We’re diving right away into book five, James S.A. Corey’s Nemesis Games! If you’re interested in joining the read-along, feel free to check out our Goodreads page or follow along on Twitter with @SFFReadAlongs. Also, thanks to Sarah of The Illustrated Page for the banner! The schedule for book five is:
Week 1: Sunday 8th October, Prologue to Ch. 12, hosted by Over The Effing Rainbow
Week 2: Sunday 15th October, Ch. 13 to 25, hosted by There's Always Room For One More
Week 3: Sunday 22nd October, Ch. 26 to 38, hosted by Tethyan Books
Week 4: Sunday 29th October, Ch. 39 to End, hosted by The Illustrated Page
Today we’re discussing up through chapter 12, so beware of spoilers!
1. The story takes a pretty sharp turn from any of the previous sorts of narratives, by dividing up the Roci crew and (finally!) giving us the POVs of Naomi, Alex and Amos, as well as Holden. What do you think of this twist? Are you enjoying a particular POV more than the rest, so far?
I love this twist! I love all their viewpoints, and I don’t think I can choose! This was such a happy surprise. I had assumed we’d never get the crew as viewpoint characters. I can already tell this is going to be one of my favorite books of the series!
As for their separate storylines, it seems like what they aim to do ends up not being what they’re doing. For instance, Amos went to make sure Lydia died peacefully. She did, and now he’s talking to Avasarala about going to see Clarissa. I suspect his meeting with Clarissa is going to lead him into his true adventure. Alex planned to go see his ex-wife. That didn’t pan out, but now he’s into something scary with Bobbie. Naomi went to help her son, but he came to meet her. What’s this really about? Holden thought he was going to watch over ship repairs, but now he’s got a mystery on his hands.
2. Holden, meanwhile, has to tackle the mystery of some disappearing ships, without the rest of his crew. Do you have any theories about the disappearances, and how do you think Holden will handle flying solo on this one?
I don’t think it’s Belter sabotage. My theories are closer to Monica’s, but I don’t think it’s the protomolecule exactly. There was some reason that the gate was closed by the previous owners, after all. What if there is something of the civilization killer still remaining in the gate, and entering it in a certain way or at a certain time gets the ships eaten by it? If it’s something like that, then it might put the breaks on the flow of people to new planets. I think Holden will do okay, but I hope he doesn’t screw up the Rocinante’s relationship with the OPA.
3. Before leaving the Rocinante, Naomi raises the point that it might be time they considered expanding the crew. Do you think she's right?
I think she’s definitely right, but I don’t like it any more than Holden does. I like the crew, and emotionally I don’t feel like they should hire anyone else. Realistically, though, it’s a good idea. It seems like Holden could have put up the postings and started going through resumes while people were on vacation. That’s a lot of work, and he’ll have to do it before they get to the interview stage anyway. It would have helped him with the loneliness.
Other notable points:
--I hadn’t really thought through what the gate meant for the Belter civilization. We saw Belters who wanted to live on a planet on Ilus, so I guess it didn’t occur to me that others might oppose the idea of living down a gravity well. It does seem like these resources may destroy their culture, over time.
--I am loving Amos and Chrisjen’s conversations. They are just hilarious. I hope this is a thing that keeps happening.
--I’m actually pretty happy that Talissa pointed out how selfish Alex’s desire for closure was. He chose to leave her--I think he’s already got about as much closure as he’s going to get.