Southern Reach Trilogy, Book 2

eBook - 2014
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After thirty years, the only human engagement with Area X—a seemingly malevolent landscape surrounded by an invisible border and mysteriously wiped clean of all signs of civilization—has been as series of expeditions overseen by a government agency so secret it has almost been forgotten: the Southern Reach. Following the tumultuous twelfth expedition chronicled in Annihilation, the agency is in complete disarray.         John Rodrigues (aka "Control") is the Southern Reach's newly appointed head. Working with a distrustful but desperate team, a series of frustrating interrogations, a cache of hidden notes, and hours of profoundly troubling video footage, Control begins to penetrate the secrets of Area X. But with each discovery he must confront disturbing truths about himself and the agency he's pledged to serve.         In Authority, the second volume of Jeff VanderMeer's Southern Reach trilogy, Area X's most disturbing questions are answered... but the answers are far from reassuring.
Publisher: 2014
ISBN: 9780374710781
Branch Call Number: OverDrive ebook
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc


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Jul 19, 2018


Some surprises in this second of three books about the Southern Reach government project and its focus: the mysterious Area X.

1. A brand new central character. In fact, a whole HOST of new characters, mostly Southern Reach staff people, as seemingly enigmatic as the previous novel's expedition members.

2. A change of focus, too. It's not Area X that's the focus, as it was in the first book: it's the Southern Reach organization itself.

3. The last 50 pages. Forewarned: Not at all what you expect. You'll RACE through these pages.

There IS, by now, some more of what we've come to expect given the first novel: more internal angst and anguish. Not, this time, so much about Area X and doomed expedition characters, but about the central character, whose title--Ironically--Is "Control." Of course, there IS no control.

It's a somewhat easier book for modern (20th and 21st century) readers to enjoy than the first book. Still, for some it'll be agonizingly slow.

Good enough--compelling enough at the finale--to reach for volume three...

Jul 13, 2018

Excellent continuation of the Southern Reach trilogy. Takes a completely different direction than Annihilation which threw me for a bit of a loop. Could hardly put this book down and look forward to reading Acceptance when I get the chance.

Jul 13, 2018

The first book Annihilation was intriguing but this sequel, set almost entirely at the facility just outside Area X, is mildly-paranoid Orwellian monotony. We do learn a few more backstory details, but nothing much happens and almost all the characters are emotionally-stunted and/or slightly unhinged. Perhaps it is setting things up for the 3rd book instead of just filler extending two books into a trilogy.

Jun 21, 2018

I looked forward to reading the second book of the Southern Reach Trilogy after blasting through the first book, "Annihilation". As many have pointed out, the second book is written differently than the first, more of a mystery-type story than the exploration-type story of the "Biologist". The story line bogged down and became disjointed at times, but the author's writing approach is "explained" as you follow the progression of the second book's main character, "Control. As any second book of a trilogy should do, the connection to the first book and set-up for the third is properly made. Looking forward to how Jeff Vandermeer will bring the story to a "close".

KateHillier Apr 16, 2018

More of a deep dive into the Southern Reach itself instead of a true follow up to Annihilation. You learn a bit more about the expeditions and some of the characters from the previous book but I think we really needed to know all this before whatever awaits in the next book. So it's interesting but I'm more interested in what's coming

Jan 19, 2018

Oh, wow. Wow. Okay. So this book was like, a 2-star read from me for a long while. I didn't like the 'knowingness' of it all, the names, the people, the banal day by day where you still get no information. But something kept me going- the possibility that VanderMeer wanted me in a slow tumble into the mundane before he released the strangeness of Annihilation back upon me.

If you find yourself wondering what the point is of this novel, keep going. Keep reading. The wonderful, terrifying truths that are revealed (or not revealed, I guess? I still have all the same questions) are worth the comparative slow normality of Authority compared Annihilation.

Overall, this is a great bridge book, really one that I felt served to set up book 3, Acceptance. You need to be invested to make this one work, I think, but I was invested and it is 100% worth it.

Mar 27, 2017

VanderMeer delivers again - he writes with excellent precision and control, and yet always leaves out just enough crucial data to keep us needing to look over our shoulder...
The narrator in this case has a lot more information at his fingertips but might not be trustworthy in his telling, and there is much more lurking out there.

Jul 27, 2016

Absorbing & intriguing. The book has strong messages about environmentalism and individuality.

Feb 10, 2016

The first book in the Southern Reach series thoroughly confused me in many ways, but kept me intrigued enough to dive into the second novel.

In many ways I enjoyed the second novel more as certain insights are shared to bring "some" level of clarity to the first one, but still introduces a ton of new questions.

Honestly, I'm not quite sure how I feel about these books. This is equal parts frustrating and refreshing at the same time for someone looking for something a bit different.

I'm curious to see what happens in the third book and how that makes me view the series as a whole.

SFPL_danielay Feb 02, 2016

The second book in VanderMeer's Southern Reach trilogy is just as thrilling and mysterious as the first one. Where the first volume took us into the mysterious Area X, the second volume focuses on the government agency tasked with overseeing it. You might assume that bureaucracy and administration will be dull but the mystery only deepens as the new director tries to figure out what exactly is going on.

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Jun 21, 2018

rrobichaud65 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

Apr 19, 2017

blairl thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

May 08, 2015

danomcd thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


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