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Assemblers of Infinity

Doug Beason
Kevin J. Anderson

It is the twenty-first century. Earth's space program is thriving, with a colony in place in the Moon. And then an incredible discovery is made on the lunar farside. A massive structure is being erected by living machines--microscopically small, intelligent, unstoppable, consuming whatever they touch. All who come near them die horribly. Meanwhile, the mysterious structure continues to grow, expand, take shape. And its creators begin to multiply....

Is this the first strike in an alien invasion from the stars? Or has human nanotech experimentation gone awry, triggering a long-predicted disaster? As riots rage across a panicked Earth, scientists on Earth and on the Moon race to learn the truth before humanity's home is engulfed by the voracious machines and its inhabitants perish in the most terrifying plague ever known.

Tau Zero

Poul Anderson

Fifty men and women set out in the twenty-third century from Earth aboard an interstellar craft to travel to a planet some thirty light-years away. The ship will approach the speed of light and so (as Einstein predicted) subjective time on board will slow and so the journey of several decades will be of much shorter duration for the crew. But the ship's deceleration system is irreparably damaged when it hits a cloud of interstellar dust and acceleration continues toward light speed, tau zero. Soon the ship is speeding through galaxies and eons are passing on board the ship in the blink of an eye ...

Achilles' Choice

Steven Barnes
Larry Niven

The gods of Olympus offered a fateful choice to the warrior, Achilles--a short, glorious life, or a long, dull one.

Achilles chose glory.

This is the story of the Eleventh Olympiad in the late 21st century--a contest not only for glory but for survival--and of the woman who dared to compete for the highest stakes of all.

The future of humanity.

The Descent of Anansi

Larry Niven
Steven Barnes

It's the American Revolution all over again. But this time it's a ragtag band of space colonists vs. the United States. And the fate of the world hangs by a thread - 200 miles above the Earth.

Blood Music

Greg Bear

An amazing breakthrough in genetic engineering made by Vergil Ulam is considered too dangerous for further research, but rather than destroy his work, he injects himself with his creation and walks out of his lab, unaware of just quite how his actions will change the world. Author Greg Bear's treatment of the traditional tale of scientific hubris is both suspenseful and a compelling portrait of a new intelligence emerging amongst us, irrevocably changing our world.

Blood Music (novelette)

Greg Bear

Hugo and Nebula Award winning novelette. It originally appeared in Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact, June 1983. It has been expanded to the full novel Blood Music (1985) and has been reprinted many times. It can be found in the anthologies:

It is included in the collections Tangents (1989) and The Collected Stories of Greg Bear (2002).

Read the full story for free at the Baen website.

Hull Zero Three

Greg Bear

A starship hurtles through the emptiness of space. Its destination-unknown. Its purpose-a mystery.

Now, one man wakes up. Ripped from a dream of a new home-a new planet and the woman he was meant to love in his arms-he finds himself wet, naked, and freezing to death. The dark halls are full of monsters but trusting other survivors he meets might be the greater danger.

All he has are questions-- Who is he? Where are they going? What happened to the dream of a new life? What happened to Hull 03?

All will be answered, if he can survive the ship.

HULL ZERO THREE is an edge-of-your-seat thrill ride through the darkest reaches of space.

Heart of the Comet

David Brin
Gregory Benford

An odyssey of discovery, from a shattered society through the solar system with a handful of men and women who ride a cold, hurtling ball of ice to the shaky promise of a distant, unknowable future.

Against Infinity

Gregory Benford

On the poisonous, icy surface of Ganymede, a man and a boy are on a hunt for the Aleph--an alien artifact that ruled Ganymede for countless millenia, Infinitely dangerous, the Aleph haunts men's dreams and destroys all efforts to terraform Ganymede into an habitable planet. Now an ancient struggle is joined, as a boy seeks manhood, a man seeks enlightenment, and a society seeks the power to rule the universe.

Jupiter Project

Gregory Benford

The Jovian Astronautical-Biological Orbital Laboratory circles Jupiter and its moons--a metal shell bathed in lethal radiation, held in tenuous place by the gravity of the massive gas giant like a fragile glass ornament in a monstrous fist.

For seventeen-year-old Matt Bohles and his friends, "the Can" is home.

Life onboard the aging space station is cramped, spartan, and dangerous. Its mission--to monitor incoming signals and transmissions in search of alien life--has so far proven fruitless.

It is the only world Matt has ever known.

But now, as the threshold of adulthood--with its onset of new questions, confusions and feelings --Matt Bohles faces an impending crisis that threatens everything he knows and is. For unless he can prove himself an invaluable member of the scientific team--and quickly--he will be exiled to a filthy, perilous and unfamiliar hell called Earth.

Timescape

Gregory Benford

1962: A young Californian scientist finds his experiments spoiled by mysterious interference. Gradually his suspicions lead him to a shattering truth: scientists from the end of the century are using subatomic particles to send a message into the past, in the hope that history can be changed and a world-threatening catastrophe averted.

The Demolished Man

Alfred Bester

In the year 2301, guns are only museum pieces and benign telepaths sweep the minds of the populace to detect crimes before they happen. In 2301 murder is virtually impossible, but one man is about to change that...

Ben Reich, a psychopathic business magnate, has devised the ultimate scheme to eliminate the competition and destroy the order of his society. The Demolished Man is a masterpiece of imaginative suspense, set in a superbly imagined world in which everything has changed except the ancient instinct for murder.

A Case of Conscience

James Blish

Father Ruiz-Sanchez is a dedicated man--a priest who is also a scientist, and a scientist who is also a human being. He has found no insoluble conflicts in his beliefs or his ethics... until he is sent to Lithia. There he comes upon a race of aliens who are admirable in every way except for their total reliance on cold reason; they are incapable of faith or belief.

Confronted with a profound scientific riddle and ethical quandary, Father Ruiz-Sanchez soon finds himself torn between the teachings of his faith, the teachings of his science, and the inner promptings of his humanity. There is only one solution: He must accept an ancient and unforgivable heresy--and risk the futures of both worlds...

Transhuman

Ben Bova

Six-time Hugo Award-winner Ben Bova presents Transhuman.

Luke Abramson, a brilliant cellular biologist who is battling lung cancer, has one joy in life, his ten-year-old granddaughter, Angela. When he learns that Angela has an inoperable brain tumor and is given less than six months to live, Abramson wants to try a new enzyme, Mortality Factor 4 (MORF4), that he believes will kill Angela's tumor.

However, the hospital bureaucracy won't let him do it because MORF4 has not yet been approved by the FDA. Knowing that Angela will die before he can get approval of the treatment, Abramson abducts Angela from the hospital with plans to take her to a private research laboratory in Oregon.

Luke realizes he's too old and decrepit to flee across the country with his sick granddaughter, chased by the FBI. So he injects himself with a genetic factor that will stimulate his body's production of telomerase, an enzyme that has successfully reversed aging in animal tests.

As the chase weaves across the country from one research facility to another, Luke begins to grow physically younger, stronger. He looks and feels the way he did thirty or forty years ago. Yet his lung cancer is not abating; if anything the tumors are growing faster.

And Angela is dying.

The Golden Apples of the Sun

Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury is a modern cultural treasure. His disarming simplicity of style underlies a towering body of work unmatched in metaphorical power by any other American storyteller. And here, presented in a new trade edition, are thirty-two of his most famous tales--prime examples of the poignant and mysterious poetry which Bradbury uniquely uncovers in the depths of the human soul, the otherwordly portraits of outré fascination which spring from the canvas of one of the century's great men of imagination.

From a lonely coastal lighthouse to a sixty-million-year-old safary, from the pouring rain of Venus to the ominous silence of a murder scene, Ray Bradbury is our sure-handed guide not only to surprising and outrageous manifestations of the future, but also to the wonders of the present that we could never have imagined on our own.

