Babylon’s Ashes by James S.A. Corey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I think this is the Expanse I have been waiting for. The novel is strong throughout and it is more humane, maybe by virtue of focussing not just on three or four people but on a myriad of characters with their very own hopes and wishes.
I have missed out on the novellas to be fair — excepting the Anderson Station one — so I may know less about the backstory than I should, but I wanted to keep on going with the main story, and I am happy I did. I may not like the ending here — and I do as it feels logical — but it is a partial ending. We know things are going to get better, we know things are going to get worse. It’s a good place to stop.
Although some of the things in the books felt out of character. Maybe it could have been the stress these people were feeling; maybe I am reading them slightly wrong. I also feel that Mars is getting the least good end of the stick, but that’s probably for a good reason (and you can find this one out on your own).
Lastly, I would just stress again the humanity of this book. It feels right. People do righteous things by themselves and they either work out or they don’t. People agree to work together or they don’t. But everything keeps on going, just as it always does.