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The Causal Angel [Format Kindle]

Hannu Rajaniemi

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Présentation de l'éditeur

With his infectious love of storytelling in all its forms, his rich characterisation and his unrivalled grasp of thrillingly bizarre cutting-edge science Hannu Rajaniemi has swiftly set a new benchmark for SF in the 21st century. And now with his third novel he completes the tale of his gentleman rogue, the many lives and minds of Jean de Flambeur.

Influenced as much by the fin de siecle novels of Maurice leBlanc as he is by the greats of SF Rajaniemi weaves, intricate, warm capers through dazzling science, extraordinary visions of wild future and deep conjecture on the nature of reality and story.

And now we find out what will happen to Jean, his employer Miele, the independently minded ship Perhonnen and the rest of a fractured and diverse humanity flung through the solar system.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 434 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 303 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 0575088974
  • Editeur : Gollancz (17 juillet 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00HRXQ1B0
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Composition améliorée: Non activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°105.214 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Amazon.com: 4.5 étoiles sur 5  84 commentaires
15 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Part science fiction, mostly fairy tale. And all great. 22 juillet 2014
Par scott - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
First, a bit of a warning: "The Causal Angel" is the final entry in the Quantum Thief trilogy, and is very tightly coupled to the two books that preceded it. There is probably little or no point in trying to read this if you have not read the first two; if you have read them recently, so much the better as there are lots of references to plot points that appeared to be minor in the first two works.

Having said that, what "Angel" offers up is in some ways more of the same: lots of dense prose, interesting characters, and heaps of wildly imaginative technology. The plot follows (primarily) Jean le Flambeur as he attempts to steal a device that will prevent the Sobornost and the All Defector from destroying most of the solar system in their pursuit of the Great Common Task. The vocabulary is as clever as the previous books, but requires the reader to be as deeply steeped in internet culture and lingo as the author to fully make sense. Zokus, virs, and the Great Game to mention but a few tumble straight out of modern internet culture--and at times I think Rajaniemi and Cline (Ready Player One) have a common muse.

The plot is as wild and imaginative as the previous works--but this time out we can a bit more explicit character development, which is a welcome thing. Jean clearly grows up here--for instance (minor spoiler) when the city of Sir is recreated on a plate floating in Saturn's skies--this seems dangerously close to altruism for our narcissistic thief! Likewise Miele gains additional depth, and we even get to appreciate that the Founders are not unidimensional master villains.

If anything, Angel is more approachable than its predecessors as the characters are richer, and more multidimensional. The vocabulary and the "science" is now familiar. And this is where the book really starts to distinguish itself. The previous work resembled "Arabian Nights" with a massive quantum twist to it--this book is even more explicitly a fairy tale offered up through the language of hard science. When Asimov said that a "sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" he might well have been thinking of a book like The Causal Angel. Here the science is so far out there that it truly resembles magic (the Ekypyrotic gun, and the Kaminari Jewel are obvious examples). And Rajaneimi even has a rejoinder for Asimov that is hilarious in its own right!

