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Publisher's Summary

The biggest science fiction series of the decade comes to an incredible conclusion in the ninth and final novel in James S.A. Corey’s Hugo-award winning space opera that inspired the Prime Original series.

Hugo Award Winner for Best Series

The Laconian Empire has fallen, setting the 1,300 solar systems free from the rule of Winston Duarte. But the ancient enemy that killed the gate builders is awake, and the war against our universe has begun again.

In the dead system of Adro, Elvi Okoye leads a desperate scientific mission to understand what the gate builders were and what destroyed them, even if it means compromising herself and the half-alien children who bear the weight of her investigation. Through the wide-flung systems of humanity, Colonel Aliana Tanaka hunts for Duarte’s missing daughter...and the shattered emperor himself. And on the Rocinante, James Holden and his crew struggle to build a future for humanity out of the shards and ruins of all that has come before.

As nearly unimaginable forces prepare to annihilate all human life, Holden and a group of unlikely allies discover a last, desperate chance to unite all of humanity, with the promise of a vast galactic civilization free from wars, factions, lies, and secrets if they win.

But the price of victory may be worse than the cost of defeat.  

©2021 James S.A. Corey (P)2021 Recorded Books, Inc.

Featured Article: The Best Sci-Fi Horror Audiobooks of All Time


Sci-fi and horror are two genres that just make sense together. Swap haunted mansions for abandoned space ships, ghosts for virus-created zombies and experiments gone wrong, and the eerie darkness of the woods for the deep vastness of space, and it’s easy to see why these two genres make for a classic, thrilling combination. Here are our picks for some of the best sci-fi horror audiobooks of all time.

What listeners say about Leviathan Falls

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Awesome conclusion to an awesome series!

If you haven't read The Expanse, do it. I started Leviathan Wakes less than two months ago and quickly burned through the series. They're all 5/5 except maybe one or two in the middle with too many POVs (Babylon's Ashes probably my least favorite but still like 4/5).

I'll refrain spoiling specific plot details and jist outline some things.

Leviathan Falls does an excellent job wrapping up the plot, although I still don't fully understand the uber alien things. The "Dreamer POV" chapters are confusing. Reminiscent of "The Investigator" chapters in Cibola Burn.

The main POVs are Jim Holden, Naomi Nagata, Elvi Okoye, and Aliana Tanaka (the woman Santiago Singh dismissed early in Tiamat's Wrath). Also several chapters from Teresa Duarte, and a few from Alex. Couple other randoms like Kit, Alex's son.

In general I appreciate returning to the smaller number of POV's found in the first few books and Tiamat's Wrath, although these four chars I would not call my favorites (well Elvie is probably top 3). Would have liked for some Amos POV especially considering what happened in Tiamat's Wrath, and more Teresa. Tanaka is hard for me to understand regarding her motivations. She was with that first generation of Martian defectors rather than brainwashed Laconian, and Duarte is no longer in great shape, so...I don't get her motivations but her POVs are still good. Jim is Jim, not the most interesting guy but always getting in exciting situations. I'm not a big fan of Naomi's chapters, probably because of how passive and weak she seems compared to most other chars. I prefer the TV Naomi.

I do like there are a lot more balanced POVs from gender perspectives. Sometimes you read one scene from one person's perspective and cover the same ground from another person's perspective, which is always interesting.

Jefferson Mays is perfect as usual. Only thing that could make this one better is if Avasarala were resurrected. Also miss Fred Johnson, some others, but what a journey! Literally the best series I've ever read of such length.

I'm pretty concerned as to how Amazon is going to wrap up, what, four books in one final season? I'm not getting my hopes up, though the TV version has been pretty good up to now, so maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.

----

A note regarding reviews stating this book is the worst in the series, the ending is bad, etc. Without spoling anything, what else did you expect to happen? The series ended the only way it could have.

If you expected the Rocinante to team up with the one surviving Laconian magnetar and destroy the interdimensional godlike aliens, you just haven't been paying attention. Amos said in Tiamat's Wrath the God aliens were going to kill everyone. Holden knew it. Everyone was just trying to survive and they did the only thing that could be done IMO.

You're welcome to your opinions but I don't get what you were expecting after reading eight books in this series. If you liked Tiamat's Wrath then Leviathan Falls rates a 4/5 at minimum. I'd probably give it 4.5/5 after some reflection. I would have preferred some Amos POVs, for Teresa to join the "family" more fully, some minor things like that. Elvi and Tanaka have great plotlines with Jim's pretty good and Naomi "meh". The worst book in the series is Babylon's Ashes, which ends in a deus ex machina and has some of the most boring POVs (Pa, randoms) in the series.

