The Critique Circle Public Library

The Collapsing Empire
by John Scalzi
Amazon rating
Critique Circle rating 
PublisherTor Books
Release Date2017-03-21 (added to CC 28 Mar)
Amazon Sales Rank618

“John Scalzi is the most entertaining, accessible writer working in SF today.” ?Joe Hill, author of The Fireman

Our universe is ruled by physics. Faster than light travel is impossible?until the discovery of The Flow, an extradimensional field available at certain points in space-time, which can take us to other planets around other stars.

Riding The Flow, humanity spreads to innumerable other worlds. Earth is forgotten. A new empire arises, the Interdependency, based on the doctrine that no one human outpost can survive without the others. It’s a hedge against interstellar war?and, for the empire’s rulers, a system of control.

The Flow is eternal?but it’s not static. Just as a river changes course, The Flow changes as well. In rare cases, entire worlds have been cut off from the rest of humanity. When it’s discovered that the entire Flow is moving, possibly separating all human worlds from one another forever, three individuals?a scientist, a starship captain, and the emperox of the Interdependency?must race against time to discover what, if anything, can be salvaged from an interstellar empire on the brink of collapse.

"Fans of Game of Thrones and Dune will enjoy this bawdy, brutal, and brilliant political adventure" ?Booklist on The Collapsing Empire

“Scalzi is one of the slickest writers that SF has ever produced.” ?The Wall Street Journal on The Human Division

"Political plotting, plenty of snark, puzzle-solving, and a healthy dose of action...Scalzi continues to be almost insufferably good at his brand of fun but think-y sci-fi adventure." ?Kirkus Reviews


Member Reviews
(28 Mar)
I've enjoyed reading Scalzi ever since Old Man's War. This latest work does not disappoint.
It is obviously the first book in a new series, and has a very interesting premise.
It takes place more than a thousand years from now and while he pays tribute to the current knowledge that won't allow for faster-than-light travel, he invents "the flow" which is a series of alternative universe streams that allow spacecraft to cross vast distances in a short time.
While at first glance, it seems to follow the old space-opera themes of a dynastic empire ruled by "royals", their supporting military, and the unwashed masses, it quickly evolves into something quite recognizable.
The novel involves several memorable characters and alternates between three different plot lines. All three lines come together and are resolved in the last few chapters.
I'm already looking forward to the next book in the series.
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