counter create hit Sanction - Download Free eBook
Ads Banner
Hot Best Seller

Sanction

Availability: Ready to download

Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.The generation ship Jacob's Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship - the only world its inhabitants have ever known - remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggled to come to terms with the traumas of her Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.The generation ship Jacob's Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship - the only world its inhabitants have ever known - remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggled to come to terms with the traumas of her past, the remnants of rebellion aboard the ship still threaten the crew's survival.Yet as Perceval's relatives Tristen and Benedick play a deadly game of cat and mouse in pursuit of a traitor through a cast ship that is renewing itself in strange and dangerous ways, an even more insidious threat is building in a place no one ever thought to look. And this implacable enemy could change the face of the ship forever if a ragtag band of heroes cannot stop it.Originally published in 2010 as Chill.


Compare
Ads Banner

Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.The generation ship Jacob's Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship - the only world its inhabitants have ever known - remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggled to come to terms with the traumas of her Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.The generation ship Jacob's Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship - the only world its inhabitants have ever known - remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggled to come to terms with the traumas of her past, the remnants of rebellion aboard the ship still threaten the crew's survival.Yet as Perceval's relatives Tristen and Benedick play a deadly game of cat and mouse in pursuit of a traitor through a cast ship that is renewing itself in strange and dangerous ways, an even more insidious threat is building in a place no one ever thought to look. And this implacable enemy could change the face of the ship forever if a ragtag band of heroes cannot stop it.Originally published in 2010 as Chill.

30 review for Sanction

  1. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

    I'm afraid that I won't be able to review this book as seriously as I originally intended. I wanted to read it as an adventure and a novel of chase, because that's how it felt, but I got sidetracked by alienish and outright aliens being bred in the bowels of the generation ship. I wanted to get waylaid by Tristan, the toolbox, the necromancer, and the fragment of our big bad angel from Dust, but I'm afraid I was distracted. It could be because the novel was a departure from the excellent setup I'm afraid that I won't be able to review this book as seriously as I originally intended. I wanted to read it as an adventure and a novel of chase, because that's how it felt, but I got sidetracked by alienish and outright aliens being bred in the bowels of the generation ship. I wanted to get waylaid by Tristan, the toolbox, the necromancer, and the fragment of our big bad angel from Dust, but I'm afraid I was distracted. It could be because the novel was a departure from the excellent setup from the first in the trilogy, and perhaps it is because the main actors from Dust were forced into more cerebral and sendentary roles. Perhaps I wanted a smarter overmind, incorporating the pizazz of the angels from before. Unfortunately, the novel felt like it was suffering from the same problem as the ship. It was outrunning a supernova, but it had no idea where it wanted to go. I know, it sounds rather damning, but that's my take, and the characters within go and hunt for a reason, or an engineer, to take them by the hand and just go astrogate. We do get it, by the end, with the help of leviathan, but it felt more like a whimper than a bang. The first novel was much better. Fortunately, I'm still riding the supernova of the first novel, so I haven't given up on the trilogy. I'll take on Grail right away and pray it picks up again. In the spirit of full disclosure, I do have to let everyone know that this novel is going to suffer, in my mind, because I devoured a singularly fantastic book during the reading of this one. The problem is simple. I've suddenly had to rearrange my favorite top 3 books of all time to make room for Raphael Carter's Fortunate Fall. This out of print book was a complete unknown to me, but it STILL has an iron grip on my mind and makes me look at EVERYTHING else in a poorer light. It's not fair to the books that come after or, in this case, during, because it's become almost impossible to be objective. This is also the best reason I can give for continuing on to the third book in good faith.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

    Elizabeth Bear's Chill is the second in her Jacob's Ladder series. I described the first in this series as part of a "frequently disorienting, occasionally downright trippy, always original and thoughtful trilogy." Chill was less disorienting – except in terms of tracking who the 12-15 central characters were: they included siblings of a super family of Exalt, good and bad angels (AI projections), necromancers, re-evolved creatures (baby mammoths and giant carnivorous orchids). I enjoyed Dust, Elizabeth Bear's Chill is the second in her Jacob's Ladder series. I described the first in this series as part of a "frequently disorienting, occasionally downright trippy, always original and thoughtful trilogy." Chill was less disorienting – except in terms of tracking who the 12-15 central characters were: they included siblings of a super family of Exalt, good and bad angels (AI projections), necromancers, re-evolved creatures (baby mammoths and giant carnivorous orchids). I enjoyed Dust, but Chill seemed to come together better. It faced the evil in the world, named it, and attempted to rebuild a better one. Caitlin, one daughter in the Conn family, when faced with a horrifying decision made by the Builders (perhaps us?) considered the description of the decision as "cynical": Cynical. What a comforting euphemism to mean deception, betrayal, the treacherous use of the faith of hundreds of thousands to lure them to their deaths. (Kindle 3687) Trust appears in the text 45 times and was a rare but growing commodity:"Will you accept a squirt?” Easier and faster than speech, to allow the angel to simply inject the knowledge into his head. Riskier, too—all sorts of things could come concealed in such code. Benedick nodded nevertheless, choosing to trust. Trust the angel, trust the Captain his daughter. Trust the world that cradled his bones. (Kindle 1608)Love was dangerous, but fruitful. You did not love an angel to be safe, or in the interests of survival, or even because you thought the angel might ever love you back. You did not love an angel because you thought you could tame an angel, change it, make it safe. You loved an angel because to love an angel was to touch something larger than yourself, and because the process of that touch enlarged you as well. (Kindle 3198) In Dust, the characters were either good or bad, while in Chill, they were more nuanced. In one scene, Tristen meets his great-granddaughter, the priestess of the land that his team was travelling through, and judged for his crimes by being forced to face them. He told her, "Death is not the only justice. I paid for my sins before you met me, Lady of the Edenites. I am well acquainted with my monstrosities. And I have long since learned to live with them, which is harder.” She responded, Good enough, if unsatisfying." (Kindle 3379) To me, this is a more satisfying conclusion than many. His sister Arianrhod, the most obviously evil member of the family, is caught at the end. She was released, Cynric (yet another sister) arguing, "What has she done that's worse than you or me?" (Kindle 4309) Fair enough. This series reminds me of Zelazny's Prince of Amber series, although the tone is very different. There the demi-god siblings killed each other at a drop of a hat and often joked. In Chill, their ship has just escaped apparent apocalypse. There are fewer opportunities to laugh. If I were to ask for one thing, I would ask for a genealogy – or an activated X-Ray feature on my Kindle – especially as the Conn family was complicated, intermarried, long-lived, and might take different forms across time. Tracking their relationships was often difficult. In fact, I probably misidentified some relationships in this review. Mea culpa!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    2 Stars This book is barely a 2 star read after a decent start with book 1 Dust. Very little happens in this book and the characters that made book 1 great are reduced down to paper thin shells. I was bored at times reading this and am truly shocked that I pushed through to the end. Elizabeth Bear is an amazing author that writes great science fiction, but this book was not up to par. It is going to be tough to finish this series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Phoenixfalls

    WARNING: No spoilers for Chill, but plenty of spoilers for Dust. Chill picks up almost directly after Dust ended, when the ship is reeling from the nova blast and the crew is reeling from all of the deaths, particularly Rien's sacrifice to bring the new angel -- an A.I. integrating all of the splinter A.I.s that developed when the ship broke down centuries before -- into existence. Perceval is now captain, but she is barely functional as she deals with her grief, and there is an enormous power WARNING: No spoilers for Chill, but plenty of spoilers for Dust. Chill picks up almost directly after Dust ended, when the ship is reeling from the nova blast and the crew is reeling from all of the deaths, particularly Rien's sacrifice to bring the new angel -- an A.I. integrating all of the splinter A.I.s that developed when the ship broke down centuries before -- into existence. Perceval is now captain, but she is barely functional as she deals with her grief, and there is an enormous power vacuum that the remaining Exalts of Rule and Engine -- both those for and against Perceval's captaincy -- are scrambling to fill. And while the A.I.s have all been integrated into the new angel, it is bothered by enormous black spaces in its awareness of the ship, due either to damage or enemy machinations. And then a very dangerous prisoner escapes, so two teams -- one led by Tristen, the other by Benedick -- are sent in pursuit. The plot is made up entirely by that pursuit, and I found that choice disappointing. The entire plot of Dust was Perceval and Rien fleeing through the fascinating landscape of the half-ruined ship; to have the entire plot of this one be another chase through a now-much-more-familiar landscape just seemed repetitive. There are a couple new and exciting set-pieces -- particularly a scene involving massive intelligent fungi doing something deliciously unexpected -- but ultimately I felt a bit let down by Bear's imagination. What stood out most about Dust for me was how gloriously imaginative the world-building was; with that thrill behind me this was just another SF action novel. Or would have been, were it not for the characters. If there was one flaw in Dust, it was that all of the characters were ciphers to me for 2/3 of the novel. Not so here. Dust and Chill ended up being mirror images of each other: the first all ideas and no character development; the second few (new) ideas but wonderful, complex characters with long histories and complicated relationships. The chase plot is really just window-dressing for internal, character-driven action, as the characters left standing after Dust figure out who they want to be in this new world. Unfortunately, window-dressing or not the chase plot was still there, and it required a resolution, and that resolution was something of a deus-ex-machina. It also left a pretty significant plot thread dangling, as this is the middle book of a trilogy. But for these characters I would forgive a great deal more than that.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jason Lang

