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Summary

Count Cassius Mass was the greatest star pilot of the Crius Archduchy. He fought fiercely for his cause, only to watch his nation fall to the Commonwealth. It was only after that he realized the side he'd been fighting for was the wrong one. Now a semi-functional navigator on an interstellar freight hauler, he tries to hide who he was and escape his past. Unfortunately, some things refuse to stay buried and he ends up conscripted by the very people who destroyed his homeland. Their mission for him? Destroy his clone before he's used to rouse the defeated Crius Archduchy from their apathy.

©2016 Charles Phipps (P)2017 David N. Wilson

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Peter
  • Guildford, United Kingdom
  • 22-06-17

An interesting space adventure

C. T. Phipps and, Michael Suttkus have done a great job with this book it is well written and the great narration makes this book is an enjoyable listen.

Each character has their own goals, personality, and history adding to the richness of the story enhanced by the unique voice Eric Burns's narration give them. The story is well paced and the action scenes feel quick and intense. The setting has a lot of history and in is interesting seeing it in the past with the flashback and in the present. As the story goes on you find out more and more about why things are happening. I really want to find out what might be next for the characters I hope there is a sequel.

I think they dynamics between the characters are very well done and the flashbacks are handled well giving you enough information and not side tracking the whole story. The development of the main character as they learn more about their past and the truths about their home nation. The ragtag crew of the ship is just brilliant and reminds be very much of Firefly I love the old granny captain.


I very much enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone that like space adventures.
5/5



I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

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

"We're not criminals. We are - differently legal!"

Any additional comments?

... or, "Okay, what the hell is going on?"
This is a great space romp, humerously written with a fun story of constantly changing parameters. The author has drawn an interesting universe, in which The Commonwealth has been expanding, absorbing all other planetary governments into itself. Only one had escaped defeat: a strange people known as the Chell.
Cassius Mass had fought valiantly against the Commonwealth but had been unable to save his home world. But he survived. Famous (or infamous) for his war deeds and fighter pilot skills, and with a price on his head, he changes identities and gets work as a navigator on a freight ship. When a lookalike version of himself starts appearing on news channels inviting people to join a resistance faction, Cassius finds his secret identity isn't quite as secret as he had thought ... And nearly everything else is somewhat different, too.

A really enjoyable book with great characters, good dialogue and a story which just keeps on shifting. There are humans, AIs, bioroids, clones, genetically enhanced people and aliens, spies everywhere, and even a two hundred plus year old grandmother, Captain of the freight ship, with her mechanical aid, Hunkajunk, probably the oldest robot still in use, now you really don't want to annoy her.

The.narration by Eric Burns is excellent, giving individual voice to the numerous characters and his reading of the text between dialogue is in an expressive, well paced enthusiasm very fitting to the action and pleasing to the ear. One or two tiny slips but, overall, an impressive performance.

I was very fortunate to receive my copy of Lucifer's Star as a gift from the rights holder, via Audiobook Boom. My thanks. I really enjoyed the numerous confusions as beliefs and expectations prove wrong and new directions are introduced. Lots of ingenious fight scenes and I loved the humour which bubbles up throughout. Some interesting ideas, too. If you are looking for the more usual battle between good and evil, this is not the book for you. But if intrigue and double dealing with a 'hero' as confused about his place in the greater scheme of things as the listener is sure to become, then don't delay - get this book now, read, enjoy and then, like me, hope that another adventure will soon follow.

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  • erobbins33
  • 22-05-17

Surprising

Part epic space saga, part comedy of errors, Lucifer's Star surprised me with its world building and plot depth. Just when I'd think the end was near, another layer would unravel, and the plot would rocket in a new direction. The narrator did a great job with the different voices, but I'd have to say Ida was my favorite. She fairly screamed "cantankerous old lady"! A very enjoyable listen.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • DabOfDarkness
  • 18-06-17

Bioroids! Drunk space royalty! Crafty spymaster!

Set in a galaxy far, far away, Cassius Mass, supreme star pilot, has lost his faith in his side of the war. All his life he believed he was fighting for the right side, the Crius Archduchy. Alas, the Archduchy fell to the Commonwealth and people rejoiced (much to Cassius’s surprise). Now he spends his days drunk navigating a freight hauler, the Melampus, going by the name Marcus Grav. That is, until he’s swept up into intrigue and revolution.

I know I have said this before about a new-to-me Phipps series: This is my favorite of Phipps’s works! Well, I say it again. This gripping scifi story is a little darker than some of his other works and yet still has moments of humor and all of it has this space opera feel going for it. I was rooting for Cassius throughout the story since I felt he would do his best to get the least number of average people killed.

