Review of 'Destroyer of Worlds'

Destroyer of Worlds by Edward M. Lerner, and Larry Niven
3rd book in the 'Fleet of Worlds' series

The Fleet of World series is billed as prequel to the Ringworld series where we find a giant “Ringworld” discovered by humans but built by the mysterious Pak we see in this series. So the suggestion is that you don't have to have read the previous “Fleet of Worlds” novels to figure out what is going on…Not entirely sure if this is the case, at least for me. It took quite some time to figure out what was happening, and, basically it is this…

The “Fleet of Worlds” is a set of five planets populated by “Puppeteers” (“Citizens”) as they power their way through space having had their original solar system destroyed. The planet “New Terra” is populated by humans from the long-forgotten Earth. All are threatened by an “interstellar disruption” that is actually a vast fleet of “ramscoop” ships piloted by the hyper-advanced “Pak” that are destroying everything in their path, including New Terra and Fleet of Worlds…The human Sigmund Ausfaller seeks a solution to the problem coming across a race of beings called the “Gw'Oth” who are VERY quick learners but, at the start of the story at least, are behind the humans in development. Sigmund's group come across a Pak called Thssthfok that they imprison but who is determined to escape to return to his fleet and warn them of the potential threat that the humans and Citizens pose. With the fate of civilisation at stake, will a solution be found? Can the Gw'Oth be trusted? Will Thssthfok succeed at escaping?

I was not entirely satisfied what I felt too simple an ending to this story but generally the story is quite enjoyable. The characters are interesting and keep you guessing as to who will do what next. The exposition for new readers is evident throughout but somewhat overwhelming for this reader just picking up the series for the first time.

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2013-04-05

Genre: Science Fiction

Publisher: Tor

Publication Date: 2009

Other reviewed books by Steven Barnes, Larry Niven, and Jerry Pournelle: