Read Angel Stations by Gary Gibson Online

angel-stations

Aeons ago, a super-scientific culture known as 'Angels' had left incomprehensible relics all over the galaxy. Among these phenomena were the Stations, whereby human spacecraft could jump instantly from one part of the galaxy to another. And from them the brilliant Angel technology could be explored and exploited. One of these stations orbits the planet Kaspar, where the onAeons ago, a super-scientific culture known as 'Angels' had left incomprehensible relics all over the galaxy. Among these phenomena were the Stations, whereby human spacecraft could jump instantly from one part of the galaxy to another. And from them the brilliant Angel technology could be explored and exploited. One of these stations orbits the planet Kaspar, where the only other known sentient species outside Earth has been meticulously allowed to continue evolving in its own world of primitive ignorance. But suddenly Kaspar's mysterious 'Citadel' has become the vital key to repelling the fast-approaching threat. At what cost, though, to its native inhabitants ... and to the human residents of the orbiting Angel station?...

Title : Angel Stations
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780330420174
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 551 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Angel Stations Reviews

  • Adrian Leaf
    2018-08-22 21:38

    A mid future space opera that is Gary Gibson's first novel. Unfortunately it falls into a lot of the traps most authors do with their first book; Interchangeable characters, sketchy motivations, and a lack of focus to the plot. There are probably too many characters points of view for the page count. I found it difficult to remember what a certain character was trying to achieve, or even who they were when they reappeared after a number of pages. That isn't to say it hasn't got any redeeming qualities, it is typically ambitious, fairly good fun and has some nice ideas, just a little overreaching.

  • Roddy Williams
    2018-09-02 00:42

    Gibson's debut novel is a multi-character narrative space opera much in the style of Peter F HamiltonMankind has been able to travel out to the stars due to the discovery of Angel Stations; vast torus-shaped space stations surrounding wormholes which give instantaneous access to other stations in other parts of the galaxy.The study of abandoned Angel tech has been a mixed blessing. It has allowed Earth to design probes which have been sent as far as possible toward the galactic core and which have discovered that processes have been set up to automatically set off novas and flood the galaxy with lethal radiation at very long but regular intervals. The radiation is due to arrive at the planet Kaspar in days, and is likely to kill off the only other sentient race that humanity has discovered, currently at a pre-industrial feudal culture level. Humans have also used Angel tech to alter human genes in military test subjects, producing a number of humans who are virtually indestructible and can, in some instances, see the future. We follow a disparate group of people whose paths converge at the abandoned Angel citadel on the planet Kaspar as the wave of radiation approaches. It's an interesting debut, featuring echoes of Peter F Hamilton, Jack McDevitt and Fred Pohl's 'Gateway'.Certainly the concept of older races 'culling' other life in the galaxy (usually by way of ancient machines) is a popular idea (see 'Engines of God', 'Revelation Space' and 'Berserker') and perhaps is in some ways a counterbalance to works in which ancient alien races are either extinct, coldly aloof or benevolent. It's not simply a derivative novel, however. Gibson has created some interesting concepts and has cursed the earth with a Blight, an Angel Tech derived virus which was unleashed while one of the protagonists was trying to retrieve it from one of the Earth's criminal gangs. Kim is a xeno-archaeologist who has the deaths of some of her colleagues on her conscience and has become addicted to absorbing 'books' which are the distilled memories of others. She has fallen on hard times and is working as an asteroid miner from the Angel Station in the Kaspar System.She too has unleashed a plague of sorts, as one of the artefacts she retrieved from the Kaspar citadel during an archaeological expedition has become active. This has released self-replicating Von Neumann bugs which are slowly consuming all the human-built sections of the stations as well as their ships. The bugs are using the cannibalised material to make more bugs. Meanwhile, members of a human cult - The Primalists - are hiding out on Kaspar in deep caves waiting for the radiation to kill all the sentient natives so that they can claim the planet as a new Eden. One of the aliens, however, is in possession of an Angel artefact that might be the key to deflecting the radiation and saving his species. The Kasparians are an interestingly designed species able - in an odd mirroring of Kim's addiction - to achieve sentience by eating the flesh and brains of a dead adult. Their children are pre-sentient animals and do not attain intelligence until this ritual has been carried out. There are some loose ends left untied which no doubt means that sequels are in the pipeline. Maybe it's me but it seems many debut novels now are planned with sequels in mind. No one seems to want to write stand alone novels any more. Is this publisher pressure or a strategic move on the part of the author?