Then I started rooting for Ida Claire, a spy master and captain of the Melampus who may or may not be on Cassius’s side, because she was so damn interesting! I kept picturing her with a bit of knitting as she read over the latest spy logs, quietly drinking rum-spiked tea and casually checking off boxes on the log that would determine who lived and who died. I know. She never had any knitting in the book and yet I always picture her with knitting. Maybe the knitting needle tips are poison dipped.

Let’s talk about Cassius’s tangled family tree. So he’s technically a clone of his father, yet he was raised as a sibling with his father’s biological offspring…. so that makes them his, well, we’ll go with siblings for now. Someone learned from that and decided to make a clone of Cassius to raise an Archduchy rebellion against the Commonwealth. Now Ida wants to stop that uprising and hunt down this clone and whoever is controlling him. Obviously, things are going to get messy for Cassius who was raised to have strong familial ties.

I loved the bioroids! Originally crafted to serve as a slave work force, sometimes a bioroid breaks free and spends the rest of their days working on some rundown freight hauler. Take Isla Hernandez, a medical officer, who is glad for her freedom but still harbors plenty of anger. The bioroids plight put me in mind of the human-like AI robots of Bladerunner and Battlestar Galactica.

There’s also aliens! Yes! Humanity knows they exist but has very little to do with them, per the aliens’ choice. We’re not evolved enough to be of interest. Then there’s the nearly alien Chel, a race of once-humans that are so far removed from humanity in purpose, biology, and technology that they are considered alien by most. Clarice has had contact with them and it wasn’t pretty. She’s got her own scars to keep tucked away.

Cassius is in a relationship with Isla, who used to be in a relationship with William… so there’s some personal tension between the two men. There’s also the young Hiro who is everyone’s little brother and he does Cassius a good turn, earning his trust. It’s a ragtag crew that often put me in mind of Firefly.

My one little quibble is that I found Cassius a bit too trusting beyond reason. He has plenty of hints that a member of the Melampus is working for a different team but is then surprised when that betrayal comes to pass. Same thing when he meets up with his siblings once again. Since we’re experiencing the entire tale through Cassius’s eyes, if we see it, then Cassius sees it as well. So I felt it was just a touch clunky trying to portray these hints of forthcoming betrayal and yet still keep Cassius’s blinders on.

All around, I really enjoyed this tale. There’s plenty of skirmishes, spy networks, and individuals making plays for personal gain. Most of our would-be heroes have deep scars that affect their choices, which in turn, put them or others in great peril. I also loved the witty humor that kept popping up, providing breaks from the grimdark feel of the overall story. Plus, there were a few references to iconic movies such as The Godfather and Airplane. I’m so looking forward to Book 2!

I received a free copy of this book.

The Narration: Eric Burns was an excellent narrator for this story. I loved his voice for Ida, which could range from sweet grandmotherly to brutally honest. He also made a really good Cassius, holding onto that sense of honor throughout the story. He did a great job with the humor as well as the grim moments, expressing the right mix of emotions for any given scene.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Brian
  • 26-05-17

A Blast of a Book

For some reason recently, I haven't been reading as many science fiction books as I used to. I think that Lucifer's Star might change that for me. It was an absolute blast to read with twists and turns that could make even the most cybernetically-enhanced stomach turn.

C.T. Phipps is quickly becoming an everyday name in my bookshelves. The best part is that it's not in just one genre. He's written books in numerous genres, including ones that I wouldn't normally read that I've absolutely loved. You can easily add Lucifer's Star to the list of books from Phipps that I've loved.

The story has some of my favorite Sci-Fi characters I've ever read. A former star pilot, his doppelganger, a semi-psychotic version of a Disney princess (hint -- it's the cold one), this story easily has some of my favorite characters ever.

Another aspect that I found myself enjoying was that pretty much every character lied in some way, shape, or form -- and this is pointed out numerous times by Mass to the point where he is getting extremely tired of it (which gave me a good chuckle). The irony is that the lying and deceit ended up being a major part of the book allowing me to get lost (literally, at one point I felt like I was reading a part "who done it?" book). Each character had their own little (or big) lie and it played itself out by the end of the book.

This might be my favorite Phipps book to date -- it's definitely up there with Agent G (which I absolutely loved). I have not read his Supervillainy series, but I might have to give it a try after how much I've loved each one of his books so far.

I'm eagerly awaiting the next book in this series and I hope that it's just as fun as Lucifer's Star was. With that said, this book didn't feel like a "part 1 of 6" book either. This had a nice story arc that plays itself out throughout.

The narration for Lucifer's Star was done by Eric Burns who I thought did a nice job with it. I love when I can just put a book on and be transported to another world. Phipps & Suttkus combined with Burns' narration allowed me to do that.

