Far from the Spaceports Epub ☆ Far from ePUB ½



10 thoughts on “Far from the Spaceports

  1. Ian Ian says:

    Far from the Spaceports by Richard Abbott is the first in what promises to be a series of science fiction novels following Mitnash Thakur, a financial fraud investigator, and his artificially intelligent companion Slate.Mitnash works for the ECRB Economic Crime Review Board , an organisation that investigates financial irregularities throughout the solar system.The ECRB has noticed a large financial irregularity, and its origins are thought to be in the Scilly Isles, a collection of asteroids s Far from the Spaceports by Richard Abbott is the first in what promises to be a series of science fiction novels following Mitnash Thakur, a financial fraud investigator, and his artificially intelligent companion Slate.Mitnash works for the ECRB Economic Crime Review Board , an organisation that investigates financial irregularities throughout the solar system.The ECRB has noticed a large financial irregularity, and its origins are thought to be in the Scilly Isles, a collection of asteroids situated well beyond the orbit of Mars.Mitnash and Slate are sent to investigate.Mitnash is somewhat of an expert coder, and in a future where coders have the ability to control most technologies, and hacking is commonplace, he uses his credentials to go undercover and infiltrate the Scilly Isles community He encounters a diverse group of human settlers, but being in such an isolated location, must learn quickly who he can and cannot trust.He and Slate must work fast too If the ECRB suspicions are correct, and the Scilly Isles are being used as the base for such large scale fraud, the reputation of the islands could be under threatIn the spirit of full disclosure, I should mention that Richard is a friend, and I have collaborated with him to create the cover artwork for some of his books, this one included.However, as Richard usually writes in the historical fiction genre, which isn t my cup of tea, I ve not previously read any of his work.Science fiction is a different matter though, and I felt compelled, intrigued and obliged to begin reading.Far from the Spaceports is set in the near future, although the exact time frame is never mentioned The story contains examples of lots of believable futuristic technology, many examples of which I have no doubt will become commonplace in most homes and offices in the coming decades.Take Slate for instance Slate is not a robot or any other type of physical being, but rather an AI persona that can be hosted on any available computer system Slate can communicate with Mitnash using voice commands or via a cochlea implant that is capable of interpreting his thoughts, sub vocally Slate has its own personality and comes across as very human, as do the other AI personas encountered As well as performing everyday mundane tasks such controlling habitat settings, managing communications or navigating a spacecraft, whenever Mitnash needs advice or doesn t he can rely on Slate to proffer it.For those with iPhones, I guess you could think of Slate as Siri on steroids If you re expecting battles in outer space with lots of things being blasted and blown up then you ll be disappointed Far from the Spaceports is a futuristic crime thriller A science fiction whodunnit if you will.The story is split into four logical parts, with each part being split further into smaller sized chunks that make the book really easy to consume The narrative really does zip along and I found myself reading for much longer stints than I d originally planned.Throughout the book, Mitnash and Slate are developed into characters you really care for and want to learnabout The dialogue between all of the characters is very good, and comes across as natural, and never seems forced I also found the story very interesting, with a strong plot, which although set in space, has a grounding in the real world.Far from the Spaceports isn t like the usual type of sci fi fare I read, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I m glad to say that I can t wait for the next one in the series


