Penguin presents the unabridged downloadable audiobook edition of Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel. Read by William Hope, Christopher Ragland, Andy Secombe, Charlie Anson, Eric Meyers, Laurel Lefkow, Liza Ross, William Hope, Adna Sablyich and Katharine Mangold.
Deadwood, USA. A girl sneaks out just before dark to ride her new bike. Suddenly the ground disappears beneath her. Waking up at the bottom of a deep pit, she sees an emergency rescue team above her. The people looking down see something far stranger....
We always look forward. We never look back.
That girl grows up to be Dr. Rose Franklin, a brilliant scientist and the leading world expert on what she discovered. An enormous, ornate hand made of an exceptionally rare metal which predates all human civilisation on the continent.
But this thing...it's different. It challenges us. It rewrites history.
An object whose origins and purpose are perhaps the greatest mystery humanity has ever faced. Solving the secret of where it came from - and how many more parts may be out there - could change life as we know it.
It dares us to question what we know about ourselves.
But what if we were meant to find it? And what happens when this vast, global puzzle is complete?
"Reminiscent of The Martian and World War Z, this is a luminous conspiracy yarn that shoots for (and lands among) the stars." (Pierce Brown, author of Red Rising)
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One of the best audio books I've ever listened to
No, at least not in this series. It was a very interesting experiment, I am glad they did it, and I hope other teams try similar things. But the story just isn't good enough in my opinion.
Most interesting: Very much the narration. It feels like a production in a way that World War Z didn't quite (to cite a book this one is often compared with).
Least interesting: The central idea. It's not giving too much away to say it features the discovery of a giant alien robot that kicks botty. It starts off interesting, but it doesn't really go anywhere with the idea. Then the story turns into a political thriller and eventually ends.
There are some plot twists that reignite interest, including one that made me think, "No, you just can't do that to someone!" The science is credible, and the implications are generally well explored.
But at the end of the day it's just an X-Filesish story about a big robot. And add me to the list of people who didn't like the ending - it was the opposite of surprising.
As the story is told mainly in the form of interviews, I cannot imagine reading it as a straight book, although I believe it exists in that form.
Despite its success in this area, I have given 4 stars rather than five because the Nameless Bloke kept doing that tiresome thing a certain kind of cliched character does in thrillers - pretending to search for a euphemism. "That would be... unfortunate." Okay, so maybe it's the story's fault rather than the reader, but with the sort of power he wields he could surely arrange to have the dialogue... refined.
Well the "1" at the end of the title suggests it's the first book of a series, and it ends on an unresolved note. However, as I was tempted to give up on it, I am happy to have finished it.
I find it odd to consider what stood out in my mind. There's a scene in which an angry character is trying to make a serious point, but he's having trouble doing this because he can't remember the correct term for an inhabitant of Iceland - is it Icelander? Icelandic? It's exactly the sort of frustrating thing that happens in real life but rarely in fiction. In an otherwise very earnest work, it struck me as very funny.
- Dr Caterpillar