Epeolatry Book Review: Perhaps the Stars by Ada Palmer


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Title: Perhaps the Stars
Author: Ada Palmer
Publisher:  Tor Books
Genre: Science Fiction
Release Date: 2nd November, 2021

Synopsis: From the 2017 John W. Campbell Award Winner for Best Writer, Ada Palmer’s Perhaps the Stars is the final book of the Hugo Award-shortlisted Terra Ignota series.

World Peace turns into global civil war.

In the future, the leaders of Hive nations—nations without fixed location—clandestinely committed nefarious deeds in order to maintain an outward semblance of utopian stability. But the facade could only last so long. The comforts of effortless global travel and worldwide abundance may have tempered humanity’s darkest inclinations, but conflict remains deeply rooted in the human psyche. All it needed was a catalyst, in form of special little boy to ignite half a millennium of repressed chaos.

Now, war spreads throughout the globe, splintering old alliances and awakening sleeping enmities. All transportation systems are in ruins, causing the tyranny of distance to fracture a long-united Earth and threaten to obliterate everything the Hive system built.

With the arch-criminal Mycroft nowhere to be found, his successor, Ninth Anonymous, must not only chronicle the discord of war, but attempt to restore order in a world spiraling closer to irreparable ruin.

The fate of a broken society hangs in the balance. Is the key to salvation to remain Earth-bound or, perhaps, to start anew throughout the far reaches of the stars?

Perhaps the Stars is the fourth and final book in Ada Palmer’s Terra Ignota series, and it does not disappoint. This science fiction epic has it all: compelling characters, a richly imagined world, and a thought-provoking plot that keeps the reader guessing until the very end.

The story picks up where the previous book left off, with the main character, Mycroft Canner, on the run from the law and struggling to come to terms with the choices he has made. Mycroft is a complex and deeply flawed individual, but his journey towards redemption is one of the most compelling parts of the book. Along the way, he is aided by a diverse cast of characters, each of whom bring their own unique perspectives and experiences to the table.

One of the things that sets Perhaps the Stars apart from other science fiction novels is its attention to detail. The world of Terra Ignota is fully fleshed out, with its own politics, cultures, and social norms. Palmer does an excellent job of introducing the reader to this world gradually, allowing them to fully immerse themselves in the story. The result is a rich and immersive reading experience that is unlike anything else in the genre.

In addition to its well-realized world, the book also boasts excellent writing. Palmer’s prose is beautiful and evocative, and she has a knack for creating memorable characters and situations. The plot is fast-paced and action-packed, with plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader engaged.

Ultimately, Perhaps the Stars is a fitting conclusion to the Terra Ignota series. It ties up loose ends and provides a satisfying resolution to the story, while also leaving room for the reader to imagine what might happen next. This is a must-read for fans of science fiction, and it is sure to leave a lasting impression on anyone who picks it up.


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