30 people found this helpful

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Did NOT disappoint!

Been waiting for this book for a long time now like I'm sure many of you have and all the hope, trust and anticipation i had built up for the ending of this series (impossibly high my standards might have been) was well placed. Unlike so many series endings in the past that let me down this one finished strong and im extremely greatful for that fact 🙏. Intense thoughout, perfect balance of suspence and story/character development, [WITHOUT GIVING ANYTHING AWAY OR ANY SPOILERS] i felt everything up to this point was well adressed and ended in a very satisfactory way. AMAZING SERIES ALL THE WAY TO THE FINISH LINE!!!👍👍⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

27 people found this helpful

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A successful closing of an incredible series

I was lucky to get into The Expanse only a year ago when most the the books had already been written. I only had to wait a month for the final installment and it did not disappointment. A great ending to a great series.

19 people found this helpful

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Interstellar "meh"


Was going to give this three stars, but after thinking it over this book actually annoys me. Are you expecting an exciting climax? Intriguing answers to the mysterious questions from previous books? Well, stop that. Prepare to be disappointed and settle in for 60% of the book being descriptions of people's thoughts. Some of those people are completely irrelevant to the story. And what story there is is slow and unexciting. When it's all said and done, you'll wonder what exactly the heros gained for all the trouble,

15 people found this helpful

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  • 12-01-21

Not the End would've wanted

Worst book in series. Antagonists plot didn't seem all that bad and I think should have been fleshed out a bit better. Most of the book was kinda boring and looking back alot of the exciting story lines didn't really fit into the overall plot that well anyway.

The stage to me was set for something far more dramatic and nuanced. I think maybe this was due to the confines of fitting the story into a 19 hr audiobook.

A bit disappointed but happy these books at least get published on a reasonable timeline.

15 people found this helpful

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A meh ending to a great series.

Im not sure what’s the point in writing a review at this stage in the series. I mean, if you read (listened) this far, not consuming the last book really isn’t an option. And, hey, maybe you won’t see it like I do. As someone who loves this series I would simply advise you to temper your expectations. The final chapter simply isn’t the in the same class as the previous installments. We’re not talking GoT bad or anything. I’d still recommend this series, only now my recommendation will have an asterisk that accompanies it regarding the ending.

13 people found this helpful

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So much potential!

I won't be over-dramatic and equate this ending with the final season of GOT, but it's a runner up.

The story starts out strong and about a quarter of the way through starts to hem and haw ALOT. Characters that had intriguing obstacles to overcome introduced in book 8 don't get enough attention. And other less appealing (AKA boring or fully fleshed out in prior books) get way too many chapters with the spotlight.

I don't want to spoil anything for those who haven't read/listened to the story. To be fair my expectations were set really high and most likely this has impacted my opinion. But, I want others to be prepared for a "meh" (*shrugs*) feeling at the end.

11 people found this helpful

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a mediocre ending to a great series

this book is an okay ending to the series. not great but not terrible either.

10 people found this helpful

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More than Worth the Wait

This is, quite simply, the best science fiction I’ve read & listened to in pretty much forever. The imaginative, evocative, and intelligent writing here is easily the equal of all the great Hugo-winning authors/series from decades past, as well as all the wonderful sci-fi pulp that always afforded a welcome respite from so many of those “important” works.

This performance lives up to that in every way as well. Mr. May’s voices, cadences, and delivery are the perfect compliment to the wonderful writing.

The whole is simply superlative. Read the series, listen to the series, and even watch the series on Amazon. It’s just that good.

10 people found this helpful

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A great finish to the arc of the story and chars

It must be challenging to meet expectations finishing a grand series like this. It was done satisfyingly well. The characters and physics stayed true to form, which is a relief. Some authors would feel compelled to amp up the alien magic to 11 for such a finale, but this remained - as always - a story about being human, grit and all.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Evan H
  • 12-05-21

It'll do I suppose.

Exceptionally well read by Mr.Mays, it does its job as the series' finalé but there are issues.

First is the padding. The runtime is artificially extended both by subplots with arguable relevance and repetition of events from multiple narrative perspectives, which dont add any information or depth.

Second is the nonsense. If you came away from Tiamat's Wrath thinking 'Well how the hell are they going to resolve that?', The answer is 'with utter nonsense with little internal logic to it'.

