It’s been about 18 months since the events of Leviathan Wakes, James Holden and his crew of the Rocinante are now working full time for OPA in their hijacked military ship. Meanwhile, the protomolecule –a morphogenesis type entity that was the start of the war that breaks out between Earth, Mars and the ‘Belters- has been plunged into Venus my Detective Miller in hopes of stopping it. Launched millions of years ago from some unknown part of space, the protomolecule was supposed to wipe out Earth, but Venus now becomes the host for whatever the thing truly is.
Meanwhile, as tension escalates between the three powers, Holden and his crew get drawn into a search for a missing child on the moon Ganymede, which is in the middle of a war. But something happened on Ganymede, beyond the skirmish between Belters and Martian Marines. A monster of unbelievable strength has been left loose there, a monster that seems connected to Venus.
But as one Earth Admiral tries to piece together those events with previous ones, it becomes clear to Holden and crew that someone is trying to reverse engineer the protomolecule and turn into something even more horrible than it already is and at the center of it all is one little girl.
While the authors continues the believable human personalities traits and keeps the technology in the realm of reality, they do stumble a bit with some cartoonish villains and off the wall silly politics. And like the first book, the authors bounce back between characters, giving us the readers a unique way for the story to unfold -though at times I felt some growth came due to the story beats and not necessarily organically. But it's still a fun book.