SF/F Read Alongs: Caliban’s War, Part 3

In the third part of Caliban’s War, everything – and everyone – is beginning to come together. So how long will it take to fall apart again…?

This week we’re covering chapters 28 to 42, with questions from Sarah at The Illustrated Page. Spoiler alert!



So a lot happened this week! What do you make of all the POV characters meeting up? Do you think there will be any new additions to the crew of the Rocinante? 

I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS. I was dying to see what might happen when the Roci crew finally met Avasarala, and that scene absolutely did not disappoint me. I could not stop giggling at Chrisjen’s idea of “hello”.

As for new crew members … I still have my worries about Prax from last week, but now I have to admit I’m hoping he finds a place for himself on the Rocinante. I mean, they could use a scientist, right? Especially one who seems to at least have SOME grasp of how this alien biology might work… That, and I am entering Big Softie mode and I really just want to see him be accepted and find a home after everything that happened on Ganymede. I like Prax, and this would please me.


Holden has had some self realizations. Do you think he’ll really change his ways? And how does it tie into the new decisions for the Rocinante?

I think Holden will try to do/be better now; he seems like the type of person who’d make that effort once the required self-awareness comes along to give him a nudge. Or a kick, as the case may be – nobody wants to lose Naomi! And I like that it seems to be bringing some change to the order of things on the Rocinante. It also really amused me that the first person to a) point out when Holden was about to break his own voting rule, and b) thus take advantage of it, was Amos. Sneaky, sneaky. I knew that one was smarter than he seemed. *Grin*

I do like that they’ve put this more democratic process into effect, not only because it’s the fair thing to do but because it may keep a check on Holden’s wilder impulses. In all seriousness, nobody wants him to end up like Miller.


What do you think they’ll find on Io?

… I keep wanting to say “cows” but that’s cheeky. I actually have no idea, but the whole thing spooks me. If whoever’s taking these kids is in fact doing it to turn them into protomolecule super-alien-soldiers, then at the very least what might be waiting there is a whole lot of trouble…

I am prepared for tragedy, because I suspect we’ll all have to be, but there’s part of me that is really not comfortable with any sort of harm, on the page or off, being done to children. I’m dreading the thought that Prax might not find his daughter the way he left her; it seems like that would be much worse than finding her dead, or even not finding her at all…


Apparently, the UN was involved after all, and now Avasarala’s been out maneuvered! But Bobbie thinks she has a plan to save their skins. Any ideas what her big revelation was? And do you think they’ll succeed? 

I had such a facepalm moment after the political revelations, because of course all the higher-ups would have this much of a limited view! I found the point that they’re picking this fight because they might actually win it to be a really interesting one, and it encapsulates the flaws of us mere mortals pretty perfectly – we have an astounding capacity for this sort of relative pettiness when we’re faced with hugely important facts or choices we don’t fully understand, or that frighten us. We’ll always pick the fight we think we can win, even if we might destroy ourselves in the process. In a lot of ways, and especially given the current political climate(s) in real life right now, I think that’s scarier than any number of protomolecule super-alien-soldiers…

As for Bobbie’s idea, I DON’T KNOW AND I AM IN AGONY OVER HAVING TO STOP RIGHT THERE. Absolute reader agony. I hope it’ll work, whatever it is! Things are going to be in a bit of a mess if they don’t. That said, I know there are several more books to come after this one, so perhaps there’s going to be a bit of mess to be cleaned up…? ARGH WHY DO I DO THIS TO MYSELF.


2 thoughts on “SF/F Read Alongs: Caliban’s War, Part 3

  1. Yep, trying to be the ‘leader’ of a democratic crew is turning out to be a little tougher than Holden expected. Though I do like that Amos is holding him to it.

    cows! ha! I can hope for cows as well but I doubt we will see cows.

    Yeah, having the UN involved in creating these protomolecule ‘weapons’ is pretty scary. That means a whole lot of people thought this was a good idea.

  2. It’s a pretty bleakly convincing view of politicians and generals/admirals, isn’t it?

    I think I’d rather think about alien protomolecules…

    Well, maybe not.

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