Recently, I was on Facebook, and several of my friends were talking about the book series, The Expanse by James S. A. Corey. I am a big fan of Sci-Fi stuff, fantasy, etc, so I grabbed the first book, Leviathan Wakes.
Well, to be truthful, I grabbed the audiobook. I find it hard to sit still and just read these days (Covid making me stir-crazy, I'm sure), so I've been doing audiobooks while I cook, clean, drive, walk, or even just sitting on the couch drawing or coloring.
One thing I have to say about audiobooks: the narrator is almost more important than the author. A good reader can make a book come alive, infusing great voices and accents into the storylines. A bad reader can ruin even the greatest book.
The Expanse series is narrated by Jefferson Mays, and he does a fabulous job, creating accents and voices, characterizations, and emotion without turning it into a performance. I listened to one of the novellas that was read by a different narrator, and it wasn't nearly as good. The way that the other reader did the voice of a character that appears in the main series was so different, it felt like he hadn't read any of the books at all. I honestly wish they had just gotten Mays, but maybe he was busy with some other project?
All that said, the book is fascinating. It takes place 200+ years in the future when mankind has colonized Mars, the Moon, and a variety of other places across our solar system. The story is centered around 2 characters, and they don't even meet until at least halfway through the book. They are both on totally different paths until those paths collide in the middle, conveniently right before a total poop-storm breaks out.
At first, the book feels slow, but it's more like a slow burn. The pace feels like a snowball starting down from the top of a hill: at first, it's small and slow moving, but it consistently picks up more and more tension and speed and energy until the end finally provides relief, and an utter craving for the next book in the series.
I've already gotten the second book.
Love and spaceships,