Cibola Burn is the fourth novel of The Expanse series, and at this point I’m reading as much to see what the authors do with the protomolecule as to see how humanity reacts to it. Some thoughts:
- I get that that there are narrative advantages to keeping the same characters throughout, but I’m a bit tired of the crew of the Rocinante as the best at everything. Yes, they’re very talented, but they keep surviving a lot of scrapes that probably should have killed them. I also did not see the need to reward the UN player, but that’s me.
- That said, I really could not put this down, as the idea of ancient alien defense systems that we cannot comprehend is fascinating, even if at times it feels a bit Starcraftish…
- Miller as construct is an interesting device through which we can get some sort of glimpse as to what the protomolecule has developed. Being inside its head makes it easier to understand.
- The constant desire to talk about our primate brain, the ease with which we start killing other, strikes me as a necessary corollary to the what feels like me as an underlying, hey science and technology are great and will solve all of our problems that often feels like the assumed attitude in scifi.
- My guess is that, with the revelation that the creators of the protomolecule had enemies, we will find out that the protomolecule was sent out as a last ditch effort to save their civilization.
- I am hoping that they can find some way to wrap this up that is worthy of the big ideas and the reawakening of the space opera that they have created, but I know that will tough. I think part of the reason scifi moved away from the space opera is because the only available plot resolutions are big space battle sort of things. Corey avoids that in these, but if they do not finish the series with that sort of battle then I will give them huge props.