  2. Richard Abbott Richard Abbott says:

    I am the author so am providing the synopsis rather than a review


  3. Lisl Lisl says:

    I ll be honest up front I don t normally read science fiction, and in fact am not really a huge fan Nevertheless, when a read of Far from the Spaceports was presented for possible review, I was open to it because I d seen reviews for other novels by Richard Abbott, which means nothing really, I know, given they aren t sci fi But he d piqued my curiosity in the past and a preview at the blurb gave me a sneaking suspicion this wasn t typical sci fi.How glad I was I didn t dismiss it out of I ll be honest up front I don t normally read science fiction, and in fact am not really a huge fan Nevertheless, when a read of Far from the Spaceports was presented for possible review, I was open to it because I d seen reviews for other novels by Richard Abbott, which means nothing really, I know, given they aren t sci fi But he d piqued my curiosity in the past and a preview at the blurb gave me a sneaking suspicion this wasn t typical sci fi.How glad I was I didn t dismiss it out of hand, for Far from the Spaceports was a delightfully pleasant read, not only with a fantastic plot but also personable characters one as artificial intelligence , intriguing world building, an especially thrilling and sweat breaking scene and lures from one transition to the next all the way through.The sole bump for me was an opening chapter segment with a tad bit of disconnect, but I put this down to the narrative and I getting to know one other, and walking into a scene in progress smoothed over quite quickly Potential readers with the same sort of relationship to sci fi as I generally have can also rest assured that the jargon written into the tale is not the dense or fearsome linguistic mine trap from which we often recoil in fact it s fun to read and typically rather understandable Slate had flicked on the message within a couple of femtoseconds of reception Abbott does a great job, as I came to see early on, of keeping his readers informed and on track with contextual passages of dialogue or prose that need little information padding at all Far from the Spaceports, set in the Scilly Isles, an asteroid belt close to Jupiter, is Mitnash s story of his mission to the Isles to investigate financial fraud He works under the jurisdiction of the Economic Crime Review Board ECRB , along with his onboard persona, Slate, also referred to in the beginning as a stele This I found rather fascinating, given that Slate performs, really, essentially the same function as ancient stelae in terms of the passing of information, though electronically and with the added modern ability to communicate via cochlear implant.Abbott s choice to tell Mit s tale in first person is a splendid one, as readers canclosely get to the heart of what the protagonist is thinking and feeling, whereas there would be a remove with even an omniscient but detached narrator We engage inof a personal feel to what Mit experiences, such as the whining of an electric car, probably older than I was, in double duty fashion providing readers an idea of just how long the colony has been functioning as well as the character s sense of resigned acceptance regarding priorities of supply.Mit has been doing this for a while as well, as indicated by his statement that, Some years ago I d asked Slate to use his partner Shayna s voice as the audio basis whenever we were away from Earth As the story progresses we are privy to Mit s impressions as he takes up his newest mission as well as his relationship with the loyal Slate, who provides him with data computations and information helpful to his investigation.The information technology is what in part makes this novel different to many other sci fi stories I ve given a shot it is the focus, not stereotypical laser battles with weapons that can melt your enemy, nor outstanding physical feats of bravado acted out by your hero Mind you there is action and Mit is tested, required to engage his wits to escape physical and other danger that he finds himself embroiled in, can predict or see coming His arsenal is awareness and prep, intelligence of the cerebral as well as provided sort and quick wits in detecting and escaping the mysterious, suspicious and dangerous Abbott s persuasive mixture of just the right ingredients at particular moments shows off a research and storytelling expertise blended together with such dexterity readers periodically pause to admire the effect of writer as well as characterHe was looking at me with the unfocused expression of someone who was querying a remote stele I had practiced for hours in front of mirrors and human trainers to avoid exactly that look He saw me watching and tried to cover himself My contact tells me your supplies will be transferred within the hour, Mr Thakur I nodded, knowing full well he had been running a completely different query Indeed, Far from the Spaceports is a mystery novel, complete with queries and lies, and the author skillfully balances this genre mix with humor, including that coming from interaction with Slate, who has a developed personality as well as perspectives On occasion she is suspicious, which makes sense given her ability to mine data and utilize formulae to determine viability But Abbott bestows her withthan that, allowing her to avoid the paradigm of sidekick by making her a greater part of the story and not merely a tool Mit utilizes to progress in his detective work he needs her as much as she needs him, and not just for efficiency Readers will appreciate her worry about being marginalized, for example, or frustrations, even snobbery regarding equipment Already miffed in one scene, she retreats into mostly silenceThe fake flowers are better on Deimos Pretty, though She made a noncommittal noise Neither of us had seen a real agapanthus plant, but Slate would have been able to acquire muchaccurate sensory data than I could, so she was probably right.Whether right or not about the quality of the flowers, she also disliked her current living space and was letting me know A hand held was small, slow, and impoverished compared to her usual frame She always made her voice sound tinny when she was transferred to inadequate hardware to remind me of her frustration At one point Mit partners with a new character who, despite her late appearance in the book, is also well developed, though presented in such a way I often wondered if she was helping Mit or would turn out to be a double agent or baddie This continued the anticipation earlier created and that provoked actual sweat on my forehead when Mit has to work his way through a spell of psychological warfare perhaps evenfrightening than super powered space arms.This links also to contemplations of what a futuristic world looks like, though to Abbott s credit, he doesn t fall into any sort of dystopian like trap with machinations of evil also sci fi staples that may have turned me off in the past Instead, he gracefully explores various elements, periodically pointing to new versions of what appears in our existing world small anachronisms used to define or identify actions no longer actually performed in the manner described For example, someone today might counter repetition with, You sound like a broken record, despite these devices being obsolete In Mit s world, errors in a systematic analysis are still call ed a fat finger problem even if no fingers are actually used Things can also get a little intrusive, such as it being almost impossible to persuade anybody you were out of contact, to the very dangerous, such as hacking and a higher level of identity theft Abbott makes it believable because though it amps up the results to something quite deceptive and potentially very destructive,so than we deal with today, it was birthed from our current technology It adroitly fits readers of all stripes.At the end of the day one could describe Far from the Spaceports as a sci fi mystery, which it is, though it is so muchthan merely that sum With likeable characters and bad guys readers can t easily identify, believable futuristic technology, a well balanced mix of drama and dry humor, and a very engaging and well told storyline, it is a new take on detecting, with enough questions arising in the end or remaining unanswered from earlier that it seems open to a sequel.Like many books before it, Far from the Spaceports surely contains elements I missed that could be caught on a subsequent read Of course, readers know only too well this is near impossible in these days of to be read piles threatening to topple over However, as I approached the end I felt sorry not to be moving throughbreathtaking scenes with Mitnash I hope he doesn t mind that I ve been calling him Mit , that there weren t at least 200pages So then, as now, I resolved it shall be read again and I hope I ll be doing it in anticipation indeed of that sequel I mentioned as possibility Far from the Spaceports is simply an amazing book that took me to a world I was alien in yet felt comfortable exploring and want to return to Combining all the right elements of mystery, psychological thriller, sci fi, adventure not an easy balance this is a novel that will bring aboard a wave of new readers for sci fi, and have Richard Abbott to thank for it