Table of Contents:

  • The Fog Horn - (1951)
  • The Pedestrian - (1951)
  • The April Witch - (1952)
  • The Wilderness - (1952)
  • The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl - (1948)
  • Invisible Boy - (1945)
  • The Flying Machine - (1953)
  • The Murderer - (1953)
  • The Golden Kite, the Silver Wind - (1953)
  • I See You Never - (1947)
  • Embroidery - (1951)
  • The Big Black and White Game - (1945)
  • A Sound of Thunder - (1952)
  • The Great Wide World Over There - (1952)
  • Powerhouse - (1948)
  • En la Noche - (1952)
  • Sun and Shadow - (1953)
  • The Meadow - (1953)
  • The Garbage Collector - (1953)
  • The Great Fire - (1949)
  • Hail and Farewell - (1953)
  • The Golden Apples of the Sun - (1953)

The Illustrated Man

Ray Bradbury

He was a riot of rockets and fountains and people, in such intricate detail and color that you could hear the voiced murmuring, small and muted, from the crowds that inhabited his body.

Ray Bradbury brings wonders alive. A peerless American storyteller, his oeuvre has been celebrated for decades--from The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451 to Dandelion Wine and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

The Illustrated Man is classic Bradbury --a collection of tales that breathe and move, animated by sharp, intaken breath and flexing muscle. Here are eighteen startling visions of humankind's destiny, unfolding across a canvas of decorated skin--visions as keen as the tattooist's needle and as colorful as the inks that indelibly stain the body.

The images, ideas, sounds and scents that abound in this phantasmagoric sideshow are provocative and powerful: the mournful cries of celestial travelers cast out cruelly into a vast, empty space of stars and blackness ... the sight of gray dust settling over a forgotten outpost on a road that leads nowhere ... the pungent odor of Jupiter on a returning father's clothing. Here living cities take their vengeance, technology awakens the most primal natural instincts, Martian invasions are foiled by the good life and the glad hand, and dreams are carried aloft in junkyard rockets.

Ray Bradbury's The Illustrated Man is a kaleidoscopic blending of magic, imagination, and truth, widely believed to be one of the Grandmaster's premier accomplishments: as exhilarating as interplanetary travel, as maddening as a walk in a million-year rain, and as comforting as simple, familiar rituals on the last night of the world.

Earth

David Brin

It's fifty years from tomorrow, and a black hole has accidentally fallen into the Earth's core. A team of scientists frantically searches for a way to prevent the mishap from causing harm, only to discover another black hole already feeding relentlessly at the core - one that could destroy the entire planet within two years.

But some even argue that the only way to save the Earth is to let its human inhabitants become extinct: to let the million-year evolutionary clock rewind and start all over again.

From an underground lab in New Zealand to a space station in Low Earth Orbit, from an endangered species conservation ark in Africa to a home in New Orleans, EARTH is a gripping novel peopled with extraordinary characters and abundant with challenging new ideas. Above all, it is an impassioned testament about our own responsibility to our endangered planet.

Glory Season

David Brin

Young Maia is fast approaching a turning point in her life. As a half-caste var, she must leave the clan home of her privileged half sisters and seek her fortune in the world. With her twin sister, Leie, she searches the docks of Port Sanger for an apprenticeship aboard the vessels that sail the trade routes of the Stratoin oceans.

On her far-reaching, perilous journey of discovery, Maia will endure hardship and hunger, imprisonment and loneliness, bloody battles with pirates and separation from her twin. And along the way, she will meet a traveler who has come an unimaginable distance--and who threatens the delicate balance of the Stratoins' carefully maintained, perfect society....

Both exciting and insightful, Glory Season is a major novel, a transcendent saga of the human spirit.

War Surf

M. M. Buckner

In the 23rd century, Nasir Deepra finds fun by dropping into minor wars. High-tech gear fully protects him, but nothing can protect him from a woman named Sheeba--and her voracious lust for danger.

Rogue Moon

Algis Budrys

During all recorded history, the Moon has hovered above our heads, a timeless symbol for lovers' ecstasy. Goddesses and Gibson Girls have tripped the light fantastic of her beams while sonneteers and scientists have scanned her changing phases.

Now man had actually reached the Moon, and on it the explorers found a structure, a formation so terrible and incomprehensible that it couldn't even be described in human terms. It was a thing that devoured men; that killed them again and again in torturous, unfathomable ways.

Earthbound are the only two men who could probe the thing: Al Barker, a homicidal maniac, whose loving mistress was death, and Dr. Edward Hawks, a scientific murderer, whose greatest mission was rebirth.

Synners

Pat Cadigan

First published in 1991, this cyberpunk classic won the Arthur C. Clarke Award and was shortlisted for the Nebula Award

Synners are synthesizers--not machines, but people. They take images from the brains of performers, and turn them into a form which can be packaged, sold, and consumed. This book is set in a world where new technology spawns new crime before it hits the streets. The line between technology and humanity is hopelessly slim; the human mind and the external landscape have fused to the point where any encounter with reality is incidental. This classic novel from one of the founders and mainstays of the cyberpunk movement.

A Darkling Sea

James L. Cambias

On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don't disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they're free to conduct their missions in peace.

But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war.

Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives--and the future of human exploration--is anything but certain.

Corsair

James L. Cambias

In the early 2020s, two young, genius computer hackers, Elizabeth Santiago and David Schwartz, meet at MIT, where Schwartz is sneaking into classes, and have a brief affair. David is amoral and out for himself, and soon disappears. Elizabeth dreams of technology and space travel and takes a military job after graduating.

Nearly ten years later, David is setting himself to become a billionaire by working in the shadows under a multiplicity of names for international thieves, and Elizabeth works in intelligence preventing international space piracy. With robotic mining in space becoming a lucrative part of Earth's economy, shipments from space are dropped down the gravity well into the oceans.

David and Elizabeth fight for dominance of the computer systems controlling ore drop placement in international waters. If David can nudge a shipment 500 miles off its target, his employers can get there first and claim it legally in the open sea. Each one intuits that the other is their real competition but can't prove it. And when Elizabeth loses a major shipment, she leaves government employ to work for a private space company to find a better way to protect shipments. But international piracy has very high stakes and some very evil players. And both Elizabeth and David end up in a world of trouble.

Saturn Run

John Sandford
Ctein

The year is 2066. A Caltech intern inadvertently notices an anomaly from a space telescope -- something is approaching Saturn, and decelerating. Space objects don't decelerate. Spaceships do.

A flurry of top-level government meetings produces the inescapable conclusion: Whatever built that ship is at least one hundred years ahead in hard and soft technology, and whoever can get their hands on it exclusively and bring it back will have an advantage so large, no other nation can compete. A conclusion the Chinese definitely agree with when they find out.

The race is on, and an remarkable adventure begins -- an epic tale of courage, treachery, resourcefulness, secrets, surprises, and astonishing human and technological discovery, as the members of a hastily thrown-together crew find their strength and wits tested against adversaries both of this earth and beyond.

Stories of Your Life and Others

Ted Chiang

Stories of Your Life and Others presents characters who must confront sudden change--the inevitable rise of automatons or the appearance of aliens--while striving to maintain some sense of normalcy. In the amazing and much-lauded title story, a grieving mother copes with divorce and the death of her daughter by drawing on her knowledge of alien languages and non-linear memory recollection. A clever pastiche of news reports and interviews chronicles a college's initiative to "turn off" the human ability to recognize beauty in "Liking What You See: A Documentary." With sharp intelligence and humor, Chiang examines what it means to be alive in a world marked by uncertainty and constant change, and also by beauty and wonder.

The collection received the Locus Award and the stories have received the Hugo, Seiun, Nebula, and Sturgeon Awards.