Fortunately, Rajaniemi's obvious love of stories and story telling enables him to successfully carry this off--it is just not that important whether this is amazing science fiction or a wondrous fairy tale--because first and foremost it is a wild, lovely, beautifully imagined and touching tale. And in that sense, what we have is a bit of irony: a story that goes further into the wild science of picotech and branes, ends up being a more human story. Because the fantastic science is so utterly fantastic that it becomes magical, we are left to treasure the story and the characters in it. On the other side of science fiction lies a fairy tale that is wondrous and beautiful. In the end it doesn't matter if you are stealing the rings of Saturn or magic beans as long as the story is good. Rajaniemi's story of Jean is not just good, it is great. Read it and cherish it.
9 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A perfect ending to a perfect series 19 juillet 2014
Par Greenrat - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
"He claims that in precisely 57 minutes, he is going to steal a ring of Saturn"
Mieli finds herself among zoku at Saturn, Sobornost, infected by the All Defector gathers its gogols for an attack and Jean needs to infiltrate the Gun Club at Iapetus to steel his ship... Wait, are you lost? Then go find the first one, Quantum Thief, and buy it, because this vir is only for those with enough entanglement.
Book series often disappoint when a grand-scale idea or setting could not be wrapped up successfully, leaving you with a disappointing meh instead of a grand BOOM. Rajaniemi brilliantly avoids it: Causal Angel exits with a planetary-scale Gotterdammerung war, mind-twisting heists and a tender bittersweet ending. It's a Hauer's "Tears in Rain" monologue expanded into a book - a model space opera. But this is also the most clear and straightforward book out of three - if you got the ideas and vocabulary from the first two it would be as easy and enjoyable sailing as possible for a Le Flambeur series book. My only disappointment is in some unconcluded lines and unexplored opportunities (we don't meet any more Founders, etc). In the end this a perfect drug of a book - it leaves you with a huge withdrawal, longing for more, more, more.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great ending to the series, even if not as strong as the first two. 25 septembre 2014
Par SerpentSatellite - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
Fitting end to the series, although a little weaker than the previous two titles.

Sticks to the hard-sci-fi, and made up word themes of the firsts, the largest issues being - as creative as the book still is - it doesn't add anything into the series.
The first creates a shockingly original world and characters, and possibly even more shockingly, the second novel builds on that, but adds entirely new scenery and high concepts.
This one sticks mostly to things established already in the first two, and therefore can feel a little bit more derivative.

Still, an effective and brilliant ending to the series, I was completely satisfied with the novel and the ending. I can't say that of a lot of series.
We get to see a LOT more of the Zoku/video game related clans, and fortunately I found those aspects fascinating.

If you haven't read the first, don't do yourself a disservice - go read them first. Although you could get some enjoyment out of this one, still, I'm sure, the author relies heavily on deep science, and throws his imagined concepts at you using in-world (ie: made up) terms that you are expected to eventually infer the meanings of from context.
Since I went one entire previous book with entirely the wrong idea about one of the major items discussed, I assume figuring some of these things out picking up the story at this point would be an exercise in futility!

One of the best series I've ever read. Period.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Brilliant, but Difficult Reading 24 décembre 2014
Par Daniel Burton - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
As I approached the final act of The Causal Angel, Hannu Rajaniemi's Jean Le Flambeur Series that started with The Quantum Thief, there was an uptick in the action, a movement toward battle and denouement. Giant space ships and lethal weapons were brought to bear, planetary defenses were invoked, and warriors on both sides came to grips...

Unfortunately, I'm not sure I understood half of it. The weapons, vehicles and concepts seemed to require a robust understanding of quantum and theoretical physics and computer science, neither of which I can claim, even for all of my interest in science and science fiction. The world that Rajaniemi has imagined is on the other side of the singularity, and it is a world that is difficult to recognize as descending from our own.

So, clearly, it's brilliant. I just struggled to understand and relate. Call me stupid, call me dense, but I see the series as a brilliant, but missed opportunity.

I very badly wanted to love the book, and I spent some time clicking through Google researching the terms and concepts, using both a wiki about the series and Wikipedia itself. It helped, but the more I read and the more obscure jargon that I bumped up against the more I became convinced that my efforts would be futile. The learning curve is steep, and Hannu does little to assist his reader, utilizing in action descriptions that are short of a helpful infodumps, but oh! how I would have loved one.

Sure, usually I prefer that the author focus on the story, showing only a glimpse of the world building that is beyond view, hinting at what is out there beyond the action. The Causal Angel does this. But because the world is so far from our own, the glimpses are insufficient. It makes for difficult reading.

It doesn't help that the story picks up immediately from where it left off, requiring some back tracking by the reader to refresh memory. And my understanding of what was going on in the plot was never really crystal clear in the first place. Compound everything that I missed in The Quantum Thief, The Fractal Prince, and now The Causal Angel together, and I'm sure that I was unable to enjoy the story to the fullest.

