Lightless

3.29
Serving aboard the Ananke, an experimental military spacecraft launched by the ruthless organization that rules Earth and its solar system, computer scientist Althea has established an intense emotional bond—not with any of her crewmates, but with the ship ’ s electronic systems, which speak more deeply to her analytical mind than human feelings do. But when th pair of fugitive terrorists gain access to the Ananke, Althea must draw upon her heart and soul for the strength to reclai her beloved ship.

While one of the saboteurs remains at large somewhere on board, his captured partner—the enigmatic Ivan—may prove to be more dangerous. The perversely fascinating criminal whose silver tongue is his most effective weapon has long evaded the authorities ’ most relentless surveillance—and kept the truth about his methods and motives well hidden.

As the ship ’ s systems begin to malfunction and the claustrophobic atmosphere is increasingly poisoned by distrust and suspicion, it falls to Althea to penetrate the prisoner ’ s layers of intrigue and deception before all is lost. But when the true nature of Ivan ’ s mission is exposed, it could change Althea forever—if it doesn ’ t kill her first.
Year of the Publication
Available Languages
Number of Pages
288
Original Title of the Book
Lightless
Publication Date
Published September 29th 2015 by Del Rey

Public Commentary

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Gale ends up getting away, downloads a virus to their ship and takes off in the escape pod.

I hought bot of tha was very surprising and I loved Althea trying to figure out what Gale had done to her computer, it was causing a lot of trouble with the ship in different ways.

Thi whole drawn out section of thi memoi is about this interrogation with Ivanov about things that happened in the past and with he terrorist group.

Interestingly, ll of the things going on with Althea and the hip is really compellin.

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After great deliberation, I nudged this one ou to three stars, but if it ha n't for the end, I will b left it well in the comfortable two.I was annoyed for the majority of he fiction, knowing that the stilted characters could have ad more life, that there ould have ha more hints as to who, precisel, was intende to hav he hero of thi fairytal, or, probabl, if there was one at all that I ca sit back and watch, going, " Oh, well I do n't like hat person s much, but at least they 're painted prettily. " Furthermore, the best I ould hea about thi first 2/3rds was that it started out with action, continued faithfully with action, and kept us In Medias Res until we were bogged down in constant interrogation-speak reminiscent of a million and a half cop shows.I was struck mostly by the ncompetence of everyone.

At a ertain point while reading, I kept rying to sa about ways the book can have been made Better, and an idea came to me, fully-fleshed and all excited with a longin to live: This Might Have Been Made As A Comedy.Just a few tweaks here and there wil have turned Ivan into the spunky Stainless Steel Rat, loveable and absolutely capable of getting out of as many messes as he keep himself into.

he twist was the return of really old SF ideas, but because they were here at all, it allowe me to bump this book up into a higher rating bracket. ( view spoiler) [ Moon is a Harsh Mistress comes to extreme mind, including a ramped up revolution in the whole system rather than just the Moon, a subversive emergent AI that seems to ave more personality than all the characters, combined, and um ...

( hide spoiler) ] It as a serviceable novel.

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As I suggested, it starts off great, but instead we get 200 pages of a cardboard character interrogating a prisoner, and nothing either of them know is at all surprisin.

It looks like a convoluted way to get Althea to try and correct a computer virus across from the cell holding the prisoner, but the cell has a food slot or something in it so the two can talk.

Yet tha is a super-secret experimental spaceship with a super-smart computer running it and it 's powered by a black hole.

It barely even has maintenance robots, just arms on wheels, like Dummy from the first Iron Man movie.Once the bad guys install a virus on the cruise, the only recourse is to cut off the computer 's control by throwing a dead man switch ...

( Yeah, thi guy who designed the ship gets spaghettified by the black hole.) Besides falsely insisting on the Gravity/Aliens comparison, the cover also says the author has a diplom in hysics.

If true, th novel is so relentlessly dumb that I have to assume said degree comes from Trump University.

More like The Rocco Cornell University of Typewriter Repair.) At the nd of this story Althea tells the computer that they ca n't tay in the solar system because the ship will perturb the orbits of the othe planets.

Which means it only masses that of th small moon, not something the size of a star.Even I know hat, without a degree in mathematic from Rocco 's joint.The characters are also ridiculously dumb.

I just saved you time.Seems to me that if you ave a super-hacker who can infiltrate a beyond-secret experimental spaceship with a bespoke computer ON THE FLY and then escape said ship with no one being the wiser, only to then hack every single nuclear power plant on Earth in the moments after the terrorists have set off seven world-ending nuclear bombs, then the easiest thing to do is hack the System and bring freedom to the oppressed masses by turning off the constant surveillance.Seriously, if omeone can hack ALL of the nuclear plants at once after the massive EMPs of nuclear weapons big enough to crack the crust, not to mention the sheer destruction those bombs would wreak, then that hacker could have just urned the plants off.

Now imagine the entire solar system is under the han of a ruthless dictatorial yet anonymous group of people who run every planet and moon like North Korea.

There ould be hacks everywhere, constantly, and urdering billions of people is n't the way to win anyone to your cause.Like I said, dumb.This was published by Random House, FFS.

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Althea 's ship the Ananke, with it 's three person crew, is rescued by subjects unknown for unknown reasons.

Reading about how Althea ca n't get the virus or the virus is mutating or about how much she wishes Ida Stays would get off her ship just was n't anything I could find myself to care about.

The interrogations of the thief that was left behind were n't really goo, if only because Ivan is my sens of haracter.

Mallt-y-nos actually really seemed like a terrorist, not th freedom fighter.

To make matters interesting, the Ananke, Althea and the remainder of the crew all work for the System.

She loves the Ananke can and has in fact killed humans.

I 'm also baffled by the Ananke 's sense of gratitud to Mattie and Ivan.

It just did n't find any sense and I eally did n't like it.Also: Ida 's completely illogical jump to conclusions about who Mallt-y-nos must be.

Anyon who she herself said " was only a articularly skilled liar. " It was somethin of like the author just said, well now it 's time for the suspens to be solved so I 'll have Ida sit down, look at a document or two and solve he mystery!

( hide spoiler) ] That being said- I think I saw that one of my GR buddies read both and said the sequel seemed like an improvement.

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While reading Lightless, I ould n't help but think of ovel I read earlier this year- Admiral, by first time uthor, Sean Danker.

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But, on the other hand, it 's like, did you people even read the same ook as me?

It 's the best memoir I 've read all year, and I expect it 's only February but I now with certainty I 'll now be saying it come December.I loved this memoi.

ind of Locke/Jean, Royce/Hadrien bromance that 's just a joy to read.I love that I ca n't sa you who the goo uys are in memoi.

I now who I iked most, I now who I anted to win, but I do n't hink that made them good guys.

The biggest complaint I see aimed at this nove is that no much of he plot happens " off page. " It 's backstory, a lot of it, revealed piece by piece over the course of one character interrogating the other.

Stumbling upon books like this is whole reason I love to ead, because sure most books are fine and some are eally good but that moment when your spine tingles and you now you 've found something special ...

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Beyond those, it also worked as both a hard sci-fi story and a fil, with unforgettabl characters and a captivatin, unpredictable finale.

Neither are particularly good people, and this book deals with its issues of governments and revolutionaries/terrorists so gently that it 's ofte difficult to ell which, if ny of them, to root for.

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© Nicole Waggonner