• The Abyss Beyond Dreams

  • Chronicle of the Fallers, Book 1
  • By: Peter F. Hamilton
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 22 hrs and 28 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (3,698 ratings)

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The Abyss Beyond Dreams  By  cover art

The Abyss Beyond Dreams

By: Peter F. Hamilton
Narrated by: John Lee
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Publisher's Summary

The year is 3326. Nigel Sheldon, one of the founders of the Commonwealth, receives a visit from the Raiel - self-appointed guardians of the Void, the enigmatic construct at the core of the galaxy that threatens the existence of all that lives. The Raiel convince Nigel to participate in a desperate scheme to infiltrate the Void. Once inside, Nigel discovers that humans are not the only life-forms to have been sucked into the Void. The humans trapped there are afflicted by an alien species of biological mimics - the Fallers - that are intelligent but merciless killers. Yet these same aliens may hold the key to destroying the threat of the Void forever - if Nigel can uncover their secrets.

©2014 Peter F. Hamilton (P)2014 Tantor

What listeners say about The Abyss Beyond Dreams

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    2,240
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Intersection of the Void and Commonwealth - Super

John Lee is the best narrator ever and the Hamilton Commonwealth/Void series is one of the best Meta-Space Operas ever....Nice combination. If you have followed our various storylines in and out of the Void you will have to read this. If not, you will not get it. But can I make a suggestion? Go back and start with "Pandora's Star"....I envy you the journey.

Pandora's Star (2004), ISBN 0-330-49331-0
Judas Unchained (2005), ISBN 0-330-49353-1
The Dreaming Void (2007), ISBN 978-1-4050-8880-0
The Temporal Void (2008), ISBN 978-1-4050-8883-1
The Evolutionary Void (2010), ISBN 978-0-345-49657-7
The Abyss Beyond Dreams (2014) (This one)
The Night Without Stars (TBA)

176 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

NEGATIVE 5 STAR

THIS AUTHOR IS ABYSMAL!
This was the second Hamilton book I tried, and it
was as bad as the first.I will never choose this author
again. The first book..The Dreaming Void... was really bad, but
this author seems to get good reviews so I tried a second book.
I slogged all the way through the first book to the miserable end.
This second book, I gave up on in less than 2 hours.

There is sooooo much wrong with this book that I don't know where
to begin.

Overly sexual.... just like The Dreaming Void
Hard to follow... Just like The Dreaming Void
Tedious and unimaginative ... Just like The Dreaming Void
Misogynistic to nauseam.. Just like....

The author tries to make his female characters strong and enlightened,
but it just disgustingly misogynistic and I choose to never purchase
another of his books. I can't believe anybody would like this.

112 people found this helpful

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

100 hours in and still getting better

I assume you won't listen to this until you have listened to the previous 100+ hours of books in the Commonwealth Universe. That is, I assume you wouldn't even be reading this review unless you were already a fan of Hamilton. If you are, I have good news! This book is great, and shows real evolution in Hamilton's writing.

If that worries you, it shouldn’t: there is a lot of typical Hamilton here: we return again to the Commonwealth Universe, old characters re-appear, the book title is again bad, the worldbuilding is incredible, and the plotting is propulsive. And the man can write action scenes!

But some things have changed, nearly all for the better. For example, the two dozen character perspectives that Hamilton typically uses are reduced to just a few, allowing the reader to better settle into the characters and the story. This is combined with a slightly shorter overall book (closer to 20 hours than the usual 30+) which makes the plot feel tighter and more focused without losing the worldbuilding and detail that Hamilton is famous for. Also, the way Hamilton has traditionally built up the central mysteries in his books is by having characters with secrets in their backgrounds that are only revealed gradually as the book goes on. Here, he greatly reduces his use of that crutch, making the twists and turns in the plot involve less unexpected slight-of-hand, which helped me engage with the plot.

Finally, Hamilton does some very clever things with the plot of the book, building up expectations based on the previous Void Trilogy that are subverted in interesting ways. The end result is that this feels like the best written Hamilton book to date, while keeping all of the usual cool elements - hard(ish) science fiction worldbuilding, universe-scale action, and tight plotting – that have made his books so great. And Lee, as usual, is awesome.

Honestly, if you have spent 100+ hours with Lee and Hamilton, you probably are going to get this. Just be ready to find excuses to listen to your audio book, because it is excellent…

58 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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Avoid this Void. An Abyss It Is. Step Away! 😱

Muddled confused pedantic lethargic discourse takes the reader to wish for a future time when this story is ended . . . 😱
Avoid this Void.

37 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

It's just blah blah blah..... Blah!!!!!

At least the other
Hamilton book were interesting. Just excessive trivial talk.
All his Void stories are worthless. His others are ok. But if Void is in the title move on.

36 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Never Thought I'd Say This...

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

More action in the Revolution. I liked the first quarter and last quarter of the book, but found the Revolution build to be tedious.

What was most disappointing about Peter F. Hamilton’s story?

The Revolution story line.

Which scene was your favorite?

{Redacted} No spoilers here. Move on. No body loss to see...

What character would you cut from The Abyss Beyond Dreams?

Savasta (sp?))

Any additional comments?

If I could go back in time... I would tell myself not to bother with this book. I'm a HUGE PFH fan, but this story was not up to the standards he has historically created for himself. I loved the Sheldon threads, but the Revolution plot was simply tired, slow, and boring. I know I've lost interest when I become annoyed with a book, and I did with this one. I finished it, as I would do for any PFH book, but was not impressed. To describe it in a word: "Meh."

Still, based on all the other works of PFH I have absolutely LOVED, I will still read [listen] to anything he writes. He is easily one of my top 10 authors of all time, and despite this book, he keeps his place at number 6. Truly a giant in the SF world.

John Lee did a great job, as always, he is also one of my top 5 narrators and I could listen to him all day.

35 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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Not sure why I read this

Has The Abyss Beyond Dreams turned you off from other books in this genre?

I really enjoyed the Void Trilogy, and at the recommendation of another reviewer I went back and reread the third volume of the trilogy. I never could figure out the point of this new book, and how it quite fits in. It comes across to me as more random fantasy than sci-fi, and I'm not a fantasy reader.

Any additional comments?

This strikes me as another in the long line of examples of authors capitalizing on the success of a series by simply adding on to it in one way or another. I wish more authors would end a series of dignity unless they can really figure out something new to say.

35 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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I sent this one back

I found the beginning of the book full of astrophysical techno dragon without context. Secondly I found a very heavy British accent and use the videos distracting.

33 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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Blah

Unless you already know you like Hamilton, this is not a good book.

It's invented technical language, lack of character development, and unimaginative creepiness makes this book about as appealing as a frog dissection.

There is no humor.

There are no life lessons.

The narrator has a good voice, but I think it is odd for a man with such a deep voice to be reading a book told from a woman's perspective.

You want a story about being stranded in space with creepy aliens? Go watch the Dr. Who episode with David Tennent on Mars with the water creatures.

33 people found this helpful

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

Bad, frustrating

I really don't understand why people have rated this so highly. I love good SciFi, this is not it. Pompous and unengaging. The reader makes it worse. Do not waste time and money on this.

31 people found this helpful