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Download In the Courts of the Crimson Kings Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample In the Courts of the Crimson Kings Audiobook, by S. M. Stirling Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.59 out of 53.59 out of 53.59 out of 53.59 out of 53.59 out of 5 3.59 (27 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: S. M. Stirling Narrator: Todd McLaren Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Lords of Creation Series Release Date: March 2008 ISBN: 9781400176106
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In the parallel world first introduced in S. M. Stirling's The Sky People, aliens terraformed Mars (and Venus) 200 million years ago, seeding them with life-forms from Earth. Humans didn't suspect this until the twentieth century, but when the first probes landed on our sister worlds and found life—intelligent life, at that—things changed with a vengeance. By the year 2000, America, Russia, and the other great powers of Earth were all contending for influence and power amid the newly discovered inhabitants of our sister planets. Venus is a primitive world. But on Mars, early hominids evolved civilization earlier than their earthly cousins, driven by the needs of a harsh world growing still harsher as the initial terraforming ran down. Without coal, oil, or uranium, their technology was forced onto different paths, and the genetic wizardry of the Crimson Dynasty united a world for more than 20,000 years. Now, in a new stand-alone adventure set in this world's 2000 AD, Jeremy Wainman is an archaeologist who has achieved a lifelong dream: to travel to Mars and explore the dead cities of the Deep Beyond, searching for the secrets of the Kings Beneath the Mountain and the fallen empire they ruled. Teyud Zha-Zhalt is the Martian mercenary the Terrans hire as guide and captain of the landship Intrepid Traveller. A secret links her to the deadly intrigues of Dvor il-Adazar, the City That Is A Mountain, where the last aging descendant of the Tollamune Emperors clings to the remnants of his power…and secrets that may trace their origin to the enigmatic Ancients, the Lords of Creation who reshaped the Solar System in the time of the dinosaurs. When these three meet, the foundations of reality will be shaken—from the lost city of Rema-Dza to the courts of the Crimson Kings. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The splendid alternate universe Stirling invented in The Sky People has—quite justifiably—metamorphosed into a series…Stirling has hit an unexpectedly rich lode of creative ore.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • Todd McLaren adopts the tone of an objective but interested reporter, deftly presenting long passages of explication without lagging. AudioFile
  • “Todd McLaren adopts the tone of an objective but interested reporter, deftly presenting long passages of explication without lagging.”

    AudioFile

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill | 2/5/2014

    " Great storytelling! Took an old-school Sci-Fi concept and gave it a modern feel. Lots of fun to read "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike Ratner | 2/1/2014

    " An absolutely brilliant rollicking SF adventure tale full of humor and non-stop action. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Travis | 1/27/2014

    " Like a for TV movie, but worse, uses convoluted words to express five-or-less-letter-word meaning. For example, lifted doesn't need to be translated to raised in elevation. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Graham Crawford | 1/23/2014

    " A good fun read. This one seemed a bit more complex than the first one in the series. I suspect the author took some of the feminist critisim of book one to heart, turning the leading man into the passive love interest in this one. I appreciated the gesture, but it's still playing off tired old gender stereotypes (albeit inverted ones). I did enjoy the liguistic transliterations which provided a certain comic relief. The descritptions of the biotech were superficially interesting, but left me craving more information. A nice homage to John Carter, but really just one step up from an airport novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mike | 1/21/2014

    " Much better than the first book, The Sky People, the action takes place entirely on an inhabited Mars. We gain more insight into "The Lords of Creation" and the ending is wide open. Hoping to see Stirling wrap up this story but he has nothing listed yet as far as a third book is concerned. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jason | 1/15/2014

    " The best of an alternative history series in which humankind discovers that Mars, Venus, and the moons of the great gas giants all harbor intelligent life. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 J E | 1/12/2014

    " A well written book in the style of Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars Series. Look forward to more books in this Lord of Creation Series by Mr. Stirling. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Frank Mullins | 1/6/2014

    " Reading others reviews I am not sure what exactly I missed when I read this book. It took half the book to get even interesting and then it just seemed like a slow burn the rest of the book. Just seemed like the last of the book was the whole reason Sterling wrote the book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Tomaž | 1/3/2014