  • Bruno Di Giandomenico
    2018-09-16 22:28

    It is the first book from Gary Gibson. It is quite obvious that, and it could have used some editing. The theme is interesting, but it is treated in a fragmentary way, a number of possible alternatives and plot themes are quickly dealt with and never explained or exploited later on.The beginning is not easy to follow, you must go on a little bit to start understanding the plot better, which is not necessarily evil, but the way things are hinted and not better explained is not good.The idea of a previous galactic civilization which left some stations with core shortcuts to other parts of the galaxy is well exercised and could have been explored more (at least for my taste, see Starplex by Robert Sawyer, similar plot with a twist). The alien civilisation of wolf like people who become sapient when they eat of their own dead is a bit thin.The plot by the evil people, the Primalist, is not completely clear, too.All in all a first opus, could have been better.

  • Mark Palmer
    2018-09-19 02:47

    This one sounded interesting, but was kind of a rough start. The back cover mentions a sweeping story with an ancient enemy. By about 200 - 250 pages in, not much had happened aside from separate threads involving different characters in different places, with almost no knowledge of who some of the characters were and where they were located, and no apparent connection between any of these threads. Around the midpoint, that started to change and the story got quicker. I started to enjoy the book much more at this point, but the ending was not quite what I expected, there are a few events that were not adequately explained, and I think things are left pretty wide open for a sequel at some point, but there would appear to not be one in site (this book was published almost 10 years ago, and the author has written two other series). This was interesting enough that I may check out the Shoal trilogy.

  • Maria Longley
    2018-09-18 21:26

    Space opera it says on the cover and space opera it is inside too. A bit uneven, a bit long, but once you were into the story things picked up a bit. We jump around different people's views throughout the book as one of the furthest Angel Stations known to humans is threatened, as is the nearby planet with the only other aliens to be found so far. However there are plans and counterplans and the such. The use of religion is unimginative and boring as it often is in sci-fi sadly, but I seemed to be particularly irritated by it in this book.

  • Hubcon
    2018-09-10 20:26

    A standalone book. A enjoyable read, that kept me hooked. A story from four different view points, which is confusing at times, but is helped by each chapter starting with the name of the character of the story. Read on a Kindle, and found it difficult to quickly go back to a chapter to remind myself what happened to a character, especially after a few days apart. I liked the sci-fi elements and the ideas of the future. The slightly weak ending and the confusing swapping of characters early on caused me to drop a star.

