Author: StJohn Piano
Published: 2021-06-07
Datafeed Article 226
This article has been digitally signed by Edgecase Datafeed.
1205 words - 307 lines - 8 pages

[excerpt: page 7]

A hundred and fifty years before, when the parochial disagreements between Earth and Mars had been on the verge of war, the Belt had been a far horizon of tremendous mineral wealth beyond viable economic reach, and the outer planets had been beyond even the most unrealistic corporate dream. Then Solomon Epstein had built his little modified fusion drive, popped it on the back of his three-man yacht, and turned it on. With a good scope, you could still see his ship going at a marginal percentage of the speed of light, heading out into the big empty. The best, longest funeral in the history of mankind. Fortunately, he'd left the plans on his home computer. The Epstein Drive hadn't given humanity the stars, but it had delivered the planets.

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[excerpt: page 19]

Ceres, the port city of the Belt and the outer planets, boasted two hundred fifty kilometers in diameter, tens of thousands of kilometers of tunnels in layer on layer on layer. Spinning it up to 0.3 g had taken the best minds at Tycho Manufacturing half a generation, and they were still pretty smug about it.

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[excerpt: page 20]

"Yeah, well," Miller said. "Say what you will about organized crime, at least it's organized."

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[excerpt: page 119]

It's all fun and games till someone shoots back, Holden thought.

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[excerpt: page 122]

For thirty years, Miller had worked security. Violence and death were familiar companions to him. Men, women. Animals. Kids. Once he'd held a woman's hand while she bled to death. He'd killed two people, could still see them die if he closed his eyes and thought about it. If anyone had asked him, he'd have said there wasn't much left that would shake him.

But he'd never watched a war start before.

[end of excerpt]

[excerpt: pages 224-225]

"I'm just going back to Eros from a conference on Luna," he said. "My proselytizing days are long behind me."

"I didn't think those ever ended," Miller said.

"They don't. Not officially. But after a few decades, you come to a place where you realize that there's really no difference between trying and not trying. I still travel. I still talk to people. Sometimes we talk about Jesus Christ. Sometimes we talk about cooking. If someone is ready to accept Christ, it doesn't take much effort on my part to help them. If they aren't, no amount of hectoring them does any good. So why try?"

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[excerpt: page 225]

Miller looked over at the wide, moon-round face.

"As long as we're human?" he said.

"Some of us believe that we shall all eventually become angels," the missionary said.

"Not the Methodists."

"Even them, eventually," the man said, "but they probably won't go first."

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[excerpt: page 278]

All through training, the instructors had said that you couldn't know what you'd do until the moment came. Killing another human being was hard. Some people couldn't.

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[excerpt: pages 288-289]

He said it with much more bravado than he felt. The truth was he didn't want to die. Even during his time in the navy, the idea of dying in the line of duty had always seemed distant and unreal. His ship would never be destroyed, and if it was, he would make it to the escape shuttle. The universe without him in it didn't make any sense at all. He'd taken risks; he'd seen other people die. Even people he loved. Now, for the first time, his own death was a real thing.

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[excerpt: page 405]

The OPA forced open the doors, taking cover in display-rich rooms, something between lecture halls and manufacturing complexes. Twice, unarmored civilians, still at their work despite the ongoing assault, attacked them when they entered. The OPA boys mowed them down. Part of Miller's mind - the part that was still a cop and not a soldier - twitched at that. They were civilians. Killing them was, at the very least, bad form. But then Julie whispered in the back of his mind, No one here is innocent, and he had to agree.

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[excerpt: page 419]

"So," Holden said. "You figure out how the bug works, and then what?"

"Then everything. Belters who can work outside a ship without wearing a suit. Humans capable of sleeping for hundreds of years at a time flying colony ships to the stars. No longer being bound to the millions of years of evolution inside one atmosphere of pressure at one g, slaves to oxygen and water. We decide what we want to be, and we reprogram ourselves to be that. That's what the protomolecule gives us."

Dresden had stood back up as he'd delivered this speech, his face shining with the zeal of a prophet.

"What we are doing is the best and only hope of humanity's survival. When we go out there, we will be facing gods."

"And if we don't go out?" Fred asked. He sounded thoughtful.

"They've already fired a doomsday weapon at us once," Dresden said.

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[excerpt: page 429]

The air was scented with something smoky that wasn't smoke. A piano and bass dueled lazily with each other while a man's voice lamented in Arabic.

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[excerpt: page 448]

Miller saw the pair of them reflected in the screens, the man pensive, the ghost amused.

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[excerpt: page 465]

It would have been something, wouldn't it? she said. Flying through vacuum without a suit. Sleeping for a hundred years and waking up in the light of a different sun.

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[excerpt: page 496]

Background radiation spoke to Holden in mystic whispers full of dire portents while he waited. Newcomer, it said. Hang around for fourteen billion years or so. See what I've seen. Then all this nonsense won't seem so important.

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[excerpt: page 523]

It was funny, he thought, how the ruins of the past shaped everything that came after. It seemed to work on all levels; one of the truths of the universe.

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[excerpt: page 543]

Her eyes opened. They weren't human anymore - the sclera etched with swirls of red and black, the iris the same luminous blue as the fireflies.

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[excerpt: page 570]

[Extras / Interview]

Leviathan Wakes has two protagonists with very different worldviews, which are often in conflict.Can you describe those views and why you chose that particular conflict?

You know how they say science fiction is about the future you're writing about, but it's also about the time you're writing in? Holden and Miller have got two different views on the ethical use of information. That's very much a current argument. Holden's my holy fool. He's an idealist, a man who faces things with this very optimistic view of humanity. He believes that if you give people all of the information, they'll do the right thing with it, because people are naturally good. Miller is a cynic and a nihilist. He looks at the dissemination of information as a game you play. He doesn't have faith in anyone else's moral judgment. Control of information is how you get people to do what you want, and he doesn't trust anyone else to make that call. I picked those two characters because they're both right, and they're both wrong. By having them in the same story, I can have them talk to each other. And that central disagreement is sort of underneath everything else that happens.

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[excerpt: page 577]

[Extras / Excerpts from Caliban's War]

A thousand alarms would be sounding if an orbital bombardment had begun, but she couldn't help looking up at the sky anyway. No flashes or missile trails. Nothing but Jupiter's bulk.

[end of excerpt]

[start of notes]

Leviathan Wakes is a 2011 book by James S A Corey.

I read a physical copy, in which I marked out excerpts.

I found a starting text here:

[end of notes]