Table of Contents:

  • "Tower of Babylon" (originally published in Omni) (Nebula Award winner)
  • "Division by Zero" (originally published in Full Spectrum 3)
  • "Understand" (originally published in Asimov's)
  • "Story of Your Life" (originally published in Starlight 2) (Nebula Award and Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award winner)
  • "The Evolution of Human Science" (a.k.a. "Catching Crumbs from the Table") (originally published in Nature)
  • "Seventy-Two Letters" (originally published in Vanishing Acts) (Sidewise Award winner)
  • "Hell Is the Absence of God" (originally published in Starlight 3) (Hugo Award, Locus Award and Nebula Award winner)
  • "Liking What You See: A Documentary"

Understand

Ted Chiang

Hugo Award nominated novelette. It originally appeared in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, August 1991. The story can also be found in the anthologies Supermen: Tales of the Posthuman Future (2002), edited by Gardner Dozois and The Hard SF Renaissance (2002), edited by David G. Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer. It is included in the collection Stories of Your Life and Others (2002).

A Fall of Moondust

Arthur C. Clarke

Time is running out for the passengers and crew of the tourist-cruiser "Selene", incarcerated in a sea of choking lunar dust. On the surface, her rescuers find their resources stretched to the limit by the pitiless and unpredictable conditions of a totally alien environment.

A Meeting With Medusa

Arthur C. Clarke

Nebula winning and Hugo nominated novella.

In leading an expedition through the many-layered Jovian atmosphere in the hydrogen balloon craft Kon-Tiki, Captain Howard Falcon discovers a world where bioluminescent air plankton produce brilliant atmospheric sea-fire, predatory manta-ray creatures dominate the skies, and enormous jellyfish-like beings grow to be over a mile across.

This story was originally published in the December 1971 issue of Playboy and has been reprinted many times. It is incuded in the collections The Wind from the Sun (1972), The Sentinel (1983) and The Collected Stories of Arthur C. Clarke (2000). It is half of the Tor Double A Meeting with Medusa / Green Mars (1988). It can be found in numerous anthologies. Among them Nebula Award Stories Eight (1973), edited by Isaac Asimov, Best SF: 1971 (1972) edited by Harry Harrison and Brian W. Aldiss, The Best Science Fiction of the Year (1972) edited by Terry Carr, The Arbor House Treasury of Science Fiction Masterpieces (1983), edited by Robert Silverberg and Martin H. Greenberg.

Earthlight

Arthur C. Clarke

The time: 200 years after man's first landing on the Moon. There are permanent populations established on the Moon, Venus and Mars. Outer space inhabitants have formed a new political entity, the Federation, and between the Federation and Earth a growing rivalry has developed. EARTHLIGHT is the story of this emerging conflict.

Expedition to Earth

Arthur C. Clarke

ELEVEN MASTERFUL SCIENCE FICTION TALES OF WONDER IN THIS WORLD AND BEYOND

HIDE AND SEEK
"K.15 was a military intelligence operative. It gave him a considerable pain when unimaginative people called him a spy. But at the moment he had much more serious grounds for complaint . . ."

SUPERIORITY
"When the war opened we had no doubt of our ultimate victory. The combined fleets of our allies greatly exceeded in number and armament those which the enemy could muster against us. We were sure we could maintain this superiority. Our belief proved, alas, to be only too well founded . . ."

EXPEDITION TO EARTH
"It was in the last days of the Empire. The tiny ship was far from home, and almost a hundred light-years from the great parent vessel searching through the loosely packed stars at the rim of the Milky Way. But even here it could not escape from the shadow that lay across civilization . . ."

Imperial Earth

Arthur C. Clarke

In the year 2276, Duncan Makenzie travels from Saturn's moon, Titan, to Earth as a diplomatic envoy to the United States. As a member of Titan's 'First Family' descended from the moon's original settlers 500 years before, Duncan finds himself welcomed into the glittering political and social scene in Washington.

But Duncan isn't just on Earth for a diplomatic visit. Haunted by the memory of a woman from Earth he once loved, Duncan is also driven by the need to continue the family line-despite a devastating genetic defect. A tour-de-force of vivid characterization, futuristic vision, and suspense, Imperial Earth is one of Arthur C. Clarke's most ambitious novels.

The Fountains of Paradise

Arthur C. Clarke

Vannemar Morgan's dream is to link Earth to the stars with the greatest engineering feat of all time;a 24,000-mile-high space elevator. But first he must solve a million technical, political, and economic problems while allaying the wrath of God. For the only possible site on the planet for Morgan's Orbital Tower is the monastery atop the Sacred Mountain of Sri Kanda. And for two thousand years, the monks have protected Sri Kanda from all mortal quests for glory. Kings and princes who have sought to conquer the Sacred Mountain have all died.Now Vannemar Morgan may be next.

The Hammer of God

Arthur C. Clarke

A century into the future, technology has solved most of the problems that have plagued our time. However, a new problem is on the horizon-one greater than humanity has ever faced. A massive asteroid is racing toward the earth, and its impact could destroy all life on the planet.

Immediately after the asteroid-named "Kali" after the Hindu goddess of chaos and destruction-is discovered, the world's greatest scientists begin their search for a way to prevent disaster. In the meantime, Captain Robert Singh, aboard the starship Goliath, may be the only person who can stop the asteroid. But this heroic role may demand the ultimate sacrifice.

The Last Theorem

Arthur C. Clarke
Frederik Pohl

The final work from the brightest star in science fiction's galaxy. Arthur C Clarke, who predicted the advent of communication satellites and author of 2001: A Space Odyssey completes a lifetime career in science fiction with a masterwork.

30 light years away, a race known simply as the One Point Fives are plotting a dangerous invasion plan, one that will wipe humankind off the face of the Earth...

Meanwhile, in Sri Lanka, a young astronomy student, Ranjit Subramanian, becomes obsessed with a three-hundred-year-old theorem that promises to unlock the secrets of the universe. While Ranjit studies the problem, tensions grow between the nations of the world and a UN taskforce headed up by China, America and Russia code-named Silent Thunder begins bombing volatile regimes into submission.

On the eve of the invasion of Earth a space elevator is completed, helped in part by Ranjit, which will herald a new type of Olympics to be held on the Moon. But when alien forces arrive Ranjit is forced to question his own actions, in a bid to save the lives of not just his own family but of all of humankind.

Co-written with fellow grand master Frederik Pohl, The Last Theorem not only provides a fitting end to the career one of the most famous names in science fiction but also sets a new benchmark in contemporary prescient science fiction. It tackles with ease epic themes as diverse as third world poverty, the atrocities of modern warfare in a post-nuclear age, space elevators, pure mathematics and mankind's first contact with extra-terrestrials.

The Sands of Mars

Arthur C. Clarke

In Clarke's first published full-length science fiction novel, renowned science fiction writer Martin Gibson joins the spaceship Ares, the world's first interplanetary ship for passenger travel, on its maiden voyage to Mars. His mission: to report back to the home planet about the new Mars colony and the progress it has been making.

First published in 1951, before the achievement of space flight, Clarke addresses hard physical and scientific issues with aplomb-and the best scientific understanding of the times. Included are the challenges of differing air pressures, lack of oxygen, food provisions, severe weather patterns, construction on Mars, and methods of local travel-both on the surface and to the planet's two moons.

The Songs of Distant Earth

Arthur C. Clarke

Thalassa was a paradise above the earth. Its beauty and vast resources seduce its inhabitants into a feeling of perfection. But then the Magellan arrives, carrying with it one million refugees from the last mad days of earth. Paradise looks indeed lost....

The Fold

Peter Clines

STEP INTO THE FOLD.

IT'S PERFECTLY SAFE.

The folks in Mike Erikson's small new England town would say he was just your average, everyday guy. And that's exactly how Mike likes it. Sure, the life he's chosen isn't much of a challenge to someone with his unique gifts, but he's content with his quiet and peaceful existence.

That is, until an old friend presents him with an irresistable mystery, one that Mike is uniquely qualified to solve: far out in the California desert, a team of DARPA scientist has invented a device they affectionately call the Albuquerque Door. Using a cryptic computer equation and magnetic fields to "fold" dimensions, it shrinks distances so a traveler can travel hundreds of feet in a single step.