    " As with The Sky People I didn't care much about the characters and the story. The bits I liked most were the Encyclopedia Britannica nuggets. In fact I would have found the book more entertaining if it were a pure Silmarilion-Style description of the setting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Charles | 12/5/2013

    " Stirling knocked it out of the park with this one. A wonderful revivial of the Sword and Planet genre, and set on Mars no less. Great action, wondeful though fantastic characters, and a powerful ending. A truly enjoyable experience. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul Werner | 12/4/2013

    " difficult to get into. The language is somewhat formal at first. Takes a while to get into. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Portobellord | 12/3/2013

    " A rollicking adventure in the spirit of Burroughs. I enjoyed this one more than the first in the series. Perhaps because found the advanced race of beings on Mars more interesting than the neanderthal-like people of Venus. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nesta | 11/27/2013

    " I really enjoyed this. Well-written, with sympathetic characters, a fascinating-yet-believable take on an alien culture, and an ending which satisfies yet leaves room for sequels = exactly what I want from a sci-fi novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Denise | 11/26/2013

    " Fast, engaging read. Nice nod to classic sci-fi writers and well-done alt-universe, though a bit slow to build. Stands on its own. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Chad | 11/10/2013

    " Better than the first book in the series, but I'd like them both better overall if the weird meta-elements were toned down. This book in particular could stand on it's own without them, and be more successful for it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeff Doten | 5/19/2013

    " I really want a third one.i liked the first one, but this one, being sword and planet on Mars really did it for me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Debbie | 1/24/2012

    " I had to slog through some of this but oddly didn't stop reading it. It was ok- very compelling parts, reminded me somewhat of Dune - although a 'poor man's Dune" "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Samantha | 7/27/2011

    " Quite an enjoyable adventure. I liked the turnaround on who the love interest was versus the rescuer. It wasn't a huge innovation but it was nice. Now I want to know more about what happens next. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kevin | 2/7/2011

    " Not as good as the first book, slow start, hard to follow at times. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Gavin | 8/25/2010

    " Stopped listening. It had an interesting idea but I got lost. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David | 7/24/2010

    " This book took a little to really get into. Partly because of the alien dialog. Like other books I really enjoyed, I had to read the last half in one sitting. It is worth reading, especially if the sci-fi genre interests you. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Denise | 7/5/2010

    " Fast, engaging read. Nice nod to classic sci-fi writers and well-done alt-universe, though a bit slow to build. Stands on its own. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Samantha | 4/7/2010

    " Quite an enjoyable adventure. I liked the turnaround on who the love interest was versus the rescuer. It wasn't a huge innovation but it was nice. Now I want to know more about what happens next. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nesta | 2/8/2010

    " I really enjoyed this. Well-written, with sympathetic characters, a fascinating-yet-believable take on an alien culture, and an ending which satisfies yet leaves room for sequels = exactly what I want from a sci-fi novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Portobellord | 2/8/2010

    " A rollicking adventure in the spirit of Burroughs. I enjoyed this one more than the first in the series. Perhaps because found the advanced race of beings on Mars more interesting than the neanderthal-like people of Venus.
    "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathleen | 11/24/2009

    " Book started out slow but got better. Unfortunately motivations of various characters were difficult to figure out as characters, except for 1-2 main were shadowy and undefined. So book could have use more background development. Did like the touches of technical reports from earcth based research "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jason | 10/14/2009

    " The best of an alternative history series in which humankind discovers that Mars, Venus, and the moons of the great gas giants all harbor intelligent life. "

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About the Author

S. M. Stirling was born in France but is Canadian by origin and American by naturalization. Stirling is the author of numerous science fiction and fantasy novels, including the popular Nantucket series that began with Island in the Sea of Time and, more recently, Dies the Fire and The Protector’s War. A former lawyer and an amateur historian, he lives in the Southwest with his wife, Jan.

About the Narrator

Todd McLaren was involved in radio for more than twenty years in cities on both coasts, including Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. He left broadcasting for a full-time career in voice acting, where he has been heard on more than five thousand television and radio commercials, as well as television promos; narrations for documentaries on such networks as A&E, Discovery, and the History Channel; and films, including Who Framed Roger Rabbit?