“Tiamat’s Wrath” Review

The book cover is taken up by various parts of buildings and lights and other shapes that might be parts of spaceships. There is a lot of silver and orange in the cover. The author's name is at the top with the book title below in the middle.  Full Title: “Tiamat’s Wrath: The Expanse No. 8”
Written by James S.A. Corey
Published by Orbit Books, March 2019
544 pages
Completed June 8, 2024

Thirteen hundred gates have opened to solar systems around the galaxy. But as humanity builds its interstellar empire in the alien ruins, the mysteries and threats grow deeper.

In the dead systems where gates lead to stranger things than alien planets, Elvi Okoye begins a desperate search to discover the nature of a genocide that happened before the first human beings existed, and to find weapons to fight a war against forces at the edge of the imaginable. But the price of that knowledge may be higher than she can pay.

At the heart of the empire, Teresa Duarte prepares to take on the burden of her father’s godlike ambition. The sociopathic scientist Paolo Cortázar and the mephistophelian prisoner James Holden are only two of the dangers in a palace thick with intrigue, but Teresa has a mind of her own and secrets even her father the emperor doesn’t guess.

And throughout the wide human empire, the scattered crew of the Rocinante fights a brave rear-guard action against Duarte’s authoritarian regime. Memory of the old order falls away, and a future under Laconia’s eternal rule – and with it, a battle that humanity can only lose – seems more and more certain. Because against the terrors that lie between worlds, courage and ambition will not be enough…

Often times the middle book (or movie series) of a trilogy is more of a bridge to fighting the big bad than a story that resolves anything. Not so with this book. Which is why I enjoy it a lot. Granted it has its slow parts and some things are a little tedious but it’s a good book and I enjoy all the different point of view characters. Without spoiling too much a good chunk of the primary problem is resolved. I love the way the crew of the Rocinante are fighting their own fights as they work their way back together. I like that we see one of the pervious characters returned (Elvi Okoye) and a new character (Teresa) who has to figure out where she belongs in the universe.