cover image Tiamat’s Wrath

Tiamat’s Wrath

James S.A. Corey. Orbit, $30 (608p) ISBN 978-0-316-33287-3

Part empire-building space opera, part alien contact thriller, and all epic blockbuster, the eighth chapter in the Expanse series delivers supernovae of action and intrigue. With the death of Chrisjen Avasarala, the hard-nosed former U.N. Secretary-General, back on Earth, human space is effectively under the control of the distant empire of Laconia and its ruler, Winston Duarte. Duarte is determined to force the next stage in human evolution using the mysteriously powerful alien “protomolecule,” key to the ring gates that give humans access to over a thousand worlds. While Duarte pursues the secrets of the long-lost protomolecule creators, the rebel underground—including the surviving members of the gunship Rocinante, around whom the series revolves—schemes to free humankind from his rule. The final wild card is Duarte’s 14-year-old daughter, whose sense of family duty doesn’t necessarily include bonding with the protomolecule. Corey delivers just enough backstory to bring new readers up to speed without slowing the overall pace. Brimming with vivid characters and intrigue, this tightly plotted space thriller gives readers an electrifying future carved by alien science and human ambition. Agent: Danny Baror, Baror International. (Mar.)