The Nano Flower - Peter F. Hamilton

**** Perfectly built, but too calculated and cold towards the ending

I liked this novel very much, until I came to the last part on New London, of which I am not really able to digest the conclusion. And this inevitably has a negative influence on my overall judgment.
As always Hamilton is a master at managing complex plots in an elaborate backdrop and make many well developed characters interact in it. In this sense, “The Nano Flower” is the link between its first production set on Earth in the near future and the space opera of his later books.
Although the series is known as the Greg Mandel trilogy, Mandel has a secondary role in this book, as he is on stage as much as the other characters, or even less than them. I must say this disappointed me a bit, because I really like this character, who in the previous books was undoubtedly the hero, and I expected at least a most decisive role of him in the resolution of the story, which however didn’t happen. The cornerstone of this novel is no doubt Julia Evans, although she cannot be considered the protagonist either. More simply it can be called a choral novel.
Less investigative than the previous ones, which is not necessarily positive, and more imaginative, although longer, this book is more fast-paced and engaging than them, thanks to the always excellent prose of Hamilton.
I would have given five stars, but I found the whole story of Royan, including the ending, quite depressing. I could not, in any way, like his selfish choices towards his family. His motives still don’t make sense to me. And likewise I found Julia too cold in reacting to the dramatic conclusion of the story of this character. I felt, in the behaviour of both, something deeply wrong in terms of human emotions, which gave me the feeling that the ending was almost worked out in the cold, without any involvement, losing all contact with the humanity of the characters. And all this clashes with the way Hamilton had dug up to that point in their mind and psychology.
I also have difficulty to consider credible that a character as powerful as Julia Evans really cares so much for the good of mankind and secondarily for her interests. It is unrealistic to say the least, especially when compared with the far from rosy future that is described in this trilogy.

Both aspects have caused my suspension of disbelief to collapse. What a pity.

The Nano Flower on Amazon.