Rhom

Babylon's Ashes: The Expanse Book 6 (Spoilers)

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5 hours ago, Rhom said:

Totally catching me off guard, I saw this come up in my Facebook feed just now.

Cover reveal for Persepolis Rising.

:stunned: 

That's interesting. I'm not sure what it means; the only thing that immediately comes to mind is a space elevator (Persepolis was famous for its staircase), but I don't see the point of building such a thing when one has the Epstein drive at one's disposal and that image doesn't really suggest anything of the sort.

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I think you're looking for something more literal. Babylon was conquered by Cyrus of Persia and then destroyed by Xerxes. Nemesis Games + Babylon's Ashes is the fall of earth, Persepolis Rising is the ascendancy of either the colonies or

Spoiler

Duarte, possibly with the latter even returning in conquest. Not sure I needed to spoiler this but playing it safe. Don't think the alien threat is going to become main focus in this one still.

 

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2 hours ago, Altherion said:

That's interesting. I'm not sure what it means; the only thing that immediately comes to mind is a space elevator (Persepolis was famous for its staircase), but I don't see the point of building such a thing when one has the Epstein drive at one's disposal and that image doesn't really suggest anything of the sort.

Something that could perhaps implement a mass evacuation of Earth?

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Reading spoilers even though I'm only a quarry done and I shouldn't, but yeah as soon as I started getting into it I figured some sort of trump allegory would come up. :P 

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On 11/12/2016 at 4:36 PM, TheRevanchist said:

Finished it. A decent reading but I think that books 1, 2 and especially 5 were definitely better books.

I am hoping that this is the last book concentrated on Sol system. Time to explore the other planets and the protomolecule makers/their destroyers.

 

 

  Reveal hidden contents

No retaliation from Earth and Mars on the Belt, is something that would never have happened in real life. More likely they would have nuked the shit out of any station that was under Belter's control.

 


I don't like at all the story of redemption. Like Holden said, 'plenty of forgiveness, but also red lines'. I couldn't accept the story of redemption for Mao (thousands of lives lost), and cannot accept it at all for Pa and Filip, who contributed on the biggest genocide in human's history.

 

Newbie here - big fan of the titles this forum represents but this series too.  Couldn't agree more too about 1,2 and 5, the last book was my favourite of the lot.  I devoured BA very quickly, felt like a bit of a filler to the next series of the books, with some excellent moments that some have already pointed out but I'd guessed what the endgame was very early on.  The epilogue felt a bit flat compared to the last book but NG was exceptional all round.  Looking forward to Persepolis Rising already and the last of the 9 books in print comfortably before I get my hands on I dream of spring!

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20 hours ago, Gavarnos said:

Newbie here - big fan of the titles this forum represents but this series too.  Couldn't agree more too about 1,2 and 5, the last book was my favourite of the lot.  I devoured BA very quickly, felt like a bit of a filler to the next series of the books, with some excellent moments that some have already pointed out but I'd guessed what the endgame was very early on.  The epilogue felt a bit flat compared to the last book but NG was exceptional all round.  Looking forward to Persepolis Rising already and the last of the 9 books in print comfortably before I get my hands on I dream of spring!

I'm dieing to know what's going on beyond the Lacoinia Gate

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2 hours ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

 

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I'm dieing to know what's going on beyond the Lacoinia Gate

 

Spoiler

Certainly something that the pair of old Earth battleships with their rail guns pointing at it can't handle!

 

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Its not been a good week for reading for me... so I'm still only about halfway. 

But enough talk is coming in hidden in spoilers that plenty of people are done and we have given REG his headstart he asked for.  I'll edit the main post and make this thread open for spoilers.

I'll be back in a couple days after I finish up!  Happy discussions.

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Just finished it last night.  I enjoyed the read but I wouldn't say this one's a favorite of the series.  I appreciated the attempt to do something different with more POVs, although newer ones didn't really register as three dimensional characters for me, even Pa*.

Spoiler

* I did like her final speech, and I also liked the epilogue (but Anna wasn't a new character).

Fred Johnson's death was handled well and was a nice surprise.  I like Holden's journey, dipping his toes into the nitty gritty of politics and the contrast with Avasarala's expertise in that arena.   