    Dust was a fantastic novel that reminded me of Wolfe's Dying Sun series. Couched in mythic/fantasy language, but set far in the future. Chill is Dust's sequel and sadly, not as good as it's prequel. The world-ship Jacob's Ladder has suffered some cataclysm which has left it adrift. The crew is at war with each other inside the broken hull. After a enforced peace breaks out at the end of Dust, the ship sets out again after 500 years. Now, crippled by damage, low on resources, the crew must deal Dust was a fantastic novel that reminded me of Wolfe's Dying Sun series. Couched in mythic/fantasy language, but set far in the future. Chill is Dust's sequel and sadly, not as good as it's prequel. The world-ship Jacob's Ladder has suffered some cataclysm which has left it adrift. The crew is at war with each other inside the broken hull. After a enforced peace breaks out at the end of Dust, the ship sets out again after 500 years. Now, crippled by damage, low on resources, the crew must deal with tough decisions. And then it looks like someone or something is sabotaging the ship... This book feels both short (as in, it hasn't covered much ground) and rushed (as in, the final chapter or two and the big reveal all crammed into a chapter or two. It feels like she had to pad the middle parts of the novel to expand the book out, and then had an editor cut off the last couple of chapters. Bear has done great novels, but sadly, it seems like her sequels always suffer.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jacqie

    I think the first book in the series, "Dust", was a stronger book. It may have been too long since I read that one until I read this one. I had a hard time remembering all the characters and family history. The first book had more of a sense of wonder with the movement through the ship. The main characters from the first book are mostly not seen, and I had a hard time transferring my interest to the new characters. This book is basically one big long chase scene, interspersed with lots of I think the first book in the series, "Dust", was a stronger book. It may have been too long since I read that one until I read this one. I had a hard time remembering all the characters and family history. The first book had more of a sense of wonder with the movement through the ship. The main characters from the first book are mostly not seen, and I had a hard time transferring my interest to the new characters. This book is basically one big long chase scene, interspersed with lots of character angst and family drama. Exploring the ship/world wasn't quite as fresh. It looks like a lot of set-up for the third book, which may have more story to it. Although there were a lot of efforts at building tension, really, I had a hard time believing in deadly danger facing these superhuman characters. It may just be a case of middle-book syndrome, and the series may be more dynamic in the next book.

  7. 5 out of 5

    MA

    Had absolutely no idea what was going on, in the first book. Too many names, too many new ideas, too much description that made it difficult to tell what was metaphor and what was actually happening. I picked up the second book mostly just hoping to figure out what happened in the first one. Ooh, I get it now! I will probably go re-read Dust, now that I have a better idea. Because, for all my complaining, Bear's prose is SO GORGEOUS that I can't not read her books, even when I am completely Had absolutely no idea what was going on, in the first book. Too many names, too many new ideas, too much description that made it difficult to tell what was metaphor and what was actually happening. I picked up the second book mostly just hoping to figure out what happened in the first one. Ooh, I get it now! I will probably go re-read Dust, now that I have a better idea. Because, for all my complaining, Bear's prose is SO GORGEOUS that I can't not read her books, even when I am completely lost. And her metaphors are so fabulous that I can't not enjoy the hell out of the books-- even when I am completely lost.

  8. 4 out of 5

    bronwyn

    AUUUUGGHHHHHH there is NO reason that these books should be such a slog but WHAT A SLOG. They are chock full of concepts and ideas and “WHOA!!!!” moments but have no depth and no coherence and are as a result painfully boring despite being made from fantastic materials! I’m so mad I spent the better part of a month unable to finish this instead of reading something else. WHAT A WASTE.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra

