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4.2 out of 5 stars
24
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 31 December 2014
Having ploughed through the awful Ringworld Throne a few years back, I was tempted back to the series by the positive reviews of this one on Amazon. I rather wish I had not bothered. Ringworld's Children has a reasonable story (hence the extra star) but as an entertainment, it's fatally compromised by Niven's writing style - which has declined to the point where I can't enjoy reading it. I re-read his first Novel (World of Ptavvs) from 1966 to check whether it was me that had changed, or Niven's writing. The 1966 writing was clear and fast-moving and I enjoyed the (excellent) book as much as I did when I first read it in my 20's - so it's not me, Larry, it's you! Niven now writes in an abbreviated, sketchy style as if he can barely be bothered to get the words down on the page. You don't read SF looking for great literature - as a long-term reader I'm well aware (and accept) that great writing and great SF ideas don't usually go hand-in-hand. However, here the poor writing dips below the threshold of readability and makes the story uninvolving and actually hard to follow. It's a shame really as some of the ideas in the book would have been interesting if explored by a better writer - like the younger Niven...
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on 2 March 2011
I personally loved this book and am a Niven fan but for the uninitiated it will prove incomprehensible and messy.

Surpassing even his own previous dreams of epic scale (e.g. the ringworld in hyperspace, hyperspace containing massive creatures that eat spaceships) this doesn't feel like a conclusion, just chapter 4 but with decade-ish long gaps between books it might be a while.

This is more fluid and entertaining than the plodding Ringworld Throne and tries to answer some of the long asked questions such as who created this terrifyingly huge artificial world. However you have to stick at it and it isn't a novel that can be dipped into and out of (I had a similar experience with Frank Herbert's Chapter House Dune).

If you like Niven or the Known Space or RW series, this is something you definitely should invest in. Other than that, check out the original novel and work your way up.
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on 5 April 2009
This is, just like the original Ringworld and its successors, a fast-paced story with several kinds of aliens and near-humans. If you know Ringword, you'll know what to expect. If you don't, don't start with this one....
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on 5 May 2014
Space travel, aliens, sex, drugs, sex with aliens and violence.
Oh and some well reasoned science to back up most of it making it less science fiction and more a view of things to come.
I've found myself saying "Why haven't we developed this yet?" a few times during these books.

Top notch visual writing from my favourite author (with Terry Pratchett a close second), these books take you to a gaudy construct - Ringworld where... well, no spoilers.

Un-puttable-downable. But start from the beginning - Ringworld.
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on 19 June 2004
Ringworld's Children, is the forth of a series which you can't really understand unless you have read the first three: Ringworld, Ringworld Engineers and The Ringworld Throne, and maybe some of the other stories of Larry Niven's Known Space e.g. Protector. The story races along at a pace. No thesaurus expansions and diversions like some other authors. Louis Wu has to save the Ringworld from the Fringe War. But someone else does it in the most spectacular style. A great read. A must for Ringworld/Larry Niven fans.
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on 27 May 2010
Excellent fourth book in the Ringworld saga. So much better than the dire "Ringworld Throne". This has the pace and mind-blowing scale of the first two books. The ending looks like it's been re-engineered for a sequel, after originally being written as the finale.. (fingers crossed).
Meanwhile, I'm off to find some more "known space" books..
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on 23 November 2015
The Ringworld series are absolutely amazing in the fact the science behind them is so believable and the stories so well crafted.What's wrong Film producers? Is your SF knowledge so limited yo are unable to envision the potential in these tales!
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on 8 June 2014
This book continues the ringworld series and is an interesting and good read. The charachters are good with varied relationships and the natives that are met are crazy and interesting.
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on 11 January 2016
It jumps about a bit, but carries on the adventure nicely.
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on 4 September 2009
I have been a Larry Niven fan since..., well forever. At one time I'd buy it simply because his name was on the cover. I loved ringworld. But Ringworld's Children just doesn't work. It is too complicated, has too many characters. The narrative's habbit of hopping about from location to location is just annoying. Too few new ideas. I got bored with the machinations of protectors.
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