The invention promises to make mankind's dreams of teleportation a reality. And, the scientists insist, travelling through the Door is completely safe.

Yet evidence is mounting that this miraculous machine isn't quite what it seems -- and that its creators are harboring a dangerous secret.

As his investigation draws him deeper into the puzzle, Mike begins to fear there is only one answer that makes sense, And if he's right, it may be only a matter of time before the project destroys... everything.

A Better Way to Die: The Collected Short Stories

Paul Cornell

Paul Cornell has written Doctor Who for the BBC, Batman & Robin for DC, and Wolverine for Marvel. He has won the BSFA Award for his short fiction, the Eagle Award for his comics, and shares a Writer's Guild Award for television. He is one of only two people to be Hugo Award nominated for all three media.

A Better Way to Die is his first ever short story collection, providing a comprehensive overview of his work. Featured here are both his contributions to George RR Martin's Wildcards series and all the Jonathan Hamilton stories, including "One of Our Bastards is Missing", shortlisted for the Hugo Award in 2010, and "A Better Way to Die", winner of a BSFA Award in 2011.

With an introduction by John Scalzi, the eBook edition contains 21 stories, representing almost all of Paul's published short fiction to date.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction - essay by John Scalzi
  • The Deer Stalker - (2005) - shortfiction
  • Michael Laurits Is: DROWNING - (2008) - shortstory
  • Global Collider Generation: an Idyll - (2009) - shortfiction
  • Secret Identity - (2010) - shortstory
  • The Occurrence at Slocombe Priory - (2011) - shortfiction
  • The Sensible Folly - (2011) - shortfiction
  • More - (2011) - shortfiction
  • The Elephant in the Room - (2013) - novelette
  • A New Arrival at the House of Love - (2012) - shortfiction
  • The Ghosts of Christmas - (2012) - novelette
  • Tom - (2013) - shortstory
  • Ramesses on the Frontier - (2013) - shortstory
  • Zeta Reticuli - (2014) - shortfiction
  • Catherine Drewe - (2008) - shortstory
  • One of Our Bastards Is Missing - (2009) - novelette
  • The Copenhagen Interpretation - (2011) - novelette
  • A Better Way to Die - (2014) - novelette

Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better World

Ed Finn
Kathryn Cramer

Inspired by New York Times bestselling author Neal Stephenson, an anthology of stories, set in the near future, from some of today's leading writers, thinkers, and visionaries that reignites the iconic and optimistic visions of the golden age of science fiction.

In his 2011 article "Innovation Starvation," Neal Stephenson argued that we--the society whose earlier scientists and engineers witnessed the airplane, the automobile, nuclear energy, the computer, and space exploration--must reignite our ambitions to think boldly and do Big Stuff. He also advanced the Hieroglyph Theory which illuminates the power of science fiction to inspire the inventive imagination: "Good SF supplies a plausible, fully thought-out picture of an alternate reality in which some sort of compelling innovation has taken place."

In 2012, Arizona State University established the Center for Science and the Imagination to bring together writers, artists, and creative thinkers with scientists, engineers, and technologists to cultivate and expand on "moon shot ideas" that inspire the imagination and catalyze real-world innovations.

Now comes this remarkable anthology uniting twenty of today's leading thinkers, writers, and visionaries--among them Cory Doctorow, Gregory Benford, Elizabeth Bear, Bruce Sterling, and Neal Stephenson--to contribute works of "techno-optimism" that challenge us to dream and do Big Stuff. Engaging, mind-bending, provocative, and imaginative, Hieroglyph offers a forward-thinking approach to the intersection of art and technology that has the power to change our world.

Contents:

  • Foreword (Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future) - essay by Lawrence M. Krauss
  • Preface: Innovation Starvation (Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future) - essay by Neal Stephenson
  • Introduction: A Blueprint for Better Dreams - essay by Ed Finn and Kathryn Cramer
  • Atmosphaera Incognita - (2013) - shortfiction by Neal Stephenson
  • Girl in Wave: Wave in Girl - shortfiction by Kathleen Ann Goonan
  • By the Time We Get to Arizona - shortfiction by Madeline Ashby
  • The Man Who Sold the Moon - shortfiction by Cory Doctorow
  • Johnny Appledrone vs. the FAA - shortfiction by Lee Konstantinou
  • Degrees of Freedom - shortfiction by Karl Schroeder
  • Two Scenarios for the Future of Solar Energy - shortfiction by Annalee Newitz
  • A Hotel in Antarctica - shortfiction by Geoffrey A. Landis
  • Periapsis - shortfiction by James L. Cambias
  • The Man Who Sold the Stars - (2013) - shortfiction by Gregory Benford
  • Entanglement - shortfiction by Vandana Singh
  • Elephant Angels - shortfiction by Brenda Cooper
  • Covenant - shortfiction by Elizabeth Bear
  • Quantum Telepathy - shortfiction by Rudy Rucker
  • Transition Generation - shortfiction by David Brin
  • The Day it All Ended - shortfiction by Charlie Jane Anders
  • Tall Tower - shortfiction by Bruce Sterling
  • Science and Science Fiction: An Interview With Paul Davies - interview of Paul Davies (1946-) - interview by unknown

A Legend of the Future

Agustin de Rojas

A canonical, riveting work from the patron saint of Cuban science fiction that is reminiscent of Arthur C. Clarke's 2001: A Space Odyssey and now available to an English readership for the first time.

A morally profound chamber piece, Agustín de Rojas' A Legend of the Future takes place inside a damaged spaceship following the failure of a mission to Titan, one of Saturn's moons. The journey back to Earth forces the crew members to face their innermost fears. This mesmerizing novel is a science fiction roman à clef about the intense pressures--economic, ideological, psychological--inside Communist Cuba.

The Man Who Sold the Moon

Cory Doctorow

Sturgeon Award nominated novella. It originally appeared in the anthology Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better World (2014), edited by Ed Finn and Kathryn Cramer. The story is also included in the anthologies The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirty-Second Annual Collection (2015), edited by Gardner Dozois, and Imaginarium 4: The Best Canadian Speculative Writing (2016), edited by Sandra Kasturi and Jerome Stueart.

Read this story for free at boingboing.

Axiomatic

Greg Egan

From junkies who drink at the time-stream to love affairs in time-reversed galaxies; from gene-altered dolphins that converse only in limericks to the program that allows you to design your own child; from the brain implants called axiomatics to the strange attractors that spin off new religions, Greg Egan's future is frighteningly close to our own present.

Diaspora

Greg Egan

The boldest and most wildly speculative writer of our time, Greg Egan has envisioned a quantum Brave New World -- a masterful saga of a time when not only human life, but fleshly reality itself, will be nothing but a memory...

It is the thirtieth century.The "world" has evolved into a vast network of probes, satellites, and servers knitting the solar system into one scape from the outer planets to the sun. Humanity, too, has reconfigured itself. Most people have chosen immortality, joining the polises to become conscious software. Others have opted for disposable, renewable robotic bodies that remain in contact with the physical world. A few holdouts stubbornly remain fleshers struggling to shape an antiquated existence in the muck and jungle of Earth.

And then there is the Orphan, a genderless digital being grown from a mind seed.

When an unforeseen disaster ravages the fleshers, it awakens the polises to the possibility of their own extinction from bizarre astrophysical processes that seemingly violate fundamental laws of nature. It is up to the Orphan and a group of refugees to find the knowledge that will save them all--a search that will lead them on a quantum adventure to a higher dimension beyond the macrocosmos....

Permutation City

Greg Egan

The story of a man with a vision - immortality : for those who can afford it is found in cyberspace. Permutation city is the tale of a man with a vision - how to create immortality - and how that vision becomes something way beyond his control. Encompassing the lives and struggles of an artificial life junkie desperate to save her dying mother, a billionaire banker scarred by a terrible crime, the lovers for whom, in their timeless virtual world, love is not enough - and much more - Permutation city is filled with the sense of wonder.

