Quietus
A transdimensional anthropologist can't keep herself from interfering with Earth's darkest period of history in this brilliant science fiction debutNiccolucio, a young Florentine Carthusian monk, leads a devout life until the Black Death kills all of his brothers, leaving him alone and filled with doubt. Habidah, an anthropologist from another universe racked by plague, is overwhelmed by the suffering. Unable to maintain her observer neutrality, she saves Niccolucio from the brink of death.Habidah discovers that neither her home's plague nor her assignment on Niccolucio's world are as she's been led to believe. Suddenly the pair are drawn into a worlds-spanning conspiracy to topple an empire larger than the human imagination can contain.File Under: Science Fiction

Quietus Details

TitleQuietus
Author
ReleaseMar 6th, 2018
PublisherAngry Robot
ISBN-139780857667434
Rating
GenreScience Fiction, Fiction

Quietus Review

  • Gary
    January 1, 1970
    Good first contact stories are as much about philosophical interplay as they are about cultural differences. “You have a unique vision”, interdimensional traveler Habidah tells 14th century monk Niccoluccio, about halfway through Tristan Palmgren’s debut novel, Quietus. She continues, “All of the Abrahamic religions on this world do. Few in the Unity see the body and the mind as separate in the way you do.” Habidah is from the Unity, the largest known planar empire in the multiverse, one that pr Good first contact stories are as much about philosophical interplay as they are about cultural differences. “You have a unique vision”, interdimensional traveler Habidah tells 14th century monk Niccoluccio, about halfway through Tristan Palmgren’s debut novel, Quietus. She continues, “All of the Abrahamic religions on this world do. Few in the Unity see the body and the mind as separate in the way you do.” Habidah is from the Unity, the largest known planar empire in the multiverse, one that presumably functions under a more holistic philosophy than the medieval Italian culture she encounters on Niccoluccio’s plane of existence. The intersection of Niccoluccio’s dualism and Habidah’s holism tests what they understand (or misunderstand) about each other’s motives and has consequences for both their worlds.Like the best genre fiction, Quietus has a premise and plot that juggles some familiar elements with fresh ideas: Habidah is a Unity anthropologist studying the effects of the Black Death on European civilization. The Unity is suffering from its own devastating plague, called the onierophage, the only disease its god-like overseers, the amalgamates, have been unable to produce a cure for. Habidah and her team are assigned to report on how medieval culture responds to, and possibly recovers from, a pestilence it cannot cure or contain. When she first encounters Niccoluccio he is wandering the wilderness after watching all his brothers and their charges die from the plague, he is near-starving and being hunted by a pack of hungry wolves. Her mission dictates that she not interfere with the natural progression of events on his world, but she has reached a point where she can no longer stand to see everyone she encounters suffer horribly and die. She decides to cross that red line just once, and so rescues him from certain death and nurses him back to health. She is surprised, and a little confused, at what little chiding she receives from the amalgamates for her transgression, and how readily they agree to let her use Niccoluccio to “spy” on his hometown of Florence for them. Before long, Habidah comes to understand why: the amalgamates’ interest in this plane goes well beyond the academic, in ways that Habidah and her associates would never be comfortable with.On the surface, the premise of Quietus is austere in its design, its early plot mechanics hinging on the ethical quandry of non-interference. The Unity can easily cure the Black Death, so don’t they have an obligation to intervene? It is a question that science fiction has asked and answered many times, and Habidah’s answer – to intervene on behalf of one person and give that person a role to play in the grand scheme – is an impulsive response, though she believes she can justify its value. The repercussions come not because her choice was an unethical one, but because she was asking the wrong question to begin with. As Niccoluccio digs his heels into the political realities of a society faced with sudden, rapid decline, Habidah continues her work, largely unaware (or at least unwilling to recognize) that she had been facing the same problems all along. Not being political animals by nature, the question neither of them wanted to entertain was: What obligations do structures of power in a society have to its body politic, and vice versa? And who gets to decide the answer? Palmgren is the kind of writer that knows how to bait and reward attentive readers. There are points in the first half of the novel when characters behave in ways that seem to contradict their established motives, or when time overlaps from one chapter to the next, but events don’t seem to match up. It’s a bit disorienting because otherwise the story seems to develop in a rather straightforward manner. It all pays off and shows its receipts – and not in the ways you expect. Palmgren isn’t the kind of storyteller who resorts to disingenuous trickery to pull the rug out from under you (as in, “Ha! He was a ghost the whole time!”). Surprises come because the author assumes his readers are as smart as he is and are willing to chase that rabbit down the hole with him.Quietus is contemplative without being ponderous or overly cerebral. It is intelligent and engaging from the start, carefully conceived as both an intimate character study and a grandly epic adventure. Like its wonderful cover (yes, go ahead and judge it by), it seems to emerge from the mist, bathed in warm light, while its scale is terrifyingly sublime.Thanks to Netgalley and Angry Robot Books fro the opportunity to read this ARC.
