Off Armageddon Reef : Safehold

  • by David Weber
  • Narrated by Oliver Wyman
  • Series: Safehold
  • 30 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Humanity is in hiding. Invention, progress, change... all are forbidden. Now it's time to change all that. The science-fiction epic of the decade begins here.
When Earth herself lay under siege by an enemy humankind could not defeat, mankind undertook one last throw of the dice: Operation Ark. Earth's final colonizing expedition was meant to build a new civilization, on a planet so distant even the Gbaba might never find it and without the high-tech infrastructure whose emissions might betray its location.
Eight centuries later, a commander from that Expedition, Nimue Alban, woke up in a cave on a planet called Safehold. She was surprised to discover that the fanatic administrators of Operation Ark had used mind-control techniques to create a false, brutally suppressive religion whose entire purpose was to forbid invention and innovation forever.
But a tiny fraction within Operation Ark's leadership remembered the truth and believed in human dignity and freedom. They've given Nimue Alban a carefully hidden cache of technology and the capabilities of the android body in which her memories, loves, hopes, and dreams live on. Now it's her job to somehow provoke the technological progress and freedom of thought and belief that the Church of God Awaiting has worked centuries to crush.


What the Critics Say

"Gripping." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

David Weber always good

I admit to bias - I will pick up a David Weber book without glancing at the dust jacket to see what its about. Off Armageddon Reef does not disappoint. Set in a completely different universe from his other books, its a study from multiple political, scientific and religiuos viewpoints of the emergence of a medival/renaissance level society to industrial age sophistication, set against religous strictures forbidding the change - with good reason - but flawed execution. The characters are well drawn - even the bad guys aren't all bad.

As always with David Weber, you have to be willing to sit through detailed descriptions of how the technical stuff works. If you are the type that skips that part to get to the action, you may find yourself hitting fast forward occasionally. I found that listening to the descriptions was actually easier than reading them and ended up listening and Not skipping over the technical stuff.
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- Alison


Info Dump Central
Three and a half hours in and I am still getting long info dumps. We are told things for countless minutes, get a sentence or two from a character and than more telling by narrator. I also hated the whole premise. The fact that that humans would wipe out there memories so as not to remember an invading superior alien race and install a religion to keep themselves from technological advance and avoid detection from said alien race, just irked me to no end. That is not the human race I belong to. I was also expecting a more technological society, it is David Weber and look at the cover of the book. Instead it is a medieval society. I did not finish this and I will not continue the series.

Nothing New
This is not only not a new concept, but it could have been handled so much better. A story about people finding out that they have had their memories wiped and had a false religion with false demi gods installed would have been a lot more interesting.
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- Jim "The Impatient"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-26-2006
  • Publisher: Macmillan Audio