I finished reading Alastair Reynolds’ “The Prefect” yesterday. It’s set in the Revelation Space universe (in the Glitter Band, before the Melding Plague) and comes in fairly short at ~400 pages (which I read in two suitably epic evening sessions).
It’s very much a page-turner, and I feel he is improving from book to book. Two things weren’t handled terribly (the Thalia Ng strand was not quite as exciting and important as the others, and the reveal about what happened 11 years back doesn’t IMO justify the actions taken afterward by the Supreme Prefect as well as the people at the scene).
So, if you hated Reynolds before, you might hate this book a bit less, everyone else will probably like it as much as I did (which is a lot). I feel this is a good stand-alone novel (in the way things start, move forward, and end) but the other books also add a lot of nicely interwoven additional background information; so I find it hard to judge how I would’ve felt about the book had I not read the other books…