The Wreck of The River of Stars

Michael Flynn

Michael Flynn has written the best SF in the tradition of Robert A. Heinlein of the last decade. His major work was the Firestar sequence, a four-book future history. "As Robert A. Heinlein did and all too few have done since, Michael Flynn writes about the near future as if he'd been there and was bringing back reports of what he'd seen," said Harry Turtledove. Now, in this sweeping stand-alone epic of the spaceways, Flynn grows again in stature, with an SF novel worthy of the master himself. Indeed, if Heinlein's famous character, the space-faring poet Rhysling, had ever written a novel, this would be it.

This is a compelling tale of the glory that was. In the days of the great sailing ships, in the mid-twenty-first century, when magnetic sails drew cargo and passengers alike to every corner of the solar system, sailors had the highest status of all spacemen, and the crew of the luxury liner the River of Stars, the highest among all sailors.

But development of the Farnsworth fusion drive doomed the sailing ships, and now the River of Stars is the last of its kind, retrofitted with engines, her mast vestigial, her sails unraised for years. An ungainly hybrid, she operates in the late years of the century as a mere tramp freighter among the outer planets, and her crew is a motley group of misfits. Stepan Gorgas is the escapist executive officer who becomes captain. Ramakrishnan Bhatterji is the chief engineer who disdains him. Eugenie Satterwaithe, once a captain herself, is third officer and, for form's sake, sailing master.

When an unlikely and catastrophic engine failure strikes the River, Bhatterji is confident he can effect repairs with heroic engineering, but Satterwaithe and the other sailors among the crew plot to save her with a glorious last gasp for the old ways, mesmerized by a vision of arriving at Jupiter proudly under sail. The story of their doom has the power, the poetry, and the inevitability of a Greek tragedy. This is a great science fiction novel, Flynn's best yet.

Saturn Rukh

Robert L. Forward

In the near future five intrepid men and women have been paid a billion dollars each to risk the first voyage into the upper atmosphere of Saturn. The goal: to convert atmospheric chemicals into fuel to power interplanetary spaceships.

But no one anticipates a crash landing on one of the enormous flying creatures known as rukhs that live in Saturn's atmosphere.

Gene Mapper

Taiyo Fujii

In a world without hunger, knowledge is power and biology a weapon...

In a future where reality has been augmented and biology itself has been hacked, the world's food supply is genetically modified, superior, and vulnerable. When gene mapper Hayashida discovers that his custom rice plant has experienced a dysgenic collapse, he suspects sabotage. Hayashida travels Asia to find himself in Ho Chi Minh City with hired-gun hacker Kitamura at his side--and in mortal danger--as he pushes ever nearer to the heart of the mystery.

Orbital Cloud

Taiyo Fujii

The global war on terror has a new front--the very edge of outer space.

In the year 2020, Kazumi Kimura, proprietor of shooting star forecast website Meteor News, notices some orbiting space debris moving suspiciously. Rumors spread online that the debris is actually an orbital weapon targeting the International Space Station. Halfway across the world, at NORAD, Staff Sergeant Darryl Freeman begins his investigation of the debris. At the same time, billionaire entrepreneur Ronnie Smark and his journalist daughter prepare to check into an orbital hotel as part of a stunt promoting private space tourism. Then Kazumi receives highly sensitive information from a source claiming to be an Iranian scientist. And so begins an unprecedented international battle against space-based terror that will soon involve the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, NORAD, and the CIA.

The Falling Sky

Pippa Goldschmidt

Jeanette is a young, solitary post-doctoral researcher who has dedicated her life to studying astronomy. Struggling to compete in a prestigious university department dominated by egos and incompetents, and caught in a cycle of brief and unsatisfying affairs, she travels to a mountain-top observatory in Chile to focus on her research.

There Jeanette stumbles upon evidence that will challenge the fundamentals of the universe, drawing her into conflict with her colleagues and the scientific establishment, but also casting her back to the tragic loss that defined her childhood. As the implications of her discovery gather momentum, and her relationships spiral out of control, Jeanette's own grip on reality is threatened, finally forcing her to confront the hidden past.

The Listeners

James E. Gunn

After fifty-one long years of patient waiting, the message has finally arrived. They have dedicated their lives to trying to decipher the eerie silence that resounds from space and now there is finally a sound after decades of quiet. In the beginning there is a hail of celebration, the Project has finally produced results, but then the questions begin. What does the message mean? Could it be 'we come in peace' or 'get ready for world domination'?

The message baffles Earth. Only one man has the power to make the decision and it could mean intergalactic warfare if he makes the wrong choice. Director MacDonald holds in his hands the fate of Earth, the universe and the Project, which is dedicated to answering questions that have plagued humanity for centuries. Will he make the correct choice?

The Centauri Device

M. John Harrison

John Truck was to outward appearances just another lowlife spaceship captain. But he was also the last of the Centaurans – or at least, half of him was – which meant that he was the only person who could operate the Centauri Device, a sentient bomb which might hold the key to settling a vicious space war.

M. John Harrison’s classic novel turns the conventions of space opera on their head, and is written with the precision and brilliance for which is famed.

The Ouroboros Wave

Jyouji Hayashi

Ninety years from now, a satellite detects a nearby black hole scientists dub Kali for the Hindu goddess of destruction. Humanity embarks on a generations-long project to tap the energy of the black hole, and found colonies on planets across the solar system. Earth and Mars and the moons Europa (Jupiter) and Titan (Uranus) develop radically different societies, with only Kali, that swirling vortex of destruction and creation, and the hated but crucial Artificial Accretion Disk Development association (AADD) in common.

Farmer in the Sky

Robert A. Heinlein

The Earth is crowded and food is rationed, but a colony on Ganymede, one of the moons of Jupiter, offers an escape for teenager Bill Lermer and his family. Back on Earth, the move sounded like a grand adventure, but Bill soon realizes that life on the frontier is dangerous, and in an alien world with no safety nets, nature is cruelly unforgiving of even small mistakes.

Bill's new home is a world of unearthly wonders and heartbreaking tragedy. He will face hardships, survive dangers, and grow up fast, meeting the challenge of opening up a new world for humanity and finding strengths within himself that he had never suspected existed.

Have Space Suit - Will Travel

Robert A. Heinlein

SKYJACKED!

One minute Kip Russell is walking around his own backyard, testing out an old space suit and dreaming about going to the moon - the next he is the captive of a space pirate and on his way to the very place he had been dreaming of. At first, the events are so unreal he thinks he might be having a nightmare... but when he discovers other prisoners aboard the spaceship he knows the ordeal is all too real. Kip and his fellow abductees, the daughter of a world-renowned scientist and a beautiful creature from an alien planet, have been skyjacked by a monstrous extraterrestrial who is flying them to the moon on a journey toward a fate worse than death....

The Man Who Sold the Moon (collection)

Robert A. Heinlein

D. D. Harriman is a billionaire with a dream: the dream of Space for All Mankind. The method? Anything that works. Maybe, in fact, Harriman goes too far.

But he will give us the stars....

Table of Contents:

  • Preface (The Man Who Sold the Moon) - (1950) - essay
  • Introduction (The Man Who Sold the Moon) - (1950) - essay by John W. Campbell, Jr.
  • Life-Line - [Future History] - (1939) - short story
  • 'Let There Be Light' - [Future History] - short story (variant of Let There Be Light 1940) [as by Robert Heinlein ]
  • The Roads Must Roll - [Future History] - (1940) - novelette
  • Blow-Ups Happen - [Future History] - (1940) - novella (variant of Blowups Happen) [as by Robert Heinlein ]
  • The Man Who Sold the Moon - [D. D. Harriman] - (1950) - novella
  • Requiem - [D. D. Harriman] - (1940) - short story

The Genesis Machine

James P. Hogan

In an America becoming repressive in the face of world tensions, Brad Clifford, a young mathematical physicist, had been virtually drafted from academia to work on defense projects. But Brad's true dedication was to bring about the unification of all fields and forces, and his theory was too wild for his superiors to take seriously. So he defied the political authorities and went AWOL to work with a fellow maverick scientist. They built the machine that his theory made possible - but the machine made all weapons impotent, and could either wreck the world or save it. And the Powers That Be wanted to control it for their own benefit...

