The future is at war for the soul of humankind ...
It is a time when civilization has extended itself far into the outer reaches of the solar system, and in doing so has developed into something remarkable. But humanity's progeny -- the nanotechnological artificial intelligences called "free converts" -- face extermination at the hands of the tyrant Amés and his invincible armies, and once the Napoleonesque Director develops superluminal flight, his "Final Solution" will be all but assured.
But hope remains alive in the outer system. From the fleeing refugees of a dozen moons and asteroids, General Roger Sherman has amassed an effective and adaptable military force, already forged into a formidable weapon in the fires of battle.
However, time is a commodity the courageous Federal Army lacks, as total war erupts between the vast cloudships of the outer system and the deadly armada of the Met, a glorious and terrible conflict that will rage among the stars ... and within the hearts and minds of every human being.
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Tony Daniel is the author of the novels Earthling and Warpath, along with the pioneering and well-received Metaplanetary, to which Superluminal is a sequel. Daniel heads up the New York City theater troupe Automatic Vaudeville, which produces independent films. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and daughter.From Publishers Weekly:
Daniel's much praised Metaplanetary (2001) presented an awesome vision of the future in which the Met (a system of super-strong cables like spider webs) connects the inner planets and people can communicate instantly across impossible distances due to the presence of "grist" (a form of quantum nanotechnology that permeates the solar system). In this ambitious sequel, war breaks out between the inner planets, ruled over by the increasingly despotic Chairman Amés, and the outer planets, led by the maverick Federal Army commander Roger Sherman. Meanwhile, a large cast of characters, some of them human, some complex computer-programs, but most some combination of the two, live out their lives. This is large-scale space opera with an enormous cast, spectacular battle scenes and 11 appendices to help readers keep things straight. The novel doesn't work quite as well as Metaplanetary, in part because the space warfare becomes a bit repetitious and in part because, as the middle book in what will be at least a trilogy, the tale comes to no real conclusion. Nor is Daniel's work as intellectually challenging as that of such writers as Ken MacLeod, Alastair Reynolds and Stephen Baxter. Still, there's much to like here, particularly for fans of Golden Age great E.E. "Doc" Smith.
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