I didn't think much about retaliatory actions on Earth's part.  I guess I assumed the attack was so catastrophic that it consumed a lot of the military's energy with aid efforts, with ships being diverted to prevent further attacks.  There is still the possibility of revenge seekers taking action in future books, even though I'd guess the alien/gate stuff will be the focus of the rest of the series.  All the pieces are in place now.

Edited by ThinPaperWings
Screwed up some pasting.

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A couple of questions:

Spoiler

 

Wouldn't the discovery of a ring gate-accessible planet with lower G and an atmosphere be possible, giving the Belter's some chance of living on an actual planet?  Like maybe .75 or .5 g?

Does anyone think that Marco and his fleet are still alive, just shifted somewhere in time/space/dimension?  I know we did see his POV 'end' and get picked up by another POV in-chapter, which has never happened before, so maybe that is meant to be a definitive death.

 

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No need for spoilers.

As an example, there's no reason that the Earth needed to keep Ceres. It could have simply obliterated it. And arguably that would have been a more reasonable thing to do, as they instead had to spend a lot of effort and military power to protect it and ensure it was supplied.

It's not hard to imagine that at least one ship would just wipe it out. This is especially true given that they let Inaros escape; they could have 'justified' it by attacking from long range with something like a railgun shot or 17 while Inaros et al were on board, and said that they just decapitated the Free Navy at the cost of minor civilian casualties. Killing Inaros, Pa, Dawes, everyone in one shot? That's what Tywin would do. 

It's something they said in Leviathan Wakes - ships aren't vulnerable, but stations are absurdly vulnerable. If someone wants to take them out it's not hard to do so. They don't even have the defenses of a planet. Blowing away something like Ceres, which can't move and barely has any real defenses, is trivial. Same with Ganymede.

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Quote

 

Wouldn't the discovery of a ring gate-accessible planet with lower G and an atmosphere be possible, giving the Belter's some chance of living on an actual planet?  Like maybe .75 or .5 g?

It's possible, but it's not clear that this is what they want. And it takes a while to find that, too. There are only like 1300 gates; the chances of them finding a habitable planet that has less gravity AND isn't inhabited by death slugs is pretty low. And what do you do with them in the meantime?

Quote

Does anyone think that Marco and his fleet are still alive, just shifted somewhere in time/space/dimension?  I know we did see his POV 'end' and get picked up by another POV in-chapter, which has never happened before, so maybe that is meant to be a definitive death.

Yeah, I kind of think that this is the case too. The protomolecule didn't exactly kill things, it just took them over and repurposed them. Whatever it is out there, it looks like some kind of stalking prey thing - it first notices passage of large ships, and then it lies in wait, and then it strikes. That the people are essentially decoupled from the perception of quantum effects is interesting too. 

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4 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

No need for spoilers.

As an example, there's no reason that the Earth needed to keep Ceres. It could have simply obliterated it. And arguably that would have been a more reasonable thing to do, as they instead had to spend a lot of effort and military power to protect it and ensure it was supplied.

It's not hard to imagine that at least one ship would just wipe it out. This is especially true given that they let Inaros escape; they could have 'justified' it by attacking from long range with something like a railgun shot or 17 while Inaros et al were on board, and said that they just decapitated the Free Navy at the cost of minor civilian casualties. Killing Inaros, Pa, Dawes, everyone in one shot? That's what Tywin would do. 

It's something they said in Leviathan Wakes - ships aren't vulnerable, but stations are absurdly vulnerable. If someone wants to take them out it's not hard to do so. They don't even have the defenses of a planet. Blowing away something like Ceres, which can't move and barely has any real defenses, is trivial. Same with Ganymede.

Minor casualties? Doesn't Ceres have a population of about 7 million? It's also a Belter Hub for resupply and repair, right? Yeah, you could destroy it easily, but you would probably militarize most of what's left of the Belt as a result.

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1 minute ago, Manhole Eunuchsbane said:

Minor casualties? Doesn't Ceres have a population of about 7 million? It's also a Belter Hub for resupply and repair, right? Yeah, you could destroy it easily, but you would probably militarize most of what's left of the Belt as a result.

As far as the Earth is concerned the Belt is militarized. And yes, 7 million is minor compared to 15 billion, especially if you are obliterating the leadership of the Free Navy.

My point isn't necessarily that this would be a good choice or a humane one, but that it would have been easily considered, and it's shocking that none of the Earth or Mars forces decided to commit any war crimes. 

