The Freeze-Frame Revolution (Sunflower Cycle) - Download Free Ebook Now
Hot Best Seller

The Freeze-Frame Revolution (Sunflower Cycle)

Availability: Ready to download

She believed in the mission with all her heart. But that was sixty million years ago. How do you stage a mutiny when you're only awake one day in a million? How do you conspire when your tiny handful of potential allies changes with each shift? How do you engage an enemy that never sleeps, that sees through your eyes and hears through your ears and relentlessly, honestly, on She believed in the mission with all her heart. But that was sixty million years ago. How do you stage a mutiny when you're only awake one day in a million? How do you conspire when your tiny handful of potential allies changes with each shift? How do you engage an enemy that never sleeps, that sees through your eyes and hears through your ears and relentlessly, honestly, only wants what best for you? Sunday Ahzmundin is about to find out. Note from the publisher: The red letters in the print edition (and highlighted letters in the e-book) indicate special bonus content from the author.


Compare

She believed in the mission with all her heart. But that was sixty million years ago. How do you stage a mutiny when you're only awake one day in a million? How do you conspire when your tiny handful of potential allies changes with each shift? How do you engage an enemy that never sleeps, that sees through your eyes and hears through your ears and relentlessly, honestly, on She believed in the mission with all her heart. But that was sixty million years ago. How do you stage a mutiny when you're only awake one day in a million? How do you conspire when your tiny handful of potential allies changes with each shift? How do you engage an enemy that never sleeps, that sees through your eyes and hears through your ears and relentlessly, honestly, only wants what best for you? Sunday Ahzmundin is about to find out. Note from the publisher: The red letters in the print edition (and highlighted letters in the e-book) indicate special bonus content from the author.

30 review for The Freeze-Frame Revolution (Sunflower Cycle)

  1. 5 out of 5

    Claudia

    First of all, this novella is not meant to be read on its own. Could be regarded as a standalone, but you’ll feel like something is missing. And that’s because it’s part of a series of stories, entitled the Sunflower cycle, which includes three more short ones (so far).* Publication order is: The Island (2009) - Winner of Hugo Award for Best Novelette in 2010 -, Hotshot (2014), Giants (2014) and The Freeze-Frame Revolution (June 2018). Now, after reading all, my advice is they are to be read in First of all, this novella is not meant to be read on its own. Could be regarded as a standalone, but you’ll feel like something is missing. And that’s because it’s part of a series of stories, entitled the Sunflower cycle, which includes three more short ones (so far).* Publication order is: The Island (2009) - Winner of Hugo Award for Best Novelette in 2010 -, Hotshot (2014), Giants (2014) and The Freeze-Frame Revolution (June 2018). Now, after reading all, my advice is they are to be read in this order: Hotshot, The Freeze-Frame Revolution , The Island, Giants. It will not answer all your questions, but it will bring some light into this universe and its perpetual travelers. Secondly, Peter Watts is not the usual sci-fi writer; he does not construct friendly or appealing worlds, nor does he stage culminating battles. Usual aliens are not part of this work. He weaves his stories around characters in, the least said, out of the ordinary situations. His stories are not meant to make the reader have an easy time; they are meant to rise questions, ponder things and try to find answers which are not within reach most of the time. Reading all these four stories, you’ll get a better idea about this universe and it will leave wanting more of it. And looks like more will come. This novella here is no exception. Sunday Ahzmundin was raised specifically for this mission, which is to build a web of wormholes gates throughout space, thus making interstellar travel more accessible. Eriophora (perfect name for what she does) is a gate-building relativistic ship, built inside an asteroid and controlled by an unusual AI, the Chimp. Not much is happening; it’s the immensity of the scale and the apparent impossibility of the task which our characters are struggling to overcome. How do you plan a mutiny when you are awake just a few days every few thousands of years, at best? And then, there is a big chance when awake not to meet the same people you schemed with. Therefore, if you like hard sci-fi, a scope as large as the universe, a time scale of billions of years, characters’ psychology and myriad of questions unanswered, you’re in for a treat. I, for one, am looking forward for more stories in this universe. * all three available on the author’ site: http://www.rifters.com/real/shorts.htm >>> ARC received thanks to Tachyon Publications via NetGalley <<<

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bradley

    This is some classy hard-hard SF. :) Black hole/worm hole drive using new and real theories? Hell yeah. But beyond that, I love the whole idea of short periods of wakefulness during a single trip that takes 65 million years. Add a rebellion against IBM... I mean HAL... I mean CHIMP, without expecting anything to go quite the way that 2001 went, or even remotely like it, and we've got a really fascinating story. Watts knows how to build really fascinating locations and situations... maybe better th This is some classy hard-hard SF. :) Black hole/worm hole drive using new and real theories? Hell yeah. But beyond that, I love the whole idea of short periods of wakefulness during a single trip that takes 65 million years. Add a rebellion against IBM... I mean HAL... I mean CHIMP, without expecting anything to go quite the way that 2001 went, or even remotely like it, and we've got a really fascinating story. Watts knows how to build really fascinating locations and situations... maybe better than almost any other writer. He never rests on a single awesome idea but adds to it and introduces even more interesting wrinkles such as watching an AI dance, or truly alien intelligences, or maybe just freaking out because the rest of humanity must necessarily be dead during the scope of your mission. But add a complicated revolution among sleepers using old D&D manuals? Adding jarring notes during a musical composition? Oh yeah, the devil is in the details. :) I'm enjoying this novel(la according to the author) through Netgalley as an ARC, but this wonderful reviewer here: Claudia's Review has pointed out that this is not a standalone story. She's even provided a link to the author's website for the other stories (free to download) as well as the suggested reading order. Thank you! I might be reading out of order, but I don't mind it all that much. Watts is a thinking man's hard-SF writer. I expect to be at least a little challenged and delighted. As anyone who has read Blindsight knows. :)

