Read mindstar rising by Peter F. Hamilton Toby Longworth Online


It's the 21st century, and global warming is here to stay, so forget the way your country used to look. And get used to the free market, too - the companies possess all the best hardware, and they're calling the shots now. In a world like this, a man open to any offers can make out just fine.A man like Greg Mandel for instance, who's psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensIt's the 21st century, and global warming is here to stay, so forget the way your country used to look. And get used to the free market, too - the companies possess all the best hardware, and they're calling the shots now. In a world like this, a man open to any offers can make out just fine.A man like Greg Mandel for instance, who's psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensory equipment, carrying state-of-the-art weaponry - and late of the English Army's Mindstar Battalion. As the cartels battle for control of a revolutionary new power source, and corporate greed outstrips national security, tension is mounting to boiling point - and Greg Mandel is about to face the ultimate test.©2011 Peter Hamilton; (P)2011 Audible Ltd...

Title : mindstar rising
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ISBN : 13583319
Format Type : Audiobook
Number of Pages : 102 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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mindstar rising Reviews

  • Michael Burnam-Fink
    2019-05-21 22:41

    Mindstar Rising is the best cyberpunk novel you've never read. Peter F Hamilton is better known for his sprawling space operas, but in Mindstar he presents a tight thriller set in an intriguing post-global warming England coming out of a 10 year Left Totalitarian government. Greg Mandel is a private detective with little extra, a military-grade neural implant that lets him read minds, and a simple investigation into sabotage on a space station draws him into a dizzying world of corporate intrigue, hacking, and economic warfare.This is a first novel, but Hamilton is humble enough to leave open questions about technology, human enhancement, and corporate power, rather than try to answer them once and for all. The novel is rife with the minor details that flesh out a good setting, like the medieval street markets next to shops turned into houses, or the new April in post-global warming England. Hard sci-fi fanatics might quibble at some things (laser pistols don't work like that, computer hacking isn't like that, socialists aren't like that, etc), but I don't care. The setting smells right, and unlike his other novels, Hamilton ends this one without the old deus ex machina.

  • Anna
    2019-04-24 19:32

    I have conflicting feelings about this book, therefore I will subdivide this review.The good: I liked the setting very much. Rural Cambridgeshire afflicted by climate change, a vast marsh criss-crossed by decaying roads, with Peterborough as a resurgent port town. This is in fact the only book I’ve ever read to have a climactic scene set in Wisbech. Apart from a few little details (notably regarding data storage capacity), the world-building seems to have aged quite well. I was slightly unnerved to find references to a ‘credit crash’ in a novel published in 1993. The characters all use a ‘cybofax’, which is essentially a smartphone. It can be used to make calls, read books, and view files. To my mind, the name cybofax is not that much stupider than ‘smartphone’. The psychic powers aspect obviously requires suspension of disbelief, but is handled quite neatly. Everyone seems to be surprisingly well-armed, although many characters are ex-military which might go some way to explaining that. Unfortunately Cambridge doesn’t feature, despite characters driving past it on the M11 at one point. I did wonder what happened there.The bad: I didn’t care about the plot, as it was basically a wrangle between rich people in which their less well off employees got caught up and sometimes killed. I kept reading in order to explore this climate changed world, not because I wanted to know what would happen to the characters. For instance, the space station designed for industrial production was very interesting, the people on it were not. I think this is linked to the politics of the book. It’s set during a ‘new conservative’ (oxymoron) government, which has taken over from the ‘people’s socialism party’ (grammatically that should really be ‘socialist’ but never mind). The latter are condemned absolutely and unequivocally by every character, in a manner that suggested they were Stalinists. Police repression and economic centralisation seem to have been involved, but no clear explanation is given. I was uncomfortable with the flimsy basis from which the characters justified assassinating members of the old regime in cold blood, complaining that membership of their party wasn’t harshly punished, and defending total freedom of market forces. It seemed as though the fall of an ostensibly left-wing repressive regime had turned everyone into blood-thirsty libertarians. I suppose this can be linked to the novel’s publishing date, 1993, when Western triumphalism after the fall of communism was high. (Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man came out the previous year.) I found it simplistic and thus lacking in impact, though. For example, throwaway comments decrying policies like the ‘one home law’ seemed stupid. In a country that has seen rapid internal migration because a significant part of the housing stock fell into the sea, limiting each household to owning one home would be nearly inevitable! During natural disasters, political pragmatism tends to blur the (never completely clear) division between left and right.Ultimately what was at stake in the plot was money, nothing more, and the narrative seemed to think this was sufficient to create suspense. It wasn’t for me. Especially as I could find no reason to like Greg Mandel, the main character.The ugly: Sexism was pervasive throughout the book. Women were always referred to by their level of attractiveness first off, whilst I never had any idea what Mandel looked like. (Did he have hair? Did he squint? We may never know.) I didn’t like the extent to which Julia was defined by wanting a boyfriend. I didn’t like the fact that jealousy always featured in relationships between women. I hated the way that Mandel used his psychic powers to seduce a vulnerable, much younger woman - it came off as totally creepy. Although Eleanor was given more agency towards the end of the book, she was always defined by her looks and her relationship with Mandel. Katerina is constantly described as gorgeous, sexy, and fond of sex, then gets horribly punished for it. The sexual politics of this novel are almost uniformly terrible and I found them very depressing.The exception was Gabriel, the only woman who wasn’t treated as a sex object. I loved her grumpiness, competence, and sensible responses to her psychic powers. She was awesome and I was very pleased when the Trinities gang thought so too. Mandel’s internal monologue criticising her weight and commenting that she looked old and dowdy compounded my dislike of him.I have actually read the sequel to this novel, The Nano Flower many years ago, but don’t remember anything much about it except scary psychic panther-things. I think I would have enjoyed ‘Mindstar Rising’ more as a teenager, when I read stacks of science fiction more or less uncritically. Now that I automatically look for socio-economic and feminist subtext in novels, science fiction thrillers often don’t come out too well. It’s a pity, though, because in this case the setting has been thought out well and really appealed to me. It was Peter F. Hamilton’s first novel, I think, so I guess you have to make allowances for that.