    This is definitely a second-book-in-the-series, not that you can tell that from the cover - which must have been annoying for some people. As such, there are spoilers for the first book, Dust. Chill picks up only hours after the end of Dust - Tristen Conn awakens in an acceleration tank, after the colony ship has had to accelerate at drastic rates to escape a supernova. The first part of the story therefore follows the experiences of Tristen, Caitlin, Benedick and Perceval as they accustom This is definitely a second-book-in-the-series, not that you can tell that from the cover - which must have been annoying for some people. As such, there are spoilers for the first book, Dust. Chill picks up only hours after the end of Dust - Tristen Conn awakens in an acceleration tank, after the colony ship has had to accelerate at drastic rates to escape a supernova. The first part of the story therefore follows the experiences of Tristen, Caitlin, Benedick and Perceval as they accustom themselves to their new roles, new relationships, and - in Perceval's case - new status. They do not do this unhampered, of course, because Arianrhod - she whose actions contributed significantly to the disasters of Dust - is also abroad, and again contributing to chaos. Much of the novel is in fact concerned with chasing Arianrhod, with Tristen and Benedick's desires for vengeance running hot. As they do so, they encounter new areas of their world/ship, Jacob's Ladder, that both broaden and confuse their understanding of the world and its purpose. There is a lot of chasing in this book; a lot of running, some hiding, the occasional ambush. One consequence for the reader is in demonstrating the sheer size of the ship. However, this is not done as well as I would have liked, as Bear shows little interest in emphasising the size or making it feel as seriously large as it must be. This is problematic because without it, I couldn't help but feel that Tristen, Benedick and their companions were doing little more than running through corridors, either aimlessly or only to advance the plot by allowing them to meet new and difficult characters. Although they clearly have a destination - or, for most of the story, an objective - it did make the book feel a bit like it was running on the spot. On the other hand, they do meet new and interesting characters (just wait for the orchids), and in the process we learn more about the characters (especially Tristen), the history of the Conns, and the world/ship. Not quite enough that everything makes sense - and I still have some trouble with the Conn family tree, which makes things a bit confusing sometimes - but enough that some pieces from Dust begin to fall into place, and other conclusions are suggested. More is learnt about the Conns and the world/ship through those who stay behind, too. Caitlin - Chief Engineer, doing what she does best - learns all sort of interesting and uncomfortable things from the resurrected Jsutien, once an Astrogator. Meanwhile Perceval, who has had hardly any time to come to grips with the fact that her sister-love Rien has been subsumed into the new world angel, is forced to start acting as Captain - which means interacting with the new angel, whether she likes it or not. Despite her preeminence in Dust, and her new role as Captain, Perceval actually doesn't appear as much as I had anticipated here in Chill. This lack contributed to my feeling somewhat unfulfilled by the novel as a whole. Even when she was the focus of particular sections, the reader is not given the same access to Perceval as in the first book. This is not a result of shifting focus; this actually contributes to the pace and excitement of the story, I think, as well as its richness. Instead it felt more like Bear wasn't sure how to deal with the new Perceval - and that she was more interested in the chase scenes. Perceval's scenes felt a bit cursory. It might sound as if I didn't enjoy this book very much, but that's actually not true. I like the characters, and especially learning more about Tristen and Benedick, who were fairly opaque in Dust. Bear does some interesting things with the world/ship as a whole - and although she doesn't always see them through, offering them more as tantalising possibilities, I'm hoping that the third book (Grail) will bring things to a magnificent conclusion. I generally enjoy Bear's dialogue and her descriptive passages as well. So I'm definitely going to read the third book.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Nick

    A funky mix of medieval knights questing through an incredible artificial space-faring habitat. I had no idea what to expect - this is one of many 'second book in the series' that I've received as gifts. They normally sit on the shelf until I've found the first one. However, our book stacks are getting ridiculous and my current system is just reading the next book on the heap. I didn't feel I was missing much though, the characters are suffering from their extended histories and the disasters of A funky mix of medieval knights questing through an incredible artificial space-faring habitat. I had no idea what to expect - this is one of many 'second book in the series' that I've received as gifts. They normally sit on the shelf until I've found the first one. However, our book stacks are getting ridiculous and my current system is just reading the next book on the heap. I didn't feel I was missing much though, the characters are suffering from their extended histories and the disasters of the first book. This is fixing it afterwards and preventing further chaos. It's a beautiful world that Bear has created, full of nanotechnology and weird whimsy. It reminded me powerfully of Brian Aldiss' 'Hothouse', one of my favourite books about the far future and the bizarre fruits of evolution. All the characters were fun, and I feel I'd like to know them better so I may still seek out the first volume 'Dust'. Bear's use of Angels as the AIs and the complex multitude of personalities and histories wrapped in all the characters made for great intrigue and depth. Basilisks - yes. Mammoths - yes. Intelligent carnivorous plants - yes. Since it is primarily a quest tale there is a lot of walking and thinking with most of the real action right at the end. That gives it a slightly odd pace but it worked perfectly for me and I was delighted throughout.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Juushika

    The planetship is underway, but fragile: as its new angel and captain integrate, their integrity is threatened by a potential outside force. I miss the duo protagonists of Dust. Characterization in Chill is strong, but the narrative voice, with its distinctive quirks (especially in depicting microexpressions), remains static as it cycles through the half-dozen points of view; the effect is fluid almost to the point of sloppy, and, with a plot so similar to the first book, bizarrely redundant. The planetship is underway, but fragile: as its new angel and captain integrate, their integrity is threatened by a potential outside force. I miss the duo protagonists of Dust. Characterization in Chill is strong, but the narrative voice, with its distinctive quirks (especially in depicting microexpressions), remains static as it cycles through the half-dozen points of view; the effect is fluid almost to the point of sloppy, and, with a plot so similar to the first book, bizarrely redundant. But while the narrative left me cold, the world continues to be fascinating (even with this book's sudden and uneven ending). The religious slant on a generation ship, handled by an author as intentionally complex as Bear, is a spiraling nautilus, delicate and exponential and halfways-hidden, esoteric and creative, a pleasure to discover. I enjoy this series, and look forward to following it to conclusion, but as an individual book I much preferred the tighter and more effective narrative of the first.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Althea Ann