  3. 4 out of 5

    Gary

    9 out of 10 at: https://1000yearplan.com/2018/05/25/t... For sixty-five million years, the crew of the starship Eriophora has been building gates to facilitate faster space travel for human expansion. The ship is ruled by Chimp, a “dumb” AI built with a lower synapse count to keep it at relatively human-level intelligence, and every few thousand or million or so years a build crew is selected and awakened from among its 30,000-plus population to assist in the logistics of gate construction. Sunda 9 out of 10 at: https://1000yearplan.com/2018/05/25/t... For sixty-five million years, the crew of the starship Eriophora has been building gates to facilitate faster space travel for human expansion. The ship is ruled by Chimp, a “dumb” AI built with a lower synapse count to keep it at relatively human-level intelligence, and every few thousand or million or so years a build crew is selected and awakened from among its 30,000-plus population to assist in the logistics of gate construction. Sunday Ahzmundin, the protagonist and narrator of Peter Watts’ new novella “The Freeze-Frame Revolution”, is Chimp’s favorite, and finds herself awakened more often than the average crewperson. She has come to see Chimp as a friend, has gotten to know more people from more of the various “tribes” that constitute the milieu of life on a ship whose mission will likely stretch as far as time itself. She’s also been around enough to see the seeds of mutiny grow, as people begin to question whether Chimp – whose capacity to rule over their lives is near-absolute – can even be trusted, and whether it really is as “dumb” as the mission’s progenitors claimed. But how can anyone stage a coup against an entity that knows where they are and what they are doing at all times, when they don’t even know who or how many of their allies will be awake at the same time, at intervals stretching several millennia or more? The mordant tone of Sunday’s narration attests to a kind of casual acceptance of the crew’s eventual fate; for the first few dozen million years, most crewpersons held out hope that they would be recalled home, or that they would be allowed to retire and settle down on an earth-like planet somewhere – at this point it seems clear that they won’t stop building gates until the heat death of the universe. When we first meet Sunday, she is relating how she used to play a little mental game with herself, calculating what point in Earth’s history they would be if they were moving backward in time rather than forward. She gives up around the time Australopithecus thrived in Eastern Africa. Had her morbid exercise in hypothetical time travel continued, the point at which her story begins would land Eriophora at the end of the Mesozoic Era, when a mass extinction event wiped out the dinosaurs. In all that time they have only covered a fraction of the expanse of the Milky Way, and the only indication they have of any sentient life – much less human life – still existing in the universe outside of themselves is the occasional “gremlin” that pokes through a newly-built gate to take a shot at them. The ratio of human years to mission years creates the kind of psychological imbalance that makes the desire for insurrection both understandable and inevitable – the most commonly utilized crew members are awake for little more than a decade or two while eons pass them by. Add to this the fact that the terms they use to (accurately) describe the conditions that define their existence are inherently dehumanizing: they were “programmed” for the mission from birth, crewpersons are “deprecated” when their skills are no longer considered useful, their coldsleep pods are called “coffins” and are stored in “crypts”. Their lives – spent mostly in a state of near-death – are reduced to their functionality, with Chimp as the sole arbiter of their value, which is measured only by their usefulness to the mission. The most striking thing about the scope of “The Freeze-Frame Revolution” is the way it makes the scale of the universe and the wonder of discovery feel like more of a prison than a liberating experience. Watts falls within the lineage of classic hard SF writers who can make far-future science magic seem tangible, but his true gift lies in how personable he makes it feel. Heavy themes like alienation, the value of existence, and the nature of consciousness are woven into the brisk narrative with humor and pathos. Watts may be too smart to let a big idea pass by without picking it to pieces, but above all, “The Freeze-Frame Revolution” is fun to read. Many thanks to Edelweiss and Tachyon Publications for the opportunity to read this ARC.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Evelina | AvalinahsBooks

    GRAB IT! NOW! I just can't begin to tell you how much I loved this book. And I know for a fact I will be reading it again, and perhaps soon. There are just so many reasons why I could recommend it to you! It’s a book for the true scifi fan that manages to be refreshing and new, at the same time retaining all the benefits of being basically hard scifi. It also raises tough questions about natural versus artificial intelligence and their relationships. Which is the true, the real one? Is the ot GRAB IT! NOW! I just can't begin to tell you how much I loved this book. And I know for a fact I will be reading it again, and perhaps soon. There are just so many reasons why I could recommend it to you! It’s a book for the true scifi fan that manages to be refreshing and new, at the same time retaining all the benefits of being basically hard scifi. It also raises tough questions about natural versus artificial intelligence and their relationships. Which is the true, the real one? Is the other one just a sequence of pre-planned actions? Or does it actually have a mind? Perhaps even a soul? Is it living? Come and read the rest of the reasons why I loved this book in my full review on my blog here. I thank Tachyon Publications for giving me a free copy of the book in exchange to my honest opinion. Receiving the book for free does not affect my opinion. Read Post On My Blog | My Bookstagram | Bookish Twitter

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nikki "The Crazie Betty" V.

