• Inhibitor Phase

  • By: Alastair Reynolds
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 19 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (669 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A stellar new science-fiction adventure from the author who redefined space opera, set in his best-selling Revelation Space universe.

For 30 years, a tiny band of humans has been sheltering in the caverns of an airless, crater-pocked world called Michaelmas. Beyond their solar system lie the ruins of human interstellar civilization, stalked by a ruthless, infinitely patient cybernetic entity determined to root out the last few bands of survivors. One man has guided the people of Michaelmas through the hardest of times and given them hope against the wolves: Miguel de Ruyter.

When a lone human ship blunders into their system and threatens to lead the wolves to Michaelmas, de Ruyter embarks on a desperate, near-suicide mission to prevent catastrophe. But an encounter with a refugee from the ship - the enigmatic woman who calls herself only Glass - leads to de Ruyter's world being turned upside down.

©2021 Alastair Reynolds (P)2021 Orbit

What listeners say about Inhibitor Phase

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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A little advice

Although this book is written so that it can be read as a stand alone, I strongly recommend against it. You will miss much of the subtext and much of the fun of this book comes from finding the answers to loose threads from previous books. So, if you haven't read any of the Revelation Space books DO NOT START HERE. And, if you haven't read the others, you should because they are wonderful. In spite of the order Audible has them listed, start with Chasm City, and then Revelation Space, Redemption Ark, Absolution Gap, and Galactic North. Although there are other books within the Revelation Space series, those 5 are the ones that really provide the setup for Inhibitor Phase.

This is the first of a new trilogy in Revelation Space so it isn't too surprising that it is a little slower than some Reynolds books - it is setting up the action that will surely come in the next two books. I am not going to really review the book because if you have read the series, you are getting the book no matter what anyway. And, if you haven't read the series yet, you shouldn't start with this book. I will make a comment about the narration just because I was a little peeved. Like most listeners, I really like most books narrated by John Lee and his performance in this one is good. However, I was REALLY disappointed that he completely changed the voices for returning characters and no excuse - John Lee originated those voices! I know there has been a gap in time between the original recordings and this new book in the series, but really, John, go back and check yourself.

Bottom line, I am so happy that Alastair Reynolds is continuing in the RS Universe. It is so huge and wonderful and he clearly has plenty more stories to tell.

23 people found this helpful

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God, kill me now!

I have become so spoiled by Reynolds's unparalleled story telling that all the rest are just tripe. Truly no one measures up. I wish he could crank them out like the rest, but the result might place him in the ranks of the average. This has been the most compelling book series I've ever run across.

11 people found this helpful

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Even an opera should be edited

I like long stories that span space and time. This is one of them. Reynolds has a great ability to create alternative worlds and populate them with unusual characters. Unfortunately, he very often gets caught up in one section of the story that just drags on and on. Then suddenly, we move on to an ending that simply sets up the next book, and you are left wondering what it was all about. I hesitate to call it filler, but I wish the entire story had moved a little more forward in the great arc of the series. One day this will be a boxed set that one can just download and wail through all at once. Some day.

3 people found this helpful

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Fantastic as expected

with Reynolds already becoming one of my favorite writers 😍 I have just stumbled upon the next book series obsession in the Revelation Space series. I can't wait to read them all in order now lol. the only reason I'm giving it 4stars is because nothing can beat House of Suns.

2 people found this helpful

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How the mighty are fallen

Every couple of years I revisit Alastair Reynolds. I remember reading Revelation space some 20 years ago in college and having my mind blown. He was never again able to write anything of that quality, but for the next decade his stuff was still worth reading. Then something happened. Now his people don’t do anything, they just talk to each other. Often, at times that should be high tension with nothing but action going on, people will pause to have multi page conversations, during which they will acknowledge that maybe they are talking too much. Reynolds has certainly forgotten about the basic creative writing freshman course rule of show not tell. I’ve known all this for a long time, but it has been a couple years since I checked out some thing of Reynolds work, and I thought maybe he might have dislodged his head from his fifth point of contact. No such luck. I will probably check him out again in another 3 to 5 years, but I feel like this author has lost his je ne sais quoi. Sad.

1 person found this helpful

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As hard as hard sci-fi gets

These books are great, great character development, and even better tech. The narration is very well done as in the rest of the series as well.

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Never disappoints

Alastair never disappoints my high expectations he has set with his previous books. I listen to almost straight thru. My wife even left me but I did not stop because it was so good.

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Unnecessary sequel

This is the most unnecessary poorly written and badly imagined and worked out piece of science fiction possible.
it doesn't work as a stand alone work as the author hoped it would and it violates all the rules of the world it is supposed to come from.
avoid at all cost as a gross disappointment 😞

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Doesn’t feel like earlier books in the series

John Lee performs as always

Overall, feels much less like sci-fi and more like a character study of people we knew nothing about before this book. Much of the “science” and “science like explanation” is gone, replaced with “and then some science happened”.

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Must Read for Fans of The Inhibator Trilogy

Although the story can be read as a stand alone, you really get the most out of it if one has read the full Revelation Space trilogy. For those that have, this title is a must read and fills in the colossal gap in the trilogy's ending between the final chapter and epilogue of third book, Absolution Gap. As always Reynolds is master of world building and hard sci-fi. Anyone that read one of Reynold's novel knows exactly what to expect. My only complaint is the story leaves a lot of unanswered questions, as is my usual experience with Reynold's novels.