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  • Bradley
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC!This book is going to be a difficult one to review because it breaks a lot of normal conventions. The first half of the novel reads like a good outsider/anthropological exploration of our Black Plague from the PoV of a visitor from an alternate universe (the many-concurrent-universes brane). The second half reads like an outright space-opera full of huge ships and a truly immense population across space and branes and a plague that threatens to wipe them all out. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC!This book is going to be a difficult one to review because it breaks a lot of normal conventions. The first half of the novel reads like a good outsider/anthropological exploration of our Black Plague from the PoV of a visitor from an alternate universe (the many-concurrent-universes brane). The second half reads like an outright space-opera full of huge ships and a truly immense population across space and branes and a plague that threatens to wipe them all out. Similarities? Of course. Direct-line similarities, even, and it gets even more interesting when we have nearly godlike extradimensional civilizations involved in long conflicts with each other and with their own followers. Adding a monk from the middle ages asking important questions about God and why he lets bad things happen becomes another direct mirror to the subjects in these huge extradimensional empires and god-like beings involved in plague warfare. The structure of this novel is pretty top-notch. I can ruminate about it for a long time and still find some really great questions and explorations. I've barely scratched the surface here.On the other side of the coin, the factor of how much fun the novel is, how easy it is to read, boils down to how much you like heavy doses of historical fiction. I saw HUGE comparisons to be made between the front half of this novel and Connie Willis's Doomsday Book. Her's was time traveling historians getting stuck in the Black Plague and Tristan's was the moral and ethical quandaries of a multiverse-hopping anthropologist. I enjoyed it well enough and it went in quite interesting directions when it came to messing with indigenous cultures (in a very Prime Directive way) and the question of unintended consequences in timeline-development.The second half of the novel was spaceships and AI companions and godlike beings messing with all us puny mortals in a very high-class SF full of action, more ethical quandaries, the fate of two vast empires.My initial reaction as I was reading it was mixed. I liked it well enough but I wanted something juicier and more exploratory. It just felt like a number of other novels I've loved, also including KSR's Years of Rice and Salt and Michael Flynn's Eifelheim. I did eventually get it. It just took a while to really flow into the historical fiction slant because, with that cover, I really expected the later explosion of big SF. :) No worries. It's there.This was something rather interesting. I really enjoy the chances it takes. :)
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  • The Captain
    January 1, 1970
    Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .This book appealed to me because it's about anthropologists from another plane doing research on the Black Death.  Their plane is also suffering from a plague and they are hoping the research can save lives back home.  Anthropologists are supposed to stay neutral but one member of the team, Habidah, breaks the rules and rescues a Florentine Carthusian monk named Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .This book appealed to me because it's about anthropologists from another plane doing research on the Black Death.  Their plane is also suffering from a plague and they are hoping the research can save lives back home.  Anthropologists are supposed to stay neutral but one member of the team, Habidah, breaks the rules and rescues a Florentine Carthusian monk named Niccolucio.Now I abandoned this book at 48% but, to be fair, I loved the first half.  I thought the story of Niccolucio was excellent and really enjoyed reading about the research of Habidah and her team.  The imagery was well done and I really cared about both of the characters.  The problem arose once the politics of the other plane got involved.  The entire tone of the book switched, and I began to feel like I was reading a different book.Because apparently the expedition had another goal besides the one that Habidah was given.  I won't get into it here but basically it spoiled the premise for me and I didn't want to read about where the author wanted to take the story.  I wanted a book more along the lines of the Doomsday book rather than a space opera.  I did attempt to keep reading several times because I wanted to know what ends up happening to  Niccolucio  specifically.  But alas I couldn't stay engaged once the plot switched.  I do have other crew members that loved it though so it might work for ye.So lastly . . .Thank you Angry Robot Books!Check out me other reviews at https://thecaptainsquartersblog.wordp...
