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Publisher's Summary

New entry in the nationally best-selling Liaden Universe series. Sequel to national bestseller The Gathering Edge.

Menace from Back Space Looming out of the Dust of Time

The Complex Logic Laws were the result of a war waged hundreds of years in the past, when two human powers threw massive AI navies at each other and nearly annihilated themselves. Being human, they blamed their tools for this near miss; they destroyed what was left of the sentient ships, and made it illegal to be, manufacture, or shelter an independent logic.

Strangely, however, the Free Ships and other AIs did not turn themselves in or suicide, they merely became wary of humans, and stayed under their scans. A clandestine support network grew up, including hidden yards where smart ships were manufactured, and mentors — humans specially trained to ease a new intelligence into the universe — socialized them, and taught them what they needed to know to survive.

Among those with a stake in the freedom of Independent Logics is Theo Waitley, who is somewhat too famously the captain of intelligent ship Bechimo. Theo's brother, Val Con yos'Phelium, presides over a household that has for a generation employed an AI butler. Recently, he approved the "birth" of the butler's child, who was sent, with human mentor Tolly Jones, to rescue or destroy an orphaned AI abandoned at a remote space station.

Then there's Uncle, the shadowy mastermind from the Old Universe, whose many projects often skirt the boundaries of law, both natural and man-made — and the puppet-masters at the Lyre Institute, whose history is just as murky — and a good deal less honorable.

All have an interest in the newly-awakening Self-Aware Logic that is rumored to have the power to destroy universes.

The question is: Who will get to it first?

©2018 Sharon Lee & Steve Miller (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Every now and then you come across an author, or in this case, a pair, who write exactly what you want to read, the characters and personalities that make you enjoy meeting them.... I rarely rave on and on about stories, but I am devoted to Lee and Miller novels and stories." (Anne McCaffrey)

"[T]he many fans of the Liaden Universe will welcome the latest...continuing young pilot Theo Waitley's adventures." (Booklist on Saltation)

"[A]ficionados of intelligent space opera will be thoroughly entertained...[T]he authors' craftsmanship is top-notch." (Publishers Weekly on Lee and Miller's popular Liaden Universe® thriller, I Dare)

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  • Overall
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 19-01-2018

Excellent addition to the Liaden Universe

Scrumptious. The 21st, and next to last in this ongoing arc of the Liaden Universe brings many stories forward and allows us to see more about characters we'd nearly lost track of. Tocohl, Tolly (Tollance Berik-Jones), Hazenthull all get significant roles, as does Theo. The action takes place in multiple locations, including Surebleak, Bechimo, Admiral Bunter, Tarigan, and Tinsori Light. A thoroughly satisfying book, and an excellent precursor to the 'fifth of five' that is to follow. There are even some tantalizing hints to things we'd likely forgotten or thought unrelated. Highly recommended if you've been following the Liaden Universe at all, and superbly well read by Eileen Stevens.

Note: includes the full text of the earlier published short story The Space at Tinsori Light.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Robin C. Rutan
  • 09-04-2018

Whew, no bad accents.

Love the series but have had painful trouble reading/ listening to the 2 previous books due to the terrible accents. Thank goodness they went back to a tried and true narrator of the series.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Skipper
  • 07-02-2018

Razzle, dazzle, fizzle, fsst

The narrator does a decent job, so that's fine, but she pronounces Shan in two different ways (rhyming with ran and with khan). Also, at times she attempts to infuse a ho-hum scene with profound importance by slowing down and adding emphasis. But in general, I was happy enough with the narration. It's slightly better than average, in my opinion.

I have read the entire series, including the short stories. This story is okay, and some scenes are endearing (Yulie Shaper) but in general I felt impatient while listening. The pace felt too slow. For the penultimate novel in a storyline spanning 20+ books, begun about 30 years ago, I expected a strong sense of urgency and growing tension. Instead, for me, several long-awaited denouements almost fizzled out.

Too much time is spent recuperating on the Uncle's ship Vivulonj Prosperu, so the homecoming scene for Daav and Alli got short shrift, in my opinion.

What happened to the joyful reunion for the long-awaited little tree and faithful Spiral Dance? A scene with amazing fizzle, for me.

