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The Spider Wars - The Burning Dark Paperback – 28 Mar 2014

3.5 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books; paperback / softback edition (28 Mar. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1783292016
  • ISBN-13: 978-1783292011
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2.4 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 514,008 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

An unsettling tale that may well induce more than a few shivers and looks back over your shoulder when you re reading it... The ending is epic in scale, spanning time, space and other dimensions... With a very cinematic scope, this is Adam Christopher's best book yet: a well-written, sometimes disturbing, descent into terror - Sci Fi Bulletin

Smart, intricate, and viscerally gripping... Adam Christopher carves a place for himself among the stars of his genre. V.E. Schwab, author of Vicious

A riveting sci-fi mystery reminiscent of Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House. -Martha Wells, author of Star Wars: Empire And Rebellion Razor s Edge

A creepy mystery embedded in a classic sci-fi setting that ll make you shiver... Tobias S. Buckell, New York Times bestselling author of Halo: The Cole Protocol

With this creepy and compelling mystery, Adam Christopher demonstrates why he s one of the most original and exciting writers working in the genre right now. --Gareth L. Powell, author of Ack-Ack Macaque and The Recollection

"An exciting new novel from an exciting new voice in SF." -- --Booklist

"A skilful genre clash, using the furniture of military SF to stage a piece of psychological horror... Christopher keeps you guessing... What lingers at the end is the deeply uncanny quality of a haunted, abandoned space station claustrophobic, yet large enough to be lost in and a final sequence of revelations that pay off the tension handsomely." --SFX

The Burning Dark is an effective work with good pacing and good storytelling"-- Roanoak

An excellent book that reads like a haunted house novel in space. Very cinematic, reading like a thriller - The Burning Dark looks different from Christopher s previous novels and really works this is one book that you won't want to miss." --The Founding Fields

"It s safe to say you ll enjoy Christopher s latest offering... There are some wonderfully sinister moments in this well-paced tale, which often makes it uncomfortable reading, such is the atmosphere that Christopher evokes." ----Starburst Magazine

"A skilful genre clash, using the furniture of military SF to stage a piece of psychological horror... Christopher keeps you guessing... What lingers at the end is the deeply uncanny quality of a haunted, abandoned space station claustrophobic, yet large enough to be lost in and a final sequence of revelations that pay off the tension handsomely." --SFX

"n excellent book that reads like a haunted house novel in space. Very cinematic, reading like a thriller - The Burning Dark looks different from Christopher s previous novels and really works this is one book that you won t want to miss." --The Founding Fields

About the Author

Adam Christopher is a novelist and comic writer. His debut novel, Empire State, was SciFiNows Book of the Year and a Financial Times Book of the Year for 2012. In 2013, he was nominated for the Sir Julius Vogel award for Best New Talent, with Empire State shortlisted for Best Novel. Born in New Zealand, he has lived in Great Britain since 2006.


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3.5 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
The Burning Dark by Adam Christopher is the first book in a new series from the author. Venturing into full-on sci-fi, The Burning Dark marks a departure from his previous – and well received – urban fantasy/superhero novels. While I have yet to read any of Christopher’s previous works, The Burning Dark does raise a very prominent question for me about the author: why the praise?

Sent out of the way to the Shadow star system and the U-Star Coast City space station to oversee its decommissioning, Captain Abraham Idaho ‘Ida’ Cleveland finds he is treated as an outcast by those aboard, while the serving Commandant has apparently left and in charge is King, the provost marshal. With a strong resentment towards him and disbelief in his achievements, of which there is no official record, Ida finds himself growing distant from the crew. While tinkering with electronics he stumbles across a mysterious transmission from the past on the banned subspace channels, and that is only the beginning of his troubles…

It’s clear to see that the ideas Adam Christopher explores in The Burning Dark are multi-layered, with nothing ever being quite what it seems. However, this is also its downfall. While the early parts of the novel are a fairly straight-forward introduction to the U-Star Coast City, Ida, and all aboard, there is always an underlying and unsettling feeling seeping through the words. While part of this is very much to do with the story Christopher is telling, other parts can be attributed to the seemingly endless exposition, internal monologuing, and general clunkiness of the prose.