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  • BAM The Bibliomaniac
    January 1, 1970
    Edelweiss #2Many thanks go to Tristan Palmgren, Angry Robot, and Edelweiss for the free copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased review.Sci-fi book about plagues and time travel in a nutshell. Except the nutshell is the size of a spaceship not a walnut. I'm not going to try to use any of the characters' names because my spellcheck will explode. Just know that one is an Italian monk and the rest are from somewhere else. It's the interaction between the characters that makes the story so engr Edelweiss #2Many thanks go to Tristan Palmgren, Angry Robot, and Edelweiss for the free copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased review.Sci-fi book about plagues and time travel in a nutshell. Except the nutshell is the size of a spaceship not a walnut. I'm not going to try to use any of the characters' names because my spellcheck will explode. Just know that one is an Italian monk and the rest are from somewhere else. It's the interaction between the characters that makes the story so engrossing. I will admit about 2/3 through it does get a bit confusing. But just power through it because the Ah-ha moment is so worth it. I was so glad I did not give up.
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  • Roy
    January 1, 1970
    This was an interesting novel. Part historical fiction with an outsiders view on the Black plague (more so an outsider from another world who just happens to be an outsider). This part is quite good. Loved the philosophical, sociological and historical aspects. I really enjoyed Niccolucio in this part. However, the second part becomes more a space opera sci fi novel, more akin to the front page. This part didnt do as well for me. I felt the sudden change in story just a little weird, and I felt This was an interesting novel. Part historical fiction with an outsiders view on the Black plague (more so an outsider from another world who just happens to be an outsider). This part is quite good. Loved the philosophical, sociological and historical aspects. I really enjoyed Niccolucio in this part. However, the second part becomes more a space opera sci fi novel, more akin to the front page. This part didnt do as well for me. I felt the sudden change in story just a little weird, and I felt the story telling suffered from it. The pacing of the novel was very slow overall. Dont expect a fast paced scifi novel with the action element. This is more a reflection on people and its expsoure to new cultures/philosophies/religion etc. A novel of 2 parts, one that worked well and the other not so much. For those people who want something different.
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  • Mike
    January 1, 1970
    3.0 out of 5 starsMy thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced reader copy in exchange for an honest review.With the assistance of a Carthusian monk, anthropologists from distant planes of the multiverse study the spread of the Black Death on Earth to better understand the plague that is ravaging their home civilization.Ah yes, the ol’ Carthusian monk meets transdimensional anthropologist story that we’ve all read a thousand times before. But seriously, this is a bold swing from a fr 3.0 out of 5 starsMy thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced reader copy in exchange for an honest review.With the assistance of a Carthusian monk, anthropologists from distant planes of the multiverse study the spread of the Black Death on Earth to better understand the plague that is ravaging their home civilization.Ah yes, the ol’ Carthusian monk meets transdimensional anthropologist story that we’ve all read a thousand times before. But seriously, this is a bold swing from a fresh new voice in speculative fiction. Author Tristan Palmgren deserves major points for creativity, even though this historical fiction/science fiction mashup wasn’t totally my cup of tea.I very much enjoyed the characterization of the monk Niccoluccio Caracciola, who, aside from having a great name, was my favorite character to follow. He functions as a reader proxy, who experiences the infiltration of the anthropologists and gets swept up into a massive conspiracy while tackling his own internal conflict that evolves over the course of the novel. Niccoluccio’s perspective grounds the narrative in some semblance of reality before the story careens away into a somewhat convoluted direction.Quietus functions most effectively when it's focused on its historical fiction beats and stumbles as it delves deeper into inaccessible science fiction elements. This, combined with slow pacing, and a story that feels 150 pages too long, leads to a lower rating than I wanted to give. Author Palmgren has a knack for original storytelling, but the blending of two disparate genres didn’t quite work for me.See this review and others at The Speculative Shelf.
