Tom Dreyfus is a Prefect, a law enforcement officer with the Panoply. His beat is the multifaceted utopian society of the Glitter Band, that vast swirl of space habitats orbiting the planet Yellowstone, the teeming hub of a human interstellar empire spanning many worlds. His current case: investigating a murderous attack against one of the habitats that left 900 people dead, a crime that appalls even a hardened cop like Dreyfus. But then his investigation uncovers something far more serious than mass slaughter---a covert plot by an enigmatic entity who seeks nothing less than total control of the Glitter Band. Before long, the Panoply detectives are fighting against something worse than tyranny, in a struggle that will lead to more devastation and more death. And Dreyfus will discover that to save what is precious, you may have to destroy it.
©2008 Alastair Reynolds (P)2011 Tantor
"A fascinating hybrid of space opera, police procedural and character study.... This is solid British SF adventure, evoking echoes of le Carre and Sayers with a liberal dash of Doctor Who." (Publishers Weekly)
"Prefect near perfect"
I was charmed and enthralled by the imaginative scope of this novel, the poor review I had read almost put me off, I am so glad it didn't! Great story, well drawn together at the end , with the hint of a sequel, perhaps? Is this what irked the negative reviewer? The characters lived for me and reflected weaknesses and strengths, making the dilemmas resonate for me. Not a 5 , but a worthy 4.
"keep them coming"
A.R. keeps writing these excellent books with very imaginative storylines which enables the reader to conjure up fantastic images of the characters and vistas used in his stories. Keep them coming Alastair.
"Top class Reynolds"
This is Reynolds at his absolute best. Fast paced, tense and with all the usual slightly disturbing Reynolds imagination.
Although it's set before the Redemption Ark and Chasm City books, you'll enjoy it all the more if you've already read (or listened to) those earlier books.
John Lee is flawless, as usual.
"An absolute cracker"
This is the first novel, chronologically, in Alastair Reynolds' "Revelation Space" series, though it stands on its own without problem. And it's an absolute cracker - wonderfully well-drawn SF backdrop, great characters and complicated plot, and a driving narrative that never lets up. There are one or two holes in the plot, but these are forgiveable, and I thought the ending well judged, unlike one of the other reviewers.
John Lee narrates superbly - great pace, well judged tone and draws the characters very well.
Best book in the RS series, and recommended.
"Reynolds can not write 'endings'"
This book has a great plot, and builds up beautifully with multiple protagonists, but then all that tension and potential for excitement just dissipates away like so much nebula gas.
Part of me only wants to give it 1 star, but it was so good for so long, that I can't quite lower the score that far.
Sadly, this is the second Alastair Reynolds book I have read, and for the second time I have been very disappointed by the ending. Admittedly the previous book was only the first in the 'Revelation Space' trilogy; but 'The Prefect' is a stand alone book set in the same universe, and again I feel betrayed by the ending.
And reviews of the final book in the 'Revelation Space' trilogy would seem to show he can't even write 'endings' for sequences of books, never mind single books.
So much potential followed by so much disappointment means I won't be buying any other Reynolds books from now on.
"A bit rubbish"
Go and buy something by Iain M Banks instead. Use Alastair Reynolds as last resort.
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