    4.5 rounded up to 5 (Rating is for the entire Sunflower Cycle series so far) I’ve held off reviewing this for some time now. Once I finished reading it, I just couldn’t fully wrap my head around what I had just read. In attempting to understand the story better, I went and looked at some other reviews of people who enjoyed the story to hopefully gather some details I may have missed. I’m so glad I did that because I found this great review by Claudia - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show..., wh 4.5 rounded up to 5 (Rating is for the entire Sunflower Cycle series so far) I’ve held off reviewing this for some time now. Once I finished reading it, I just couldn’t fully wrap my head around what I had just read. In attempting to understand the story better, I went and looked at some other reviews of people who enjoyed the story to hopefully gather some details I may have missed. I’m so glad I did that because I found this great review by Claudia - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show..., where she explains this is part of a larger set of stories called the Sunflower Cycle. Turned out there were 3 other stories in that world and they all kind of go together. Based on Claudia’s recommendation, I went and read the other 3, in the order she advised (Hotshot, The Freeze-Frame Revolution, The Island, and Giants), to get a better sense of the story and the world as a whole that Peter Watts created. The Freeze-Frame Revolution is essentially about a seriously long-term revolution going on aboard the spaceship, Eriophora. The job of the crew, also known as spores, and the on-board AI, whom everyone refers to as “Chimp”, is to build a web of wormholesque gates throughought space in a spiral moving outwards from Earth and out into the great beyond of unknown space. This way humans can hopefully succeed at interstellar travel and find another home as Earth’s resources are greatly depleted and humanity will not survive if they don’t find another planet. At this point in the Sunflower Cycle story arch, they have been travelling for essentially millions of years as they jump through space. Every spore onboard has been raised specifically for this mission, and because they need to be alive in case anything happens, the onboard AI runs the day-to-day of the ship, and each spore is only awake for about a week at a time out of a thousand years. Some on the ship are starting to question the mission, as well as the intentions of the AI. Thus, we have mutiny aboard the ship as the people decide they want to overthrow the onboard AI. But staging a coup is a little difficult when you’re only awake for a week out of a thousand years at a time, and typically not awake with the same people. Musical scores and D&D manuals assist the main character, Sunday, and her fellow friends and crewmates as they plan a coup a millennia in the making. I’m so glad that I went and read the other 3 stories before deciding on a final rating and review for this book. Peter Watts has created an exceptionally strange, surreal, but wholly sci-fi world that totally drew me in and had me wanting more. If you decide to go into this adventure know you will never get all your questions answered, and some things will never be fully explained. He also doesn’t write easy to read sci-fi. If you like your sci-fi to be well explained and fluid, you’re looking in the wrong corner. If you like hard-core sci-fi on a massive scale with lots of psychology and character-centered plot, you need this, and the other 3 companion stories available for free on the author’s website: http://www.rifters.com/real/author.htm. I’ve already started blog stalking Peter Watts to add more of his stories to my Kindle. Received via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    11811 (Eleven)

    Watts is the only hard sci-fi author I’ve found so far whose writing is so dark it’s practically black. I actually stumbled on him somehow somehow through the horror community. Reading Blindsight was like having a religious experience. Freeze-Frame was just as enjoyable and probably more accessible due to the novella-ish length. I imagine Peter Watts isn’t for everybody. For people with a simultaneous interest in sci-fi and horror (or dark fiction,) he’s worth a look. If there are any other auth Watts is the only hard sci-fi author I’ve found so far whose writing is so dark it’s practically black. I actually stumbled on him somehow somehow through the horror community. Reading Blindsight was like having a religious experience. Freeze-Frame was just as enjoyable and probably more accessible due to the novella-ish length. I imagine Peter Watts isn’t for everybody. For people with a simultaneous interest in sci-fi and horror (or dark fiction,) he’s worth a look. If there are any other authors to compare him to, I haven’t found them yet. 4+ stars. Netgalley hooked me with this kick-ass ARC free of charge. All I had to do was write an honest review in return. Not a bad deal. Thanks, Netgalley. You’re alright.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    I really wanted to like The Freeze-Frame Revolution more than I actually did, but in the end it was just too far into hard sci-fi territory for me. The concept is clever -- a ship filled with 30 000 or so crew members is on a long-term mission to build wormhole bridges throughout the universe. And by long-term, I'm not kidding! We're talking 65 million years (so far!) here. Each crew member is kept in deep freeze most of the time, with brief few-day periods of being thawed to assist the ship's A I really wanted to like The Freeze-Frame Revolution more than I actually did, but in the end it was just too far into hard sci-fi territory for me. The concept is clever -- a ship filled with 30 000 or so crew members is on a long-term mission to build wormhole bridges throughout the universe. And by long-term, I'm not kidding! We're talking 65 million years (so far!) here. Each crew member is kept in deep freeze most of the time, with brief few-day periods of being thawed to assist the ship's AI with more complicated builds. Which crew members are thawed each time varies, resulting in icy slumbers lasting hundreds or thousands of years at a time. Except not everything is going as smoothly as the crew assumes. And how do you get to the bottom of the truth when you're only awake for a few days at a time, and the people you're awake with are constantly changing? If you're a fan of hard sci-fi, then this book might appeal to you more than it did me. I didn't realize until I'd finished that this novella is part of a series, but I'm not sure if reading the other parts would have helped this to make more sense to me -- it took me a long time to figure out what the heck was going on, and even once I did, I felt very bogged down by all the tech description. Thank you to NetGalley and Tachyon Publications for providing me with a free electronic ARC of this book.

  8. 4 out of 5

    The Captain

    Ahoy there me mateys! I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings . . . This book was a bit of a stretch for me given that it is more hard sci-fi and physics is not me friend. At all. But I have always heard wonderful things about this author and the premise was too awesome not to give it a shot. And I be very glad I did. So basically this story is told from the perspective of Sunday Ahzmundin. She is a human crew member aboard a ship n Ahoy there me mateys! I received this sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings . . . This book was a bit of a stretch for me given that it is more hard sci-fi and physics is not me friend. At all. But I have always heard wonderful things about this author and the premise was too awesome not to give it a shot. And I be very glad I did. So basically this story is told from the perspective of Sunday Ahzmundin. She is a human crew member aboard a ship named the Eriophora which is on the mission to create wormhole gates across the universe. The crew expected their task to end and to be called back to rejoin the rest of humanity. Except they are still onboard over 60 million years later. So what is really going on? AI runs this ship and at the heart of the story is the relationship between Sunday and the AI who they call Chimp. Ye see the crew is only taken out of stasis when the AI thinks they are necessary to the mission. This usually is a handful of days at a time every 10,000 years or so. And of course there is a rotation so only a small handful of anywhere from 1 to 15 get thawed out at a time. Some of the humans want to revolt against the AI and the mission given the circumstances. Should Sunday join them? And if so how can a hostile takeover succeed under the conditions imposed by Chimp? I absolutely adored this (longer) novella. I thought the premise, writing, characters, and ship were awesome. Sunday's inner conflict was fascinating as was her reasons behind the choices she makes. I gobbled this up and was completely engrossed. The only flaw was that the ending happened and I just don't get it. Despite multiple readings. Those couple pages confused the heck out of me. But I thought that perhaps I just missed some crucial point. Well perhaps I did. Side note: Claudia @ goodreads' review (which is excellent) did explain just a wee bit. As she says: "First of all, this novella is not meant to be read on its own. Could be regarded as a standalone, but you’ll feel like something is missing. And that’s because it’s part of a series of stories, entitled the Sunflowercycle, which includes three more short ones (so far).* Publication order is: The Island (2009) - Winner of Hugo Award for Best Novelette in 2010, Hotshot (2014), Giants (2014) and The Freeze-Frame Revolution (June 2018). Now, after reading all, my advice is they are to be read in this order: Hotshot, The Freeze-Frame Revolution, The Island, Giants. It will not answer all your questions, but it will bring some light into this universe and its perpetual travelers . . . * all three available on the author’[s] site: http://www.rifters.com/real/shorts.htm" So while the crazy ending hurt me brain and made me feel like I was missing something, I loved the story and circumstances enough to go back and read the other stories. I even think I will follow Claudia's readin' order. So seriously even if physics intimidates yer noggin', do give this story a chance. I certainly don't regret a thing! So lastly . . . Thank you Tachyon Publications! Check out me other reviews at https://thecaptainsquartersblog.wordp...

