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A Ship of the Law travels the infinite enormity of space, carrying 82 young people: fighters, strategists, scientists; the Children. They work with sophisticated non-human technologies that need new thinking to comprehend them. They are cut off forever from the people they left behind. Denied information, they live within a complex system that is both obedient and beyond their control. They are frightened. And they are making war against entities whose technologies are so advanced, so vast, as to dwarf them. Against something whose psychology is ultimately, unknowably alien.
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Greg Bear, author of more than twenty-five books that have been translated into seventeen languages, has won science fiction’s highest honors and is considered the natural heir to Arthur C. Clarke. The recipient of two Hugos and four Nebulas for his fiction, he has been called “the best working writer of hard science fiction” by The Science Fiction Encyclopedia. Many of his novels, such as Darwin’s Radio, are considered to be this generations’ classics. Bear is married to Astrid Anderson, daughter of science fiction great Poul Anderson, and they are the parents of two children, Erik and Alexandria. His recent thriller novel, Quantico, was published in 2007 and the sequel, Mariposa, followed in 2009. He has since published a new, epic science fiction novel, City at the End of Time and a generation starship novel, Hull Zero Three.
A book-length amplification of the last pages of The Forge of God (1987). After Earth's destruction by the planet-eating machines of the Killers, the Benefactors--another group of aliens--create the Ship of the Law crewed by Earth survivors (it's the Law that victims of the machines must pursue vengeance). Martin, a young boy in the previous volume, now near-adult, is the Pan (i.e., leader--the rest of the crew are Lost Boys and Wendys). We see them drilling endlessly for the future skirmish and arguing over whether the mothers (Benefactor robots who maintain the ship) have told them everything they need to know to do the Job. They find several star systems that seem to be the Killers' home; they attack one and are repelled by an anti-matter counterattack, escaping only by a high- tech hairsbreadth. Then they continue to a second system, and are joined in their effort by a fascinating alien race who are aggregate intelligences braided of individual snakelike animal- level parts. Internal strife among the humans makes more difficult their task of penetrating the overwhelming technological superiority and deceptiveness of the Killers; but they ultimately destroy the entire system via a combination of superweapons and aggressive brute force, leaving the moral tone highly ambiguous. Lacking both the real-world anchoring of its predecessor and the transcendent ending it promises (finding a new home planet--a third volume?), and telling far more than it shows. Despite some interesting ideas, then: slow and unrewarding. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Century, 1992. Paperback. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0712638903