The latest issue (no. 3) of the BSFA Review is out, and it contains my review of Alastair Reynolds’ Aurora Rising (previously released as The Prefect). This is a slightly extended version.
I jumped into the ebook of Alastair Reynolds’ Aurora Rising without glancing at the cover or paying any attention to any publicity or even the blurb on the back. I then spent the first fifty or sixty pages with a steadily growing concern that this was all a bit familiar. So, it was a relief, when I finally checked, to realise that Aurora Rising isn’t a new book, it’s a new edition of The Prefect (first published in 2007). It has been re-released ahead of a sequel, Elysium Fire, which is coming in 2018. To be fair to the publisher (and author) this is made clear on the cover, so this confusion was not their fault, it was mine.
However, despite feeling a bit foolish, it was interesting to return to a book I first read ten years ago. I remember quite clearly looking forward to the release of The Prefect. It marked a return by Reynolds to the universe created in Revelation Space for the first time since 2003’s Absolution Gap. Reynolds’ first four novels remain, for me, one of the most impressive achievements of British space opera and while I’d liked the two novels Reynolds had published in between (Pushing Ice and Century Rain) I was, fannishly, keen to return to the familiar. Continue reading