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Nanoflower completes the Greg Mandel trilogy. Compared to the first two installments, Greg is now comfortably middle aged, a father with 4 kids (and one on the way), and a respected and successful fruit grower. Over the intervening 15 years since Quantum Murder, Julia Evans has healed Royan, they've become lovers, and have their own children all while continuing to run Event Horizon.
The story unfolds with Julie receiving a "flower" that appears to be of alien origin and points to Royan who has been missing. Julie engages Greg to track him down. At the time, rumors of a next generation technology begin surfacing resulting in a second made scramble. Greg goes up against a psychopathic techmerc following the same leads for the flower and the technology. The action is fast and furious, and nearly nonstop. While the eventual resolution is not unexpected, the denouement is still surprising.
Hamilton really begins to flex his muscles as a sci-fi grandmaster with this tale. The resulting alien biology (and microbiology) is refreshingly original and well detailed. Computer personalities are extended and space mining and colony settlements are ongoing. At its heart, this is a love story with multiple couples, each re-enforcing the theme. Perhaps the only legitimate criticism is the introduction of some new psy powers for Greg that while critical to the plot could have nevertheless been at least alluded to earlier. The narrator also deserves kudos for a fantastic range of voices.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
Where the first two installments of the Mandel Trilogy showed great potential, The Nano Flower has Hamilton hitting his stride as an author showing why he is one of the best fiction writers working today. Excellent character development, well conceived plot, believable human reactions and an incredibly well conceived universe make for a great listen. While not offering up the multiple plots and immense complexity of his later works, the plot is complex and interesting in a way not often seen in SciFi. Excellent editing keeps the pace high enough to hold your interest but not at the expense of dialogue and scene setting. Toby Longworth's excellent narration made the book even better as his consistency of individual characters and variation among voices is first rate.
This book makes me hope Audible is working hard to bring even more of Hamilton's works to the format!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
I genuinely enjoyed this final audiobook of the series. It's feels set on a grander scale though as cyberpunk meets Space Opera and I think that Hamilton just about made it. That said I didn't think that the narration was as consistently good as the previous books and it felt as though the author let the plot get slightly away from him.
It's still a good conclusion to the series and very well worth a read. It once again combines a mystery with the science fiction and the characters are clearly important to the author and receive sympathetic finales to their nature.
I will look out for more titles by Hamilton in the future.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful
The narration was excellent of course. The editing could have been better. The occasional sound of page flipping is something you can live with of course since the story and conclusion are great. Top notch!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
I have had this series since they came out in print. The narrator does full justice to the wide range of characters. Only problem is that there aren't any more in this series.
had to listen twice to soak in the detail and subtlety of the story. engrossing.