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  • Coolcurry
    January 1, 1970
    Quietus is a debut novel that combines historical fiction with science fiction. It has some elements I appreciated, but ultimately, I wasn’t wowed by it.Habidah, an anthropologist from another dimension, has been sent to our world, during the Black Death’s sweep over Europe. Her own home, a set of alternate realities bound together by an AI-ruled trans-dimensional empire, is being devastated by its own, mysterious plague, and the goal is to learn cooping strategies by studying how Europe reacts Quietus is a debut novel that combines historical fiction with science fiction. It has some elements I appreciated, but ultimately, I wasn’t wowed by it.Habidah, an anthropologist from another dimension, has been sent to our world, during the Black Death’s sweep over Europe. Her own home, a set of alternate realities bound together by an AI-ruled trans-dimensional empire, is being devastated by its own, mysterious plague, and the goal is to learn cooping strategies by studying how Europe reacts to the Black Death. Habidah is supposed to be a neutral observer, but in the face of such suffering, she struggles to hold on to her neutrality, eventually making the decision to rescue one person: the monk Niccolucio. Niccolucio discovers there’s much more to the universe than he imagined, and, surprisingly, Habidah discovers the same.To start off with, I think the plot structure was weak. It takes quite a while for Habidah and Niccolucio to come into contact with each other and even longer for the main trans-dimensional conflict to pick up speed. Basically, I felt like the story didn’t get started until around 60% into the book. Also, I never found the plot that interesting. There’s some concepts that are intriguing, such as the trans-dimensional empire and the plague that’s destroying its people on the molecule level. I found those elements satisfying, but somehow I kept considering putting the book down. I think overall there’s a lack of tension and pacing.Going into Quietus, I was 95% sure that there’d end up being a romance between Habidah and Niccolucio. Look, I’ve read enough books to know to expect it, all right! However, in this instance I was actually wrong. There’s no romantic subplot in Quietus, which was quite refreshing. As for Habidah and Niccolucio themselves, neither was entirely memorable. I didn’t dislike them while reading, but they’re not compelling either. Sort of like the book as a whole?The setting did feel believable and well researched, and I appreciated the innovative touches the science fiction added to the historical. I do think that Quietus suffers in comparison to Connie Willis’s Doomsday Book, which similarly combines science fiction with a historical fiction portrayal of the Black Death but with stronger pacing and an emotional center. Oh, well.In conclusion, Quietus has a couple of interesting concepts but with hum-drum execution. I’m not planning on reading any sequels.I received an ARC in exchange for a free and honest review.Review originally posted on The Illustrated Page.
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  • Jacqie
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book for review.Although I didn't finish the book, I gave it a high rating, which is unusual for me. Here's why:The book is about a multiverse, part of which is ruled by supposedly benevolent AIs. However, a threat from outside this multiverse has the AIs send humans to research other worlds to see how calamaties have been handled (or not handled, as the case may be).The researchers that we follow have been tasked to observe the Black Death years Thanks to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book for review.Although I didn't finish the book, I gave it a high rating, which is unusual for me. Here's why:The book is about a multiverse, part of which is ruled by supposedly benevolent AIs. However, a threat from outside this multiverse has the AIs send humans to research other worlds to see how calamaties have been handled (or not handled, as the case may be).The researchers that we follow have been tasked to observe the Black Death years in fourteenth century Europe- one of the grimmest times in European history, and that's saying a lot. What I liked about the book was the feel of the way the researchers were a part and yet apart from the time in which they had been placed. The author has a gift for description and for making a very detailed and immersive setting. The perspective of the observers, removed from the religious and cultural milieu of the time, gave me the feeling of observing history myself.The POV of the 14th century monk whose abbey is hit by plague wasn't as interesting to me, unfortunately. I must not relate well to 14th century men who believe that privation of the flesh is the way to salvation. When the story shifted to this POV, I lost interest.And the book is loooong. After about 100 pages into the book, storylines hadn't converged and I wasn't interested in several of them. I had an idea about what might be going on with the godlike AI manipulation in the background. I had one character I liked and several I didn't. Although there were some very admirable things about the book, I petered out and skimmed the end instead of reading it properly. And this is really not a book you can skim- it's dense and you'll miss something if you don't read carefully. Maybe at another time I'd have persevered, but right now my brain isn't functioning at peak capacity and I needed something that was less laborious.
