Leviathan Wakes : The Expanse

  • by James S. A. Corey
  • Narrated by Jefferson Mays
  • Series: The Expanse
  • 20 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The first book in the landmark Expanse series, now a major television series from Syfy!
Leviathan Wakes is James S. A. Corey's first novel in the epic New York Times best-selling series The Expanse, a modern masterwork of science fiction in which humanity has colonized the solar system.
Two hundred years after migrating into space, mankind is in turmoil. When a reluctant ship's captain and washed-up detective find themselves involved in the case of a missing girl, what they discover brings our solar system to the brink of civil war and exposes the greatest conspiracy in human history.
The Expanse
Leviathan Wakes
Caliban's War
Abaddon's Gate
Cibola Burn
Nemesis Games
Babylon's Ashes
The Expanse Short Fiction
The Butcher of Anderson Station
Gods of Risk
The Churn
The Vital Abyss

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Started a love affair with hard sci fi

My husband and I watched The Expanse on Amazon Prime a couple of months ago. It was good but not great. I am not a hard sci fi consumer. I usually go more towards sci fi/fantasy or sci fi that is not has heavy on the sci part. I decided to check out the book that The Expanse was adapted from because the book is always better than the movie or tv series (it is a law of the universe which someday scientist will discover written with stars). I am really, really glad I did.

Leviathan Wakes is the first book in The Expanse series. The TV series uses seasons 1 and 2 to cover the story. There are significant differences between the series and the book, all of them lining up on “the book is better” side.

Leviathan Wakes takes place in mankind's future. We have spread ourselves through our solar system but have not quite reached the stars yet. There are humans living on moons of Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and in the large planetoids within the belt between Mars and Jupiter. People have been born, lived and died outside of Earth’s gravity. There are physical and cultural differences between Earthers, Martians and Belters which create a tense political situation.

The story is told from several points of view, all third person.
Julie: a poor little rich girl leaving her privileged life behind to fight for the rights of Belters
Holder: an Earther, now serving as the XO on an ice hauler
Miller: a Belter and native of Ceres who serves as a cop
Fred: an Earther and former United Nations general who now fights for the rights of Belters
Ninety-five percent is told from Holden and Miller’s viewpoints. It gives the story a much better diversity of scope than had it just been from only Earthers or Belters. There are several other characters who have large parts in the story. There is diversity in gender, ethnicity, politics, and where they call home in the solar system.

Jefferson Mays narrates this almost twenty-one hour epic. At no point did my attention lag or wonder. He really brings all the tension and wonder to life through his voice. I am currently trying to figure out how I can possible afford the rest of the series right now instead of waiting for sales or a birthday. It is just incredible. I think I may have started a love affair with hard science fiction thanks to James S. A. Corey, Andy Weir and the wonderful narrators of their books.
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- N. H.

If I knew that this really wasnt hard sci fi...

What would have made Leviathan Wakes better?

At the begining of the book we find that some bio something or the other kills people. Turns out it is alien unexplainable might as well be magic. It sucks because the rest of the book is hardish sci fi. Dont know how many chapters it takes from introducing it to finding out what it is, but it might as well be magic, and the book would be significantly better without the alien goo. In all honesty its not needed.

Several hours in one of the characters starts going insane. Hate it when characters in sci fi dont know whats real or not real, since its a story, nothing in a story is actual real. The matrix is probably the only story I can think of that pulled this off.

Furthermore once one of the characters starts a freaking second war I could no longer take the book seriously and since its kinda a serious book I just stopped listening.


Would you ever listen to anything by James S. A. Corey again?

I dont know but I wont listen to the rest of this series.


Which scene was your favorite?

Honestly I couldnt tell you, there were some moments where plot came together and it was nice but nothing really jumps out


You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

it had a good voice actor.


Any additional comments?

This author seems to think that cussing and mentioning prostitution a bunch develops character. But for me it just seemed to make the characters boorish.

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- Caleb

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-30-2017
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio