You can tell you’ve found a really interesting question when nobody wants you to answer it.
Unfortunately, while the first novels in the Expanse series asked a whole pile of interesting questions about the Protomolecule and the gate builders… both seem almost entirely absent in Nemesis Games.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a fascinating bit of science fiction. Some absolutely events happen which really will change the fate of the human race. But it’s just not what got me to read the series in the first place.
On top of that, there is the conflict between wanting to see the crew of the Rocinante fleshed out and learning more about them with the fact that they are best when they’re all together. Near the beginning of the book, they all go their separate ways. While the individual stories are each a lot of fun, I miss the tight nit interactions between the crew of the first four books.
Like I said, it’s not a bad book by any stretch. By itself, it would rate among my favorite science fiction stories. But as the fifth in a series… it could have been better.
Perhaps in the next one.
Things changed, and they didn’t change back. But sometimes they got better.