  • Tamahome
    2019-05-23 20:38

    ~11/14 hrs left in the audiobook. Peter F. Hamilton is kind of a potboiler scifi writer, except he's really smart. The character development is above average. Sometimes I admit to being bored by the detailed descriptions; maybe I'm just not understanding it completely. But then something really intense happens that makes it worth it. That's where I am now. No messing. Doesn't have the fantasy elements of the Night's Dawn or Void trilogies. If you don't consider mind reading and seeing the future fantasy. There may be some libertarian messages. Done:Hamilton is a plotter -- so in the beginning you might not understand why all the elements are there, but it all fits together towards the end. I won't say 'tropes', but some of the 'cool stuff' in the book are mind uploading, brain enhancement, and genetic enhancement of animals. The last 3 hours were really action packed. Hamilton can describe explosions and beam weapons well. Somewhat grisly escape. No messing.I reviewed it here too:

  • Claudia
    2019-05-21 00:39

    Greg Mandel trilogy was the one that propelled PFH on the heights of glory ;) It does not have the scope his later tomes have, but it does provide the same fun and enjoyment while reading it.And one good point for those who are not fans of series in general, these books can be read as standalone. They are in a trilogy because of the main character, Greg Mandel, the psi enhanced Mindstar veteran and the tasks he does for Event Horizon, the company which hired his skills. But each of the three has its own story, a mystery-detective one.It has some clichés, it’s a bit predictive, but totally a lot of fun.

  • William
    2019-05-22 20:11

    A good mystery and good hard sci-fi book, both. The protagonist has special preceptive powers due to a gland installed in his head by the military at one time. The characters in the book are mostly well-drawn and sympathetic, and the book pacing and writing was very good, minus an overlong "invasion" near the end of the book.

  • Lee
    2019-05-11 20:22


  • Nikki
    2019-04-28 01:36

    Mindstar Rising is a reasonably entertaining technological thriller, though I'm not going to touch the politics aspect of the speculative world Hamilton has created. The pace is okay, enough to keep you interested, and there are some characters that you get a little caught up in -- Julia, for example, and her grandfather; I felt pity for the wreck he was in, and sympathy because of the way he adored her. And Julia... I sympathised with the way she was struggling to figure out how she fit into the world.On the whole, though, I won't be reading more of Hamilton's work, at least until I've got this ridiculous stack of books down a bit (unless there's another Hamilton book hiding in the pile). I think it's something more in my sister's line than mine, perhaps. Anyway, my main problem was the main character, Greg Mandel. He was just bland to me, up to the point where he used his psychic abilities to seduce a much younger, vulnerable woman. Then I started feeling twitchy. It's one thing to use it against people in criminal investigations -- although even then, I feel like someone's thoughts and emotions are really their own business and no one else's -- but using it for the sole purpose of getting laid?Also, man, I have had enough of the male gaze-y crap. There are intelligent women in this book, strong women, but I think every woman Mandel comes across is evaluated first in terms of how she looks. I've had quiiiiiite enough of that, thank you.Entertaining, like I said, but I'm not feeling the enthusiasm.

  • Fred Hughes
    2019-04-25 21:16

    Greg Mandel can read your mind, sort of. He can tell when you're lying and depending on the question can reason out what is going on. While this was a great asset in the military, once he got out it's more of a unique skill set paid for by the government.He is hired by a billionaire to determine who is sabotaging his earth orbit manufacturing facilities.He soon lands in a major battle with the people who are doing the sabotage. However, as he peels away the layers in that organization it keeps pointing to people in higher places with matching bank accounts.It's an adventure par excellent, which is standard fare for Peter F Hamilton who is a master story teller

  • PeterS
    2019-05-15 01:41

    Echt schön: für vieles von dem, was ich im Commonwealth-Zyklus so toll finde, sind hier schon die Ansätze zu sehen - im übertragenen Sinne: der Umgang mit gesellschaftlichen, persönlichen und wirtschaftlichen Dingen, Einführung der Personen, verschiedene Handlungsstränge, und natürlich ein Ende, bei dem alle Fäden zusammenlaufen: so liebe ich das bei Hamilton.

  • Hallie
    2019-05-08 19:36

    Computer's been eating partially-written reviews again. Grrr.Would have been great if not for the politics, both material and sexual. Britain is suffering the aftermath of severe climate change, worsened (like everything else) by the appalling rule of the People's Socialist Party. But worry not, as the New Conservatives are now in power, and Event Horizon, the multi-national, mega-super-big company run by Philip Evans, with help from his brain node-enriched granddaughter, Julia. I imagine the idea of the New Conservatives and filthy-rich industrialists together saving the day might have read a little less like the darkest of black comedy back when this was published, but today...? Greg Mandel himself is sort of 'old-fashioned honorable', ex-soldier, been given a psychic gland by the military, and now hired to see who's trying to mess with Event Horizon. Which is nice, and he is depicted as loyal, no matter what - except that he starts out with Eleanor by using his psychic powers to help him seduce her, and by the time they end up the couple of the decade, nobody seems to think anything of this! But in terms of sex, the attitudes are very retro indeed. There's a lot about women's appearance, and Greg even says at one point something to the effect of his being able to 'forgive' his close friend and fellow psi-boosted ex-army mate Gabrielle, for letting herself go, because her psychic ability is so tough on her. She has let herself go in more than the physical sense, but this is specifically mentioned - she's dumpy and dowdy. For shame, woman! (I'm getting cranky about this all over again, writing this.) There's also this weird little peasant-to-royalty vibe near the end, when Eleanor is pleading with Julia to rescue her 'man'. Made me slightly nauseous. When I could stick the nonsensically villainous socialist-thing in a dark mental corner, and ignore the ruthlessness we seemed supposed to understand and condone in the awful Philip Evans (because it was all for Julia - yeah, right), and nobody was thinking about sexy times, then the story was a fair amount of fun, with some good twists. Not very convincing science (and there was one stupid assumption made by Greg and the head of Event Horizon security that was so idiotic I'd have fired both of them), I wouldn't have thought, but fun all the same. Pity about all the ignoring required.

  • Juste
    2019-04-24 23:27

    I find it quite had to review Mindstar Rising as it's a bit of a mixed bag. The book was given to me as a Birthday present so it's not something I would have usually sought out for myself and I didn't really know what to expect when I began.What the book delivered was a bit of a jumbled mess of detective story and Sci-fi jargon. If I could I'd probably rate it 2.5 as the writing was quite shoddy but the last 5 - 6 chapters are full of barnstorming excitement.My biggest criticism of the book (and the most forgiveable) is probably the language. The book is peppered with a wide array of nonsense Sci-Fi terminology which detracted quite a lot from the (better) detective side of the story. Also the Authors habbit of constantly inserting a brand name for any object/garments/car/made up device... got irritating VERY quickly and sadly continues throughout. However when I learnt this was a debut novel I can easily forgive these things. It's really not that bad for a first attempt.All of the Male characters in the book are extremely well flushed out and interesting, however unfortunately this doesn't carry over too well for the female characters who all seem to be 2 dimensional and riddled with stereotypical behavioural traits.The story itself is well structured and moves along at a brisk and refreshing pace for what is essentially a detective story set in the future. There are a few 'big reveals' adding twists along the way and some work better than others. Towards the end of the book I genuinely found it hard to put down as the author piles on the peril and the tale draws to its ultimate conclusion.The book has quite a big political undercurrent which often went against my own politics and sometime just didn't make sense. 'The Enemies' in the story are described as 'Hard Left' which itself seems to be a contradiction especially when you add in tales of east-germanesque, Stasi like behaviour of the ruling class. 'Fortunately' these lefty nutjobs were thrown out of power with the help of Billionaire capitalist and the 'new conservatives'...... right. OK.To sum up then, I started the book not knowing what to expect and what it delivered was an entertaining mess sometimes bordering on quality fiction. Primarily because of the strong end to this book I'm quite intrigued to read the other two books in the series which I hope will put to bed some of the issues that crept into this messy début.

  • Rob
    2019-05-24 01:28

    I really enjoyed this book. Also, the audiobook narrator was fantastic.Greg Mandel is a protagonist you can really root for. The world he lives in (post-global warming, techno-dystopian England but with a big potential hope) is a believable future that's really interesting. The enemies are communists (I miss the Cold War...).Great pacing. Great allies. Great technology. Interesting characters. Really did a wonderful job. And the last quarter of the book is really edge-of-your-seat action. Just and awesome, fun read. Recommended to people who love a good space opera, though this isn't exactly a space opera. I started the 2nd in the series immediately.I think the only real negative for me is that the book started out with a lot of sexuality. It was almost to the point where I thought, man, if this keeps going no way am I going to finish the book. Too much too soon. But it tapered off quickly and moved on to real plot, and, in retrospect, the early sexual stuff set the foundation for key character development and plot points later on that might have been hard to get across another way.

  • Paul
    2019-05-12 01:36

    I did finish this, though it was an effort. Plodding & ultimately boring. Hard to believe the same writer was responsible for the "Night's Dawn Trilogy". Though admittedly i read that 20 years ago, so i can't help wondering if i would regard it as highly if i were reading it for the first time now.*3* stars

  • Koen
    2019-05-11 18:12

    “Mindstar Rising”, is written by Peter F. Hamilton and is the first Greg Mandel book of three and I’ve bought this book on veteran’s day 2007. ISB number 0-330-32376-8, first published in 1993 by Pan.Keep in mind that the story is written in 1993 by Peter Hamilton (currently 24 years ago) and the story is still compelling. The setting is great, the changing of the climate raised the water levels and swamps the lower parts of England. The politic situation in England is terrible and wars are being fought in the streets of the bigger cities. The political situation changes and there is room for big companies such as Event Horizon to get a foothold in the UK helping the economy. Event Horizon is led by Philip Evans and later on by his granddaughter Julia Evans. Event Horizon is growing ferry fast and investing a lot of money in research leaving the competition far behind. The success of Event Horizon however gives rise to corporate espionage and sabotage. Greg Mandel is a former Mindstar veteran with a military grade neural implant, which enables him to sense truth or lie and gives him an intuitive edge about almost any situation. He is asked by Event Horizon to investigate a complex case of corporate espionage and hacking attempts endangering the existence of Event Horizon.The not so good part of Hamilton’s writing (not only in this book), is the way he describes/handles the female characters. He always focuses on sex and Hamilton misses a chance to develop the female characters. The technology described by Hamilton is good (sometimes a little bit out-dated but hey, 1993 what do expect?)Below an abstract of the personages:Former Mindstar Battalion:• Greg Mandel, former Mindstar battalion.• Gabriel Thompson, former Mindstar battalion.Wilholm Manor, Evans’ Estate:• Philip Evans, Owner of Event Horizon.• Julia (Juliet) Evans, Granddaughter• Dillan Evans, Julia’s father,• Adale, Julia’s maid.Julia’s friends:• Adrian Marler• Karina CowthorpeJulia’s bodyguards:• Steven Welbourne.• Rachel Griffith.Event Horizon, • Morgan Walshaw, security Chief.• Dr. Ranasfari, leading one of the research teams.• Martin Wallace, institute security officer.Event Horizon’s Hardliners:• Victor Tyo Staff Lieutenant.• Bruces Parwez.• Evan Hains.• Jerry Masefield.• Isabel Curtics.• Glen Dichitt.Sean Francis, Captain of the Oscot, Cyber factory ship part of Listoel.Jeff Graham, Sanger pilot.Sanger, space plane used for bringing up the microgee modules.Microgee space station modules.The Parnell, sister ship of the Oscot.Horace Jepson, Channel Magnate Globecast and personal friend of Julia Evans.Kendric di Girolamo, 8% stake in the backing consortium of Event horizon.Hermoine, Kendric’s wife.Zantus Space Station;• Lewis Pelham, dormitory commander.• Don Howard, Security captain.• Angie Kirkpatrick, furnace operator.• Jenifer and Diana, Angie’s daughters.• Norman Knowles, furnace operator.• Kurt Schimel, providing the malware.• Alexius McNamara, software specialist.Trinities:• Royan, hotrod hacker. • Goi, Royan’s caretaker.• Des.• Suzie.• Teddy “Father”, former sergeant and leader of the Trinities.PSP members:• Leopold Armstrong, former PSP President.• Nevel Turner, former minister in the PSP government.Hotrod:• Ade O’Donal/Tentimes, hotrod hacking Event Horizon.• Wolf/Charles Ellis, Tentimes employer living at Castlewood condominium, New Eastfield, Petersborough.

  • Miss
    2019-04-23 23:30

    This was like nothing I have read before. The world was futuristic and at times difficult to picture but the characters, for the most part, were appealing and relatable. The storyline was compelling, progressed at a decent pace, and kept me engaged from the get go. A very enjoyable read!

  • Lotte
    2019-05-11 20:36

    This is the first of Peter F Hamilton’s books that I’ve read and I have to say, it wasn’t what I expected! I’ve never been into Science Fiction but after a lovely meal with Peter (including an awkward discussion about having never read his books) I decided I should give some of his work a go! I actually enjoyed it far more than I thought it would, so it just goes to show, you mustn’t judge a book by its genre!The story is set in post-apocalyptic Britain. Global warming has hit resulting in soaring temperatures and drastic rises in sea levels, altering the country. The land is scorched and all previously low-lying land is now submerged below a metre or two of water. On higher ground the population has become much denser due to the migration of those from low-lying grounds. Not only that, the country has been under the power of the People’s Socialist Party, a hard, left-wing dictatorship with a devastating ruling. As you can imagine the country and its people are in a bit of mess. For me Hamilton built the world well, perhaps too well at times. He describes the surrounding environment, habitats, climate fairly often throughout the book and always with precision detail. I prefer to read a book and develop an image of the world in my head through the contextual clues given. I felt as though too much was given to the reader which meant it lost an element of imagination for me.However, the world that Hamilton creates is perfect for the plot he has lined up. Despite the bleak scene, Event Horizon headed by billionaire Phillip Evans, is returning to England, after years of avoiding the PSP, to help those in need. It seems Event Horizon is just what the country needs to rise again, providing employment and advances in technology beyond the rest of the world. Until, of course, it all starts to go wrong.A spoiler operation is run against Event Horizon causing chaos. After narrowly avoiding a complete meltdown of the company, Phillip Evans enlists the services of our main character, Greg Mandel. Greg is an ex-soldier from the Mindstar Brigade, struggling to survive after the PSP. His character is clearly defined, coming across as a straight talking, no messing kind of guy. Did I mention his psychic ability? The entire Mindstar brigade had psychic glands implanted; Greg’s being telepathy (the ability to read minds). This isn’t as straight forward as it seems. Greg’s ability to read mind is limited to only being able to tell if people are lying. From there he has to play detective and figure it out. It is for this reason that Phillip Evans hires Greg; he wants to know which of his employees was involved in the spoiler operationThis sends Greg into a case that should have been simple: Interview the staff, use his espersence to find out who was lying, job done. Only it’s never that simple. A second attack, terrifying villains, a second-psychic comrade, a gland-enhanced granddaughter and a web of lies keep you guessing right up to the end of this story. Hamilton’s plot is well thought-out, with multiple angles all coming together neatly at the end. I like a tidy book!! Given that this book was written in 1993, 20 years ago, it’s slightly out dated. However I didn’t feel it detracted from the story at all as long as you kept that in mind. Hamilton’s use of technology was inventive and in-depth. Whilst I followed the majority of Hamilton’s meaning, I cannot confess to fully understanding all of his technological advances and found some of the descriptions and explanations laborious and at times dull. As a self-diagnosed technophobe, I was never going to understand it all but it was encouraging to find that even those with limited technology knowledge/experience could follow and understand their uses. I had some issues with Hamilton’s characters. The females seemed to be very stereotypical and seeped in sexuality. It was a bit much at times and didn’t seem necessary to the story. Also, without giving away any spoilers, Greg’s comment regarding his psychic comrade, where he was able to forgive her for letting herself go, was a little off! All in all, I enjoyed this read! It was an exciting, well paced, near-future sci-fi read that will keep you hooked. I think I’ll be trying some of Hamilton’s other books!

