Saturday, 16 July 2011

SCIENCE FICTION REVIEW: Heaven's Shadow - David S Goyer and Michael Cassutt

Release Date: 15/07/11


Heaven's Shadow begins with the discovery of an object of unknown origin headed toward Earth. Speculation as to what it might be runs high, and leads to an international competition to be the first to land on it, to claim both the prestige and whatever other benefits there might be. Thus, two rival teams of astronauts begin a thrilling and dangerous race but what they find when they reach their goal will turn out to be unlike anything they could have imagined ...What they have landed on is no asteroid but a spacecraft from a civilization that has travelled tens of thousands of years to reach earth. While the team try to work out what it is they are needed for, more sinister occurrences cause them to wonder if their involvement with this alien race will ead to anything but harm for humanity.


If you love a space story that has mankind uncovering ancient technology far in advance of our own, then this is going to be a book for you. The concept is stark in its simplicity and to be honest its more about the evolution of mankind’s morals than anything else, especially when you realise that in some ways, this ancient space hulk is, in certain respects, a test to see if mankind is worthy.

Add to this some spartanesque prose, a decent pace and a whole host of imaginative scenario’s to help the reader imagine the ship in all its Technicolor glory. Whilst this book does have some flaws such as the characters being fairly flat, this does feel fairly movie like in its explanations (which could be because David wrote some crackers such as The Unborn, The Dark Knight etc.) as well as portrayal and as such if you want something that feels part Event Horizon as well as part Solaris, this could well be the book for you.

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