  • Jasper
    2018-09-02 03:30

    Originally posted at http://thebookplank.blogspot.com/2013...The story of Angel Stations starts of directly with a lot of action and introduces you to multiple characters that you get to follow along the whole story. The initial start up of the story focuses on many of these characters individually from all the characters there are several that really make up the backbone of the whole story: Elias, Kim and Ursu. It's is hard to say who really makes up the main protagonist of the story, as in all three the threads you really get to learn much about how this universe is working, if I would have to say something, it would be the combination of Elias and Kim in the end that really drove the story onwards. But lets get back to the characters first. Elias is an ex-soldier with a complicated past. It is hard to say who really makes up the lead in the story, but if I would have to judge it would be Elias. Elias' character is very interesting. Soon you learn that he is one of the soldiers that has been genetically modified by Angel technology and can do and see things that others can't, he has something of a gift of precognition. With some action happening early in the book Elias set out to find Trencher. The encounter between Elias and Trencher and what was said might not have meant a whole lot in that context but when you look closely at the ending of the book, it all makes a whole of sense. Elias is a very strong character that once he has set his mind on something he will make sure that he will achieve his goal. But Elias has another big problem... he has contracted something called slow-blight... he is now racing to find answers. On the other side you have Kim, a pilot who works near and about the Kaspian planet, flying about in her Goblin spacecraft. With Kim's story taking place near the Angel station a lot things that you read in her storyline are about explaining several aspects of the Angels and how it is all working. The first thing that falls to note about Kim's characters is that she has a lot of demons haunting her. Troubled by her girlfriend that she misses a lot. She also has come to take "Books" into her system. Books are a bit like eatable pills of memories, when you ingest a Book it allows you to relive the memories of the person from which they were extracted from. I really liked the idea of showing memories in this way and though Kim claims it's not a drug, in my opinion she does see at as a form of escape of reality just to forget everything. Gary Gibson showed in a great way how complex Kim's character is. But on the whole she is just like Elias, once she has set her mind upon something she is headstrong and determined to reach it. The best part of the book is when both their stories come to collide, this part by their interplay and part by the flow of the story really pushes the story into a rapid. Another perspective is offered through one of the inhabitants of the planet of Kaspar. Usru. This first confused the heck out of me not really knowing how to let this all sink it. This perspective of the story was one of the complexest that I had to read. By Ursu we learn a lot of how life is going on the planet of Kaspar and the Kaspians themselves. Ursu worships the god Shecumpeh and when a new power arises that wants to ban and destroy all the gods, proclaiming himself and the new emperor Ursu must do everything to make sure his god is safe, but he even finds out more than he initially thought would happen. Now just a bit on the Kaspian people, if found them the most interesting alien race. The reference of bit like doglike creatures walking on all fours, but with a lot of intelligence offered a lot of new feeds to my imagination. The whole universe that Gary Gibson has created in Angel Stations is just grand. Even though the story takes place mostly into and around the planet of Kaspar, you learn a lot of the dynamics of the whole universe and how somethings came to pass. But what is most striking to read about was the fact that the "Angels" initially granted the human the Angel Stations but they left without a trace... This really inspires that something must have happened or that something else is up... And this is I think reflected more towards the ending of the story as you see Elias and Kim race towards saving a planet. The fleeing from the Angel Station in that small confined spaceship with Elias and Kim got me readily down to the edge of my seat. Because Elias isn't all just a nice guy after all when he HAS to get his job done. The story of Angel Stations might read be complex at first, there is a lot of exposition going on in the earlier pages that almost feel as a big dump of information, but it's all top notch scifi stuff that gives a grand feel to the story, and for me didn't feel like a drag at all. And once you get down to near the ending of the book a lot of things fall into place and that moment right there, is why you should read this book!Angel Stations is a great debut by a new voice in science fiction. Yes I am reading a reprint of a book published in 2005, I can still safely say that even now Angel Stations is a unique story that allows for a great deep space opera adventure. Gary Gibson involves a lot of cool elements of science fiction, nice characterization and knows when to take hold of the reins of the story to slow it down or to throw you into a thrilling ride till the end.

  • Scifimoth
    2018-08-22 01:22

    OK, so it's not my favourite Gibson, and has the characteristic I hate (far too many character subplots between which it jumps) but actually there's a very good SF story here that left me with that "sense of wonder". It was his first published book, so let's make allowances for that too.