  • Mark
    2019-05-11 02:22

    Mindstar Rising is Peter F Hamilton's first published novel from back in 1993 and still on of my favourites of his. I've read this novel so many times I've lost count, but with each read I still enjoy the characters and world he has created. Despite the fact that the world history and main plot details now seem dated, I still found myself enthralled in a great sci-fi detective story.The setting of Mindstar Rising is England in the mid 21st century, specifically the areas around Rutland and Peterborough. This may not sound that exciting, but with the rise in sea levels all of the land east of Peterborough is now under a metre or two of water and the temperatures now echo those of the Mediterranean. The rise in sea level has caused a mass exodus of the low lying lands and the cities are now crowded. Add to this that the country has been under a hard left political dictatorship for the past ten years and you can start to imagine the state of the country.While these all affect the landscape of England and the world we're introduced to, it's all a very well executed backdrop to the story Hamilton is telling. With the fall of the People's Socialist Party, the country is getting back on its feet and Event Horizon, a private corporation run by one Philip Evans, is returning to England after years smuggling technology across the borders to the people in need. Now in the strong position of creating jobs and a technological industry that will rival the best in the world, Event Horizon has a very bright future ahead. It's not until a sophisticated spoiler operation is run against it that we get into the nitty gritty of the story and meet the full cast of characters that take us along for the ride.Greg Mandel is the main character in Mindstar Rising, a telepath who can vaguely read minds enough to see when someone is lying. He's an ex-soldier from the disbanded Mindstar Brigade, a company of officers each with their own psychic abilities gained through the implantation of a gland in their brain. Greg is scraping by after being left in the cold while the PSP ruled and as such has no sympathy for them. I like Greg, he's such an enjoyable character to read because he just doesn't mess around and is able to talk to people and assess the situation quickly and effectively. This is a good thing as we follow him for the majority of the novel while his investigations for Event Horizon start turning up some interesting things.Event Horizon is run by Philip Evans and his granddaughter, Julia Evans, two characters that take after each other perfectly with their unstoppable goals for the company. Philip Evans is an ill old man, but Julia is young and bubbly and has more than the expected knowledge and drive for someone her age. While Philip is instantly recognisable as an old school business man who has a wealth of experience, Julia is more of a grey area as we're never too sure, at least at the start, how she will deal with situations. They both make for a formidable team, especially with their chief of security Morgan Walshaw at their side.There are a few characters that I really did enjoy from Greg's past, but Gabriel Thompson is by far the most interesting. With a psychic ability that lets her see the future it instantly made me suspicious that Hamilton was overdoing it and making things too easy for our protagonists, although when we're introduced to her we see what this ability has on her and allows us to more fully appreciate the situation of the Mindstar veterans. Suffice to say that Gabriel is an asset to the story, but Hamilton manages to stop short of over-using her and getting all the problems solved.While the motives for the attacks against Event Horizon are never that clear, especially as more and more information comes to light, Hamilton manages to deliver a very well paced story that gives us good amounts of action and worldbuilding while delivering and well plotted and focused novel. I still enjoy Mindstar Rising after many re-reads and if you can look past the dated political and geographical set up then you'll find yourself a great near-future investigative sci-fi tale. Highly recommended.

  • Wesley
    2019-05-19 22:17

    The first novel by Peter F. Hamilton is smaller in scope than his later space opera epics. It is set in a Britain ravaged by global warming and suffering the after effects of a credit crunch and the downfall of a totalitarian government. Greg Mandel is an ex-Mindstar Brigade soldier who has an enhanced esp talent due to an implanted gland in his brain that can secrete neurohormones. Now a civilian, he uses his talent to help a company executive get to the bottom of an industrial espionage attack against his company.Apart from the setting and some incidental technology used by the characters in the book, this book good just as well have been a standard detective/thriller. I have a problem at times with Hamilton's portrayal of female characters and the adolescent mind set of his male characters when it comes to sex. This book, being his first, is probably a "good" example of this. It was entertaining enough and I will go on to read the other two Mandel books at some point but I much preferred his later Night's Dawn trilogy to this - it is hard to believe they were by the same author.

  • Ryan
    2019-05-20 00:11

    Warning ***Spoilers Ahead***I read Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained by Hamilton first. I struggled to get through both, but kept returning because I recognized a fantastic world and it stuck with me...even when I took a year off, I could pick up right where I left off with little to no confusion at having to remember characters.This book, was my second attempt at consuming Hamilton's sci-fi. I found the book itself structurally interesting, and I think Hamilton builds worlds in an interesting way. However, the characters and the whole scenario that they dealt with was fairly awful. I found no sympathy for the Evans family over all. Maybe a little for Julia, but only at first until you're told she actively planned out the selling of her "friend" to the man who raped her. Greg Mandel himself was a kind of cool character...damaged in all the right places with a big heart concealed by the gruff exterior, but that's about it...there wasn't much more interesting about him than the archetype that he is...and very little about him changes throughout the novel or grows.