The Two Faces of Tomorrow

James P. Hogan

Midway through the 21st century, an integrated global computer network manages much of the world's affairs. A proposed major software upgrade - an artificial intelligence - will give the system an unprecedented degree of independent decision-making, but serious questions are raised in regard to how much control can safely be given to a non-human intelligence. In order to more fully assess the system, a new space-station habitat - a world in miniature - is developed for deployment of the fully operational system, named Spartacus. This mini-world can then be "attacked" in a series of escalating tests to assess the system's responses and capabilities. If Spartacus gets out of hand, the system can be shut down and the station destroyed... unless Spartacus decides to take matters into its own hands and take the fight to Earth.

Biogenesis

Tatsuaki Ishiguro

Told in the manner of scientific reports, this collection of science fiction stories explores the allegorical overtones about the precariousness of species.

Biogenesis and Other Stories collects five stories by Tatsuaki Ishiguro.

In Biogenesis, two professors research the rare winged mouse and how the genetic makeup of the creatures point to their eventual extinction. They discover that upon mating, both the male and female of the species die. The professors try to clone the winged mice without success. They breed the remaining pair in captivity, noting the procedure, which includes a vibration of the creatures' wings, what appeares to be kissing, and the shedding of tears--composed of the same substance as their blood--until their eventual death.

Mind Switch (The Other Foot)

Damon Knight

One day (a) reporter for the Paris Soir visited the Berlin Zoo...standing outside the spacious cage housing the newly-acquired Brecht Biped, Fritz, when the world seemed to lurch...Then he was no longer outside the cage looking in, but inside looking out...

The Flicker Men: A Novel

Ted Kosmatka

A quantum physicist shocks the world with a startling experiment, igniting a struggle between science and theology, free will and fate, and antagonizing forces not known to exist

Eric Argus is a washout. His prodigious early work clouded his reputation and strained his sanity. But an old friend gives him another chance, an opportunity to step back into the light.

With three months to produce new research, Eric replicates the paradoxical double-slit experiment to see for himself the mysterious dual nature of light and matter. A simple but unprecedented inference blooms into a staggering discovery about human consciousness and the structure of the universe.

His findings are celebrated and condemned in equal measure. But no one can predict where the truth will lead. And as Eric seeks to understand the unfolding revelations, he must evade shadowy pursuers who believe he knows entirely too much already.

His Master's Voice

Stanislaw Lem

Scientists studying the phenomenon of neutrino radiation suddenly realize that the cosmic emissions are conveying a message for humanity, and the race is on to decode the alien transmission.

Solaris

Stanislaw Lem

Who's testing whom? When Kris Kelvin arrives at the planet Solaris to study the ocean that covers its surface, he is forced to confront a painful, hitherto unconscious memory embodied in the living physical likeness of a long-dead lover. Others examining the planet, Kelvin learns, are plagued with their own repressed and newly corporeal memories. Scientists speculate that the Solaris ocean may be a massive brain that creates these incarnate memories, its purpose in doing so unknown.

The first of Lem's novels to be published in America and now considered a classic, SOLARIS raises a question: Can we truly understand the universe around us without first understanding what lies within?

Lem himself, who read English fluently, repeatedly voiced his disappointment about the Kilmartin-Cox translation of the French translation, and it has generally been considered second-rate. In 2011, the first direct Polish-to-English translation by Bill Johnston was released as an audiobook narrated by Alessandro Juliani, and then as an e-book.

Newton's Wake: A Space Opera

Ken MacLeod

ACROSS THE UNIVERSE

In the aftermath of the Hard Rapture-a cataclysmic war sparked by the explosive evolution of Earth's artificial intelligences into godlike beings-a few remnants of humanity managed to survive. Some even prospered.

Lucinda Carlyle, head of an ambitious clan of galactic entrepreneurs, had carved out a profitable niche for herself and her kin by taking control of the Skein, a chain of interstellar gates left behind by the posthumans. But on a world called Eurydice, a remote planet at the farthest rim of the galaxy, Lucinda stumbled upon a forgotten relic of the past that could threaten the Carlyles' way of life.

For, in the last instants before the war, a desperate band of scientists had scanned billions of human personalities into digital storage, and sent them into space in the hope of one day resurrecting them to the flesh. Now, armed, dangerous, and very much alive, these revenants have triggered a fateful confrontation that could shatter the balance of power, and even change the nature of reality itself.

The Invisible Country

Paul J. McAuley

In these nine exraordinary tales, acclaimed author PAUL J. MCAULEY--winner of the Philip K. Dick, British Fantasy Society, John W. Campbell Memorial, and Aruthur C. Clarke Awards--explores the wonders and dangers of biotechnology and its creations in stories whose settings careen from a distant alternate past to a breathtaking far-flung future. In a sixteenth-century Venice, transformed by a premature Industrial Revolution, a physian mourning his daughter's passing meets a mountebank with the power to raise the dead. In a tomorrow of raw and terrible beauty, revolutionaries struggle to free genetically engineered creatrues fated to die in combat games and violent sexual encounters. And ten million years in the future, on an artificial world orbiting an immense black hole, a civilization of awesome strangeness and complexity created--and abandoned--by the Godlike Preservers is about to meet the human ancestors of its makers.

Infinity Beach

Jack McDevitt

We are alone. That is the verdict, after centuries of Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence missions and space exploration. The only living things in the Universe are found on the Nine Worlds settled from Earth, and the starships that knit them together. Or so it's believed, until Dr. Kimberly Brandywine sets out to find what happened to her clone-sister Emily, who, after the final, unsuccessful manned SETI expedition, disappeared along with the rest of her ship's crew.

Following a few ominous clues, Kim discovers the ship's log was faked. Something happened out there in the darkness between the stars, and she's prepared to go to any length to find answers. Even if it means giving up her career...stealing a starship...losing her lover. Kim is about to discover the truth about her sister -- and about more than she ever dared imagine.

The Cassandra Project

Jack McDevitt
Mike Resnick

Two science fiction masters--Jack McDevitt and Mike Resnick--team up to deliver a classic thriller in which one man uncovers the hidden history of the United States space program...

"Houston, we have a problem..."

Formerly a cynical, ambitious PR man, Jerry Culpepper finally found a client he could believe in when he was hired as NASA's public affairs director. Proud of the Agency's history and sure of its destiny, he was thrilled to be a part of its future.

But public disinterest and budget cuts changed that future. Now, a half century after the first Moon landing, Jerry feels like the only one with stars in his eyes.

Then a fifty-year-old secret about the Apollo XI mission is revealed, and he finds himself embroiled in the biggest controversy of the twenty-first century, one that will test his ability--and his willingness--to spin the truth about a conspiracy of reality-altering proportions...

Picoverse

Robert A. Metzger

Picoverse: a universe one million-millionth of our own, created by deliberately ripping apart the fabric of space-time.

A big-bang of an adventure, Robert Metzger's Picoverse boldly embraces the grand traditions of the genre, while exploding beyond the limits of knowledge, beyond the edges of the imagination, and beyond the boundaries of the universe as we know it.

