Manhattan in Reverse by Peter F. Hamilton
I’ve been meaning to read Peter F. Hamilton for years. I own a few of his books, but I haven’t read them yet. If you’re familiar with Hamilton, I’ll bet you know why. His books are HUGE, and most of them are part of a series. Every time I look at them on my shelf, they scream “MAJOR TIME COMMITMENT,” so there they stay. Thus, I was pleased to come across Manhattan in Reverse, a slim and inviting collection of seven stories by Peter F. Hamilton:
“Watching Trees Grow” — This novella was originally published by PS publishing in 2000. It’s a murder mystery that’s set in an alternate England which progressed, technologically, much more rapidly than our real world has. There are only a handful of serious suspects, but the investigation takes more than 200 years while Edward Buchanan Raleigh doggedly pursues the culprit as technology advances to th... Read More
Peter F. Hamilton(1960- )
Peter F. Hamilton was born on March 2, 1960 and grew up in Rutland, England. He attended a science school. Hamilton sold his first short story in 1988 and his first novel, Mindstar Rising, 1993. He has had more than ten books published. Hamilton still lives in Rutland with his wife and two children. To find out more about this writer or to ask him about his work, visit Peter F. Hamilton’s website.
Manhattan in Reverse by Peter F. Hamilton
Greg Mandel — (1992-1995) Publisher: It’s the 21st century and global warming is here to stay, so forget the way your country used to look. And get used to the free market, too — the companies possess all the best hardware, and they’re calling the shots now. In a world like this, a man open to any offers can make out just fine. A man like Greg Mandel for instance, who’s psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensory equipment, carrying state-of-the-art weaponry — and late of the English Army’s Mindstar Battalion. As the cartels battle for control of a revolutionary new power source, and corporate greed outstrips national security, tension is mounting to boiling point — and Greg Mandel is about to face the ultimate test.
Night’s Dawn — (1996-2000) A Second Chance at Eden is a story collection. The Confederation Handbook is a companion guide. Escape Route is a related short story on audio. Publisher: Space is not the only void… In AD 2600 the human race is finally beginning to realize its full potential. Hundreds of colonized planets scattered across the galaxy host a multitude of prosperous and wildly diverse cultures. Genetic engineering has pushed evolution far beyond nature’s boundaries, defeating disease and producing extraordinary spaceborn creatures. Huge fleets of sentient trader starships thrive on the wealth created by the industrialization of entire star systems. And throughout inhabited space the Confederation Navy keeps the peace. A true golden age is within our grasp. But now something has gone catastrophically wrong. On a primitive colony planet a renegade criminal’s chance encounter with an utterly alien entity unleashes the most primal of all our fears. An extinct race which inhabited the galaxy aeons ago called it “The Reality Dysfunction.” It is the nightmare which has prowled beside us since the beginning of history. This is a modern classic of science fiction, an extraordinary feat of storytelling on a truly epic scale.
Commonwealth Saga — (2004-2005) Publisher: Critics have compared the engrossing space operas of Peter F. Hamilton to the classic sagas of such sf giants as Isaac Asimov and Frank Herbert. But Hamilton’s bestselling fiction—powered by a fearless imagination and world-class storytelling skills—has also earned him comparison to Tolstoy and Dickens. Hugely ambitious, wildly entertaining, philosophically stimulating: the novels of Peter F. Hamilton will change the way you think about science fiction. Now, with Pandora’s Star, he begins a new multivolume adventure, one that promises to be his most mind-blowing yet. The year is 2380. The Intersolar Commonwealth, a sphere of stars some four hundred light-years in diameter, contains more than six hundred worlds, interconnected by a web of transport “tunnels” known as wormholes. At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth, astronomer Dudley Bose observes the impossible: Over one thousand light-years away, a star… vanishes. It does not go supernova. It does not collapse into a black hole. It simply disappears. Since the location is too distant to reach by wormhole, a faster-than-light starship, the Second Chance, is dispatched to learn what has occurred and whether it represents a threat. In command is Wilson Kime, a five-time rejuvenated ex-NASA pilot whose glory days are centuries behind him. Opposed to the mission are the Guardians of Selfhood, a cult that believes the human race is being manipulated by an alien entity they call the Starflyer. Bradley Johansson, leader of the Guardians, warns of sabotage, fearing the Starflyer means to use the starship’s mission for its own ends. Pursued by a Commonwealth special agent convinced the Guardians are crazy but dangerous, Johansson flees. But the danger is not averted. Aboard the Second Chance, Kime wonders if his crew has been infiltrated. Soon enough, he will have other worries. A thousand light-years away, something truly incredible is waiting: a deadly discovery whose unleashing will threaten to destroy the Commonwealth… and humanity itself. Could it be that Johansson was right?
