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The Reality Dysfunction Part 1: Emergence Mass Market Paperback – Jul 1 1997

3.8 out of 5 stars 181 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Aspect; Warner Books ed edition (July 1 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446605158
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446605151
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 2.5 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars 181 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #440,210 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Amazon

This is space opera on an epic scale, with dozens of characters, hundreds of planets, universe-spanning plots, and settings that range from wooden huts and muddy villages to sentient starships and newborn suns. It's also the first part of a two-volume book that is itself the first book of a series. There's no question that there's a lot going on here (too much to even begin to detail the plot), but Hamilton handles it all with an ease reminiscent of E. E. "Doc" Smith. The best way to describe it: it's big, it's good, and luckily there's plenty more on the way.

About the Author

Peter F. Hamilton was born in Rutland in 1960, and still lives near Rutland Water with his wife and daughter. He began writing in 1987, and sold his first short story to Fear magazine in 1988. He has also been published in Interzone and the In Dreams and New Worlds anthologies, and several small-press publications. His previous novels include the Greg Mandel series: Mindstar Rising, A Quantum Murder and The Nano Flower and the 'Night's Dawn' trilogy: The Reality Dysfunction, The Neutronium Alchemist and The Naked God, which established him as Britain's bestselling writer of science fiction and a major name in global science fiction writing. His ten novels and one handbook (a vital guide to the 'Night's Dawn' trilogy) have sold almost two million copies worldwide.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I waited until I had read all six vols. of this marathon. Thus what I'm going to say relates to the entire series, not just this first part. As to the first part, it will suck you in with the hope that all of the following five long, long, long episodes are as good; they are not. Nothing about the final books is as good as the first, or even the second.
Marion Zimmer Bradley says (Why Stories Get Rejected) that one of the fatal errors of science fiction is resorting to some outside power to resolve the story rather than having the main character(s) do it on their own. This series has outside forces to spare. One is introduced in the first installment, but seems to be put in hibernation. But in each subsequent book more and more unexplainable outside forces, omipotent, all-intelligent, supra-normal, beings or forces come on the scene. And the end. . .well, let's just say the main characters DO NOT resolve the issues by themselves.
Another thing about this series that got my goat was the disappearance of primary characters at the drop of a word processor. The first two books and the middle two books (The Neutronium Alchemist) introduce a plot and characters that simply disappear on a single page toward the end of the fourth installment (oh, one of them comes back as a crew-member, but of no signifigance). This disregard for plot line and point-of-view really drove me crazy. I kept expecting them to come back right up to the end. For example, the main character has a brother suddenly show up and present a nice plot twist. Is the twist resolved? No, the brother just disappears into the background (as another crew member).
I realize that long, long, long series are all the rage in SF these days, but the last couple of books in this series don't make any sense.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the first part of a 6 book (3 2-part books) series spanning over 3500 pages. It is not actually 6 books or even 3, but one incredibly long novel. The breaks at the end of each book are strictly for purposes of publishing and binding, and have little or nothing to do with natural break points in the story. None of the books stands on its own, so don't even think about starting this one unless you intend to read all 3500+ pages.
I cannot fathom why the book is so long. I seems to me that it could have been shortened by at least 50% with absolutely no loss of content or style. But this is consistent with what appears to be an overall complete lack of editorial input throughout all the volumes. There are tons of grammatical errors and typos that could have been fixed by a decent editor but weren't. But these aside Hamilton is still only a mediocre writer who lacks the ability possessed in spades by colleagues like Bear, Brin and Benford.
The main plot idea is great - souls of dead people returning from the "beyond" to "possess" living humans. The universe that Hamilton constructs, with nanobiotech playing a central role is also fascinating.
However, although sounding like a hard sf novel, there is actually very little in the way of mechanistic explanations for any of the really cool stuff like "affinity bonding", a form of telepathy, or the "neural nanonic" implants that lots of folks have. Instead we are supposed to basically take all these things and more on faith.
The last 100 pages of the last book wrap things up in a nice neat little package, but in a way that is ultimately not very satisfying.
All in all, a valiant effort but one that the author couldn't quite pull off.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
For hard core Sci-Fi, the "Night's Dawn" Trilogy has it ALL!!!He-Man heroes, classy heroines, nasty bad guys (not to Even forget THE DEAD RETURNING!!!) New Worlds and Old;Aliens, space battles, suspense, intergalactic conflict and politics; who could ask for MORE? Starships, living space habitats, Biotech, Neurotech, Cyborgs, Genetic Engineering; it's all here; just be prepared to read nothing else for the next couple of MONTHS, 'cause this one is IT!! I originally was hooked into this Epic in the Hardcover Sci-Fi Book Club Edition, buying "The Neutronium Alchemist" first (somehow, I missed "The Reality Disfunction" when first offered; then had to wait another two weeks for that delivery rather than read the story out of sequence. THEN was forced to go through several cowhides, chewing leather and making a complete nuisance of myself until "The Naked God" was finally published and released in Nov. '99. BOTTOM LINE: If you're going to dive into this Epic, Buy the complete Trilogy as a complete set and be prepared to be enthralled by a whole new universe of the caliber of Heinlein, Asimov, or Clarke (and to stay for awhile!!!)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having just spent the best part of 6 weeks working my way through 3 volumes & the best part of 4000 pages, I can honestly say I have yet to read anything else like it in the SF genre. From astounding technologies & adventures, to a detailed examination of both the best & worst the human race has to offer, this series has it all.
I will not outline what this series is about - many other reviewers have done that more adroitly than I could possibly manage, but the journeys of Captain Joshua Calvert, intertwined with the people that he meets along the way, as well as the struggles of people such as Ione & Louise are incredibly detailed and offer you a realistic view of how the universe may unfold in 5-600 years time.
This, combined with Hamiltons insightful (& sometimes downright violent) views of human nature leave you wanting more.
You come out the other end of this series with a different perspective on "life, the universe & everything" to borrow a well known phrase.
Buy, Read & Enjoy. Just be prepared for many sleepless nights!
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