    I really enjoyed the first book in this series, "Dust." I very much liked the juxtaposition of the near-derelict generation ship with the mythology that has grown up around its technologies, and the complex, 'old-fashioned' court hierarchies of the society. Unfortunately, I didn't feel that "Chill" lived up to the first book's promise. I just wasn't sucked back into the world. The plot kind of meandered, and while there were some interesting ideas and imagery, I didn't feel any tension or driving I really enjoyed the first book in this series, "Dust." I very much liked the juxtaposition of the near-derelict generation ship with the mythology that has grown up around its technologies, and the complex, 'old-fashioned' court hierarchies of the society. Unfortunately, I didn't feel that "Chill" lived up to the first book's promise. I just wasn't sucked back into the world. The plot kind of meandered, and while there were some interesting ideas and imagery, I didn't feel any tension or driving drama... it was a bit of a slog to get through it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    David

    Chandler's Law on a generation ship. I decided to finish the series but that is probably a character flaw. (view spoiler)[The ending was a disappointment. All-knowing immortal aliens, give me a break. (hide spoiler)]

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kes

    This book is really about the Conn family and their history. We follow Benedick and Tristen as they chase (view spoiler)[Arianrhod (hide spoiler)] through the ship. She's carrying a dangerous, unknown, virus. In the background, Caitlin and Perceval struggle to repair the ship. It felt like a very slow book - the characters are basically going through the ship, and any "fight" scenes are between competing AIs. There's interesting bits about nanotech and evolution. It also felt very mythic - there This book is really about the Conn family and their history. We follow Benedick and Tristen as they chase (view spoiler)[Arianrhod (hide spoiler)] through the ship. She's carrying a dangerous, unknown, virus. In the background, Caitlin and Perceval struggle to repair the ship. It felt like a very slow book - the characters are basically going through the ship, and any "fight" scenes are between competing AIs. There's interesting bits about nanotech and evolution. It also felt very mythic - there are abundant references to the Bible (including the Book of Job) and a resurrection of (view spoiler)[Cynric (hide spoiler)] to lead them to a new path (giving the ship (view spoiler)[an actual destination - after the revelation that the ship was deliberately marooned to "force" evolution (hide spoiler)] . Plotwise, it doesn't feel like it's moving - but I can appreciate how dense the story also feels. 3/5 stars - wasn't as fresh as the first book, and the last book looks far more interesting.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Gail

    Second book in the series, and this one was weirder than the first. This book begins after the generation ship catches the explosion wave of the star they were circling when it went nova. The ship is cracking up. The new captain is mourning. Lots of people died. And they're under attack, either by the aunt/granddaughter/cousin (depending on which of the cast of characters is relating to her) who was causing trouble in book 1, or maybe the ship's own nanocolonies gone rogue and attacking itself. Second book in the series, and this one was weirder than the first. This book begins after the generation ship catches the explosion wave of the star they were circling when it went nova. The ship is cracking up. The new captain is mourning. Lots of people died. And they're under attack, either by the aunt/granddaughter/cousin (depending on which of the cast of characters is relating to her) who was causing trouble in book 1, or maybe the ship's own nanocolonies gone rogue and attacking itself. Mostly, it's a quest story, with several of the characters from book 1 heading off through the ship to catch/stop the bad girl. They spend an awful lot of time traveling through the various, marvelous spaces of the ship, marveling at them. A lot of ship history is explored as well, and secrets are revealed. Bear does a good job of keeping her own story secrets as well, releasing them in dribs and drabs as needed, but only as needed. And the ending is again a hopeful one.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Matt Hope

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Well this is unexpected. I actually liked this one a lot more than the first. It’s a lot stranger, for one. Sapient carnivorous plants! And the characters come through a lot better for me but that might just be increased familiarity. I’ve never been good at keeping track of many characters though not as challenging as it would be in game of thrones. Nevertheless, rampant incest makes it very difficult for me to keep in mind who loves who or hates who and why and who had what children and so on. Well this is unexpected. I actually liked this one a lot more than the first. It’s a lot stranger, for one. Sapient carnivorous plants! And the characters come through a lot better for me but that might just be increased familiarity. I’ve never been good at keeping track of many characters though not as challenging as it would be in game of thrones. Nevertheless, rampant incest makes it very difficult for me to keep in mind who loves who or hates who and why and who had what children and so on. Add to that multigenerational conflicts and relationships. Yeah. My mind can’t handle that. I was grooving along a lot better than with the first. Not entirely sure if most people will enjoy book two as it feels very different than book one but I can tell you that it’s sprawling with strange ideas.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jamie Rich

    Chill (Jacob's Ladder, #2) by Elizabeth Bear If Dust didn't blow you away, this sequel will! Just when you thought it was safe to be in Jacob's Ladder, you will be killed. But death may, or may not, be all that permanent. In a spaceship known simply as the world, that left Earth how many generations ago, and is headed to who knows where, the onboard family schisms and power struggles are all to real. And the family that Rules them all, the Conns (nifty name there) is by parts, as sadistic, Chill (Jacob's Ladder, #2) by Elizabeth Bear If Dust didn't blow you away, this sequel will! Just when you thought it was safe to be in Jacob's Ladder, you will be killed. But death may, or may not, be all that permanent. In a spaceship known simply as the world, that left Earth how many generations ago, and is headed to who knows where, the onboard family schisms and power struggles are all to real. And the family that Rules them all, the Conns (nifty name there) is by parts, as sadistic, manipulative and power hungry as they come. Yet they also boast some of the most heroic, and also some of the most talented people on board. You'll just hafta read this continuation!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mya R