Cibola Burn proved that you can have a pseudo-Lovecraftian monster in your sci-fi and still have a satisfying conclusion, provided it adheres to a clearly defined and internally consistent ruleset, from within which our protagonists find the means to overcome it.

Leviathan Falls simply does not bother with this and is hugely frustrating as a result.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Swords and Spectres
  • 12-19-21

Good finale with a bit too much padding

Leviathan Falls is the ninth and final book in the Expanse series. This being a series I have really enjoyed, despite a few of them feeling a tad underwhelming. On the whole, the series has felt fun and relatively fresh compared to other stuff I'd picked up. I had high hopes going into this as it had been one of the few books I'd been looking forward to all year. 

Sadly, my high hopes were perhaps set a fraction too high. For me, at least, Leviathan Falls didn't deliver as a big finale. It wasn't bad, it just never felt truly great either. I think the best way to describe it is: it was fine. Inoffensive, yet never in real danger of grabbing you by the shirt collar and dragging you along for a rip-roaring good time. It was just ... fine.

My main issues were the pacing and the repetitive nature of large parts of the book. It genuinely felt like the authors were struggling to make it to the five-hundred page mark and so we were treated to far too much of the mental intrusions of the protomolecule. Have it happen a few times, sure, let us know what's going on. But giving so much time over to it, when it was essentially doing the same thing over and over again without any real progression? It just felt a tad stale by the time I got to the three quarter point.

I really enjoyed the character progression that has gone on throughout this series and it carried on here. In book one (Leviathan Wakes) we have a crew of young people and, as the series go on, we see them grow and age. No more so apparent as in this book. You genuinely feel the aches and pains that will be coursing through their aged bodies as they try to do what their younger selves would have taken for granted. The attention to detail on that was wonderful. Other character arcs were equally enjoyable and, due to the spoiler nature of said arcs, I'll not say anything more about them.

My issues aside with this book, I really enjoyed both the ending and the epilogue. The ending had a very complete and final feel to it that I feel the series deserved (I just wish we'd have avoided the padding along the way to get to it). The epilogue also did a wonderful job of leaving things open to revisit the world of the The Expanse in the future to give a whole new set of stories a run through with new characters in a new time. I don't know if that's the plan, but I'd totally be up for it if it was.

All in all, the series had some incredible highs, some slow-going lows and everything in-between. If you're a science fiction fan, this really is a series you need to try if nothing else.

As ever, Jefferson Mays' narration was downright perfect. His work made me insanely happy I opted for the audio books rather than the physical or e-book. Bravo to Mr Mays, I look forward to hunting down some of his narrations in the future.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Ian
  • 12-12-21

Somewhat disappointed

I feel a touch disappointed with the final book in the otherwise excellent series. The pace is slow, only picking up halfway through.

The ending was predictable, and didn't really feel like a conclusion to the characters and factions we have been following over the series.

Excellent narrator, same as the previous books.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Ginger guy!
  • 12-02-21

If you got this far you are meant to hear this!

Jefferson Mays is excellent at reading the final book in The Expanse, it's a must listen you won't be disappointed!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Trinity
  • 12-30-21

Gutted it's ended - But it ended well.

I can't believe I have been with the characters of this series since 2016, I cried numerous times and am gutted now it's at an end.
I'm really happy that the tv show does the books justice (except for a certain actor who F*ed up and had to be written out) - so I can watch for a while longer.
I was nervous about this book after reading some of the reviews - But am pleased this series ended well.
It's been an awesome ride, both story and character wise. During which the space / future stuff has seemed realistic.
The narrator has been epic - in fact his narration was matched in quality by the superb tv series casting.
I'm close to tears writing this but just wanted to write an open hearted review to counter the few misery guts who have down marked this awesome book.
Please read / listen and also celebrate the deeds and example of the Rocinante crew (and previous cohorts like Bobbie Draper and Avasarala.) We will never see their like again.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Gemesia
  • 12-15-21

Disappointing

The final chapter in the story somehow just didn't do the preceding books justice. It simultaneously felt like going over old ground and introducing new elements that went nowhere (Kit, for example). It lacked the emotional depth of previous books.
I usually like abstract writing, but the interludes in this book didn't manage to convey a sense of what was happening in the elegant way they did with Miller in Cibola Burn. I just wasn't drawn into this one. Disappointing.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-03-21

The best series ever

A great ending to remarkable series. I'm so sad it's over, but it's bitter sweet. I'm gonna go cry myself to sleep. Not experienced books like this, don't think I will again. Just brilliant.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Martin Steele
  • 12-02-21

Can't believe it is over

This book needs no reviews other than a fitting end to an amazing journey.