  • Pete Young
    2018-08-24 02:42

    Gary Gibson hit the ground running with Angel Stations, a confident space opera with a hint of Fred Pohl’s ‘Heechee’ saga about it. In the near future, a host of artefacts from a disappeared alien race, given the name Angels, are discovered in the Oort cloud at the edge of the solar system, and among these are devices found to possess an unknown technology that connects to other Angel stations across the galaxy by means of instantaneous matter transference. One of these stations is in the solar system of a planet known as Kasper on which survives the only living alien intelligence yet discovered, and is being observed from afar by humans occupying the abandoned Angel station. Into this setting come a variety of well-drawn characters, alien and human: the Kaspians are a wolf-like, pre-industrial society, cynically manipulated by a cargo-cult use of the Angel artefacts into believing they have a direct line to their god. The architect of this deception is Ernst Vaughn, one of four genetically-altered humans given powers of either precognition or increased longevity by our experimentation with the Angel's genetic technology. Other more normal humans, notably the female space pilot Kim, find themselves drawn into a conflict between these four as Vaughn is about to attempt the takeover of Kasper with an army of devout followers. Meanwhile as Earth falls under a virulent plague known as the Blight and a deadly radiation burst from the centre of the galaxy threatens to wipe out all life on Kasper, is the Angel's all-encompassing technology some kind of key to the way much of all this can be resolved?There’s a lot going on here, and Gibson delineates the bones of his story adequately and with the barest minimum of infodumps. One of the philosophical thrusts of the book, though possibly too well hidden behind the action, is questioning the existence of free will or, instead, if our lives follow a pre-ordained route into the future. This is quite well illustrated by the central female character, Kim, who has her head illegally wired with Angel technology so she can experience episodes from the life of her late lover Susan by a technology known as ‘books’, in which all sensory experience is recorded as opposed to just sounds or pictures; Kim can experiences Susan’s life precisely as it happened, with no option or choice in what she ‘experiences’. In the real world her own life seems to be dictated by choices forced upon her, which in turn she has no way of realising will have a bearing on the outcome of a larger scenario, one she is probably ill-equipped to survive. A good point Gibson makes is that if true precognition is achieved by just one person this surely removes free will for the rest of the species; conversely this is what would make precogs something other than human, and it also hints at the reason the Angels might no longer to be found in the universe.I was occasionally left wondering quite how all the assorted Angel technology connects up, particularly their self-replicating and voracious silver bugs, and the resolution, probably too easy, hinges on just this kind of absence of knowledge by retaining its technological mystery at a point when perhaps a more precise explanation was needed. These small matters aside, Gibson’s debut novel is notably well-rounded, its many merits marking the arrival of a confident new voice.

  • Ethan
    2018-09-09 03:46

    This book had a lot of cool stuff, but I just couldn't get into it.The cool stuff: -An alien species that actually has cultural and linguistic diversity (there's not improbably one language and culture for the entire species like you find on Star Trek and Star Wars) - Plenty of POVs from these aliens (I liked the aliens more than the humans)- Ancient alien archaeology and technology- Space opera fun: space travel, wormholes, etc. - Other fun SF tropes: precognition, genetic engineering, nanotechnology... just about anything an SF fan would want (a bit like you get with Peter Hamilton's stuff)Given all this cool stuff, I would expect to love this book. I didn't. It was okay, but there's something about Gibson's style - either he's just not very good at telling stories or he's too subtle for me. Whatever the reason, I had a lot of trouble getting into it. I was able to finish the book, but it was at times a bit of drudgery. I often didn't understand what was going on so that I felt like I was reading the sequel to a book I haven't read, even though this is supposed to be a standalone novel. The multi-character epic with numerous SF tropes is like Peter Hamilton, but Gibson isn't as entertaining as Hamilton and Hamilton usually manages to get a small handful interesting, identifiable characters to emerge from the nameless throngs.Honestly, I'm not sure whether to chalk this up to Gibson's subtlety as a writer that I simply failed to understand or whether the problem is that he lacks the ability to tell a comprehensible story. It sort of came together at in the last 50 pages, but I'm still not entirely sure about everything. I suspect this is why one of the blurbs on my book says that this will "reward several careful readings." Perhaps that's the only way to catch everything, but if so, I find myself without much motivation to read this one again. Despite all the cool stuff, it was too much of a slog to get through and most of the characters aren't interesting or unique enough to keep the reader interested (I couldn't remember who was who aside from my two favorites: the human Kim and the alien Ursu).I guess this was his first novel. Maybe his others are better.

