The sequel to Pandora’s Star, Judas Unchained continues right where the last one left off, but with the action ramped up to 11. The various storylines and loose threads come together one by one until it’s the good guys racing against the bad guys for the fate of the universe.
But the story isn’t perfect. One part that falls flat is the fact that multiple characters begin worrying about humanity’s plan to genocide the Prime aliens, the same aliens who have launched two genocidal campaigns against humanity (and one successful genocide against another species). It doesn’t feel realistic to be concerned about the moral high ground as millions or billions die.
With a little knowledge of Chekhov’s Gun, I could see how the ending had to unfold with a few hundred pages to go, but I still found it thrilling. The strong conclusion makes this the slightly better of the two books in the Commonwealth Saga.