The Expanse got me back into reading and particularly Sci Fi and I will forever be grateful to both authors for that.

Thank you

3 people found this helpful

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  • Michael
  • 01-14-22

Brilliant

I’ve now seen, read or listened to all 9 Expanse books and would rate it as one of the best stories ever….and trust me, at 67 years old I’ve read, listened or watched a good number of works of fiction (SF or otherwise) over the years. The Expanse series, including Leviathan Falls, are gripping and entertaining to the last. I may even have to start the whole series again. Leviathan Falls is highly recommended. An amazing, mind blowing end to the series.

2 people found this helpful

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  • alistair
  • 01-05-22

Great end to a wonderful series

One of the best sci-fi series about. Wonderful characters, fantastic story lines and very well read. Would recommend this series to anyone wanting to get into reading sci-fi.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-04-22

was good but left unsatisfied

it was a decent ending to the story but I feel the last book was very short for what the ending of a universal war between entities i would have thought would be.

it was a decent ending but I just didn't get many goosebumps out of excitedness to want to relish in the story. they introduced a new character in the book and spent a quarter of the book telling her point of view and shit it was dumb. I'd rather have waited 2 more years for a decent book that had more detail and from perspectives of Amos.

I was just left unsatisfied 6/10

1 person found this helpful

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  • hunter
  • 12-27-21

Disappointing

Very self indulgent, felt like a long dragged out sentimental goodbye. Left all the mystery to head cannon, nothing is revealed in the end at all.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Belvedere Spudge
  • 08-30-22

Excellent marriage of material and narrator

If you're starting The Expanse here, you're at the wrong end :)

A solid ending to a well conceived space opera that provides an appropriate farewell to its primary characters, It adopts a more allusive, semi-Lovecraftian approach to the Big Bad that might not satisfy some, but it felt appropriate to me given the nature of the grand threat. I'm generally not wild about introducing new characters when things are wrapping things up, but they communicated a narrative perspective that wasn't necessarily available via Holden, Naomi and co that helped round the story out.

As to the series as a whole, I came to it via the TV show. For a story with two authors, it is easy to imagine a single writer such is the clear authorial voice that comes through. Where I felt the show lost a bit of steam from season 4 onwards, the books maintain a consistent tone and pacing throughout. The narrative stakes build organically across the saga as well as within each individual book, with few titles I would regard as "table setting". Each individual story builds to a climax that feels immense, yet also a part of something grander. You do have to buy into the conceit that out of billions of humans across hundreds of worlds, the same 4-6 folks find themselves at the core of cataclysmic events 9 times in a row, but that's why I went with "space opera" instead of science fiction. YMMV. :)

And as just about everyone else has said, Jefferson Mays does a wonderful job as narrator across the series and I'm not sure I could hear it in anyone else's voice.

There is enough material missing between the adaptation and the book that means its worth going back to the start, although it isn't absolutely critical if you just want to see where it all goes. Well worth it.

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  • Nicholas Brownlee
  • 07-27-22

Great end to a great series

Very strong finish. Left me wanting more of the Expanse. Can't recommend it highly enough.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-19-22

Now one of my favourite series!

I loved this series from book one to book nine and Jefferson Mays did an absolutely wonderful job! 10/10 for books and narrator.

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  • Suzanne Rose
  • 07-03-22

End Of A Journey

My son in law gave me a copy of the first book many years ago and I have read, listened and watched this amazing saga. I shed a tear at the end. Felt I was losing friends. Jefferson Mays does a wonderful job and is the voice of the expanse.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-05-22

Best Author/s EVER!

I can't get enough of The Expanse series or Jefferson Mays. One of the best narrators EVER! Please please write some more books .... pretty please bossmag.

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  • Jinglesc
  • 05-03-22

Best galactic soap opera ever!

This is the first time I've watched a TV series and then immediately listened to all nine books. A true space adventure spanning a life time. The narration by Jefferson Mays allows you to feel and experience each character as you become part of their family as they traverse the universe and beyond. James S.A. Corey you leave me wanting more.

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  • Glenn Woodford
  • 04-19-22

What now?

One of the best stories I've heard. Now that it's over... what next? Start again?

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  • Chin Scratcher
  • 04-10-22

A solid finale

It was always going to be tough to wrap The Expanse up, but this final book has done a solid job. And perhaps left open the possibility of more.