Monday, January 24, 2011

The Rough Guide to Space Opera: Peter F. Hamilton - Blue Tyson

Peter F. Hamilton was a leading proponent of what has been termed New Space Opera, and with his work gave it a healthy boost in the late nineties. In fact, if you want to be a writer of space opera I'd definitely recommend changing your name to Hamilton, and definitely away from Brown.

He has two space opera series, Confederation and Commonwealth, and the latter is the newest. And unfortunately not as interesting and more padded, at least in the latest series. In fact, it might appear like Hamilton is trying to be the first to write a million word space opera novel, or one that will choke a hippopotamus, or both. One interesting thing is that the Confederation novels have been published in omnibus as ebook - if that was a hardback, some people wouldn't be able to lift it!

Hamilton has made it to double figures in both the novel and short form, and his Confederation stories have been collected in A Second Chance at Eden, and this setting was so popular it also had a handbook published.

Fallen Dragon is a standalone, a story of a wastrel son of the filthy rich manipulated by his father, so of course he becomes a soldier. And in these times, mercenaries work for corporations who perform terrorist raids on colonies they have established to try and gain back money they have lost in interstellar travel and colonisation.

The Night's Dawn trilogy has a difference of opinion between those that will use neural enhancements and those that won't, and also people trying to discover why alien civilisations keep wiping themselves out. It is because they have too many dead people who don't want to stay that way. And throw in some superweapons to go along with the sentient spaceships and habitats.

The Commonwealthy initial duology has a band of rebels being hunted by a leading detecti ve while trying to prove or stop an alien infiltration conspiracy by The Starflyer, of which no-one believes. And is of course real.

Candy Buds


Escape Route

Fallen Dragon

The Naked God

The Neutronium Alchemist

Pandora's Star

A Second Chance at Eden [short story]

Judas Unchained

The Night's Dawn Trilogy

The Reality Dysfunction

A Second Chance at Eden [short story]

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