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  • Elaine Aldred
    January 1, 1970
    It is the time when the Black Death swept across Europe, and the population, decimated by its effects and unable to understand the science of how it spread, thought the world was coming to an end.Into this tumultuous time comes Habidah and her team of scientists, closely observing the population in an effort to find a solution to the onierophage, a similar plague affecting the population of her own world made up of a vast network of political alliances of ruling races.Although I was aware from t It is the time when the Black Death swept across Europe, and the population, decimated by its effects and unable to understand the science of how it spread, thought the world was coming to an end.Into this tumultuous time comes Habidah and her team of scientists, closely observing the population in an effort to find a solution to the onierophage, a similar plague affecting the population of her own world made up of a vast network of political alliances of ruling races.Although I was aware from the start that Habidah was someone not native to Niccolucio's world, I experienced all the sights, filth and smells of this historic world through her. Niccolucio's viewpoint only cemented this effect, leaving me with the impression that were the author to write only historical novels I would be an avid fan. But that Palmgren managed to effortlessly shift from fantastical technology and a sense of space opera to an authentic sense of time of the fourteenth century Plague and then bring them together, really immersed me in the story.Out of all the people Tristan Palmgren could have chosen from the Middle Ages to be yanked to safety by someone from a mind-blowing technologically advanced race, Niccolucio, is just perfect. His self-doubt and humility, but at the same time open-mindedness and unbiased approach to the world, makes him a wonderful foil for Habidah's constant moral questioning.The plot is complex, with no end of scheming and wondering where alliances truly lie between the servants of the ruling alliances and the vast alliances themselves. This was certainly the part of the book where you had to pay attention because of the complexity of the associations and interactions.Throughout it all are the constants of Habidah and Niccolucio in their developing and very special relationship in the face of Habidah wondering who she can trust.Palmgren demonstrates remarkable poise for a debut novelist with regards to the depth of world building and character development in a cleverly conceived plot, making him a writer to watch in the future.Quietus was courtesy of Angry Robot via NetGalley.
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  • Rachel Noel
    January 1, 1970
    *Free copy for an honest review.This book does an interesting thing. It manages a tight balance between exposition, philosophy and story that keeps this book interesting. With as long as this book is and with as little action as there is, there was the risk of being boring, but Palmgren does a great job of keeping all the elements in line so that I was still engaged in the reading. I never drifted off or loss interest because all the elements at play were kept balanced. Palmgren also keeps the m *Free copy for an honest review.This book does an interesting thing. It manages a tight balance between exposition, philosophy and story that keeps this book interesting. With as long as this book is and with as little action as there is, there was the risk of being boring, but Palmgren does a great job of keeping all the elements in line so that I was still engaged in the reading. I never drifted off or loss interest because all the elements at play were kept balanced. Palmgren also keeps the mystery of the powers at play just out of reach enough that I had to keep reading because I couldn't guess and I was as curious as the characters. It was genuinely interesting to read the juxtaposition of the advanced, interplanar society next to the medieval, scientifically illiterate world. To see the similarities between how the amalgamates are treated and how God is thought of. To read about the varying reactions to an unstoppable, unpredictable disease. The attitude that Habidah's team has towards the "backward" people of Nicculoccio's world and the reverence Nicculoccio has towards Habidah's world makes for an interesting dynamic and conversation.Then there are the thought experiments/meditations. Does the amalgamates refusal to cure the Black Plague equal the force that causes the plague in Habidah's world? Are they equally evil or is one worse than the other? Does the knowledge that nothing you do matters liberate you or trap you? How do you keep moving forward when everything seems pointless or trivial?As much as I love books with high action and low exposition, every now and then it's good to stretch my brain with a book like this. A book with more philosophy and story than action, but still well balanced and interesting. If you're a fan of historical fiction looking to branch into Sci-Fi or looking for heavier read in general, I recommend this book. It's got plenty of power play drama, religious in-fighting and some actual fighting. It's also got new worlds to discover and governments to destroy.