  9. 5 out of 5

    Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)

    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 4.5* I had been super curious about this book since I first read its synopsis on Netgalley. But then I was kind of afraid that it might be a bit too "science-y" for my brain to handle. I needn't have worried, though! I decided to go for it and request after reading Evelina's review because she basically abated my fears while making me even more excited for the book. What I'm saying is, if You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 4.5* I had been super curious about this book since I first read its synopsis on Netgalley. But then I was kind of afraid that it might be a bit too "science-y" for my brain to handle. I needn't have worried, though! I decided to go for it and request after reading Evelina's review because she basically abated my fears while making me even more excited for the book. What I'm saying is, if you're on the fence, check out her review! And now, I will tell you why I loved it! First, the concept is incredible, and the book delivers. It's hard to even wrap one's head around the thought of being alive in space for millions of years, really. But in a good way, because it's so very thought provoking. It made me think about time in a whole new way, and of course had me questioning whether I could ever do the things that Sunday's had to do. In addition, it's full of action and adventure, and contains a lot of really diverse and well fleshed out characters. The fact that this comes in at under 200 pages makes it an even more impressive feat, since I genuinely cared about the fates of not just the main character, but side characters as well. And, thanks to The Captain's review , I found out that there are more stories set in this world! Of which I shall be devouring immediately, obviously. The only problem I'd had really is that I wanted more of this world and well... problem solved! Bottom Line: If you love a sci-fi that makes you really think, but is also full of action, this is one you won't want to miss!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Steven Shaviro

    This new novella by Peter Watts is part of a series of stories he has been writing, on and off, for some time now. The series seems to be called Sunflowers. The other stories to date (Hotshot, The Island, and Giants) are available for free download from the author's website: . The basic idea is this: a group of human beings live and work on a spaceship that is circling the galaxy, at a substantial fraction of light speed, in order to create wormholes - so that future spaceships from Earth will be This new novella by Peter Watts is part of a series of stories he has been writing, on and off, for some time now. The series seems to be called Sunflowers. The other stories to date (Hotshot, The Island, and Giants) are available for free download from the author's website: . The basic idea is this: a group of human beings live and work on a spaceship that is circling the galaxy, at a substantial fraction of light speed, in order to create wormholes - so that future spaceships from Earth will be able to move from star system to star system quickly and easily. The thousands of people on the ship spend most of their time in cryogenic suspension, without aging, as the ship takes millions of years to traverse the galaxy. An onboard artificial intelligence runs things, and only awakens a few of the human beings or brief periods when it encounters situations that are too difficult for it to deal with by itself (mostly when they actually need to install a wormhole). It quickly becomes absurd: the narrator, Sunny, has only had a few years in toto alive, awake, and ageing, while the ship as a whole has been traveling for something like 55 million years. Nobody knows what has happened on Earth in that vast stretch of time, nor even whether human beings (or their evolutionarily changed descendents) still exist. Each story explores a different aspect of this dilemma. The Freeze Frame Revolution deals with the relations between the crew and the AI (which they call The Chimp, because of its supposedly limited intelligence - which has been deliberately limited so that it will not come off as superior to the living human beings aboard). Crew members have reason to believe that The Chimp has been lying to them and manipulating them, and they want to put a stop to it. This entails plotting to take over the ship from the AI - the conspiracy takes millennia of actual time to unfold, because nobody is awake for more than a week or so at a time, and only a small portion of the crew is awake at any particular time - they need to send messages to one another which endure over the long hibernation period, and which the AI is unable to read (or even to be aware of the existence of). It is difficult, but they manage to do it -up to a point. The novella is a somber one, because it deals with a situation in which ostensibly free people do not actually have much of a choice, or much room to maneuver, and where the challenge of dealing with the essentially nonhuman intelligence like the AI is a difficult and perhaps impossible one. The book, like all of Watts' fiction, is intense, intellectually intriguing, and very skeptical about long-range human prospects.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Xavi

    Un universo excepcional. El mejor Watts ha vuelto https://dreamsofelvex.blogspot.com/20...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sad Sunday (Princess Consuela Bananahammock)

