Book Review – Slow Bullets by Alastair Reynolds


Synopsis from NetGalley:

From the author of the Revelation Space series comes an interstellar adventure of war, identity, betrayal, and the preservation of civilization itself.

A vast conflict, one that has encompassed hundreds of worlds and solar systems, appears to be finally at an end. A conscripted soldier is beginning to consider her life after the war and the family she has left behind. But for Scur – and for humanity – peace is not to be.

On the brink of the ceasefire, Scur is captured by a renegade war criminal, and left for dead in the ruins of a bunker. She revives aboard a prisoner transport vessel. Something has gone terribly wrong with the ship.

Passengers – combatants from both sides of the war – are waking up from hibernation far too soon. Their memories, embedded in bullets, are the only links to a world which is no longer recognizable. And Scur will be reacquainted with her old enemy, but with much higher stakes than just her own life.


I received this book on NetGalley and was super excited as Alastair Reynolds has been on my to-read list for so long but I just didn’t know where to start. As this is a novella, I felt it would be the perfect introduction to his writing and the description sounded fascinating.

The novella focuses on Scur and her time aboard a prisoner transport vessel. Last she remembered, she had been left for dead by a man called Orvin and so she has now awakened on a transport vessel that is drifting aimlessly through space. The ship contains fighters from both sides of the war, along with some civilians. The three groups must work together in order to figure out where they are and how to get home, if their home still exists. She also discovers that Orvin is also a passenger on the ship, and so must find and deal with him too.

Now, I’m a huge fan of survivalist stories and especially ones set in space, so of course I ended up loving this novella. The characters are great and the concept of a slow bullet – a bullet implanted in you that records your memories and past – is also really intriguing and ends up playing an important role later on.

I would definitely recommend this novella, I felt it was an excellent introduction to the writing of Alastair Reynolds and has definitely made me want to read many more of his books!


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