The Void Trilogy — (2007-2010) Publisher: Reviewers exhaust superlatives when it comes to the science fiction of Peter F. Hamilton. His complex and engaging novels, which span thousands of years–and light-years–are as intellectually stimulating as they are emotionally fulfilling. Now, with The Dreaming Void, the eagerly awaited first volume in a new trilogy set in the same far-future as his acclaimed Commonwealth saga, Hamilton has created his most ambitious and gripping space epic yet. The year is 3589, fifteen hundred years after Commonwealth forces barely staved off human extinction in a war against the alien Prime. Now an even greater danger has surfaced: a threat to the existence of the universe itself. At the very heart of the galaxy is the Void, a self-contained microuniverse that cannot be breached, cannot be destroyed, and cannot be stopped as it steadily expands in all directions, consuming everything in its path: planets, stars, civilizations. The Void has existed for untold millions of years. Even the oldest and most technologically advanced of the galaxy’s sentient races, the Raiel, do not know its origin, its makers, or its purpose. But then Inigo, an astrophysicist studying the Void, begins dreaming of human beings who live within it. Inigo’s dreams reveal a world in which thoughts become actions and dreams become reality. Inside the Void, Inigo sees paradise. Thanks to the gaiafield, a neural entanglement wired into most humans, Inigo’s dreams are shared by hundreds of millions — and a religion, the Living Dream, is born, with Inigo as its prophet. But then he vanishes. Suddenly there is a new wave of dreams. Dreams broadcast by an unknown Second Dreamer serve as the inspiration for a massive Pilgrimage into the Void. But there is a chance that by attempting to enter the Void, the pilgrims will trigger a catastrophic expansion, an accelerated devourment phase that will swallow up thousands of worlds. And thus begins a desperate race to find Inigo and the mysterious Second Dreamer. Some seek to prevent the Pilgrimage; others to speed its progress — while within the Void, a supreme entity has turned its gaze, for the first time, outward…
Watching Trees Grow — (2000) Publisher: Peter Hamilton brings his trademark flair for narrative sweep and epic ideas to a short novel that tells the story of an near-immortal mankind that grew from the Roman Empire. Paired with WATCHING TREES GROW is TENDELEO’S STORY the Theodore Sturgeon award-winning new Chaga short novel from the acclaimed Ian McDonald.
Fallen Dragon — (2001) Publisher: Born in a colony world in 2310, Lawrence Newton hankered after the golden era of starships exploring the galaxy. But the age of human starflight was drawing to a close, so this hot-heated teenager ran away from home in search of adventure. Twenty years later, he’s the sergeant of a washed-out platoon taking part in the bungled invasion of another world. The giant corporations call such campaigns ‘asset realization’, but in practice it’s simple piracy. While he’s on the ground, being shot at and firebombed by local resistance forces, Lawrence hears stories about the Temple of the Fallen Dragon — and a sect devoted to the worship of a mythical creature that fell to the ground millennia ago. More importantly, its priests are said to guard a hoard of treasure large enough to buy lifelong happiness — which information prompts him to mount a private-enterprise operation of his own.