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Just now, Kalbear said:

My point isn't necessarily that this would be a good choice or a humane one, but that it would have been easily considered, and it's shocking that none of the Earth or Mars forces decided to commit any war crimes. 

 I have a sneaking suspicion that's coming.

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2 minutes ago, Manhole Eunuchsbane said:

 I have a sneaking suspicion that's coming.

It still won't be particularly satisfying. People plotting horrible things isn't what I wanted; I wanted people making bad decisions in the face of incredible tragedy. 

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11 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

It still won't be particularly satisfying. People plotting horrible things isn't what I wanted; I wanted people making bad decisions in the face of incredible tragedy. 

Perhaps that will be allayed be the Proto-Molecule fleet coming back, with humanity having to unite itself against a common cause.

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I didn't think the belters trying to murder Earth was that farfetched (it's just another star to them) but the lack of retaliation against the Belt did seem unlikely.  The only other things that tripped my suspension of disbelief were mostly what has been mentioned:

1) why didn't the belters or earth or anyone suggest moving them all to Luna?  Or the even more obvious spot (but I guess legitimately not possible dude to the timeline, that we DID get st the end of BA) the old Nauvoo?

2) the entire economy of the Belt to begin with.  there are autosurgeons can perform complex surgery but not more automated mining and resource based mechs?  I feel like the industry of the Belt would be more automated.  ( Think someone mentioned this in one of the old threads).   I could see there being a few stations with a couple thousand people but the millions seems like way more than would be needed to run the ice and gas haulers and mining operations.  But once I accepted this number (1) seems less of a stumbling block.

That being said, relatively small issues with what is a wonderful series that I am very invested in.  So small in fact that after a moment of head scratching I am immediately immersed in the world of the the Expanse again.

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On 12/12/2016 at 7:53 PM, karaddin said:

I think you're looking for something more literal. Babylon was conquered by Cyrus of Persia and then destroyed by Xerxes. Nemesis Games + Babylon's Ashes is the fall of earth, Persepolis Rising is the ascendancy of either the colonies or

  Reveal hidden contents

Duarte, possibly with the latter even returning in conquest. Not sure I needed to spoiler this but playing it safe. Don't think the alien threat is going to become main focus in this one still.

 

With that interpretation, the only plausible candidate is

Spoiler

Laconia. The other colonies are just barely getting established; it will be decades or centuries before they rival even a severely damaged Earth. However, if the rogue Martians found some alien technology that they can use (and it sure looks like they did), they can jump ahead.

Regarding the aliens: I don't think any serious confrontation with them would make any sense nor are they a threat. The protomolecule creators are dead and the ones that destroyed them (which may or may not be the same ones intercepting ships at the gates) are, for all intents and purposes, gods. There's no fighting them or bargaining with them or anything of the sort.

4 hours ago, larrytheimp said:

I feel like the industry of the Belt would be more automated.

I think they started writing the books before it was obvious just how big a deal automation was going to become -- and how quickly. With what we know today, the population of the Belt is indeed not very likely.

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7 minutes ago, Altherion said:

With that interpretation, the only plausible candidate is

  Hide contents

Laconia. The other colonies are just barely getting established; it will be decades or centuries before they rival even a severely damaged Earth. However, if the rogue Martians found some alien technology that they can use (and it sure looks like they did), they can jump ahead.

Regarding the aliens: I don't think any serious confrontation with them would make any sense nor are they a threat. The protomolecule creators are dead and the ones that destroyed them (which may or may not be the same ones intercepting ships at the gates) are, for all intents and purposes, gods. There's no fighting them or bargaining with them or anything of the sort.

I think its the most likely option yes, but I'm not convinced on a couple of points

Spoiler

On one hand I don't think the next book is going to be about conflict between Laconia and Sol. I think if it goes that way, Laconia will have managed to jump up in tech enough that for now they cannot be fought and we'll simply see them taking over and resistance will come later if that makes sense? I don't mean there won't be any conflict at all, but that a war will be non-viable to the point that even Earth and Mars can't even try.

The other options is that its 'ascendancy' in a more abstract sense, its not conquest or anything and we aren't seeing the colonies on top, its a shifting of humanities focus off Earth into all these new worlds, presumably with mass movement of refugees from Earth to the colonies.

I actually think it will be both.

 

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