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The Final Few by Johiah

Our pride ruined us. We fled from the consequences. We still didn't learn. 

The Final Few follows the struggles of the last of the human race after it has fled the Milky Way aboard a massive worldship. It starts at the edge of the Andromeda galaxy, as they awaken from a 10000 year slumber.

A serialized novel

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Listed: Apr 30, 2019


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The Disappointment Is When You Are Finished

By ElliottThomasStaude, author of Mourners, Abednego, Persistence

May 9, 2019: Once upon a time in a place called England, a man named Peter F. Hamilton was born. He proceeded to write some of the greatest high-concept space opera stuff that has ever been written. Johiah’s The Final Few is not yet something at quite that caliber, but based on the parts currently available it’s very close. This is a science fantasy work which I’ll probably be checking for updates on a compulsive basis, and that’s an uncommon deviation from my binge-then-leave-then-return ways. There are occasional hiccups in the use of punctuation a la leaving sentences un-perioded, but occasional enough that without the work right before me it’s hard to remember.

Confession time: I’m a person for whom a good central conceit can prove amply satisfactory on its own (see David Weber’s Safehold series). In that spirit, The Final Few rockets out of the starting block with the sort-of adventures of the stinkin’ big spaceship Musteon and its many passengers. When the technological singularity fairy has come to all the good girls and boys of Sol 3, that’s usually it in many stories. They’ve come to a point of at least contextual nonscarcity of many of life’s good things. The tyranny of age has been cut down. However . . . what if the miracle mass-energy source of the future was quasi-psionic emotive stuff, used for everything from making Human 2.0 models to powering the gas burner . . . and the whole galaxy went dry? Answer: Andromeda road trip! This is set against a background raised by a person whose sci-fi chops are strong indeed without being overly abstruse. Metamaterials, yes; macrocellular clusters being introduced to the human genome and only explaining what that actually means fifty hours in, no.

At time of posting there’s a slightly saddeningly small amount acually available, but it’s already managed to frame politics, character, some of the essential in-house physics, nomenclature, philosophy, history, and good old pioneering. That’s a lot for three chapters plus two asides to manage and competently manage at that. To be sure, the chapters seem to be coming out more slowly than the reader might like, but that would still be true if they popped out on a daily basis. Time spent buffing up the shine here is very worthwhile. The main characters require the reader to go through the brain-shift of how a person thinks when they’re part of a highly advanced society, but their interactions are framed against a universally recognizable plight. These people are learning to swim in the ocean, and they can’t just turn their boat around to good old Earth and call a mulligan. No, they’re on an adventure: someone else undergoing the rigors of tears and shouting and thinking very hard about whether they ought to eat that third slice of cake, far away from both us and everything they’ve known.

In case it’s not clear: tiny scuffs on a very shiny chassis, and the biggest disappointment is that this car’s not complete yet. To change metaphors, take a bite – you’ll probably like how it tastes.

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