This review will be one of the more spoiler-y reviews out there. It’s about book seven in a series so it’s hard not to talk about things that have happened. That said, here we go:
One of my favorite aspects of the Expanse series is the wonderful titles of each novel and trying to figure out how it relates to the book. You see, each book is title something very grandiose and magnificent from somewhere in myth, legend, literature, or religion.
Book one is Leviathan Wakes, a book about an alien substance that shows up and threatens humanity.
Book two is Caliban’s War and I had to look up the reference if I’m honest. Caliban is the deformed half-human son of Sycorax from Shakespeare’s The Tempest; another spot on title thanks to the protomolecule.
Book three is Abbadon’s Gate, Abbadon is both the Destroyer and the Angel of the Abyss, guarding a version of Hell and if book seven is any indication (not to mention hints throughout the series), humanity is about to experience something terrible. What an outstanding name for a book about a portal opening to new worlds.
Book four is Cibola Burn. This was another reference I had to learn. Cibola is a lost city of gold, similar to the better known El Dorado. Now, if I’d been paying better attention to National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets, I’d have already known that. Another fun take on a myth for the Expanse as Cibola Burn follows the Rocinante on a quest to a new world.
Book five is Nemesis Games. Named for “the goddess of indignation against and retribution for” Nemesis Games may be the best book of the series thus far. It brought us back to our solar system and we watched as the series Nemesis took retribution for past discretions. It turned everything upside down in the best possible way; not an easy feat for a middle of the series book.
Books six is Babylon’s Ashes. We watch as mankind’s original home struggles to survive, let alone rebuild.
Now we are here, Persepolis Rising, the creation of a magnificent empire, the largest known to mankind. An empire that assimilates rather than conquering and subjugation. This book also reintroduces the bigger picture to the series. The alien civilization that sent the protomolecule and built the rings was destroyed by something else and it may be here in Sol. This is supposed to be a nine book series so with just two left and I can’t wait. Given the fun we’ve had with titles, I’m not confident that Persepolis will leave the enduring mark on humanity it intends.