"Probably the most daring SF novel since Ringworld...mind-boggling." (F. Paul Wilson, author of All the Rage)

"Bob Metzger knows his science. He proves it in Picoverse, a complex and intriguing story that ranges widely through time and space." (Charles Sheffield, author of The Spheres of Heaven)

"Metzger has captured the essence of that good old time religion SF fans have worshiped since the genre began: a rousing hard SF tale with a true Sense of Wonder...This one is a winner." (David A. Truesdale, Editor, SFWA Bulletin)

"A 21st century leap from the physics lab into the multiverse that only Gregory Benford, Philip José Farmer, and A.E. Van Vogt could have written-if they had ever collaborated." (Tom Easton, Reviewer, Analog)

Solar Express

L. E. Modesitt, Jr.

You can't militarize space. This one rule has led to decades of peaceful development of space programs worldwide. However, increasing resource scarcity and a changing climate on Earth's surface is causing some interested parties to militarize, namely India, the North American Union, and the Sinese Federation.

The discovery of a strange artifact by Dr. Alayna Wong precipitates a crisis. What appears to be a hitherto undiscovered comet is soon revealed to be an alien structure on a cometary trajectory toward the sun. Now there is a race between countries to see who can study and control the artifact dubbed the "Solar Express" before it perhaps destroys itself.

Leading the way for the North American Union is Alayna's friend, Captain Christopher Tavoian, one of the first shuttle pilots to be trained for combat in space. But, as the alien craft gets closer to its destination, it begins to alter the surface of the sun in strange new ways, ways that could lead Alayna to revolutionary discoveries-provided Chris can prevent war from breaking out as he navigates among the escalating tensions between nations.

Solar Express is a thrilling, new, hard science fiction novel from New York Times bestselling author L. E. Modesitt, Jr.

Remnant Population

Elizabeth Moon

For forty years, Colony 3245.12 has been Ofelia's home. On this planet far away in space and time from the world of her youth, she has lived and loved, weathered the death of her husband, raised her one surviving child, lovingly tended her garden, and grown placidly old. And it is here that she fully expects to finish out her days--until the shifting corporate fortunes of the Sims Bancorp Company dictates that Colony 3245.12 is to be disbanded, its residents shipped off, deep in cryo-sleep, to somewhere new and strange and not of their choosing. But while her fellow colonists grudgingly anticipate a difficult readjustment on some distant world, Ofelia savors the promise of a golden opportunity. Not starting over in the hurly-burly of a new community... but closing out her life in blissful solitude, in the place she has no intention of leaving. A population of one.

With everything she needs to sustain her, and her independent spirit to buoy her, Ofelia actually does start life over--for the first time on her own terms: free of the demands, the judgments, and the petty tyrannies of others. But when a reconnaissance ship returns to her idyllic domain, and its crew is mysteriously slaughtered, Ofelia realizes she is not the sole inhabitant of her paradise after all. And, when the inevitable time of first contact finally arrives, she will find her life changed yet again–in ways she could never have imagined....

Lucifer's Hammer

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle

Monumental devastation will sweep across the globe if the newly-discovered Hamner-Brown comet collides with the one major obstacle in its path: Earth.

For millionaire Tim Hamner, the comet is a ticket to immortality. For filmmaker Harvey Randall, it's a shot to redeem a flagging career. And for astronauts John Baker and Rick Delanty, it's a second chance for glory in outer space.

But for a world gripped by comet fever, fascination quickly turns to fear. And only those who survive the impact will know the even greater terror, when rich and poor, politicians and killers, turn to each other or against each other--and the remnants of humanity grow savage to battle for what little remains...

Oath of Fealty

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle

In the near future, Los Angeles is an all but uninhabitable war zone, racked by crime, violence, pollution and poverty. But above the blighted city, a Utopia has arisen: Todos Santos, a thousand-foot high single-structured city, designed to use state-of-the-art technology to create a completely human-friendly environment, offering its dwellers everything they could want in exchange for their oath of allegiance and their constant surveillance.

But there are those who want to see the utopia destroyed, whose answer to tomorrow's best and brightest hope is mindless violence.

And they have just entered Todos Santos. . . .

Convergent Series

Larry Niven

Contains:

  • Bordered in Black
  • One Face
  • Banquo's Ghost
  • The Meddler
  • Dry Run
  • Convergent Series
  • The Deadlier Weapon
  • The Nonesuch
  • Singularities Make Me Nervous
  • The Schumann Computer
  • Assimilating Our Culture, That's What They're Doing!
  • Grammar Lesson
  • The Subject is Closed
  • Cruel and Unusual
  • Transfer of Power
  • Cautionary Tales
  • Rotating Cylinders and the Possibility of Global Causality Violation
  • Plaything
  • Mistake
  • Night on Mispec Moor
  • Wrong Way Street

Destiny's Road

Larry Niven

Wide and smooth, the Road was seared into planet Destiny's rocky surface by the fusion drive of the powered landing craft, Cavorite. The Cavorite deserted the original interstellar colonists, stranding them without hope of contacting Earth.

Now, descendants of those pioneers have many questions about the Road, but no settler who has gone down it has ever returned. For Jemmy Bloocher, a young farm boy, the questions burn too hot--and he sets out to uncover the many mysteries of Destiny's Road.

Inconstant Moon (collection)

Larry Niven

Stan and Leslie watch as the moon becomes impossibly bright; then the sky lights up and seems on fire. Has the sun gone nova and these are their last few hours alive? As Los Angeles drowns in storms and people move from shock to terror, Stan and Leslie face their own mortality, as Stan seeks to understand what has happened.

Written with intelligence and humor, Larry Niven's Hugo Award-winning short story became an "Outer Limits" episode. "Inconstant Moon" invites you to ask yourself, "How would you spend your last night on Earth?"

Table of Contents:

  • Inconstant Moon - (1971)
  • Wait It Out - (1968)
  • Bordered in Black - (1966)
  • Not Long Before the End - (1969)
  • How the Heroes Die - (1966)
  • At the Bottom of a Hole - (1966)
  • Passerby - [State] - (1969)
  • The Deadlier Weapon - non-genre - (1968)
  • Convergent Series - (1967)
  • One Face - (1965)
  • Becalmed in Hell - (1965)
  • Death by Ecstasy - (1969)

Usurper of the Sun

Housuke Nojiri

The mysterious Builders have brought humanity to the edge of extinction; can they be reasoned with, or must they be destroyed? Aki Shiraishi is a high school student working in the astronomy club and one of the few witnesses to an amazing event--someone is building a tower on the planet Mercury. Soon, the Builders have constructed a ring around the sun, threatening the ecology of Earth with an immense shadow. Aki is inspired to pursue a career in science, and the truth. She must determine the purpose of the ring and the plans of its creators, as the survival of both species--humanity and the alien Builders--hangs in the balance.

Robot Dreams (collection)

Isaac Asimov

Robot Dreams spans the body of Asimov's fiction from the 1940s to the mid-80s, and features classic Asimovian themes, from the scientific puzzle to the extraterrestrial thriller, all introduced in an exclusive essay written especially for this collection.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction - (1989) - essay
  • Little Lost Robot - (1947) - novelette
  • Robot Dreams - (1986) - shortstory
  • Breeds There a Man...? - (1951) - novelette
  • Hostess - (1951) - novelette
  • Sally - (1953) - shortstory
  • Strikebreaker - (1957) - shortstory
  • The Machine That Won the War - (1961) - shortstory
  • Eyes Do More Than See - (1965) - shortstory
  • The Martian Way - (1952) - novella
  • Franchise - (1955) - shortstory
  • Jokester - (1956) - shortstory
  • The Last Question - (1956) - shortstory
  • Does a Bee Care? - (1957) - shortstory
  • Light Verse - (1973) - shortstory
  • The Feeling of Power - (1958) - shortstory
  • Spell My Name with an S - (1958) - shortstory
  • The Ugly Little Boy - (1958) - novelette
  • The Billiard Ball - (1967) - novelette
  • True Love - (1977) - shortstory
  • The Last Answer - (1980) - shortstory
  • Lest We Remember - (1982) - novelette

The End of Eternity

Isaac Asimov

One of Isaac Asimov’s SF masterpieces, this stand-alone novel is a monument of the flowering of SF in the twentieth century. It is widely regarded as Asimov’s single best SF novel.