  • Robert
    2019-05-16 22:15

    Peter F. Hamilton's debut novel is an entertaining thriller set in a near future where global warming, a Credit Crash and far left wing totalitarianism wrecked the British economy, Scotland has become independent and Wales gets no mention at all.... England's recovery from all of this is underway but it's fragile and many are still living under the influence of gangs and corruption. The protagonist, a war vet with medically boosted empathy and intuition, is hired by the hi-tech company leading the way in dragging the economy forward out of egrarianism and bartering to solve a case of industrial espionage and illegal spoiler tactics.It is a straightforward narrative that soon grips and is not bloated. Fun and followed by two sequels involving the same protagonists. Readers of the Night's Dawn trilogy or the Commonwealth Saga will find this something of a stylistic contrast.

  • Andreas
    2019-05-21 02:28

    Consisting of: Mindstar Rising A Quantum Murder The Nano FlowerThese three loosely connected novels share the same protagonist, Greg Mandel. He is a psychic former soldier who now works as a sort of private investigator/mercenary. Greg comes into contact with a billionaire named Julia Evans, a very interesting characted in herself.Although they can be read as straightforward SciFi crime novels, there is much more depth here. The location, a post ecodisaster England recovering from climate change is a fascinating place. Add to that a brave new kind of capitalism that has superseded rabid socialism, and the social commentary becomes top notch. Highly recommended.

  • Laurie
    2019-05-17 22:37

    I really loved this first outing with Greg Mandel, a psychic detetctive operating in a near future Earth that Hamilton has carefully crafted. The mystery aspect is very well handled with lots of twists and unexpected revelations that kept me reading far later into the night than I should. I am very drawn to the world Hamilton envisions with it's political, economic, and technological advancements, all so plausible and enticing. As with previous titles, I can recommend this one with complete confidence so pick it up soon.

  • Maddalena
    2019-05-13 02:40

    After greatly enjoying Peter Hamilton's The Reality Dysfunction, the first volume of his Night's Dawn trilogy, I wanted to read more about this author, but without committing to one of his more "monstrous" novels yet, and I settled for Mindstar Rising, again a first volume in a trilogy and, from what I understand, Hamilton's first published novel.The setting of this story is very interesting:Continue reading over at SPACE and SORCERY BLOG

  • Peter
    2019-05-06 00:14

    I'm reading the Hamilton series out of order. :-) I've read his big space opera's and now I started with his first series. The Greg Mandel books are more cyberpunk then the other books of Hamilton I've read. But you can already spot some of his common themes in here.I had a hard time starting in this book. It starts with two seemingly smaller cases before the real story unfolds. But once the story really kicks off; I was really into it. the book reads like a train, and there are some twists and turns to keep everything going.Read this if you like to enjoy your books.

  • Jeffrey
    2019-05-10 02:26

    A fine science fiction mystery from Hamilton with thrills, suspense and action. His main character has been an operative in the best sense of action hero --working for the Army, he has a special neurohormone that makes him a telepath. Now he has to use his military talents and his telepathy to figure out who is hunting a visionary industrialist.All the action you could want.

  • David
    2019-04-23 20:12

    Pretty decent action-based near-future Sci-fi, especially considering it was the author's first book (I think). The sort of book I enjoy reading, but don't then feel the urgent need to go out and pursue more in the series. Will read the Night's Dawn series at some point though.

  • Matthew Bandy
    2019-05-07 20:15

    I couldn't finish it.

  • Sara
    2019-05-08 23:25

    3.5 stars. Greg is a man hired for odd jobs, when his abilities are warranted - he has a gland that allows him to discern when someone is lying. An organization known as Event Horizon discovers there's been some sort of corporate sabotage and is unsure how or who or why. And so Greg is called in and immediately sets to work discovering a larger conspiracy that takes him all over even to space, and forces him to deal with computer programs and artificial intelligence.This is basically an extremely complicated detective story set in the future. The plot was quite complicated but I enjoyed the scope of it. The idea of having Greg as a human lie detector was interesting, and I liked his "partner" of sorts, whose own gland allowed the ability to see the future. This made for a fun pairing, even though I felt like it could have been developed a little more at times. The history of the world was laid out a number of times, almost overly developed, but to the point where it was so overly complicated (and not relevant at the time it was being described except as backstory) that I had a hard time keeping track of everything. I did appreciate the attention to detail, however, and the story flowed along quite smoothly. I never felt bored while reading.There was an overly complex and intricate plot as well as a large cast of characters, and I never really felt connected to any of the characters despite their alternate turns starring as the main character for a chapter. I did feel like many of the female characters were written with an almost misogynistic viewpoint, as if the author was unsure how to write them without simply resorting to looks and fantasy. None of the characters were particularly deep or complex, but there was a big difference between the males and females in here. Apparently I'm not the only one who noticed, judging from other reviews, but it didn't make me hate the book. It just seemed overly simplistic.I felt like there was a lot of potential in here, and parts were definitely interesting and fun to read, but I didn't love this overall. The story was interesting but also felt basic at the same time, despite its complexity. I think there was just enough hints of the world and of Greg's abilities (and history) to intrigue me... yet there wasn't enough to make me truly riveted. Perhaps part of this also stems from the book having been published nearly 25 years ago and maybe seeming dated now. Clearly the author has grown as a writer too, since I guess this was his debut novel and I've read a way more intricate tome from him that I enjoyed more! I wouldn't necessarily recommend this book to others, unless you are a fan of the author's later books and want to see the building blocks of his later characters and such (I could see that throughout this novel), but I did enjoy it enough to read the second book in this series at some point, especially since I already own it.

