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Download Rainbows End Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Rainbows End (Unabridged), by Vernor Vinge
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (5,643 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Vernor Vinge Narrator: Eric Conger Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Vernor Vinge doesn't write novels very quickly, but when he writes one, it's well worth the wait. His last two novels have won the coveted Hugo Award for Best Science Fiction Novel of the year. Rainbows End is set in the same near future as his novella Fast Times at Fairmont High, which won the Hugo Award in 2002 for Best Novella. Set a few decades from now, Rainbows End is an epic adventure that encapsulates in a single extended family the challenges of the technological advances of the first quarter of the 21st century. The information revolution of the past 30 years blossoms into a web of conspiracies that could destroy Western civilization. At the center of the action is Robert Gu, a former Alzheimer's victim who has regained his mental and physical health through radical new therapies, and his family. His son and daughter-in-law are both in the military, but not a military we would recognize, while his middle-school-age granddaughter is involved in perhaps the most dangerous game of all, with people and forces more powerful than she or her parents can imagine.

Filled with excitement and Vinge's trademark potpourri of fascinating ideas, Rainbows End is another triumphantly entertaining novel by one of the true masters of the field.

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Christopher | 2/16/2014

    " I had previously read two short pieces that were incorporated into this: "Fast Times at Fairmont High" and "Synthetic Serendipity." Because so much of the novel's intrigue and surprise rests on its intense vision of near future technology, I had to rate it somewhat based on how impressed I was by those stories years ago--and I liked them a whole lot. And the novel added in plenty more ideas of interest, so it's well worth reading. That said, there are a few problems. There are too many characters, too weakly characterized, and too unimportant to the plot considering the screen-time they're given. And for a long while, the reader has to care about this future Earth's 'famous' fictitious characters, without any good introduction to them (there's a real missed opportunity to tell little side stories within the story such that we might actually care about the 'Librarians Militant' or the 'Scoochis' in the same way that some characters of the novel care about them). And the heavy-handedness of the novel's points/morals was grating. Yes, I might agree that people need to adapt to new technologies, that kids pick new media up and make new worlds of them faster than adults can figure out, that search/analysis skills and crowdsourcing and things like that are going to be more and more important, that we need to recognize when others have changed and accept them anew, and so on, and so on. But illustrations of these points were often so blunt as to verge on telling rather than showing. Still, it would have been a decent book with even half as many ideas in it, so Vinge deserves his accolades for it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Brian | 2/8/2014

    " I was deeply disappointed in this book. Vinge is one of my favourite writers, but this completely failed to grip me. One of the main problems was the lead character - at times unpleasant and deeply manipulative, at others being presented more sympatehtically, but without really seeming to gel. His switches towards a more sympathetic attitude seemed more like authorial fiat than character development, and his obsessions and goals never seemed to right true. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Owen | 2/2/2014

    " Vinge's view of the future comes through some VERY interesting contact lenses! His approach to introducing readers to the alien future is novel. The plot meanders and drags at times, and the main character is singularly difficult to related to, but the presentation of Augmented Reality and high technology was enjoyable throughout. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Tynan Szvetecz | 1/30/2014

    " Vernor Vinge has written two of the most brilliant books ever - this is really cool for it's look into the near future and the power of the internet - but it's not up to par with his previous work. Definitely worth it just to see the role Google could play in our lives in the next 14 years. "

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