Misspent Youth — (2002) Publisher: Readers have learned to expect the unexpected from Peter F. Hamilton. Now the master of space opera focuses on near-future Earth and one most unusual family. The result is a coming-of-age tale like no other. By turns comic, erotic, and tragic, Misspent Youth is a profound and timely exploration of all that divides and unites fathers and sons, men and women, the young and the old. 2040. After decades of concentrated research and experimentation in the field of genetic engineering, scientists of the European Union believe they have at last conquered humankind’s most pernicious foe: old age. For the first time, technology holds out the promise of not merely slowing the aging process but actually reversing it. The ancient dream of the Fountain of Youth seems at hand. The first subject for treatment is seventy-eight-year-old philanthropist Jeff Baker. After eighteen months in a rejuvenation tank, Jeff emerges looking like a twenty-year-old. And the change is more than skin deep. From his hair cells down to his DNA, Jeff is twenty–with a breadth of life experience. But while possessing the wisdom of a septuagenarian at age twenty is one thing, raging testosterone is another, as Jeff discovers when he attempts to pick up his life where he left off. Suddenly his oldest friends seem, well, old. Jeff’s trophy wife looks better than she ever did. His teenage son, Tim, is more like a younger brother. And Tim’s nubile girlfriend is a conquest too tempting to resist. Jeff’s rejuvenated libido wreaks havoc on the lives of his friends and family, straining his relationship with Tim to the breaking point. It’s as if youth is a drug and Jeff is wasted on it. But if so, it’s an addiction he has no interest in kicking. As Jeff’s personal life spirals out of control, the European Union undergoes a parallel meltdown, attacked by shadowy separatist groups whose violent actions earn both condemnation and applause. Now, in one terrifying instant, the personal and the political will intersect, and neither Jeff nor Tim – or the Union itself – will ever be the same again.
If at First … — (2011) Publisher: Peter F. Hamilton has proven himself a modern master of epic space opera, carrying the tradition of far-future empire building begun by Heinlein and Asimov into the new millennium. But Hamilton is also a master of the short story, and when he tackles one of science fiction’s most enduring themes — time travel — the result is as provocative as it is entertaining. It starts in 2007 with a break-in. The victim: Marcus Orthew, the financial and technological genius behind Orthanics, the computer company whose radical products have delivered a one-two punch to the industry, all but knocking PCs and Macs out of the ring. The perpetrator: a man obsessed with Orthew. Just another simple case of celebrity stalking — or so everyone assumes at first, including Metropolitan Police Chief Detective David Lanson. But when Lanson interviews the suspect, he makes a startling claim: Orthew is from the future. Or, rather, a future — a parallel timeline. Thus begins the ride of a lifetime for Lanson, as his pursuit of the facts tumbles him headlong down a rabbit hole — and the hunter finds himself hunted.
Great North Road — (2012) Publisher: New York Times bestselling author Peter F. Hamilton’s riveting new thriller combines the nail-biting suspense of a serial-killer investigation with clear-eyed scientific and social extrapolation to create a future that seems not merely plausible but inevitable. A century from now, thanks to a technology allowing instantaneous travel across light-years, humanity has solved its energy shortages, cleaned up the environment, and created far-flung colony worlds. The keys to this empire belong to the powerful North family — composed of successive generations of clones. Yet these clones are not identical. For one thing, genetic errors have crept in with each generation. For another, the original three clone “brothers” have gone their separate ways, and the branches of the family are now friendly rivals more than allies. Or maybe not so friendly. At least that’s what the murder of a North clone in the English city of Newcastle suggests to Detective Sidney Hurst. Sid is a solid investigator who’d like nothing better than to hand off this hot potato of a case. The way he figures it, whether he solves the crime or not, he’ll make enough enemies to ruin his career. Yet Sid’s case is about to take an unexpected turn: because the circumstances of the murder bear an uncanny resemblance to a killing that took place years ago on the planet St. Libra, where a North clone and his entire household were slaughtered in cold blood. The convicted slayer, Angela Tramelo, has always claimed her innocence. And now it seems she may have been right. Because only the St. Libra killer could have committed the Newcastle crime. Problem is, Angela also claims that the murderer was an alien monster. Now Sid must navigate through a Byzantine minefield of competing interests within the police department and the world’s political and economic elite… all the while hunting down a brutal killer poised to strike again. And on St. Libra, Angela, newly released from prison, joins a mission to hunt down the elusive alien, only to learn that the line between hunter and hunted is a thin one.