    The world building in this book is amazing. The flora & fauna, the evolution of culture & language, have been given exquisite attention. However, this book goes in a different direction from the first in the series. The main protagonists are different characters, & point of view shifts through many more people. Unfortunately, I never fell in love with any of them. I was fascinated by the world through which they were traveling, but it was a struggle to care how their journey The world building in this book is amazing. The flora & fauna, the evolution of culture & language, have been given exquisite attention. However, this book goes in a different direction from the first in the series. The main protagonists are different characters, & point of view shifts through many more people. Unfortunately, I never fell in love with any of them. I was fascinated by the world through which they were traveling, but it was a struggle to care how their journey resolved. I loved so many things about the first book, to not love this one was a disappointment.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alytha

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Finished Chill and Grail, volumes 2 and 3 of the Jacob's Ladder trilogy by Elizabeth Bear. Chill picks up immediately after the end of Dust. The Jacob's Ladder is under way again after 500 years, but all is not perfect. The newly-made Captain Perceval has to deal with the loss of Rien, and learn to work with the new ship's Angel Nova, composed of Rien and the fragmented Angels she ingested at the end of Dust. Nova, meanwhile, notices that something is fighting her control over the ship's systems. Finished Chill and Grail, volumes 2 and 3 of the Jacob's Ladder trilogy by Elizabeth Bear. Chill picks up immediately after the end of Dust. The Jacob's Ladder is under way again after 500 years, but all is not perfect. The newly-made Captain Perceval has to deal with the loss of Rien, and learn to work with the new ship's Angel Nova, composed of Rien and the fragmented Angels she ingested at the end of Dust. Nova, meanwhile, notices that something is fighting her control over the ship's systems. In order to be able to survive the acceleration, all inhabitants of the Jacob's Ladder have been forcibly Exalted. And they're not too happy about that. Benedick and Tristen seperately travel through the ship to find their antagonist, and run into different factions not happy with the Conn rule, foremost a group of Edenists, who violently oppose the forced evolution enforced by the the Builders who launched the Jacob's Ladder almost a thousand years ago. As if that wasn't enough, Tristen discovers that the Edenists leader, Dorcas, wears the body of his deceased daughter Sparrow. Meanwhile, Benedick and Chelsea, another member of the Conn family, take another route and meet giant, intelligent, carnivorous mobile orchids, among other things. Fortunately, they're friendly. In the course of the novel, several dark secrets are laid open, some relating to the true aims of the Builders, and some to the mysterious Cynric Conn, who developed most of the creatures inhabiting the Jacob's Ladder, as well as the nano-colonies the Exalted rely on. Grail continues 50 years after the events of Chill. The Jacob's Ladder has discovered a habitable planet on their course. Unfortunately, other humans have got there first, as faster than light travel was invented while the Jacob's Ladder drifted through space. The book's perspective shifts between the people on the ship, and the Administrators of the planet, Danilaw and Amanda, each trying to come to terms with the respective "aliens". Unfortunately, an ancient antagonist on the ship decides to use the opportunity to take over control, and there's an attack on the Bridge resulting in a very tragic death. Most of the book is concerned with philosophical discussions about the two forms of human civilsation: the highly advanced but rather chaotic Jacob's Ladder people, for whom evolution and adaptation is the highest aim, and on the other side the highly ordered people of Fortune, who have culled all negative elements out of the human mind through a procedure called "rightminding". The people of Fortune are all well-adjusted, rational and useful members of society. Thus, members of both groups are almost constantly fighting their own instincts making them see the other as an abomination. It's a bit hard to describe what I like so much about Elizabeth Bear...she has a very distinctive style, very intelligent and somehow poetic, which also often requires the reader to think along with her. No easy, ready-to-swallow conclusions for the most part. The Jacob's Ladder is a fascinating world, full of amazing creatures, and people who, despite their evolution and all their little nano-toys, still have to deal with the most basic human emotions; love, loss, impossible families... On the ship, technology and life seamlessly flow into eachother, as seem in the colonies supporting the people, and the toolkits, which are essentially a cross between a Swiss army knife and a smart phone in the shape of a fluffy squirrel-like creature, which is also biologically alive. Life, death, nature and artifice are very flowing here. It reminded me of Dan Simmons' Hyperion, Endymion and Illium a bit. I also liked how in Grail, the author does not take a side in the argument. Both societies have their pros and cons (though the Jacob's Ladder has more Conns....sorry...), and the motivations of both sides are thoroughly understandable. In the end, the conflict can only be solved by a bit of a deus ex machina (angelus ex machina rather), but it was pretty much the only way. Some nitpicks though: I found it hard to get a scale of the ship. It's only ever described as gigantic, but it only really seems to exist in small portions, the rest is kinda vague. Also, we're never told how many people are on it. We almost only meet the Conns and their associates, and the Edenites. It is implied that a lot of the ship is empty, but a bit more description would have been nice here. Also, I'd really like a family tree of the Conns. On the other hand, their cheerful incest (being Exalted has its advantages) might make drawing one a bit complicated. In Grail, I didn't really like the Ariane storyline. It seemed a bit superfluous, with all the philiosophical debate between the ship and Fortune going on. Also, it read like a bit of a rehash of the issues in Chill. It was also pretty obvious who Ariane was hiding in, and there wasn't much emotional impact for me, because the host never had much of a personality herself anyway. The end result is dependant of the Ariane plot, but without the problems she generated, a very different conclusion could have been found. It's a bit of a self-serving cause and effect, and none of it really necessary. Now, I'd really like to read a prequel to Dust, and see how their high-tech feudal disfunctional society on a spaceship actually worked in the beginning... Chill: 8/10 Grail: 7.5/10