The parts that work, while few and far between, really do work.
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Format: Hardcover
Adam Christopher's latest book, The Burning Dark, is a military science fiction horror set on a near-abandoned space station orbiting a peculiar and dangerous star. It's also Christopher's first book for Tor UK, showing that he has taken the next step in his writing career.

His first novel, and the only other one I've read, was Empire State. A strange blend of super-heroes and crime noir that really struggled to find its feet. It wasn't bad, it was just confusing and displayed the author's inexperience. Thankfully, the first thing to be said about The Burning Dark, Christopher's 4th published novel, is that it oozes confidence and skill that only comes from experience. The first chapter draws you in immediately, deftly weaving back story and protagonist profiling in a neat little package with an epic space battle to round it off. The book doesn't stop there, it carries on with gusto, creating an expansive universe and varied cast of characters without falling into the trap of info-dumping.

It's creepy as well. The combination of science fiction and horror is nothing new, but Christopher manages to keep it fresh and engaging.

It's not all roses though. For starters, Christopher has a naming problem. It's not serious, but it could develop into a lifelong habit. Take our lead in Burning Dark, for instance: Captain Abraham Idaho Cleveland. Hmm. That's quite a mouthful. Still, I like that it is abbreviated to Ida, and it's nowhere near as bad the protagonist from Empire State: Rad Bradbury. That's not a name, it's a speech impediment.

Some of the twists and turns are a little obvious, as well.
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Format: Kindle Edition
*I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Macmillan-Tor/Forge and Adam Christopher*

2.5 stars

Captain Abraham Idaho Cleveland once saved a planet but now he's retired and his last duty is to oversee the demolition of U-Star Coast City, a space station, that resides in the strange purple light of a star called Shadow. Bored, Ida listens to the radio, to frequencies that are forbidden for a good reason...

It took me a while to get into this book and I have to say that I'm slightly disappointed.
While there were parts that I liked, for example the whole Spider idea (metal spiders that live in space and destroy planets) and the creepy vibe, I wasn't gripped and felt that some things weren't explained as much as they could be - like what are psi-marines and what can they do? Figures on how badly the war with the Spiders was going would have been good as well. Also the ending seemed to be over quite quickly and I didn't really connect with the characters very well.

Overall this book had interesting themes but was disappointing.
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Format: Paperback
In space, no one can hear you scream and for the skeleton crew of the U-Star Coast City this is redundant anyway as no one cares if they do. Captain Abraham Idaho Cleveland is about to start early retirement, but he is given one last job overseeing the dismantling this space station that orbits a forbidding star that gives off an eerie radiation. With only a couple of hundred people left on the massive station, it is pretty quiet. This makes it easier to hear the things going bump in the night - a night that continues 24 hours.

`The Burning Dark' by Adam Christopher is classic space horror in the mould of `Alien' or `Event Horizon'. With this in mind you could immediately accuse it of being unoriginal, just another marines being chased by the big bad. This is not the case for one simple reason, Christopher's world building. The best science fiction always balances story with setting and this happens here. Christopher does not suddenly drop a load of characters into a space station and expect you to care about them. He creates a far richer world than this and develops the people in it.

Cleveland is a great example. `Burning' does not open straight into the location where most of the book is set, but instead explores the world that Cleveland inhabits. Ira tells you a story as if you are drinking buddies at a bar; a story about heroics, death and injury. In these few pages you get to know the man, only for it all to be questioned. Is Ira really a hero or a fake? The crew of the U-Star Coast City seem to find it hard to believe his tale, so will they believe him when he suggests that an alien presence is on board?
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