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Book Reviews [page 1]

Last updated: A Second Chance at Eden (Peter F Hamilton)

Welcome to the Book Reviews page! As you can see, I've added a number of new reviews lately. I'd like to say that all the authors featured here are outstanding - I don't waste time talking about second-rate writers. That doesn't mean that there are no other good writers; I only wish I had the time to read the novels of Heinlein, Niven and other acclaimed writers, and until then, they are not featured here.

You may have noticed that I've recently added blurbs to all the novels reviewed. I don't want to spend my time summarising the book, I'm here to review them. And since someone else has invariably already done a good job of it anyhow, I just copy the blurbs out.

I could have just left out all the blurbs. But I know how irritating it is to read a review of a book, and still have no clue of exactly what the book is about, thus the blurbs.

Isaac Asimov: The Foundation Universe



Perhaps one of the grandest series of science fiction novels ever written, Asimov's Foundation is a must-read for any reader, science fiction or not.

That doesn't mean that all the Foundation books are masterpieces, as I've indicated by my ratings. Click on the book titles to read their reviews, and look at the book covers.


Foundation and Empire


Second Foundation


Foundation's Edge


Foundation and Earth


Prelude to Foundation


Forward the Foundation


Iain Banks: Non-Culture novels (continued below)


The Business

Although Banks is best known within the sci-fi community for his excellent Culture books, outside the Culture universe he has written a number of books that have received critical acclaim.

His latest book, The Business, is reviewed here.

Against a Dark Background




Iain Banks: Culture novels


Consider Phlebas

The Culture series of sci-fi novels have rapidly become known as some of the best fiction to throw at the high-minded literary types who look down at all science fiction.

The sociology of the Culture universe alone is innovative enough for a dozen novels, and Banks' deep analysis of the human character and nature provides exemplary reading in books such as The Player of Games and Use of Weapons. I cannot recommend this series more highly.

The Player of Games
Use of Weapons
  A Few Notes on the Culture (by Iain M Banks)   n/a
The State of the Art

Ken Macleod


The Cassini Division

Ken Macleod has only recently started writing SF, yet already he has been praised by the likes of Kim Stanley Robinson, Peter F Hamilton and Iain Banks as being one of today's most promising new SF writers.

Considering that The Cassini Division is one of his first novels, Macleod seems well on his way to establishing himself as a major figure in modern SF.


David Brin: Uplift Universe



A multiple Hugo and Nebula award-winner among others, David Brin ranks as one of the most acclaimed and highly regarded science fiction writers in the world. Brin has also published several essays and books on general science topics, including the often cited Transparent Society.

However, Brin is most likely to be known for his Uplift series, six books whose stunning ideas on evolution, and beautiful prose have won him countless fans. Undoubtedly the truly original nature of the books helped this no end.

Rarely has there been a series which was thought out so well to enrich the Uplift universe, and bring the series to a brilliant conclusion.


Startide Rising


The Uplift War


Brightness Reef


Infinity's Shore


Heaven's Reach





Stephen Baxter



Stephen Baxter is a well known name among British science fiction circles, if not across the world. His mind-blowing Xeelee Sequence of short stories were first published in science fiction magazines, and due to their popularity and exemplary quality, they have graduated into a full blown series of books with novels adding depth to the Xeelee universe.

Lately, Baxter has concentrated his time on writing original novels such as Titan, Moonseed and Time.

Baxter is probably known most for his hard-science style of writing, where he manages to introduce sophisticated physics to his readers while at the same time adding believability, and readibility, to the story.


Vacuum Diagrams








Timelike Infinity





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