“No Inhibitors Here” (Redemption Ark)

Redemeption Ark (Cover)
The cover for Redemption Ark, from 2002

Two or three years ago, I read one of the best science fiction books that I’ve ever come across, even years later. It was called Revelation Space, by Alastair Reynolds. Mr. Reynolds still remains one of my favorite authors today. Revelation Space was a huge, sweeping space opera, with awesome characters, an engaging and original plotline, awestriking action, and scientific science. Once I finished it, I immediately went looking for the sequel. I couldn’t find it. Three years later, here it is.

In the year 2600, archaeologist Dan Sylveste’s actions on Cerberus have brought the attention of the Inhibitors, alien machines that are designed to seek and destroy intelligent life, keeping the galactic silence. The only hope for survival rests in the 33 Hell-Class weapons, hidden within the gunnery of the ship Nostalgia for Infinity, but it’s captain isn’t giving them up without a fight. Renegade Nevil Clavain and a crew of defectors, smugglers, and criminals must launch an effort across space to recover them, or humanity will be wiped out.

After waiting three years, I have to say that this book was totally worth it. Redemption Ark started out with a bunch of small character groups, both old and new and then merged them together until it was only two large groups in the end. I know that a lot of authors probably use this technique, but Alastair Reynolds does it so well.

Redemption Ark was the second book in the Revelation Space trilogy, but I didn’t really know where Reynolds was going to take the series at the end of Space. It seemed pretty open ended, until I read Ark. It was the perfect sequel that I didn’t even know was possible when I finished the predecessor. 10 out of 10.

With a complicated and ambitious plotline that concluded or explained events from the previous novel, Redemption Ark is the best science fiction novel that I’ve ever read. Enjoyable and fleshed out characters fighting against some of the best and most interesting aliens I’ve ever encountered throughout my adventures in literature is a surefire recipe for success.

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