped Chung Kuo mega-sequence. Originally published in eight volumes in the 1980s and 1990s, the series was abruptly cancelled and the author forced to write a highly unsatisfying quick ending which satisfied no-one. With new publishers Corvus at the helm, Chung Kuo has been recast in twenty volumes, including an all-new beginning and ending. The first two novels, Son of Heaven and Daylight on Iron Mountain, showed the foundation of Chung Kuo and the destruction of the world before, serving as scene-setting prologues. The Middle Kingdom, picking up a hundred years later, is where the story itself really gets started.
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Format: Hardcover
It's as good as the original, which I read circa 2002. There are some striking scenes that I can still remember from all those years ago, but a lot of this new version feels new. Still, it remains a very good read.

Unlike the other reviewer, my Kindle book was perfect with all chapters present.
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Format: Paperback
If you are new to Chung Kuo...buy the these books, you'll love them! Read the prequels too.

If you've read the original series...still buy the new books, you'll love the story all over again and these new versions are even better than the originals.

The story is terrific and very original (and not a little frightening due how prophetic the premise seems to be becoming!). They are incredibly ambitious works and are always interesting and exciting. Can't wait for the next one - already have it on pre-order.

If you are a fan of Frank Herbert, James Clavell, Peter F Hamilton, David Feintuch, Orson Scott Card etc (like me) then give these a try. The series is like Dune meets Shogun...

For fans of the original series who are unsure whether to read these new versions, I was in the same boat but decided to try them and am so glad I did. There is plenty of new material in here and the re-writes improve the excellent originals.

Looking forward to the remainder of the series and also hopefully some other new original novels by a great writer in David Wingrove...
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Tsao Ch'un is long dead, the seven T'ang rule the world and change is forbidden!

I like like the way the story develops and new characters come to fore.

A good read, look forward to the next book
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I can remember when I first discovered Chung Kuo- it was late 1997 and two pages into it I knew I had found something special. As I raced through the books I was inspired and amused and shocked and, in the end, puzzled. This reboot of the series (which promises finally getting the ending it deserves!) is proving to be everything I hoped it would be. Mr. Wingrove's style is fluid and assured, the pacing is by turns frenetic and luxuriously slow, the characters are memorable and true to life, and the grand scheme is jaw-dropping in scale. If you are looking for a world you can disappear into for 20 volumes, this is it. So far there are no weak spots, and the world of Chung Kuo is becoming more and more intriguing with each chapter. I see the next two books are coming out in rapid succession, and this is good news indeed to those of us who have been waiting for so long to return to Chung Kuo. Kudos, Mr. Wingrove!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved the first two in this series but did not like this book. I kept waiting for something to happen and to join the various threads of the story. It took a long time to get started and whilst the author must know the various relationships and families it was difficult for me to follow. I couldn't identify or feel for any of the characters - apart from the young boy and he only appeared three quarters of the way into the book.
Such a pity since the first two books held my attention and worked on a really interesting theory and twist of events.
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