    Really? Really? I am the only one who think this book is "meh"? Or Book Gnomes just put a different book into my hands? Author often throws sentences how much time has passed. 50 million years, 7 hundred years, 3 billion years, but ummm, whatever. It was just telling, not showing. And since nothing changed at all with the passing years, I, as a reader, didn't feel the flow of time at all. And Holy Cow, all that billion of years is a long time, SOMETHING important must have happened - malfunctions Really? Really? I am the only one who think this book is "meh"? Or Book Gnomes just put a different book into my hands? Author often throws sentences how much time has passed. 50 million years, 7 hundred years, 3 billion years, but ummm, whatever. It was just telling, not showing. And since nothing changed at all with the passing years, I, as a reader, didn't feel the flow of time at all. And Holy Cow, all that billion of years is a long time, SOMETHING important must have happened - malfunctions, aliens, Squid-Ants with long tails, muffin snow, explosions - just SOMETHING. Also, I didn't like the fact that the idea of humans and humanity wasn't evolved properly. We get a few mentioning that people have inner ears and inner eyes, but that is about it. And I was left alone again, wondering what was happening. Mutations? Gene engineering? What's going on? What about outer anus? Did I miss something? The main character Sunday was always in between, but lacked proper depth, so for me it was hard to decide who she really was. I know that the book falls into the "man VS machine" trope, but I found it lacking - AI Chimp, as mentioned in the book, wasn't that smart, and human struggle to break free wasn't that intense to create a real conflict that would drive the story or be engaging or relatable. Concept sounds wonderful, but how it was executed left me "meh'ing" all around. Sorry, not my cuppa of tee.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Luke Burrage

    Full review on my podcast, SFBRP episode #370. Also read the other short stories with the same characters in the same world, in this order: Hotshot The Freeze-Frame Revolution The Island Giants The short stories are available to download/read on the author's website: http://www.rifters.com/real/shorts.htm

  14. 5 out of 5

    erforscherin

    I wanted to like this novella a lot more than I actually did. Years ago when I first discovered Starfish, Watts’ writing felt like a revelation: Here was someone who could do hard science fiction right, who had done some hard digging into the scientific literature, thought a while, and come up with a well-reasoned “what if” near-future scenario. A tremendously bleak future, yes, but full of detail: it was never hard to imagine how that world arose from our present, what it would look like, what t I wanted to like this novella a lot more than I actually did. Years ago when I first discovered Starfish, Watts’ writing felt like a revelation: Here was someone who could do hard science fiction right, who had done some hard digging into the scientific literature, thought a while, and come up with a well-reasoned “what if” near-future scenario. A tremendously bleak future, yes, but full of detail: it was never hard to imagine how that world arose from our present, what it would look like, what technology we would have and why it evolved that way. With The Freeze-Frame Revolution, Watts has also clearly put in his research time, but it all feels too abstract to be truly compelling. There are a lot of ideas here, but I spent most of my time feeling very lost, not knowing why things were happening, or else unable to picture even the most basic details of the setting. What is Chimp? An AI, yes, but then what’s with the mention of multiple reincarnations? It seems to be organic one moment, then digital the next. How does the ship fly? Apparently by generating black holes, but I don’t understand any part of that. Why are they building all these gates in the first place? All I got was that humanity was in some kind of trouble, but why would the gates fix it? My biggest question: Why is nobody concerned about the GIANT SPACE MONSTERS coming out of the gates?! If your whole plan was to build these gates to help humanity travel, shouldn’t you... maybe do something about that? Unfortunately the end impression for me was not great: too many confusing details, too little explanation for anything, flat characters... and all throughout a smug “look how clever I am!” tone that I didn’t much care for. I’m not sure now if Starfish was just a momentary bit of brilliance or if Revolution just happened to miss that mark, but either way, I think it may be a while before I return to this author. ----- [Disclaimer: This eARC was provided free by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alexa

    I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. “I’ll kill you if I can.” “I’ll save you, if you let me.” My rating: 4 stars Let me start with this: if you love science fiction that really goes into the science aspect and has long descriptions about objects and happenings in space, and also you love stories about artificial intelligence, this story is for you. Personally, I found myself scrolling through a lot of the heavy science because it really wasn’t working for me, but I I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. “I’ll kill you if I can.” “I’ll save you, if you let me.” My rating: 4 stars Let me start with this: if you love science fiction that really goes into the science aspect and has long descriptions about objects and happenings in space, and also you love stories about artificial intelligence, this story is for you. Personally, I found myself scrolling through a lot of the heavy science because it really wasn’t working for me, but I still managed to enjoy this book immensely. Personally, it was the relationships that really sold this book to me, especially the relationship between the main character and the Chimp. It would be easy to say that the two of them have a close friendship in the book, but of course, it’s much more complicated than that. Read the full review on my blog.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sebastian

    I’ve waited, and waited, and waited, and then I had it. First, pirated copies leaked online, but I kept waiting. Then my pre-order arrived, and still I waited. Then I was at the beach, and I waited some more. You see, reading a new Peter Watts book is like making love to a beautiful woman – it should not be rushed. Should I even be reviewing this? Probably not. I mean, Watts is the writer I want to be. He writes what I would be writing, if I had the chops. All I can do is squee in glee that I ge I’ve waited, and waited, and waited, and then I had it. First, pirated copies leaked online, but I kept waiting. Then my pre-order arrived, and still I waited. Then I was at the beach, and I waited some more. You see, reading a new Peter Watts book is like making love to a beautiful woman – it should not be rushed. Should I even be reviewing this? Probably not. I mean, Watts is the writer I want to be. He writes what I would be writing, if I had the chops. All I can do is squee in glee that I get a new treat. And this short novel is quite the treat; razor sharp writing, science as hard as it can get in the millennium-stepping timeframe, a fiendishly clever plans-within-plans plot, and a bonus puzzle for the readers. The only bad thing about the book is that now I have read it, and so there is no more of it.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Milou

