Caliban’s War Read Along Part One

The Expanse Read Along continues with the second book in the series, Caliban’s War. For previous posts in this series, please check the tag “The Expanse Read Along.” This week’s post covers the beginning of the book through chapter twelve. Questions are provided by Lisa at Over The Effing Rainbow. Spoilers will follow.

1. Holden and crew are back! What do you make of their situation, what they’re up to and how they behave/interact now, compared to how it began?

Their interactions seem pretty similar to the first book. It does sound as though they’re feeling a bit at a loss. In Leviathan Wakes, they were instrumental in saving the human race. Now they’re sulking around on errands for the OPA. I don’t think Holden’s happy unless he’s off on some mad capped heroic adventure.

2. We meet some new characters in this book, and 2 out of 3 are women with important roles. What are your first impressions, given the general concern over the roles/lack of women in the first book?

I’m happy about this!

I was actually already familiar with Avasarala because I started watching the TV show, which chooses to introduce her earlier. I like her a lot. It’s not often that I’ve encountered a powerful older woman who’s not a villain.

As for Bobby, she feels like a familiar character type — the Strong Female character, the Action Girl. Luckily, it’s a type I like if it’s well done and doesn’t fall into the Not Like Other Girls trope, so I’ve got my fingers crossed!

3. “No one starts a war unless I say they can.”

In particular, we learn that Chrisjen Avasarala is using the power she has to pull strings and dig for information behind the scenes in UN government, and she appears to want an end to the war. What do you think of her methods – and her motive?

First off, Avasarala is awesome. A grandmother who secretly runs the entire UN? She’s so badass, I love her.

As for her motives, I think Avasarala wants what’s best for Earth and humanity as a whole. And that’s not war. It’s already been established that Mars has better technology, so it’s not a fight Earth should want to get into.

I personally love how she disarmed Nguyen. That was great.

4. We also meet Prax, scientist and starving father desperate to find his daughter. In terms of the bigger political picture (remember Miller and Dresden), how much of an emotional wild card do you think he might be?

I think Prax will end up doing whatever he thinks is necessary to get his daughter back. Maybe even some things that aren’t necessary. I’m betting he’s going to throw a huge wrench into the works at some point.

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