That said, I still liked the book, and though I'll have difficulty recommending it to more than the most hard-core of science fiction fans, I really DID enjoy it. Rajaniemi has a brilliant vision of the future, extrapolating in a way that I think is far more accurate that a lot of other science fiction. Additionally, he understands how to tell a story and, but for the high barrier that the theoretical physics and computer science presents, does spin an interesting tale.

I'm glad I read it. I just wish I could have lost myself in it a bit easier. Escaping into the imagined world is hard when I have to keep coming out to look up terms I don't understand or concepts that weren't even clear in the first book, let alone the second or third. Understanding them is clearly necessary to the plot, and they just aren't easy. If the ease of access had been greater, I would have put Hannu on the list of Hugo worthy writers. His vision is there and his writing is in the neighborhood that should get him awards. He imagines a world where consciousness has transcended the physical, where people living in a constant state of MMORPG, where copies of the self can be made, saved, and utilized in computing power. It's mind-blowing.

But the conceptual difficulty puts the novel out of reach of many, and that's unfortunate. I will read whatever Rajaniemi writes next because I am curious what else he has in the quiver. I hope it will be more accessible, because he is brilliant, his writing is brilliant, and his vision is brilliant. But I hope he can also make it accessible.

A word about the cover art on this series: I love it.
5.0 étoiles sur 5 An Epic Conclusion to the Jean Le Flambeur Series 27 mai 2015
Par Joe Frazier - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Hannu Rajaniemi’s brings an epic conclusion to the Jean Le Flambeur series in The Causal Angel. He continues to build out his SciFi fueled world in which gentlemen thieves go hand-in-hand with Oortian warriors saving a universe that is on the brink of annihilation at the hand of the All-Defector. While I focused on the complaint of a dearth of explanation for terms introduced in the review of The Fractal Prince (mainly because Adam Robert’s review was so well-written (even when we didn’t fully draw the same conclusions) that I couldn’t bring myself to write a full review. In my review of The Causal Angel, I’ll focus on Mr. Rajaniemi’s detailed, precise and visceral descriptions that help mitigate a need for explanatory passages. In others, I continue my argument from The Fractal Prince focusing on the context of the terms introduced as a viable way to provide much of their meaning. Most of the reasons by I love The Quantum Thief apply here I’ll do this mostly to celebrate well-honed writing.

Please don’t read this review (or the book) if you haven’t already read The Quantum Thief and The Fractal Prince. While there are no spoilers for those that have, there may be some for those that haven’t. Read them in order, you’ll be lost if you don’t.

One of the hallmarks of good writing is that we don’t simply learn about the world of the story, we inhabit it. We see the rolling grasslands of Rohan as we feel the wind from the White Mountains tousle our hair. We ride the waves in the HMS Surprise as we smell the salt tang in the air. We are swept away in the hustle and bustle of the streets of London as the Artful Dodger weaves around another set of legs to reach in another pocket. The books by Messrs. Tolkien, O’Brian and Dickens all are examples of following Anton Chekhov famous writing advice: “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” We see this as well in The Causal Angel. A brief example of a place description is in an introduction to the Gun Club Zoku headquarters: “We drink dark tea in the mahogany-panelled drawing room of the Gun Club Zoku’s copper-and-brass sky-train. It rides smoothly along the bright golden curve of the Club’s orbital ring around Iapetus, fast enough to create a cosy half a g of artificial gravity. Our view of the Saturnian moon’s surface through the large, circular viewports is spectacular. We are above the Cassini Regio, a reddish-brown birthmark that stains the white of the icy surface.” While this passage doesn’t provide enough for you to know about Zokus, let alone a Gun Club Zuko, it does provide a picture of where they gather: a bit of old-world and steampunk.

For full review, see: http://wp.me/p2XCwQ-19a
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