The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

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The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

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Category: Science Fiction
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Olivia Tierney
Reviewed by Olivia Tierney
Summary: The most perfect space opera book you will ever read! Unbelievably entertaining, with twists and turns throughout, The Collapsing Empire is a fantastic novel which was an absolute pleasure to read. Wonderfully written, with fantastic characters and a phenomenal plot – this should be the next book you read!
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 336 Date: March 2017
Publisher: Tor
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1509835072

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Just out of curiosity if this is the smaller problem, what is the bigger problem?

The complete collapse of the Flow, the end of the interdependency, and the possible extinction of the human race.

In the distant future, mankind has been forced to leave Earth behind and has subsequently built an impressive empire compromising of 47 human colonies all connected by The Flow: a river of alternate space-time which makes travel across the Interdependency possible. Dependent on trade, the Holy Empire's survival is all thanks to the Flow… which is now collapsing.

We join the new Emperox of the Empire as she sits on the throne she was never meant to have. Shaken by sudden events, Cardenia finds herself right in the middle of a power struggle between those of the religious order and powerful merchants who will stop at nothing to gain more power and wealth. Tasked with ensuring the continuity of humanity's survival, the new Emperox will find her work cut out for her as on End, the furthest planet from the Hub in the midst of a dangerous revolution, rebels embark on terrorist activities that threaten to provoke all-out war. Meanwhile, a scientist will journey from one end of the empire to the other, in order to reveal a new discovery which will turn the world upside down, and the heir of a Merchant House will become entangled in the terrifying future of the Interdependency. But as they try to save their people, one noble family is setting plans in motion to change the structure of the interdependency like never before…

Collapsing Empire is a story jam-packed with political intrigue, diverse and likeable characters, moments of ridiculous humour, intricate world-building and an incredibly exciting plot! I guarantee it will blow you away and like me you will be left wondering, when oh when is the next book in the series coming out?! Seriously, I cannot recommend this book enough, it's jaw-droppingly brilliant and it's really, really fun to read.

I cannot overstate how well John Scalzi has written this book, it's paced spectacularly and interweaves several storylines together, detailing the issues facing the empire from multiple viewpoints. It holds the reader's attention throughout as plans form and fail while others somehow succeed. It's the ultimate guessing game and the terrific world-building allows readers to dive into space and experience the tragedies the characters face as if they were their own. Cardenia's character really grows in this book and we can see that being forced into the most powerful role in the entire empire dramatically improves her confidence and she begins to make decisions accepting her responsibility. Kiva on the other hand, is a breath of fresh air: she speaks her mind, takes action and isn't afraid to stand up to anyone and is in stark contrast to Marce who is calm, careful and intelligent. Not to mention, Ghreni who is exceptionally calculating and character readers will love to hate. The relationships between the main characters as well as the side characters are also written very well and is one of the factors that make the book so easy to read and enjoy.

Don't hesitate to buy this book, I can't believe this is the first John Scalzi novel I've read but I can promise you now it will most definitely not be the last! It's the first book in a series and marvellously sets up the story to be continued in future books, which I expect to be just as good!

Huge thanks to the publisher providing a copy for review!

In terms of future reading, if you absolutely loved The Collapsing Empire like I did, Gateway by Frederik Pohl is a fantastic classic Sci-Fi novel which is a phenomenal read with superb description and brilliant characters.

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Buy The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi at


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