  • Michel Meijer
    2018-09-06 01:46

    Angels Stations from Gary Book is nice. It is a small space opera in which alien artifacts are spread around the Galaxy operating as (Angel) stations/worm holes to different planets. We are following Kim, who is a Goblin spaceship pilot around the planet Kaspian, Sam, some genetically (super)human being captured, Elias, who is from London at Earth. But the most interesting character is the alien Ursu, who is a priest on the planet Kaspian. There are several plot lines intertwined, as should be in a space opera, and they are actually interesting: Civil war on Kaspian, the Angel Station is under some alien technology threat, Kim is trying to get her life together after losing her mate Susan, Elias is on a mission to find a guy Trencher, and Ernst Vaughn is a religious nutcase who wants to start a new Eden on Kaspian. Vaughn knows a radiation burst is going to hit Kaspian, killing everything on the surface so he and his followers can start fresh on a sterilized planet (sounds real cool, huh?). Anyway, story enough, and the world building is there. Why is Angel Stations not a great book? I tried to analyze it for myself, but one of the reasons is that its too much description and not plot. The alien attack on the Angel Station does not serve a purpose. The Civil war on the planet, and the blight plague on Earth (and all the words it took to describe) are world building and not fueling the main plot. The radiation burst is introduced too late in the storyline. As a result, the first part of the book is mainly descriptive without real purpose to the end, and characters seem to make random moves. I loved the exploratory mission of Kim and her crew in the alien Citadel, the memory books was also a nice find. I would loved to read more difference between the alien and human descriptions (names, descriptions of cities, rituals etc). There was no added value to make the Kaspians an alien race nor did it bring the story to a higher level, changing them from wolf-like to human would not change the book. So overal, I think this book was nice, but not great, which ends up at 3 stars.

  • Sai Krishna
    2018-08-24 20:25

    Angel Stations is a book that drew me in because the plot seemed closer to Mass Effect video game. While this book came before the game, I thought may be this is one of the influences and started reading this. Book has multiple narratives from different character POVs. End game is somewhat predictable and with cliches. Overall, it has some good ideas. But it is not anywhere great, but just good. Narratives linking the natives of planet Kaspar is not very interesting to me. Anyone can figure out what's happening there and there is no need for mystique surrounding there.

  • Andrew Southworth
    2018-09-15 02:34

    Overall, this is an amazing story. If you enjoy the space-opera style of science fiction, you will love this. I gave this a 4/5 stars because while the story is great, the writing is not anything mind blowing. This is not to say that the writing is bad by any means, but not to a level that really 'WOW's' the reader. Probably won't go down as one of the best Sci-Fi books, but its definitely something that stands above a lot of the other modern day books I have read recently.

  • Andreea Pausan
    2018-08-29 04:45

    I read the back cover and I was sure this book was about aliens and space. I was wrong. The setting is space, around a planet close to the center of the Galaxy, inhabited by a sentient species of dogs, and its Angel station: an artifact built by a long gone superior race, which allows instant transfer between various points of the Galaxy. This book is about fear, and secrets, and the unknown depths of the human soul, and the courage to go on and face your destiny. Loved it.

  • Kate
    2018-09-17 20:35

    Gary Gibson's recent novels have made him one of my very favourite authors. As a result, it has been a pleasure to go back and read his first novel. With strong characters (male, female and alien), an inventive and fascinating plot, and a compulsively pageturning narrative, I cannot praise Angel Stations enough.

  • Vira Motorko
    2018-09-18 20:49

    Liked it, definitely. Smart division into chapters, interesting plot, characters from different places of the galaxy gathering one by one into the core place of the story, interesting ending - expected in general, but with 'hmm' details.Not 'astonishing' or 'unbelievable' but very good book.

  • Billy Abbott
    2018-09-06 01:49

    A bit confused on occasion and maybe trying to do too much, but overall a good chunk of dystopian future with a bit of space opera thrown in.

  • Jim Mann
    2018-09-11 21:40

    A good space opera, with a well drawn future and several good characters. Though Gibson, like Hamilton and a few others, would be better if he would edit himself a bit more.

  • Mark Cheverton
    2018-09-08 03:37

    Decent concept book that suffered from a slow start and some confused plots. I'll be checking out his later books to see how Gibson improves.

  • Ben Seymour
    2018-08-20 22:21

    not my cup of tea - glad it was a library book, and not one I had purchased