  • Roddy Williams
    2019-05-20 01:21

    ‘Wise Up. It’s the 21st Century and Global Warming is here to stay.Forget the way your country used to look. Get used to the free market, the companies have all the best hardware – they’re calling the shots now…Live with the heat.In a world like this a man open to any offers can make out just fine. Greg Mandel: Psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensory equipment, carrying state of the art weaponry. Veteran of Gulf War II. Late of the English Army’s Mindstar Battalion.AS the cartels battle for control of a revolutionary new power source and corporate greed outstrips national security, the tension mounts to boiling point and Greg Mandel is about to find out if he’s up to the ultimate test.Mindstar Rising marks the debut of a major new talent in British SF.’Blurb from the 1993 Pan Paperback EditionThis is a workmanlike debut novel from Hamilton and as decent a novel as it is there is little to indicate that he would progress to the quality (and sheer quantity) of his later books such as The Reality Dysfunction, although the beginnings of some of his favourite motifs are here. What Hamilton has lost since this first flush of success is the British setting, since after the Greg Mandel trilogy his work headed off into interstellar space and seemed to be targeting a US audience.Greg Mandel is ex-military, once part of the Mindstar programme where ESP-positive recruits were implanted with specialised ‘glands’ which enhanced their latent powers.Now he makes a living as an investigator. This Britain is a victim of global warming and the legacy of the last government, the PSP (People’s Socialist Party) against which Mandel fought and campaigned.Now, under a new government in a smaller, warmer, wetter Britain where the capital is Peterborough, the country is slowly recovering. Mandel is called in by Philip Evans, a rich and dying industrialist determined to kick-start an economic revival. Evans has discovered that someone has been engaged in industrial sabotage and asks Greg to join forces with his security people to find out what’s going on. And so we are thrown headlong into a world of cyber-terrorists, child vigilantes, programmed sentinel panthers and attractive seductive villains.One of Hamilton’s favourite motifs, the manipulative teenage uberbabe appears for the first time in the form of Katerina, a friend of Philip’s grand-daughter Julia. Julia herself, being groomed to take over the reins when her grandfather dies, is no pushover either, having had her brain more or less hardwired into the internet, she can save her memories or access data or software instantly.Another of Hamilton’s themes; the contrast between rich and poor, also appears here as we alternate between scenes of Evans’ cybernetically-controlled mansion and Mandel’s visits to gang-controlled council estates.Like practically all of Hamilton’s work it’s a gripping page-turner and Greg Mandel is a likeable – if occasionally unpredictably vicious – hero.Cleverly, Hamilton studiously avoids any info-dumping of back story, thus the history of the PSP and how it came to power left mostly a mystery, although snippets of life under its black-shirted special police and the Party’s eventual downfall are gleaned from conversation here and there within the text.Structurally it is a third person narrative which for the most part follows Mandel, occasionally wandering off to focus on Julia or Mandel’s new girlfriend or else veers away to relate parallel events elsewhere. The later Hamilton has to be considered one of the masters of the multi-character perspective, combining rather deft use of suspense and cliffhangers.The only negative point I can make about the novel is that Eleanor, the girlfriend, is a little superfluous in a narrative which strives to accentuate the sexual tension between Mandel and Julia. Their relationship is handled very well but would have made a more powerful story had Mandel been single and widowed. Julia is unattainable by the very fact of the age gap and the difference in their social status, while leaving a small margin of possibility. This tension would have provided a better counterpoint to the investigation and action going on elsewhere. Mandel’s happiness in his relationship is also at odds with the ‘Noir’ feel of the rest of the book. His other traits – his past as a Mindstar veteran and his telepathic gland – make him the outsider, the outcast. This is neutralised by the fact of his steady relationship.Opportunities are also lost for tensions between Julia and her grandfather. Philip promised that his company ‘Event Horizon’ would be hers when he dies, which he duly does. Death, however, seems to be just another problem-solving exercise for Philip. It therefore comes as a bit of a surprise when, some time after his funeral, Mandrel gets a call from Philip in which he claims someone is trying to kill him. Philip’s memories and brain structure have been downloaded into a NN core which has been the object of a virus attack from cyberspace.Philips’ resurrection; his determination to continue running the Company and his habit of popping into Julia’s head to experience life in a body of flesh again (a rather disturbing and somewhat incestuous concept) might, one thinks, make her a little pissed-off at her grandfather, but she takes everything in her stride, exhibiting nothing more dramatic than a stamp of the foot now and again.The digitised consciousness is an idea that Hamilton develops further in the Night’s Dawn trilogy where the Edenists upload their personalities and memories into the merged consciousness of their living ships and habitats.He takes the concept further in Pandora’s Star, this time examining the effect on society of a system whereby (as in Morgan’s ‘Kovacs’ series) many people carry a recording device implanted in the spine which records their experiences, and there is the technology available to rejuvenate people. In cases of unexpected death, the device can be uploaded into a fast-grown clone.During the course of the novel we meet other Mindstar veterans such as Royan, an eyeless armless cyber-junkie, plugged into a bank of ageing computers and TV screens, living his life in Internet space. Then there’s Gabriel, another damaged veteran whose gland allows her to see Tau lines of potential futures.There’s even a character called Roddy who, I am sad to report, gets not much page space before being killed by a genetically engineered panther.Sequels are ‘A Quantum Murder’ and ‘The Nano Flower’