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  • Joseph
    January 1, 1970
    Kinda unsure how there can be a unity book 2...
  • Kam
    January 1, 1970
    This review is based on an ARC given to me for free by the publisher, Angry Robot Books. This does not in any way affect my review. The novel is slated for release on March 6, 2018.... I think this story is, at its core, a call to action. I think it is quite clear that the world is not in a good place right now, that change is desperately needed if humanity is to continue surviving and living with itself for the rest of its existence. But as long as people continue standing on the sidelines, as This review is based on an ARC given to me for free by the publisher, Angry Robot Books. This does not in any way affect my review. The novel is slated for release on March 6, 2018.... I think this story is, at its core, a call to action. I think it is quite clear that the world is not in a good place right now, that change is desperately needed if humanity is to continue surviving and living with itself for the rest of its existence. But as long as people continue standing on the sidelines, as long as people do nothing, then change will never happen. There is no such thing as an “apolitical” choice, because even choosing to do nothing, for whatever reason, is a political act. And if there is one, single thing that is truly hindering change for the better in this world, it is that: the choice to do nothing. Choosing to take action is difficult, and will very certainly be fraught with pain and hardship, but it is better than closing one’s eyes and choosing to pretend that all is right with the world.Full review here: https://wp.me/p21txV-Fl
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  • Cheryl
    January 1, 1970
    Spoilers Ahead!I really wanted to like this book. Actually half way through the book I thought it was one of the best science fiction/alternate history books I had read in a long time. Then bang! It fell of the cliff. The characters were well drawn, the author made you care about them. The scenes were well drawn, you actually felt like you were there. The problem is the conflict was meh....I just could not get into whether on AI was more evil than the other and what it meant for the universe. Th Spoilers Ahead!I really wanted to like this book. Actually half way through the book I thought it was one of the best science fiction/alternate history books I had read in a long time. Then bang! It fell of the cliff. The characters were well drawn, the author made you care about them. The scenes were well drawn, you actually felt like you were there. The problem is the conflict was meh....I just could not get into whether on AI was more evil than the other and what it meant for the universe. There were so many places this plot could have gone from the halfway point of the book, where it ended up was a hot mess in my opinion. I wish the author had made it a two book or trilogy set. I really think there was something here that could have been exploited.
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  • James
    January 1, 1970
    Well, this is definitely a book I'm having trouble figuring out my feelings about. Possibly because I found the entity revealed to be behind the scenes simultaneously offputting in its goals and perspectives, and in how central it became to the plot once I'd settled into a set of different assumptions about what the main conflict was. I did very much enjoy the setting(s) and overall concept, and Niccolucio and Meloku especially made for engaging POV chapters (Meloku! I was seriously rooting for Well, this is definitely a book I'm having trouble figuring out my feelings about. Possibly because I found the entity revealed to be behind the scenes simultaneously offputting in its goals and perspectives, and in how central it became to the plot once I'd settled into a set of different assumptions about what the main conflict was. I did very much enjoy the setting(s) and overall concept, and Niccolucio and Meloku especially made for engaging POV chapters (Meloku! I was seriously rooting for her, I've got to admit) - and I suspect the interplane entity & associated conflict will feel less jarring to me in subsequent books when I'm expecting that as a primary plot element? But otherwise, my main complaints were mostly that the amount of time passing between chapters often felt unclear and was thus disorienting; and that aside from Meloku's POV sections, the Unity and the oneirophage themselves felt too emotionally remote compared to the historical Earth setting.
