Book Two of the Forerunner Saga
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A long time ago, I was a living, breathing human being. I went mad. I served my enemies. They became my only friends.
Since then, I've traveled back and forth across this galaxy, and out to the spaces between galaxies--a greater reach than any human before me.
You have asked me to tell you about that time. Since you are the last true Reclaimer, I must obey. Are you recording? Good. Because my memory is failing rapidly. I doubt I'll be able to finish the story.
Once, on my birth-world, a world I knew as Erde-Tyrene, and which now is called Earth, my name was Chakas...
In the wake of apparent self-destruction of the Forerunner empire, two humans--Chakas and Riser--are like flotsam washed up on very strange shores indeed.
Captured by the Master Builder, misplaced during a furious battle in space, they now find themselves on an inverted world where horizons rise into the sky, and where humans of all kinds are trapped in a perilous cycle of horror and neglect. For they have become both research animals and strategic pawns in a cosmic game whose madness knows no end--a game of ancient vengeance between the powers who seeded the galaxy with life, and the Forerunners who expect to inherit their sacred Mantle of duty to all living things.
In the company of a young girl and an old man, Chakas begins an epic journey across a lost and damaged Halo in search of a way home, an explanation for the warrior spirits rising up within, and for the Librarian's tampering with human destiny.
This journey will take them into the Palace of Pain, the domain of a powerful and monstrous intelligence who claims to be the Last Precursor, and who now has control of both this Halo and the fate of Forerunners and Humans alike.
Called the Captive by Forerunners, and the Primordial by ancient human warriors, this intelligence has taken charge of, and retasked, the Master Builder's cruel researches into the Flood--which it may have itself unleashed on the galaxy more than ten thousand years before.
It is absolutely a wonderful book I cant wait for book three
The book is good because you learn about the halo universe, but it takes the author far too long to get there. He must have thought that he made the greatest characters ever (he didn't), because the first half of the book is just them wandering around aimlessly. These wanderings could be easily explained in less than a paragraph, and I'm being completely serious.
The difficult to follow writing style from cryptum is also back in full force, so there is always some amount of confusion. If you're looking for another book that explains the intricacies of forerunner culture or something similar you won't find it here, though in parts the book effectively summarizes confusing points from the last novel or just outright tells you what has been going on to clear things up. Depending on how much you care about halo, you might want to consider skipping the entire first half of the novel, you won't really miss anyone, but the last half of the novel does reveal quite a bit about the direct of the franchise and so forth. I really hope the author gets it together with the last book, because this was a total snoozer for most of my time with it.
Greg bear I have come to find is a lovely and creative author the first book is good and the second is peeking into even more of my curiosity! I can't seem to put this down. Once I'm done with this one I know I'll be wanting the third right away!