  4. Robert Bayliss Robert Bayliss says:

    Brilliantly BelievableIn Far From the Space Ports we follow Fraud investigator Mitnash Thakur and his female AI persona Slate on a mission to a remote collection of asteroids known as the Scilly Isles, predominantly populated by people from the British Isles Once mined for resources these islands in space seem to be past their economic heyday yet the interest of the Economic Crime Review Board is piqued.Richard Abbott sets this tale in a near future, the technology is believable and once you be Brilliantly BelievableIn Far From the Space Ports we follow Fraud investigator Mitnash Thakur and his female AI persona Slate on a mission to a remote collection of asteroids known as the Scilly Isles, predominantly populated by people from the British Isles Once mined for resources these islands in space seem to be past their economic heyday yet the interest of the Economic Crime Review Board is piqued.Richard Abbott sets this tale in a near future, the technology is believable and once you become accustomed to the technical jargon the story just carries you along The character of Mit s AI companion Slate is excellent, think of a smartphone that fits in your ear, with a personality that can almost read your thoughts and feed instant data no self respecting fraud investigator, or pilot, or colony entrepreneur should be without one.This isn t a scifi tale of space battles and laser guns, this is a British space colony after all, but it still has its own fair share of excitement the point where Slate s personality is hacked and Mit is under persistent interrogation had me breathless, as if I was struggling to reach safety in the low gravity and vacuum of space.Overall a brilliant read and what with Mit s rare earth sideline, and a whole solar system to explore, I feel sure we will meet up with Mit and Slate again


  5. Mike Koeniger Mike Koeniger says:

    I read the reviews before I started and was aware that it took a few chapters for the story to develop Glad I pressed on While the events of the story are interesting and the music references were fun for fans of my favorite genre, it was the character development between Slate and Mit that intrigued me As others have said, invest some time in this novel, the payoff is pretty darn good.I just started the second book in the series.