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  • Cheryl
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed this book. It is broken down into two parts. The first part is a team of “alien” anthropologists studying 1300’s plague ridden Italy and the story of a Carthusian monk. Meanwhile, on the anthropologists worlds plague is occurring. From there we move into part two which turns into a space opera which brings in other worldly god like beings. These god like beings use the monk and anthropologists for what seems to be their own means. This book shows historical aspects and discusses I really enjoyed this book. It is broken down into two parts. The first part is a team of “alien” anthropologists studying 1300’s plague ridden Italy and the story of a Carthusian monk. Meanwhile, on the anthropologists worlds plague is occurring. From there we move into part two which turns into a space opera which brings in other worldly god like beings. These god like beings use the monk and anthropologists for what seems to be their own means. This book shows historical aspects and discusses moral and ethical dilemmas. This book, although not fast paced, kept me intrigued and wanting to find out what would happen. I enjoyed the characters and the plot. I look forward to the next book, as I really want to see what will happen. There is a lot packed into this book. If you enjoy a historical, philosophical, space opera sci-if, then I recommend this book.
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  • Kevin Groosalugg
    January 1, 1970
    I received this book in a giveaway and was really hoping I didn't have to review it poorly. Luckily it delivered. Quietus is hard to pigeonhole, it branches a few genres and goes through several phases.A very advanced race sends human emissaries to an alternate Earth in another dimension to study how they are coping with the Black Plague. The book is dialogue heavy touching on lots of religion, philosophy, and politics. I found some of the politics a bit monotonous and I never learned to love an I received this book in a giveaway and was really hoping I didn't have to review it poorly. Luckily it delivered. Quietus is hard to pigeonhole, it branches a few genres and goes through several phases.A very advanced race sends human emissaries to an alternate Earth in another dimension to study how they are coping with the Black Plague. The book is dialogue heavy touching on lots of religion, philosophy, and politics. I found some of the politics a bit monotonous and I never learned to love any of the characters but you can't get four stars out of me unless I think about the novel often while I am not reading and try to envision myself in character's places. I did both of these things so here we are.It finished well. Definitely a good debut.
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  • Jay Quietnight
    January 1, 1970
    Quietus combines unhurried pacing with solemn tone to create a story that feels like in should be read in front of a fireplace... in a rustic cabin... on the coldest night of winter. Definitely worth adding to your reading list!
  • Eddie
    January 1, 1970
    Was very good first novel. I really like the original ideas, and the subject matter. Most of the way through the book the thought came to me that the entire book was mostly set up for one or two chapters in the end. But it was a Worth while read, I liked it. You probably will too!
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  • James
    January 1, 1970
    Not great, but readable. I'd recommend The Doomsday Book by Connie Willis instead.Overall, the writing was too dense and expository. The characters...a little wooden. The world-building was interesting, but only that.Would I read a sequel? Most likely not.
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  • Aimee
    January 1, 1970
    Goodreads giveaway
  • Rebecca
    January 1, 1970
    The plot shifts pretty significantly about halfway through and I rapidly started to lose interest at that point. Gave up entirely around 75% of the way in.
  • Runalong
    January 1, 1970
    DNF - Unfortunately not my thing - I can see it’s very well researched but struggling to be invested
  • Mike Stolfi
    January 1, 1970
    If you're looking for an action movie, this isn't it, but it had interesting moments/perspectives.
  • Sunyi Dean
    January 1, 1970
    Ambitious, unique, intriguing. Absolutely check it out.
  • Martin Blake
    January 1, 1970
    Interesting story, not particularly well written. At the risk of being picky, the editing and proofreading is crap.
  • Nate Krenkel
    January 1, 1970
    bought at Powells
  • Lee Schlesinger
    January 1, 1970
    Some original concepts, but too long and too few surprises along the way to justify the time spent.
  • Josh Ray
    January 1, 1970
    Wow. This was an amazing book. Surprisingly deep, extremely well-written, interesting and just the perfect amount of descriptions to make t feel real without boring me. I loved it.
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