    Note: I received a copy of this novel via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinions on this book. I should start of by stating I don't read a lot of hard-sf based around AI... because I just don't get it. I am an absolute nightmare with anything related to computers, technology, physics... and these type of stories just go way over my head. When I read the synopsis of this book though it immediatly struck me as a fascinating plot. And it was! It was a fascinating Note: I received a copy of this novel via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinions on this book. I should start of by stating I don't read a lot of hard-sf based around AI... because I just don't get it. I am an absolute nightmare with anything related to computers, technology, physics... and these type of stories just go way over my head. When I read the synopsis of this book though it immediatly struck me as a fascinating plot. And it was! It was a fascinating story filled with great ideas. How to successfully run a resistance against an AI while being asleep for thousands of years at the time? Well, via sheet music and D&D manuals of course! I loved this. And there are so many more great ideas inside this novella. Take for example Kaden, who is referred to as 'se' and 'hir'. But a problem I often have with novellas also occurred here... I wasn't satisfied. I wanted to know more about who/what Kaden was for example. I wanted to know more about the mission. I wanted to know more... Now I have since reading this found out this is not really a standalone story, so I may find my answers in other works of the author. This is told from a first-person perspective, and although she is intelligent and snarky, she didn't really stand out for me. But even though I wasn't able to really connect with the MC, the plot did enough to pull me in. There is just the right level of humour in the story to keep the reader entertained but still remain a serious hard-sf story. But what I was afraid of happened... I didn't understand a thing of the amazing plan of the resistance (nor of any of the physics the mission was based on). But even though this all went way over my head, I was never bored or unable to follow the storyline. Overall, this is a fascinating, short novel which I highly recommend for people who are into hard scifi, or people who like a bit of a challenge.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jason

    5 Stars The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts is a highly imaginative far futured space romp that is one enjoyable ride. The concepts covered here are top notch and not hard to follow at all. The sheer time frame covered makes this book a cool read. Peter Watts is one of my favorite authors. A great read.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Amelia

    I didn't think a sci-fi could be so boring. There were too many descriptions and scientific phrases even I, a dedicated sci-fi lover couldn't handle. If I'm to be perfectly honest, I didn't understand 70% of the book. The only parts I remotely understood were the dialogues but the rest was just random gibberish to me - trunk circuitry, twilit grayscale, globular cluster and so on, like what am I even reading? Parts of the "plot" reminded me of Illuminae but it felt flat and like it was just tryin I didn't think a sci-fi could be so boring. There were too many descriptions and scientific phrases even I, a dedicated sci-fi lover couldn't handle. If I'm to be perfectly honest, I didn't understand 70% of the book. The only parts I remotely understood were the dialogues but the rest was just random gibberish to me - trunk circuitry, twilit grayscale, globular cluster and so on, like what am I even reading? Parts of the "plot" reminded me of Illuminae but it felt flat and like it was just trying to copy it without looking like a copy. The rest of the plot was fine I guess, I mean if I was able to understand it maybe I would've like it more. This way I had to guess what was going on. Maybe I'm just too stupid for this book XD Anyways, I didn't like it and I don't plan on reading other parts of this series.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    I’m always amazed at Peter Watts’ ability to incorporate scientific fact with well written plot. Added attraction in this novella was a hidden message! There are also several short stories in this universe I’ll be tracking down.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Christopher Farnsworth

    Every time I read Peter Watts, I find myself looking up words that I had no idea existed. I like to think of myself as a pretty smart guy, and Watts' books blow a hole in that idea every single time. I love them despite this. Or maybe because of it. It is a joy to see someone work at the very top of their game and make it look so effortless. Watts invents whole worlds to support his stories and novels, and they are so well-engineered that they are practically invisible, humming along quietly in Every time I read Peter Watts, I find myself looking up words that I had no idea existed. I like to think of myself as a pretty smart guy, and Watts' books blow a hole in that idea every single time. I love them despite this. Or maybe because of it. It is a joy to see someone work at the very top of their game and make it look so effortless. Watts invents whole worlds to support his stories and novels, and they are so well-engineered that they are practically invisible, humming along quietly in the background. In this novella, a crew member on a billion-year mission deep into the galaxy decides that she wants to quit. But to do that, she'll have to outwit the ship's artificial intelligence in the brief spans when she's awakened from hibernation. It takes decades of planning over centuries of travel, and yet somehow Watts makes it all feel urgent and taut. It's impossible not to root for the characters even though their onboard computer really only wants the best for them (within mission parameters, of course). Though it all, Watts makes the alien seem familiar and leads you to empathize with people stuck centuries in the future. But this is what good fiction does: it explores what it means to be human, even in the strangest and most extreme of circumstances.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie McDaniel

