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Publisher's Summary

What would happen to the world if the sun went out?

New epic sci-fi from Stephen Baxter, the award-winning author whose credits include co-authorship of the Long Earth series with Terry Pratchett.

By the middle of the 21st century, humanity has managed to overcome a series of catastrophic events and maintain some sense of stability. Space exploration has begun again. Science has led the way.

But then one day, the sun goes out. Solar panels are useless, and the world begins to freeze.

Earth begins to fall out of its orbit.

The end is nigh.

Someone has sent us a sign.

©2021 Stephen Baxter (P)2021 Gollancz

What listeners say about Galaxias

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Not a bad idea for a story.

The story's premise is a good one although it seemed to me that more time was spent on touchy feely interactions than any substantial scientific story. Also, it was difficult to tell which character was talking at any given time since one of the characters name sounded to like the pronoun 'she' and the narrator had no variance in the voices. I would probably get a refund except that the idea behind the book was a good one.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Disappointing Book & Narrator

The story has an interesting concept but the execution is, unfortunately, not very good. The story moves at a glacial pace with forgettable characters. Worse, a lot of concepts and situations get reiterated over and over again.

The narrator is adequate but does not provide any voices for the characters, except for a minor character that appears late in the story. Inexplicably the British narrator does a full character voice in a Texan drawl for this one character and ignores everyone else.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Bureaucratic scifi with monotonous narrator

Don't be fooled by the cool premise or opening chapters, or even its 2021 covid era relevancy. This is BORING scifi, with a primary pov of someone whose sole plot function seems to be to sit in government or tech meetings and ask stupid questions. Maybe 10% of the book was actually interesting when we get out of the tedious bureaucratic life to see glimpses of the long global implications of the novel's initial event that sets everything else in motion. ("Everything else" = endless in-novel lectures and mind numbing think tank [generously] discussion.) All this read in a calm monotonous tone by someone with a lovely voice but zero effort at characterization or delineating characters for the listener. This is even more confusing because one of the main character's names (Xi?) sounds exactly like "she" and the narrator uses the same voice modulation for every character except for one inexplicable and laughable texan drawl lol. Characters make dumb choices and repeat obvious facts and treat everything like it's a grade school guest lecture. Pinnacle of stupidity (and a major plot climax? maybe? hard to tell with this tps reports level snoozer) is the whole episode with a secret service guard and a top secret science meeting with a foreign spy -- made me want to bang my head against a wall. Stuck it out just to see if there was a big bang of a payoff but no. It ends with a jump cut and a whimper. Yawn. I would love to know exactly what inspired the author to write a cool potentially apocalyptic story from an inert steno pads view. Because that's what listening to this novel felt like.

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Baxter achieved something unbelievable

This book is a living proof you can write about first contact with a galactic super civilization, able the move our sun in a blink - in a completely boring way.

Gigatonnes of exposition, all telling and no show - with excepts from a high school physics book to make things even more indigestible and boring.

I love hard SF - Alastair Reynolds, Andy Weir, Peter Hamilton - and I don't need car chases and shootouts to enjoy it.

This book though was a chore, tedious and exhausting.

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Disappointing because I've loved his other stuff

It starts out ok but quickly becomes a weird slog that isn't sci-fi anymore.

I fully loved the Time Odyssey series and the Proxima/Ultima series and was really disappointed.

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Couldn't finish

Very disappointed in this author. I have always loved his earlier novels. This novel is just some woke introspective dribble. He has managed to shoe horn in a current social talking point into every piece of the story.

Not much to see here folks, move along

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  • LU
  • 11-07-21

Horrible narrator

The Narrator has no range. All the male characters sound like women. This distracts from the richness of the storyline which is quite good. In fact the storyline is one of the best I’ve ever heard but it’s really diminished by poor narration.

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This is what I've been waiting for?

This is a disappointment. I've enjoyed Stephen Baxter in the past. The time Odyssey stuff with Arthur C Clarke's were impressive and I was kind of hoping for lightning to strike twice. This story religious logs and drags on. I kept waiting for the climax and it just feels like it never comes. Also the choice of narrator was ill-advised. I'm sure she's fine and some other context but here she is just so banal and uninteresting. Monotone. She's like the female Wil Wheaton. I feel like she was hired for her identity and not her actual skill. And it's painful what a disappointment wasted a credit on this after waiting months in anticipation.

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  • hobbes
  • 12-13-21

Big ideas drowned by small characters and baffling narration.

As usual with Baxter's work there are huge, mind blowing ideas here. And also as usual with Baxter they're hidden behind weirdly stilted unrealistic dialogue serving as exposition.
Usually that's bearable, however the narrator has made the baffling choice of not putting any character into the characters. It's read in a steady tone without accent, inflection or changes in pitch, so every voice is exactly the same. It therefore becomes impossible to follow who is speaking. This is compounded by one of the (male) character's names being pronounced "she"
Fine if you're looking at words on the page, maddeningly confusing if you're not and the narrator refuses to differentiate etween characters.
All in all its a fairly ordinarily book made less good by poor choices from the narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Pete+Heather
  • 02-07-22

Good premise bad execution

A great start. The Sun disappears. WOW!

Unfortunately I was quickly irritated by bloated, boring and plain irrelevant interactions between the characters in the book and the drivel they constantly harped on about.

Add a ton of - again irrelevant - blundering around a political landscape which offers no real value to the plot development, an unrealistic solution to the threat and one of the worst endings I have ever read in a Sci Fi book meant this was a real miss for me. It felt like the author realised he had run out of words (or the will to live writing the book) and threw in a bodged ending to get rid of the book.

Sadly I didn't like the narration also. It felt as if the narrator was reading a book to a 12 year old. I've read a lot of Baxter from years ago and I do rate his earlier work highly but this is not up to scratch.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Basil Lange
  • 04-19-22

not the book for me

Trying to into the story. it's not grabbing. the intonation of the reader. the many names. Liked the intro and the concept. But I'm halfway now and the book never got rolling. Have read several Stephen Baxter books and loved them and came out with new ideas. This just makes me want to reread three body problem....

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-31-21

Great premise.. didn’t deliver.

Disappointed. I don’t want to give away spoilers, but I think the publishers description was a bit misleading. All the action occurred in the first chapter. Yep the sun disappeared! But was then returned 24hrs later.

What happened? Well the rest of the book was a series of meetings and conferences where the main characters discuss that very question and decide what to do about it. It was incredibly bland. The characters where nice, and bland. There were bland references to the ongoing impact of the suns disappearance on earth. There mild bland political disagreements between major world powers.

The narrator was ok. I liked her voice, she didn’t attempt any accents so there was no differentiation between voices, which was ok. Until weirdly in the last quarter of the book she managed to produce a southern US accent for a minor character. I think she also changed the pronunciation of a persons name late in the book too.

I only finished it because I was intrigued about the conclusion, even that was disappointing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jason
  • 12-28-21

One of his best in a long time.

Very enjoyable, easily one of his best in a long time. Lots of interesting ideas make it quite thought provoking imo.