  • Rita Monticelli
    2019-05-02 00:33

    Scroll down for the English version.Un romanzo che ti legge nella menteNell’intitolare questa recensione ho volutamente giocato con la trama del libro. “Mindstar Rising” infatti ha come protagonista un ex-militare, Greg Mandel, in cui è stata impiantata una speciale ghiandola che gli permette di percepire le emozioni delle altre persone e in un certo senso leggere la loro mente, anche se non letteralmente. Mandel è ora un detective privato che si ritrova a investigare su un intrigo di portata globale incentrato sulla giovane erede di un multimiliardario. La storia è ambientata in un futuro vicino notevolmente distopico, un futuro in cui il riscaldamento globale ha trasformato l’Inghilterra in un luogo quasi desertico dove i mari hanno invaso le coste e modificato la loro morfologia, dove il petrolio è finito, e le persone vivono in un mondo degradato in una mescolanza tra bassa e alta tecnologia, la seconda soprattutto ad appannaggio dei più ricchi.L’ambientazione è suggestiva, sebbene io non sopporti le storie post-apocalittiche, ma la trama gira intorno a ben altro e quindi questo aspetto non ha avuto influenze negative sul mio giudizio.Nonostante ci troviamo di fronte a situazioni ben diverse da quelle dei soliti libri di Hamilton, il suo stile è riconoscibilissimo nell’estrema complessità della trama, la descrizione disinvolta di situazioni erotiche raccontate come qualcosa di naturale, le sue lunghe scene che ti tengono incollato alle pagine del libro, il suo linguaggio ricercato che ti costringe a concentrarti al massimo nella lettura, il finale che riesce a strapparti un sorriso.Si tratta del primo romanzo di Hamilton, primo di una trilogia che continuerò presto a leggere. In un certo senso l’ho apprezzato anche di più della sua space opera, forse perché immaginare un futuro vicino mi ha dato più riferimenti nel presente e rende più semplice l’immedesimazione. I personaggi di Hamilton sono vivi e viene voglia di sapere di più su di loro. Inoltre si tratta di un thriller ambientato nel futuro con sfumature di transumanesimo, in altre parole un technothriller cyberpunk, ma molto contemporaneo, sebbene sia stato pubblicato vent’anni fa e qualche aspetto tecnologico sia leggermente sorpassato. Ma si differenzia da una certa astrusità di altri libri di questo sottogenere di dieci o più anni prima, rendendolo una lettura accessibile a un pubblico più vasto che prescinde anche la stessa fantascienza.Purtroppo il libro non è mai stato tradotto in italiano e la lettura in inglese richiede una buona conoscenza della lingua, vista la ricchezza del linguaggio usato dall’autore e il suo registro elevato. Ma può essere anche un’occasione per migliorare il proprio inglese.Infine l’edizione che ho letto, quella pubblicata in occasione del ventennale del romanzo (ogni copia è numerata e autografata dall’autore), contiene anche una novella precedentemente inedita riportata nella parte iniziale del libro, inserita cronologicamente alla fine della trilogia. Si tratta è un vero e proprio poliziesco, ma ambientato nel futuro e con un finale imprevedibile e politicamente scorretto, che definirei alla Hamilton e che lo fa distinguere da altre storie di questo genere.A novel that reads your mindIn titling this review I have deliberately played with the plot of the book. “Mindstar Rising” in fact has as its protagonist a former military, Greg Mandel, who was implanted with a special gland that allows him to feel the emotions of other people, and in a sense, to read their minds, even if not literally. Mandel is now a private detective who finds himself investigating a plot of global reach focused on the young heir to a billionaire. The story is set in a dystopian near future, a future in which global warming has transformed England into an almost deserted place where seas invaded the coasts and changed their morphology, where oil is over, and people live in a world degraded in a mixture of low and high tech, the second especially is the prerogative of the rich.The setting is picturesque, though I cannot stand post-apocalyptic stories, but the plot revolves around something very different and so this aspect hasn’t had a negative influence on my judgment.Although we are faced with situations very different from those of the usual books by Hamilton, his style is recognizable in the extreme complexity of the plot, the description of uninhibited erotic situations narrated as something natural, his long scenes that keep you glued to the pages of the book, his sought language that forces you to concentrate to the maximum while reading, the ending that can tear a smile.This is the first novel of Hamilton, the first of a trilogy that I will continue to read soon. In a sense, I appreciated it even more than his space operas, perhaps because imagining a near future gave me more references in the present and made it easier to imagine myself in the story. Hamilton’s characters are alive and you just want to know more about them. Also it is a thriller set in the future with shades of transhumanism, in other words a cyberpunk technothriller, but very contemporary, although it was published twenty years ago and some technological aspect is slightly outdated. But it differs from a certain obscurity of other books of this subgenre dated back to ten or more years earlier, making it an accessible read to a wider audience that goes beyond science fiction.Unfortunately, the book has never been translated into my language (Italian) and reading it in English requires a good knowledge of the language, given the richness of the language used by the author and his high register. But it can also be an opportunity to improve your English.Finally, the edition I read, the one published on the twentieth anniversary of the novel (each copy is numbered and signed by the author) also contains a previously unpublished novella in the first part of the book, but chronologically inserted at the end of the trilogy. It is a proper detective story, but set in the future and with an unpredictable and politically incorrect ending, which I would call it à la Hamilton and which makes it very different from other stories of this genre.