    Peter Watts is one of the hardest of hard SF writers, and one of my favorite authors, and Blindsight is one of my all-time favorite books. This new novella rides the cutting edge of physics and artificial intelligence, in telling the tale of a far-reaching journey into deep time (literally, 66 million years) and what that does to the people who take it. The Eriophora, an asteroid turned spaceship, is bound on a road to infinity--or maybe the heat death of the universe--constructing gate wormhole Peter Watts is one of the hardest of hard SF writers, and one of my favorite authors, and Blindsight is one of my all-time favorite books. This new novella rides the cutting edge of physics and artificial intelligence, in telling the tale of a far-reaching journey into deep time (literally, 66 million years) and what that does to the people who take it. The Eriophora, an asteroid turned spaceship, is bound on a road to infinity--or maybe the heat death of the universe--constructing gate wormholes on an endless circuit spiraling around the galaxy. Sent out from Earth millions of years ago, it is run by an artificial intelligence named Chimp, and staffed by thirty thousand people, the overwhelming majority of whom remain in suspended animation for centuries between builds. Chimp handles most builds itself and only wakes up a few humans at a time, as needed. Our protagonist, Sunday Ahzmundin, is one of those people, awake for a few days every thousand (or thousands, plural) years. This is the quintessential story of rats on an endless treadmill, and what happens when they want to break free. There is no settling on a habitable planet on this trip; Chimp will not halt the mission to let anyone off, and Sunday and her cohorts must go back into their cold sleep if they don't want to die during the hundreds and thousands of years of sublight travel between builds. Needless to say, this state of affairs begins to affect members of the crew, and a revolution starts to ferment. But how can any resistance come to fruition when the mutineers are awake only, as the back cover copy says, "one day in a million?" Peter Watts' books are not easy reads, and this is no exception. They're full of crunchy, chewy, hard SF ideas, rigorous physics, and meditations on, in this tale, the nature of deep time and artificial intelligence. His books demand the reader's full attention and reward more than one pass. (In this case, even more so as there's apparently a hidden message in the text--just look for the periodic red letters. I'm decoding it now.) His work is also very dark--I don't think he could write a light fluffy tale to save his life. This certainly doesn't qualify, and in fact that's the only knock I have on it (though I should be used to Watts' unrelenting bleakness by now). The ending is rather abrupt, as the mutineers strike during the attempt to build a Hub, a central point for the branching of several wormholes. The artificial singularity at the ship's heart, used to generate the micro-sized black holes that then serve as the gate wormholes (see, I told you: physics way over most people's heads), is deliberately sabotaged by the head conspirator, with the immediate result that all hell breaks loose. The newborn black hole rips through the ship itself, breaching many of the asteroid's pocket ecosystems, spewing atmosphere, destroying several thousand "coffins" of sleeping crewmembers, and threatening to tear the Eriophora apart. And...that's it. Sunday is forced back into her crypt, and we don't know who lives or who dies, or if the ship can repair itself. Supposedly there are some companion stories on Watts' website. Normally I would be, shall we say, a wee bit irritated at such an ending? But what came before is so good, so thought-provoking, that I think I can forgive Watts the ending, with perhaps only a bit of side-eye. Certainly the last few pages hint at, though probably not a happy ending, at least a...continuation? Sunday is talking to someone, a combination reader/character in the story, so maybe the ship didn't tear itself apart. At any rate, this is brilliant science fiction, and well worth your time.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    Full review is here, on my blog. So, I’ll start out by saying that this story has a really unique and fascinating premise. Sunday Ahzmundin is part of a crew of 30,000 people that are flying through the galaxy on their spaceship, the Eriophora. I’m not sure I 100% understood the technology that is involved, but from what I do think I understand a bit, it uses a singularity drive (so, a black hole), and they continuously make ‘gates’ with it, which I believe are used to make wormholes that they tr Full review is here, on my blog. So, I’ll start out by saying that this story has a really unique and fascinating premise. Sunday Ahzmundin is part of a crew of 30,000 people that are flying through the galaxy on their spaceship, the Eriophora. I’m not sure I 100% understood the technology that is involved, but from what I do think I understand a bit, it uses a singularity drive (so, a black hole), and they continuously make ‘gates’ with it, which I believe are used to make wormholes that they travel through. That’s not really important, in the grand scheme of things, but what is important is that out of these 30,000 people, only about 5 or 6 people, usually the same ‘tribe’, but sometimes mixed up a bit, are awake at a time. Everyone else is… well, pretty much dead. Frozen, or… in stasis… but still, mostly dead. The imagery is there. The place they’re stored are called crypts. The vessels in which they are stored are coffins. They’re only woken up once every few thousand years, and even then, only for a few days at a time. So, this crew of people have been out in the universe, travelling on their mission… for 60 million years. But for them, maybe… twenty something conscious years have actually passed. Something they remember from a day ago really happened thousands of years ago. The ship’s AI, an entity called The Chimp, talks to them and helps them through their days, wakes them randomly depending on perceived necessary specialties depending on where they are. A lot of people are starting to… not really trust Chimp though… Some people are starting to want more freedoms… And some are noticing that some shady shit is happening… And so…. space-mutiny! But… well, I mean how do you coordinate something like that when you and your mutineers are only awake one day of every thousand? I was absolutely enthralled by this book. As I said, I’m not certain that I ‘got’ all the intricacies of the science/technology and probably theoretical physics that this ship runs on, but I absolutely loved the premise and the adventure that Sunday and her friends had. I really liked Sunday as a character as well. She’s pretty snarky at times, which I always like in a character. Having her story be in first person, seeing things from her point of view, which I could somewhat relate to as a sometimes-snarky gal who swears a lot… well, even when I didn’t always get it, it didn’t matter. I was never bored with it. I never felt like the really sciencey bits (that didn’t always so much go over my head as smacked me in the forehead a bit) really made this hard to understand or boring. I’m not sure if I can put this more eloquently, lol. You don’t have to be a theoretical physicist to enjoy this story. It’s pretty hard sci-fi which I’m not always a fan of, but I hoped since I liked Blindsight that I’d like this one, and it turns out that I liked this one a lot! It’s also pretty short. Maybe not quite a novella (or maybe just a very long novella), but not as long as I was expecting it to be. Just long enough! I finished it in a couple of hours. Thanks to the author as well as Tachyon Publications via NetGalley for the review copy. :)

  24. 5 out of 5

    Elnahir

    What a wild ride that was. As crude a metaphor as I can give, this ouroboros of a novella deals with humanity and Humanity, the innerworlds and the outerworlds we were bred from and try to populate/save ourselves to. The speed of events, dragged on for centuries, millenia, aeons even, unequivocally demands a perspective on actions which is not intuitive to a human, a creature of passion; yet passion is one of the things at the heart of the rupture in the story. This perspective on actions is not What a wild ride that was. As crude a metaphor as I can give, this ouroboros of a novella deals with humanity and Humanity, the innerworlds and the outerworlds we were bred from and try to populate/save ourselves to. The speed of events, dragged on for centuries, millenia, aeons even, unequivocally demands a perspective on actions which is not intuitive to a human, a creature of passion; yet passion is one of the things at the heart of the rupture in the story. This perspective on actions is not really problematized as much as I suddenly feel the need for - how does a cryogenic sleep lasting a few millenia affect a profoundly human, if even genetically altered organism, for example? - but somehow feels like the negative space of a story, that highlights something else. With the exception of 4-5 short stories, Watts is only present in my mind via Blindsight and Echopraxia. Novellas such as this one, however, are quite effective in opening a new perspective on his thinking. The acknowledgements are such an intrinsic part of his narratives, with the types of conversations he has with professors, close friends, the brief glimpse he offers on how these talks affect his writing, where their impact is to be looked for. I just finished the novella and it feels like it's given me the baton to go on that specific techno-anthropological marathon it paints. Four stars only because it's too short and I want more.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Anna Nesterovich