I was given a free copy of this audiobook -- it has not affected my review in any way.

If you enjoyed my review, please vote for it. Every vote really does help! If you'd like to see more like it, click on my profile here or check out BriansBookBlog DOT com.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Todd (Toad) Vogel
  • 25-05-17

Hoping for a series!!!

Great space saga! Phipps continues to write great stories! I enjoyed his Cthulhu Armageddon series so far and this is just as good! Great sci-fi writer! I didn't want to out this book down! So many different forms of life including artificial life. Great characters! I'd was probably my favorite aside from Cassius. I truly hope Phipps decides to write more in this series! Excellent narration by Eric Burns. This is the first time I've heard of him. He does a great job with all the voices, especially Ida!

...and don't call me Shirley! lol. I laughed so hard at that!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Brian L. Parker
  • 13-07-17

Another Phipps hit

This is the fourth or fifth book I've read (listened to) by CT Phipps. He's gotten continually better and his storylines have become more robust and developed with each novel he writes.

Lucifer's Star is a high fantasy book masquerading as a space opera. The themes and elements of the story would be just as comfortable in a George RR Martin kingdom as they are hurtling across the universe. Murder, intrigue, misplaced loyalties, and warfare abound.

Pick this one up!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark
  • 30-05-17

Fun Space Opera

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Probably so - with a caveat

Any additional comments?

Mixed feelings about this one. Story has potential and overall an enjoyable book. The narration was a problem for me - as noted by another reviewer, the dramatic (or overly dramatic) inflection didn't seem to match what was actually going on with the characters at times. The humor didn't require the narrator's over exhortation to come through and it was a distraction. For this reason, I also think that this would have been a better read in print.This issue aside, book is fun space opera.I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-05-17

More than meets the eye (or ear to be precise)

Would you consider the audio edition of Lucifer's Star to be better than the print version?

To be perfectly honest - I would have liked printed version more, as it would have helped to image main character as less over-emotional

What was one of the most memorable moments of Lucifer's Star?

One of the intriguing parts of the book was at the point I was ready to give up on it. Once story elaborated on situation of bioroids and their situation in society - moral dilemmas alone kept the interest for quite some time. Wouldn't call it a plot twist, but it define telly changed the view on story universe

What didn’t you like about Eric Burns’s performance?

Considering the circumstances of main character voice acting seemed a little bit too agitated. One would expect a certain level of numbness from those who have seen much, rather than the over-emotional reactions to kills, deaths or proud in skill.

Any additional comments?

“I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.”

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Benjamin Johnson
  • 17-07-18

Space Opera, what more do you need?

You need to be able to pay attention to this one, there are a few twist and turns with this story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Ammon
  • 07-06-18

Phipps Does Space Opera

A C.T. Phipps space opera? Yes, please! If you're already a Phipps fan (and you should be) there's plenty to like in his first foray (that I know of) into the genre.

Lucifer's Star is a fun romp through all the tropes of the space opera sub-genre of Sci-Fi. Clones? Check. Replicants? Check. Rogue AI? Check. Cyborgs and/or transhumanism? Check-check. Big space battles? Check. Oh, and because this is Phipps there's a possible Cthulhu (Elder Races) connection thrown in as well.

It can be tough to follow the overall story at times and it's darn right impossible to know who to trust as that changes many, many times throughout the book. There's a convenient deus ex machina near the end of the book, but that doesn't spoil how much I enjoyed the book overall.

I've come to rely on the dependable duo of C.T. Phipps and narrator Jeffrey Kafer. Kafer has proven very reliable as the reader of Phipps' Supervillainy series. Newcomer, Eric Burns does an adequate job here for the most part. I enjoyed his voice for Cassius and most of the male characters, but I really didn't like his reading of the female characters (a little "cringe-y" at times) with the possible exception of Ida (very grandmotherly). This is a common criticism of male narrators reading female characters and vice versa. However, he did keep me engaged throughout the book.

***Full Disclosure: I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • mike s.
  • 31-07-17

Delightful Banter

The title is intriguing, but did not represent what the book was about for me – bit of a misnomer, though there was a hinted-at religious system where Lucifer was their deity.
The characters are well drawn and mostly three dimensional. Some were a hoot, lots of fun. Ida Clair? Awesome.
Plenty of twists and turns in the plot – including the last one, which was both surprising and inevitable, as twists should be.
The banter was the real star. If veered into familiar patterns and cliques a few times – sprinkled with odd anachronisms: Some which works, some which didn’t. Overall it worked well – both to establish character, move the plot and just sprinkled the whole thing with delightful fun.
I liked it very much.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful