- Paperback: 592 pages
- Publisher: Gollancz (14 Jun. 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0575094729
- ISBN-13: 978-0575094727
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.8 x 19.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 417,538 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
War in Heaven (Veteran) Paperback – 14 Jun 2012
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Gavin Smith's writing is a brutal kaleidoscope of imagination, with the raw energy of a heavy metal album cover: equally dazzling with bloodthirsty ancient Picts and the fallen post-humans of tomorrow. (Hannu Rajaniemi, author of The Causal Angel)
Age Of Scorpio announces loud and clear that in Gavin Smith an exceptional talent has arrived to uplift SF. The book is a master class of twisting plot lines that celebrate both the weird and astounding, amid a future that's deeply unnerving yet equally compelling. (Peter F Hamilton)
VETERAN was a slam-bang dive into a violent SF future. Now things get serious.See all Product description
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Top Customer Reviews
Finally add to this a better product than the original for me (as most of the work for the set-up has already been done) and it was a title that I enjoyed reading. Great stuff.
If you found the first book dark, which I did, then the second book is even darker. It is leavened by moments of humour, but even they are not for the faint hearted. The book is powerful, visceral and never lets up for an instant. It is like being on a massive, dystopian roller coaster, mostly where things go from bad to worst for the protagonist and his team.
It is brutal, bloody and heavy on the violence. There is no let up of pace and you really are committed for the whole thing. My husband read it in a weekend and loved it. I read it afterwards and thanks to the interference of children took longer which made things more disjointed for me. I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had been able to read it as a whole like he did, as it is something you really need to immerse yourself in, the world that Smith creates is so total and very demanding.
"Veteran" was good but "War in Heaven" is so much better. We get to know the main characters a lot better and being already filled up with "Veteran" there is no time lost in getting into the flow of the story. Gavin Smith has managed to write a fantastic action packed space opera of a truly magnificent format and you just can't relax and leave the book. The Bad guys are truly bad, the heroes are somewhat better but above all people that feel real. The Technology is fantastic without making you feel unable to understand how it worked. The Story line flows perfectly and there are enough surprises to make you jump again and again. I truly loved how he made the future Russian Spetsnaz forces appear.
Of course you wonder why they all refused to use nuclear weapons (they were "bad"?) even if the destiny of the Earth were at play. But ok, lets accept that as a fact. You also wonder why the hero and his girl-friend are driven by a moral code from 50 years ago instead of a future one but I found it charming.
Given the end these two books are probably not going to be followed by another one with the same main characters but I am not worried that Mr Gavin will run out of ideas to build his next book around.
If you like science-fiction and space opera do not miss these two books. I will not miss his future works. Amazon UK already lists "The Age of Scorpio" as coming out in November.
The single most important asset a book has is not the story, it is the ability of the author to write and Gavin Smith clearly can. Within this hard sci-fi genre there really is some serious rubbish around that I've been suckered into reading. Fortunately this isn't one of them. Gavin Smith writes with aplomb and excellent English which, suggests a real intelligence behind the book. I guess that is reflected in the price which is at the higher end of the Kindle sci-fi range - and to be honest probably a fairly good indicator of standards.
It's hard sci-fi in many ways like Richard Morgan's Altered Carbon. However unlike Richard Morgan but retaining a definite adult style and content Gavin Smith avoids the grotesque which is sometimes used I feel just for a shock effect but not adding to the book. There's plenty of ultra violence, up-engineered humans and interstellar war, but somehow it retains a firm footing in Earth like reality. There is a very British feel to the book with many references to places in the UK and that makes a pleasant change from the US centric books of this type.
There is a cyberpunk thread running through both books as well. In fact the story relies heavily on the possible intertwining of the net and human life in probably the most plausible way that I've read so far.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I read Veteran in one sitting, during a period of insomnia back in 2015. I was fairly certain I enjoyed it, and so I bought book 2. Sadly I gave up on it about 120 pages in. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Joe Oak
Got half way through the sample before giving up. An over complicated mess of a back story in the first few pages, appears to have been written by a teenager on speed.Published 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
These books are well written from an author with intelligence and imagination. They dark and violent futures, hopefully that won't come to pass.Published 17 months ago by COBBY
Liked both books, good action fun characters and fast paced action.
I think the author has a great imagination and should churn out some great reads. Read more
So having leapt back into Sci Fi with Veteran, in what turned out to be very much the deep end, I found that despite the violence and the darkness I found myself clinging on with... Read morePublished on 4 Sept. 2014 by Flailing
Great follow up to veteran, Smith does a superb job of moving the story along and brings it to an excellent ending.Published on 25 Aug. 2014 by P. Gallacher
Mr Smith really finds his feet with this novel. Any of the rough edges that may have been found in the first book have been filed smooth for this one, with a flowing narrative... Read morePublished on 27 Jun. 2014 by Baron