    I was waiting for this book, but perhaps without the proper enthusiasm. So I didn't read any reviews, blurbs, opinions.... and was completely unaware of any secret messages in the book. And then I opened the book and found a red letter on the very first page. And then another, on the second page. So over the next few minutes, perplexed librarians watched me going through the book with a pen and a piece of paper; then googling "mitochondrial introns just downstream from COX-five" (and coming up e I was waiting for this book, but perhaps without the proper enthusiasm. So I didn't read any reviews, blurbs, opinions.... and was completely unaware of any secret messages in the book. And then I opened the book and found a red letter on the very first page. And then another, on the second page. So over the next few minutes, perplexed librarians watched me going through the book with a pen and a piece of paper; then googling "mitochondrial introns just downstream from COX-five" (and coming up empty-handed :( ). At least I have the link for Hitchhiker, right? I was really expecting a full novel, for some reason, and 186 tiny pages feel more like a novella. I was also expecting that staging "a mutiny when you are only awake one day in a million" would be more complicated. It turned out disappointingly easy (maybe that's why they failed :) ). Nevertheless, I like the book, I like the science in it, I like the questions in it. It's not as dark as some of the other books by Peter Watts, but it's still dark enough for me and a very hard science fiction.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Bart

    Great concept, snappy writing. A rather fresh take on the starship-and-its-humans-controlled-by-an-oppressive-AI. Plus a bit of mystery and suspense. Among other things, a nice metaphor about the non-existence of free will. The only thing that did not fully work was the codes the conspirators used to communicate: too much handwavium there. Based on this, I will check out Blindsight - something I have put off for too long. Visit Weighing A Pig for longer, in-depth speculative fiction reviews.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    The Freeze-Frame Revolution is an epic science fiction novella. Set across the vastness of both universe and time we follow the mutiny of the Eriophora crew against their AI controller Chimp. How do you overcome an omnipresent keeper when you are only awake for a few days per millennia? A keeper who decides if and when you wake up? This is hard sci-fi. Watts does not stop to explain every detail, character, or slang but all the information is there if you are willing to do a little work as a read The Freeze-Frame Revolution is an epic science fiction novella. Set across the vastness of both universe and time we follow the mutiny of the Eriophora crew against their AI controller Chimp. How do you overcome an omnipresent keeper when you are only awake for a few days per millennia? A keeper who decides if and when you wake up? This is hard sci-fi. Watts does not stop to explain every detail, character, or slang but all the information is there if you are willing to do a little work as a reader. It raises questions about liberty and free will, from the carefully selected and trained 'meat' crew to the programmed AI. These are hard questions, and the author is never afraid to make you think. This was a really enjoyable read, I like the mini 'world' he created on the ship, and the character building is fantastic. I will be checking out the other books in Watts Sunflower Cycle series!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Alvaro Zinos-Amaro

    Review forthcoming.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lori L (She Treads Softly)

    The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts is a very highly recommended, dark, hard science fiction novel. "Sixty-six million years, by the old calendar. That’s how long we’ve been on the road." The construction ship Eriophora was built inside an asteroid and is controlled by AI called the Chimp. The crew of the Eriophora, referred to as spores, were all raised specifically to spend their lives building wormhole gates throughout space to make interstellar travel more accessible. They spend most of The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts is a very highly recommended, dark, hard science fiction novel. "Sixty-six million years, by the old calendar. That’s how long we’ve been on the road." The construction ship Eriophora was built inside an asteroid and is controlled by AI called the Chimp. The crew of the Eriophora, referred to as spores, were all raised specifically to spend their lives building wormhole gates throughout space to make interstellar travel more accessible. They spend most of their time in suspended animation and are awake one day in a million. At the onset of their mission they all believed in it completely. Sunday Ahzmundin has a friend, Lian, who is beginning to question their purpose and her role in it. Sunday is also looking for a missing crew member. The problem is that no one is awake for long, the members of the teams awake changes, and the Chimp, who is looking out for what is best for you, sees through your eyes and hears through your ears. Then Sunday begins to uncover secrets and pieces together plans for a mutiny that has been cleverly hidden from the Chimp. This is an exceptional hard science fiction story that is part of a larger collection, The Sunflower cycle, which currently consists of The Island, Hotshot, Giants, and The Freeze-Frame Revolution. (You can go to Watt's Website to read them.) The Freeze-Frame Revolution reminded me of 2001: A Space Odyssey in some ways, especially with the all-knowing and seeing AI, but this isn't a direct comparison by any means. Watts demonstrates that he is an outstanding science fiction author who can create psychologically complex characters and place them in equally unique complicated environment and set it all in a compelling narrative. While it is classified as a novella, The Freeze-Frame Revolution packs the punch of a well written, tightly constructed novel. Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Tachyon Publications. http://www.shetreadssoftly.com/2018/0...

  30. 4 out of 5

    James

    Peter Watts is one of the best writers of science-fiction at work today, and criminally underrated. 'The Freeze-Frame Revolution' is a stand-alone novella set on an AI-run starship circling the galaxy; having launched in our relatively near future, it now finds itself millions of years deeper into time, creating warp gates for a human race that is either long gone or long evolved into something unknowable. That, however, is the least of the crew's problems. Watts's writing is as strong as ever, a Peter Watts is one of the best writers of science-fiction at work today, and criminally underrated. 'The Freeze-Frame Revolution' is a stand-alone novella set on an AI-run starship circling the galaxy; having launched in our relatively near future, it now finds itself millions of years deeper into time, creating warp gates for a human race that is either long gone or long evolved into something unknowable. That, however, is the least of the crew's problems. Watts's writing is as strong as ever, and the blizzard of clever ideas he makes use of are delightfully mind-boggling. His fascination with consciousness (human and otherwise) and its pitfalls is to the forefront. And, oddly enough for those familiar with his work, this sometimes even feels like an optimistic book, inasmuch as the possibilities for positive change are not all shut down by the impassive laws of physics or inevitable self-sabotaging by human nature. Highly recommended.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.