Revenger, by Alastair Reynolds Rothdas book review RSS
3.7 Stars

I've heard about Reynolds for years, and had this impression of him as someone who wrote hard, dry, sci-fi that was realistic but perhaps a little too much so. You know, a man's man's sci-fi author, someone who will combine physics calculations with cardboard cut out characters in order to put hair on your chest. And so for years I've put off reading anything by Reynolds, until I saw one of his books in the library and decided to finally try him out. And wow, my impression could not have been more wrong. _Revenger_ is a swashbuckling story set in system similar to that of _Against a Dark Background_, where countless high tech civilizations have risen and fallen, leaving the current inhabitants surrounded by future-tech flotsam and jetsam, most of which they are unable to reproduce or understand. Much of the tech-talk is done through a Mad-Max type lingo; electronics are "gubbins", singularities are "swallowers". And much of the theming comes across as 1800's nautical, as spaceships set solar sails to travel between islands of civilization while worrying about pirates and buried treasure. There's also a bit of firefly in there with proto-Reavers, bounty hunters, and various scrappy space-ship crews. And maybe a tad of Patrick Rothfuss too, in that the world is very exciting and has a surfeit of interesting avenues to explore. Anyway! The story reads quickly, has a whirl of neat ideas (especially at the start), and the ending is not bad even if parts of it are a tad predictable.