  20. 4 out of 5

    Simonfletcher

    Good but not as good as the first novel in the series, I hope for less of a rushed ending. But eBear is eBear. She's still one of my favourite writers for her creative depth, eccentric characters, and intricate worldbuilding.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Galman

    The genetically engineered crew of a generation star ship fight against an unknown enemy aboard while seeking a destination star. The character motivations and plot justifications can be difficult to understand. I would need to reread it. That said, I mostly enjoyed it.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Edenvered

    Concentrated on new viewpoints in this sequel to "Dust." Good pacing in revelation of important information. Characters didn't all know the same things. Most of action was travel through ship. Leading to big climax at end that seemed to fall short.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie Caple

    Again, fascinating world building-- but wasn't a huge fan of the pacing. I found the climax abrupt and rather anticlimactic because of how brief it was.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Amy Peavy

    Sort of a post apocalyptic/pre-advanced civilization sci-fi trilogy in which I still need to read the final volume. I enjoyed getting to know the world and the different characters.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Vaughn Vargo-Alevras

    Boring build up with zero payoff.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mardel

    If you haven't yet read Dust, then Chill isn't going to make much sense. It's still doable, but it's better to read Dust first. The second in a trilogy - Jacob's Ladder trilogy- Chill takes off right where Dust ended. The aftermath of a great battle... but you need back ground. Too bad you're not going to get a lot of back ground from me -- you really need to read the book to get the most out that you can. See, I'm not sure I got everything out of the book that I could. But here's a start... The If you haven't yet read Dust, then Chill isn't going to make much sense. It's still doable, but it's better to read Dust first. The second in a trilogy - Jacob's Ladder trilogy- Chill takes off right where Dust ended. The aftermath of a great battle... but you need back ground. Too bad you're not going to get a lot of back ground from me -- you really need to read the book to get the most out that you can. See, I'm not sure I got everything out of the book that I could. But here's a start... The generation ship - Jacob's Ladder, has been recently saved from hundreds of years of orbiting a dying star. Using a dangerous combination of events, the newest captain has managed to begin a journey to find a planet for the inhabitants of this ship to colonize. this is something that was planned long ago, though the plans to colonize seem to have been delayed. The original ship dwellers are mostly all gone - there are some who have been around for a few hundred years, but even they don't know all there is to know of the beginnings of the flight; they don't know the complete story to how the ship ended up stranded and orbiting in a dying system for hundreds of years. Unfortunately, though the ship is now traveling, it's also continuing to fail at an even faster rate. The inhabitants: this is where I believe the SciFi merges with some fantasy elements - whether the author planned this or not, it's how I see it. There are some strong SciFi elements; bio-engineering, computer programs merging with humans; computer programs turned into artificial intelligence turned into "angels"; elite family members with special gifts such as wings, the ability to sense things and converse telepathically with the AI. The background of this book is rich with details of all types. The support staff of the ship are divided according to the systems they work in - here is where I show how much I don't remember terms, so I'll just describe. The engineering section is one family, the kitchen/life sustenance is another. there is life support, and the ruling class - the Conn's who are not the nicest people in the world. And the ship itself - it's vast. Vast enough to contain seasons, fields and holdings resembling fiefdoms of yesteryear. I cannot do this book and all the details justice. So, I skip to the storyline. In Dust (Jacob's Ladder #1), we meet Perceval, Rien, Mallory, Gavin, Tristen and Benedict - among a few others. In Chill, Perceval is now Captain of the ship. Two of the enemy angels have warred - with one clear winner. Each ship system had its own Angel, and one Angel was ambitious enough to take over and absorb the other angels, trying to effect a change that would save the ship. Because of this, Perceval's new found love - Rien, is now part of the computer system/angel. Perceval is angry, and trying to adjust. And even though the war is "over" it's not really over. The ship is losing valuable resources almost faster than damaged areas can be fixed. Tristen (one of the uncles) and Benedict (one of the other uncles) have gone on separate and parallel quests to find out what's going on, and to try to fix the problems. Unfortunately one of the Aunts - Arianne, seemingly captured, has escaped and has some plan she's been putting into action. Mallory - a necromancer who looks like a man and a woman, but who claims to be a woman - is helping. Mallory has the memories of hundreds, if not thousands of previously living people in his ....memory banks. His sidekick is a metal bird, called Gavin who seems to have the memories of one of the other Aunts. This aunt was a sorceress - (you see where I get the fantasy along with the SciFi?) It sounds confusing as hell, but when you're reading it, you just fall into the story, and the details unfold as you read along. The details as well as the rich surroundings, and the fantastical mix of science and fantasy, computer programs and magic. It's a hell of a mix, ending in a hell of a story. Another merging of factions is the female vs male, hetero vs homo sexual - only it really isn't a versus type of thing, it's more of a mixture. Sexuality, and even male/female presence is more of an afterthought, or even better - a blending of ideals. For example, as an exalt (the elite members of the family) one can choose to be sexual or asexual. Perceval had chosen to be asexual until she fell in love with Rien, and even then though she really wanted to marry this woman, she wasn't concerned with a sex life, more of a merging and spending a life with her loved one. Mallory - not quite male or female, is with either sex. It's as if an ideal future for the sexes was being described here - a world where people are allowed to love as they will, with no judgement or spotlight. The sexual preferences just ... Are. Good story, with the promise of more with the third of the series - Grail. I enjoyed the dialogue, the inner thoughts and the lush descriptions of everything from the ship's different sections to the animals and fauna within the ship, and all the different people. It all combines into one hell of a story.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lynda Lacasse