  6. Richard Abbott Richard Abbott says:

    I am the author and am supplying synopsis rather than a review


  7. David David says:

    While the story got off to a slow start, it certainly wasn t dull Abbott introduces us to Mitnash and does just enough world building to hook the reader with an intriguing future Humanity has colonized a good chunk of the solar system, and artificial intelligence AI has come to fruition It s something that the technorati would approve of And while space travel has improved, it still takes weeks to travel from Earth to the asteroid belt This remoteness allows for a bit of self governance t While the story got off to a slow start, it certainly wasn t dull Abbott introduces us to Mitnash and does just enough world building to hook the reader with an intriguing future Humanity has colonized a good chunk of the solar system, and artificial intelligence AI has come to fruition It s something that the technorati would approve of And while space travel has improved, it still takes weeks to travel from Earth to the asteroid belt This remoteness allows for a bit of self governance that libertarians could find comfort in it isn t anarchy or the Wild West It does mean that there will be no cavalry coming to Mitnash s rescue should he get into trouble with the locals He is very much alone, surviving by his wits.The AI entities work alongside humans and have personalities that are indistinguishable from them In this age of never ending Terminator films and Kurzweilian singularity worship, it s actually refreshing One drawback is that Mitnash relies heavily on Slate to do the heavy lifting While that comes in handy for number crunching, she executes some of the best action, leaving Mitnash as spectator too often The story is told from his point of view so the reader misses out on Slate s version of events Mitnash does get in a bit of peril when he finds himself unable to rely on her, and this winds up being the most tense scene in the book I think I would ve liked a bitof that They re a team, for sure, but it seemed to me that Mitnash needed Slatethan she needed him.There s a tremendous attention to detail, which threatens to be too much for the casual reader, but Abbott stops short of going too far It plays into his world building While it isn t all essential to the story, it does help the reader get the feel of the place I never got a proper understanding of the local gravity one fiftieth that of Earth but I ll chalk that up to my being stuck on Earth my whole life.Only found a handful of typos, so the editing gets a thumbs up from me.Far from the Spaceports is a delightful read Abbott s characters are very personable and make for good companions as he carries us to a promising future There s no dystopia here man and machine work together to fight crime through skill and wit rather than heavy handed government oversight or firearms David Brin would approve


  8. Robert Southworth Robert Southworth says:

    Sci fi excellenceIm not by any means a sci fi guru, in fact I have just starting reading the genre again after many years with my nose firmly planted in historical fiction The novel is set in the future but not too far, think blade runner rather than Star Trek as a guide The characters are well developed and help develop the storyline Worth mentioning is the relationship between Mit and his artificial intelligent companion , it really does help drive the book forward A tale of intrigue, the Sci fi excellenceIm not by any means a sci fi guru, in fact I have just starting reading the genre again after many years with my nose firmly planted in historical fiction The novel is set in the future but not too far, think blade runner rather than Star Trek as a guide The characters are well developed and help develop the storyline Worth mentioning is the relationship between Mit and his artificial intelligent companion , it really does help drive the book forward A tale of intrigue, the book delivers on varying levels I have graded it a four star only because for a relatively newbie to the genre, I found the techy jargon a little heavy That said, I cant see many sci fi enthusiasts finding this a problem


  9. Diana Ridout Diana Ridout says:

    What a totally amazing book I was fortunate enough to win it in a giveaway last year and only now have had time to read it, but I wish I had read it before It is not too sci fi to frighten away people like myself who are not very used to the genre and technical jargon is not so techy to put tech eejits like myself off The characters are brilliantly clear and well drawn and the reader gets a genuine sense of empathy with them The story is unusual, but very engrossing and it is well writ What a totally amazing book I was fortunate enough to win it in a giveaway last year and only now have had time to read it, but I wish I had read it before It is not too sci fi to frighten away people like myself who are not very used to the genre and technical jargon is not so techy to put tech eejits like myself off The characters are brilliantly clear and well drawn and the reader gets a genuine sense of empathy with them The story is unusual, but very engrossing and it is well written and the interaction between the one artificial intelligence character and the real ones is believable.An excellent book and I look forward to


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Far from the Spaceports ❮Download❯ ➾ Far from the Spaceports ➼ Author Richard Abbott – Thomashillier.co.uk Quick wits and loyalty confront high tech crime in space Welcome to the Scilly Isles, a handful of asteroids bunched together in space, well beyond the orbit of Mars This remote and isolated habitat i Quick wits and loyalty confront high tech crime in space Welcome to the Scilly Isles, a handful of asteroids bunched together in space, well beyond the orbit of Mars This remote and isolated habitat is home to a diverse group of human settlers, and a whole flock of parakeets But earth based financial regulator ECRB suspects that it s also home to serious large scale fraud, and the reputation of the islands comes under threat Enter Mitnash Thakur and his virtual partner Slate, sent out from Earth to investigate Their ECRB colleagues are several weeks Far from ePUB ½ away at their ship s best speed, and even message signals take an hour for the round trip Slate and Mitnash are on their own, until they can work out who on Scilly to trust How will they cope when the threat gets personal.