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Grail

por Elizabeth Bear

Séries: Jacob's Ladder (Book 3)

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1836114,490 (3.96)6
The ship Jacob's Ladder has arrived at its destination - the planet they call Grail. But Grail is populated by humans already, who call their home Fortune. They are wary of sharing Fortune, particularly with genetically engineered humans. Meanwhile, a murder aboard Jacob's Ladder indicates that there are enemies among the crew.… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 6 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
It's all light.

I liked this one much better than the previous two novels, full of better contrast, deeper ethical considerations, and more interesting intrigue. Mind you, this is all subject to my own subjectivity, but It was much easier to fall into a society of dull board members and sit back confidently as they get pounded ideologically by a godlike feudalist ecology, and back again as they said, "Uh, no thanks, I think we'd best stay on Prozac."

It's funny and delightful, with some real promise of cohabitation except for that one little bit of sophistry that would bring all hope to the brink. You know how people are when they know they're right.

Still, I enjoyed the deeper conversation with the reader about being alien, as with the second book, forward to the uncontemplated reality of colonizing a planet that already housed another intelligence, successfully putting our heroes and heroines on the moral high ground, as opposed to in the moral high ground.

The ending was satisfying and I can honestly say I'm glad I got through the trilogy. The compromise surprised me, somewhat, but it was a logical concession. The trend of the novels supported it, even if it wasn't what anyone really wanted.

In that regard, at least, the novel felt real, and that's a treat when we deal with nanoswarms, a near godhood over a closed system, lots of near resurrections, and unhinged enemies rewriting other's brains.

Fun stuff. I'm glad I read it.
( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
I liked this book as a conclusion to the series - it tied up ends nicely, it expanded on the world already created. The clash of the two cultures (The Exalted Folk, who are more than human), vs non-changed people, whose brains are "right-minded", for the better good of humanity. Its an interesting collision of culture, with both sides being written as sensible.

The story itself is fun - lots of action, interesting characters. The story moves quickly, and doesn't stagnate. The characters are interesting. ( )
  TheDivineOomba | Jun 26, 2016 |
The premise: ganked from BN.com: Rife with intrigue and betrayal, heroism and sacrifice, Grail brings Elizabeth Bear’s brilliant space opera to a triumphant conclusion.

At last the generation ship Jacob’s Ladder has arrived at its destination: the planet they have come to call Grail. But this habitable jewel just happens to be populated already: by humans who call their home Fortune. And they are wary of sharing Fortune—especially with people who have genetically engineered themselves to such an extent that it is a matter of debate whether they are even human anymore. To make matters worse, a shocking murder aboard the Jacob’s Ladder has alerted Captain Perceval and the angel Nova that formidable enemies remain hidden somewhere among the crew.

On Grail—or Fortune, rather—Premier Danilaw views the approach of the Jacob’s Ladder with dread. Behind the diplomatic niceties of first-contact protocol, he knows that the deadly game being played is likely to erupt into full-blown war—even civil war. For as he strives to chart a peaceful and prosperous path forward for his people, internal threats emerge to take control by any means necessary.

My Rating: Worth Reading, with Reservations

It's very close to a "Good Read," but the ending was just abstract enough that I had trouble following the why of what was actually happening. I get what caused it, and I get the end result. It's the in-between that gives me issues. No matter, I've said it before and I'll say it again: this book (and trilogy) is so rich in ideas and themes that a single read does not do the book (nor trilogy) justice. I can see myself coming back to this sometime in the future and peeling back more layers and understanding more than I ever did before. The fact I kind of want to do that is promising, because these books have an above-average rating, they have the kind of staying power that's well worth noting. It may not be an addictive read, but it is most certainly a challenging, thought-provoking one, and I'm glad I finished the trilogy.

Spoilers, yay or nay?: Yay. Expect spoilers not only for this book, but the first two books well. I apologize, but it's really hard to talk about the last book in a trilogy without divulging SOME details. The full review is in my blog, which is linked below. As always, comments and discussion are most welcome.

REVIEW: Elizabeth Bear's GRAIL

Happy Reading! ( )
  devilwrites | Apr 2, 2012 |
This is the last in a trilogy set in a generation starship, called Jacob's Ladder. It was launched from Earth ages ago and was designed to spur the evolution and adaptation of its crew and ecosystems during its journey out. It uses an eclectic mix of technologies, both digital and biological.

The end of the journey is in sight, a star system, which has two planets, one habitable, the other with a toxic ecosystem. The Captain, Perceval, is a Conn, a member of the fratricidal family that run things. All seems under control until mystery raiders kill her mother, stealing her 'null blade', a special sword and an old book from the Library. While it looks as though old wounds will be re-opened, a new type of problem presents itself. One of the planets found to be inhabited. While Jacob's Ladder has been on its journey, humanity has leap-frogged its technologies and reached the stars first.

The narrative in this book is unlike the preceding two as it flips from the feuding Conns to the citizens of 'Fortune' who are 'right-minded' humans, eschewing the violent emotions the Conns treasure. A conflict in ideologies thus looms as large in this volume as the feuding between the Conns was in the preceding volumes. Premier Danilaw on Fortune and his security Chief, after debating the issues, decide to rendezvous with the incoming ship and discuss the options. But things do not go to plan...

On the face of it, this novel sets up a unique scenario with plenty of internal and external conflicts which should result in an explosive finale...but things fail to boil over at any point. It just seems to stop, which is a shame considering the pedigree and plotting of the previous two novels. ( )
  AlanPoulter | Nov 7, 2011 |
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And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.

And Jacob awakened out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not.

And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.
--Genesis 28: 15-17, King James Version

As for ideology, the Hell with it. All of it.
--Ursula K. Le Guin

God make thee good as thou art beautiful.
--Alfred, Lord Tennyson, "The Holy Grail"
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This book is for Stella Evans, Liz Bourke, and Maddie Glymour
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Danilaw Bakare was on a nightclub stage when the world ended.
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Original title Grail; reissued title Cleave
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The ship Jacob's Ladder has arrived at its destination - the planet they call Grail. But Grail is populated by humans already, who call their home Fortune. They are wary of sharing Fortune, particularly with genetically engineered humans. Meanwhile, a murder aboard Jacob's Ladder indicates that there are enemies among the crew.

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