    Wow! This was a perfect second half of this strange and wonderful space opera! I will definitely be reading more from this author.

  28. 5 out of 5

    David Spencer

    I wanted to love this book, just like I wanted to love its predecessor. I love Bear's worldbuilding and wordcraft, but something about her storytelling leaves me feeling like the whole exercise is academic. I just don't feel invested in the story or the characters. That said, there were moments of absolute joy in this book, periods where I admired her cleverness. I've read a handful of her books over the years and always feel like I'm just on the outside of her stuff. I feel like there will be a I wanted to love this book, just like I wanted to love its predecessor. I love Bear's worldbuilding and wordcraft, but something about her storytelling leaves me feeling like the whole exercise is academic. I just don't feel invested in the story or the characters. That said, there were moments of absolute joy in this book, periods where I admired her cleverness. I've read a handful of her books over the years and always feel like I'm just on the outside of her stuff. I feel like there will be a book of hers which aligns better for me. I just haven't gotten there yet.

  29. 5 out of 5

    PabloHabla

    Man, and I thought I had family problems.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Shara

    The premise: ganked from BN.com: Sometimes the greatest sin is survival. The generation ship Jacob’s Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship -- the only world its inhabitants have ever known -- remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggles to come to terms with the traumas of her recent past, the remnants of rebellion aboard the ship still threaten the crew’s The premise: ganked from BN.com: Sometimes the greatest sin is survival.
 
The generation ship Jacob’s Ladder has barely survived cataclysms from without and within. Now, riding the shock wave of a nova blast toward an uncertain destiny, the damaged ship -- the only world its inhabitants have ever known -- remains a war zone. Even as Perceval, the new captain, struggles to come to terms with the traumas of her recent past, the remnants of rebellion aboard the ship still threaten the crew’s survival. Yet as Perceval’s relatives Tristen and Benedick play a deadly game of cat and mouse in pursuit of a traitor through a vast ship that is renewing itself in strange and dangerous ways, an even more insidious threat is building in a place no one ever thought to look. And this implacable enemy could change the face of the ship forever if a ragtag band of heroes cannot stop it. My Rating: Worth Reading, with Reservations I'll say first: for as challenging a read as it was, I liked Dust better. The sense of discovery was more powerful in that book, and the primary points of view were two sisters, and I always enjoy the female POV when it comes to SF. That being said, Chill is still very good. It may retrace the lines of Dust's plot a bit in terms of discovering new things about the generational ship Jacob's Ladder, and the motivating factor of the main story wasn't quite as epic for me personally, but it was still very good. The ending was a little out of left field, but I do wonder if it's because I'm forgetting important details from the first book. I feel like I'd get so much more out of these pages if I read the whole trilogy back-to-back, and Bear's writing is strong and fascinating enough that I may do that. Looking forward to the trilogy's conclusion, which I intend to read soon. Spoilers, yay or nay?: Nay. Some vague spoilers about the actual shape of the plot, but no specifics, no whys or hows or what ends up happening before the book is said and done. The full review is at my blog, which you can read if you click the link below. As always, comments and discussion are most welcome. REVIEW: Elizabeth Bear's CHILL Happy Reading!

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.