Along with the release of the expansion Empyrean Age in June the first EVE novel also saw the light of day, EVE: The Empyrean Age. The Empyrean Age marked the rise of the capsuleers as heavy hitters in interstellar politics, unfettered by factional or other political ties. When I picked up Tony Gonzeles’ first novel, EVE The Empyrean Age, I was honestly expecting another forgettable and ultimately meaningless.
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EVE: The Empyrean Age
The Empyrean Age brings this compelling science fiction environment to life. A clone with no name or past awakens to a cruel existence, hunted mercilessly for crimes he may never know; yet he stands close to the pinnacle of power in New Eden.
A disgraced ambassador is confronted by a mysterious woman who knows everything about him, and of the sinister plot against his government; his actions will one day unleash the vengeful wrath of an entire civilization. And among the downtrodden masses of a corporation-owned world, a man named Tibus Heth is about to launch a revolution that will change the course of history.
The confluence of these dark events will lead humanity towards a tragic destiny. The transcendence of man to the dream of immortality has bred a quest for power like none before it; empires spanning across thousands of stars will clash in the depths of space and on the worlds within. Those who stand before the tides of war, willingly or not, must face the fundamental choices that have been with man for tens of thousands of years, unchanged since the memory of Earth was lost.
A test of our convictions and the will to survive. Paperbackpages. Published August 4th by Tor Books first published June 19th To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
To ask other readers questions about EVEplease sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Game fiction is often not exactly at the top of the list of quality books, but this one sets new records in terms of horridness. Please note that I am an avid EVE player and love the game.
The following was written for an EVE community site, so might take some knowledge about the game for granted, but it should be accessible to others just as well. Writing Style To get it out front: Based on writing style, the book was the worst book I have ever read, and I read quite a few, including other game f Game fiction is often not exactly at the top of the list of quality books, but this one sets new records in terms of horridness.
Based on writing style, the book was the worst book I have ever read, and I read quite a few, including other game fiction. It’s one of the very few books I did not manage to finish. The only empyream book I have conscious memory about not being able to finish was a nice philosophy book called “Metaphysics Today”. For me, the book was atrociously bad.
Having said that, I’ll try to refrain from using too much “horrible”, “abysmal”, “terrible” and similar adjectives in the following. Also, please keep in mind that I only read until pagewhere part II of the book starts. It’s quite possible that the quality improves immensely after that. Having had that hope for about three fourths of the pages, I gave up on the hope, though.
Empyrean Age | EVE Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia
Character Charicatures The characters are overstyled to underline the impression the reader should get about them. Jamyl Sarum is described as a graceful woman, almost fragile, up to the point where she lifts her aide from the ground, holds her up, shakes her, and then throws her to the floor.
A worthy Bud Spencer scene – for the Empress? And it is merely sge to underline that she’s an “important character,” a protagonist. A few pages later, Tibus Heth does exactly the same. He’s limping with one lame leg through the factory he just helped take over, he’s tired, exhausted.
Someone upsets him – he suddenly loses all the tiredness, the lame leg, everything, he lifts the guy up, shakes him in the air, and throws him to the floor. He’s a protagonist, he apparently needs to be superhuman strong.
On the other hand, characters you are supposed to dislike are similarly “explicit”. Some corporation CEO is hiring Gallente prostitutes to “prove” to himself that he’s “good”, and he tries repeatedly empyrena satisfy all three of them. That also includes one of the probably most awkward sex scenes I know of, where I have no idea why it was included in the detail it was – not enough to count as “porn” and restrict the book to a mature audience, but detailed enough to not need any fantasy for sge event.
Compare The Burning Life, where sex scenes also happen, dve use “fade to black” to leave the details to the reader. You get a diplomat who behaves completly undiplomatically, a Karin Midular who behaves as if she never saw politics before, Deus Ex Machina One of my biggest issues with emptrean story of the book is the permanent reliance on deus ex machina to solve most plot issues.
There is at least one DEM event in almost every chapter I read – agge happens, the resolution is difficult, out of nowhere and completely unmotivated, the grand savior appears and solves the issue. This is best described by the em;yrean appearance of The Broker the personified Deus Ex Machina – empyrwan does not confuse me that he’s pretty much “the” character of the novel.
I tremendously enjoyed the chapters in which Tibus Heth takes over the factory.
Those are mostly well-written, logical, and tell a good story. Tibus Heth rises up with his workers, take over the factory, and at the end, they finally achieve their dream: The factory is theirs! And then they realize that they don’t know what to do next. Now vee have what they wanted, but don’t know what to do with it. They have the corporation police incoming, a large fleet outside They never planned this far. They didn’t even believe they’d get this far.
That is a great story. But I didn’t count on TonyG. Out of nowhere, The Broker shows up, solves all the issues, makes Tibus the boss of the corporation and a few others. This then just goes on. A completely undiplomatic diplomat gets taken by some Mysterious Person that comes out of nowhere to the Elders who came out of nowhere Elder ex Machinathe Empress who comes out of rmpyrean, etc.
Story Type The other problem I have with the book is the story it tells. It’s not an EVE story.
I stopped reading the book as an EVE book after a few dozen pages, and read it as a sci fi book. To me, it’s absolutely inappropriate to the EVE world. Epic Heroes The book tells an epic tale of universe-shattering magnitude about great heroes.
Eve: The Empyrean Age by Tony Gonzales – Books – Hachette Australia
But what I like about EVE is that there are no epic heroes. I like the dark world where no one is in power, where no one is really in control – everyone is a victim of impersonal forces, has constraints and necessities they just can’t circumvent, and even the people with the best intentions are driven to do cruel things, just by following the best intentions.
Even capsuleers, the immortals, the highest beings in the world, are just cogs in the machine, victims of impersonal powers greater than themselves. Empyrean Age and Theodicy does the exact opposite of this kind of story. It’s full of epic heroes who are better than anyone else, who are not subject to bad restrictions. Like The Broker who knows everything and can control everything. At best, you have only evil.
But really, it’s shades of grey. The Amarr clearly aren’t “the nice guys”, but neither are the Minmatar. Minmatar are tribals with quite cruel rituals and treatment of each other. A lot of slaves live a good life, but in the Republic, they often starve. The Gallente, the shining beacons of democracy, are cruel bastards of public games and mob control.
I loved the chronicle about the execution of a traitor, because that’s just what I want Gallente to be: Not the good guys, but people empyrran are differently bad. There is no “right” in this universe, there are only different kinds of “wrong. The Amarr are really evil. Tibus Heth is the really good guy – he tries to somewhat make him a dictator, but at least in the first pages, he’s the paragon of the caring leader, rescuing his people out of bad situations, risking his life to save some irrelevant worker I hope this gets better later But this is typical for TonyG if you look at Theodicy.
It’s the only story in EVE that introduces “the dark jovians” who are behind everything. That’s a boring plot.
The big conspiracy behind every negative thing is boring to me. The ideas about cloning in the book have been discussed in this forum already. There are a number of such agw. CCP PF is by far not consistent and contradiction-free, but few people created so many contradictions as TonyG – all in the name of writing a “good story”, failing at it, and all of them introduced completely needlessly.
Needless Plots Like with the Deus ex Machina, TonyG has a tendency to pull completely exaggerated plots out of the sleeve for no reason whatsoever. As a good example of empyream stories, take the Elders and Jamyl. The Republic has been diverting funds to build a fleet against the Empire. That’s a great plotline.