On the up-side, Theo Waitley finally brings Bechimo to Surebleak, where Val Con handles the ship's assessment as an independent complex logic. This was a satisfying scene, even though the rationale could have been more profound.

The plot line with the Pathfinders' destiny and secret briefcase also fizzled out for this reader, despite its big build-up in the previous book, The Gathering Edge.

We learn that a survey team from the trade authority will soon be coming to evaluate Surebleak port. Nothing happens yet though.

Uncle is reunited with his sister. An enjoyably comedic scene, set at Jelaza Kazone.

Best part of book: Jeeves' daughter, Tocohl Lorlin, deals with Lyre Institute mentor Inki. A very poignant scene comes to life when Tocohl learns she isn't alone, isn't helpless. Admiral Bunter and Tolly also learn to trust each other, and Hazenthull provides tactical support. Sweet.

There's a shakedown at Tinsori Light. This includes some long-awaited closure with the age-old enemy Shereikas, aka the Iloheen. The closure scene is brief, but I'm glad it was included. I always felt something was needed to address that open portal in Teapot Space / Weird Space.

Ren Zel deals with his addiction. A surprising turn in the plot.

Tree overextends, gets all shook up, and needs a nap. Lol. Good scene, but if Tree had called upon help from Little Tree...Alas, the sapling never even left Spiral Dance. No reunion scene. A major disappointment. Surely not an oversight? Or are we to infer a reunion occurred? But how sad is that?

It's been a while since Shan and Priscilla came back to Surebleak. They played no role in this book, either. Pat Rin and Nova played minor parts.

Once again, as with Necessity's Child, I really enjoyed the scenes with Syl Vor and Kezzi.

Baby Talizea is beginning to walk and talk, so she must be about 16 months old, I'd guess.

Recommended for Liaden readers, but this is not a good place to start the series, even if some reviews say otherwise.

I look forward to the next and last book in this sequence, temporarily dubbed Fifth of Five.

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  • S. Ludtke
  • 04-02-2018

Finally the plotlines come together!

The previous several books in the series have had characters all over the universe, with overlapping timelines and quite a lot of complexity. Finally, this book pulls things together. There are neither beginnings or endings to the turning of the Wheel of Time. But it was AN ending. Excellent book all around.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Elisabeth Carey
  • 10-01-2018

Another enjoyable Liaden adventure

A number of larger plot arcs come together in Neogenesis. Theo Waitley and her ship Bechimo are about to come head to head with the people who want Bechimo, as an independent complex logic, destroyed. Val Con and Miri finally have a survey team from the trade authority coming to evaluate Surebleak port for an upgrade to recognition as a reliable regional port. Daav and Aelliana are progressing through their rehabilitation in their new bodies, just as Uncle receives very disturbing news about his sister. Jeeves' daughter, Tocohl Lorlin, is traveling with Lyre Institute mentor Inki, who is under a compulsion to bring Tochohl to them if she can, but that's secondary to another target, not just an independent complex logic, but an old tech complex logic, from the old universe.

These are fun, fascinating characters, most of whom regular Liaden readers have had plenty of time to become very fond of. They're also having adventures that we can really care about, with the stakes being everything from peace in a family to the survival of the current universe. Plotlines are resolved, new plotlines appear.

Clan Korval's situation continues to get stranger and more complicated.

It's complicated, entertaining, and completely absorbing.

Recommended.

I bought this audiobook.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • kjfbw
  • 05-01-2018

Great addition to the Series

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Not only is it a really good book, but the reader is excellent too. Just a really good purchase for anyone who likes fantasy or science fiction.

What did you like best about this story?

intelligent. compassionate without being soppy. interesting characters by the dozen.

What about Eileen Stevens’s performance did you like?

Good vocals. easy to understand and enjoy.

Any additional comments?

i wait for each new adventure.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lee Copland
  • 22-01-2018

Great

Sharon Lee & Steve Miller does it again. I love the Liaden series. I have a hard time waiting for each new book, and when I do get it, I devour it Just being left wanting more.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Clearview Mom
  • 17-01-2018

Great Story! Narrator is getting better with Liaden words.

I love the story! This tied up a lot of loose ends in the universe while introducing some tantalizing new themes. I read the advanced fleece coffee and found

0 of 1 people found this review helpful