Reread, finally found the sequel (actually part 2 of 6) and needed to refresh my memory. Hamilton writes so many characters and so much detail that it is hard to pick up the storyline after any length of time away.
(First post) Don't you just love the feeling when a book reaches out and grabs you...you can't put it down and you don't want to finish it too quickly. That is this book. Some really interesting scifi ideas such as biological engineering in many areas, how planet colonization might really occur, strange but believable life forms, economics of spacefaring, etc. This book has space opera, espionage, culture, religions, war, sex, many likeable or despicable characters, evil, good, love, hate. Guaranteed, you will never look at a ride on a subway car in quite the same way after reading about Joshua and Ione's reunion encounter. This book has it all and now I have to find the sequel fast.