Andrew Harlan is an Eternal, a member of the elite of the future. One of the few who live in Eternity, a location outside of place and time, Harlan’s job is to create carefully controlled and enacted Reality Changes. These Changes are small, exactingly calculated shifts in the course of history, made for the benefit of humankind. Though each Change has been made for the greater good, there are also always costs.

During one of his assignments, Harlan meets and falls in love with Noÿs Lambent, a woman who lives in real time and space. Then Harlan learns that Noÿs will cease to exist after the next Change, and he risks everything to sneak her into Eternity.

Unfortunately, they are caught. Harlan’s punishment? His next assignment: Kill the woman he loves before the paradox they have created results in the destruction of Eternity.

The Gods Themselves

Isaac Asimov

Only a few know the terrifying truth--an outcast Earth scientist, a rebellious alien inhabitant of a dying planet, a lunar-born human intuitionist who senses the imminent annihilation of the Sun. They know the truth--but who will listen? They have foreseen the cost of abundant energy--but who will believe? These few beings, human and alien, hold the key to the Earth's survival.

The Killing Star

George Zebrowski
Charles Pellegrino

The late 21st century seems like a good time to be alive. Earth is at peace. Humans now command self-replicating machines that create engineering marvels on enormous scales. Artificial habitats dot the solar system. Anti-matter driven Valkyrie rockets carry explorers to the stars at nearly the speed of light. All seems well.

Then, from the uncaring black of space come swarms of relativistic missiles. Though they are merely boulder-sized hunks of metal, they move fast enough to hit with the force of many nuclear arsenals. They are impossible to track and impossible to stop. Humanity is all but wiped out by the horrific bombardment.

A handful of survivors desperately struggle to escape the alien mop-up fleet. They hide close to the sun, inside asteroids, beneath the crusts of moons, within ice rings, and in the fathomless depths of interstellar space. But most are hunted down and slaughtered.

The last man and woman on Earth are captured as zoo specimens. In the belly of an alien starship, a squid-like being relates to them the pitiless logic behind human-kind's execution: the moment humans learned to travel at relativistic speeds was the moment mankind simply became too dangerous a neighbor to have around. Nothing personal.

Century Rain

Alastair Reynolds

Three hundred years in the future, Verity Auger is a specialist in the archaeological exploration of Earth, rendered uninhabitable after the technological catastrophe known as the Nanocaust. After a field-trip to goes badly wrong, Verity is forced to redeem herself by participating in a dangerous mission, for which her expertise in invaluable.

Using a backdoor into an unstable alien transit system, Auger's faction has discovered something astonishing at the far end of a wormhole: mid twentieth-century Earth, preserved like a fly in amber. Is it a window into the past, a simulation, or something else entirely?

CENTURY RAIN is not just a time-travel story, nor a tale of alternate history. Part hard SF thriller, part interstellar adventure, part noir romance, CENTURY RAIN is something altogether stranger.

House of Suns

Alastair Reynolds

Six million years ago, at the very dawn of the starfaring era, Abigail Gentian fractured herself into a thousand male and female clones: the shatterlings.

Sent out into the galaxy, these shatterlings have stood aloof as they document the rise and fall of countless human empires. They meet every two hundred thousand years, to exchange news and memories of their travels with their siblings. Campion and Purslane are not only late for their thirty-second reunion, but they have brought along an amnesiac golden robot for a guest.

But the wayward shatterlings get more than the scolding they expect: they face the discovery that someone has a very serious grudge against the Gentian line, and there is a very real possibility of traitors in their midst. The surviving shatterlings have to dodge exotic weapons while they regroup to try to solve the mystery of who is persecuting them, and why - before their ancient line is wiped out of existence, forever.

Pushing Ice

Alastair Reynolds

Some centuries from now, the exploration and exploitation of the Solar System is in full swing. On the cold edge of the system, Bella Lind, captain of the huge commercial spacecraft Rockhopper IV, helps fuel this new gold rush by attaching mass-driver motors to organic-rich water-ice comets to move them back to the inner worlds. Her crew are tough, blue-collar miners, engineers and demolition experts. Around Saturn, something inexplicable happens: one of the moons leaves its orbit and accelerates out of the Solar System. The icy mantle peels away to reveal that it was never a moon in the first place, just a parked spacecraft, millions of years old, that has now decided to move on. Rockhopper IV, trapped in the pull, is hurled across time and space into the deep, distant future, arriving in a vast, alien-constructed chamber. And the crew are not alone, for each chamber contains an alien culture dragged into this cosmic menagerie at the end of time. The crew of the Rockhopper IV know a lot about blowing up comets, but not much about first contact with ultra-advanced aliens.

They have two things to worry about: can they (and their new alien allies) negotiate their way through each harrying contact? And can they assimilate the avalanche of knowledge about their own future - including all the glittering, dangerous technologies that are now theirs for the taking - without destroying themselves in the process?

Zima Blue and Other Stories

Alastair Reynolds

Reynolds' pursuit of truth is not limited to wide-angle star smashing - not that stars don't get pulverised when one character is gifted (or cursed) with an awful weapon by the legendary Merlin. Reynolds' protagonists find themselves in situations of betrayal, whether by a loved one's accidental death, as in 'Signal to Noise', or by a trusted wartime authority, in 'Spirey and the Queen'. His fertile imagination can resurrect Elton John on Mars in 'Understanding Space and Time' or make prophets of the human condition out of pool-cleaning robots in the title story. But overall, the stories in ZIMA BLUE represent a more optimistic take on humanity's future, a view that says there may be wars, there may be catastrophes and cosmic errors, but something human will still survive.

Table of Content:

  • Introduction - (2006) - essay by Paul J. McAuley
  • The Real Story - (2002) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Beyond the Aquila Rift - (2005) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Enola - (1991) - shortstory by Alastair Reynolds
  • Signal to Noise - (2006) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Hideaway - (2000) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Merlin's Gun - (2000) - shortstory by Alastair Reynolds
  • Angels of Ashes - (1999) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Spirey and the Queen - (1996) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Understanding Space and Time - (2005) - novelette by Alastair Reynolds
  • Zima Blue - (2005) - shortstory by Alastair Reynolds

Jack Glass: The Story of a Murderer

Adam Roberts

Golden Age SF meets Golden Age Crime from the author of Swiftly, New Model Army, and Yellow Blue Tibia-an innovative literary voice working at the height of his powers

Jack Glass is the murderer-we know this from the start. Yet as this extraordinary novel tells the story of three murders committed by Glass, the reader will be surprised to find out that it was Glass who was the killer and how he did it. And by the end of the book our sympathies for the killer are fully engaged. Riffing on the tropes of crime fiction (the country house murder, the locked room mystery) and imbued with the feel of golden age SF, this is another bravura performance from Roberts. Whatever games he plays with the genre, whatever questions he asks of the reader, Roberts never loses sight of the need to entertain.

This novel has some wonderfully gruesome moments, is built around three gripping HowDunnits, and comes with liberal doses of sly humor. Roberts invites us to have fun and tricks us into thinking about both crime and SF via a beautifully structured novel set in a society whose depiction challenges notions of crime, punishment, power, and freedom.

Aurora

Kim Stanley Robinson

AURORA tells the incredible story of our first voyage beyond the solar system.

Our voyage from Earth began generations ago.

Now, we approach our destination.

A new home.

AURORA.

Icehenge

Kim Stanley Robinson

On the North Pole of Pluto there stands an enigma: a huge circle of standing blocks of ice, built on the pattern of Earth's Stonehenge--but ten times the size, standing alone at the farthest reaches of the Solar System. What is it? Who came there to build it?

In Kim Stanley Robinson's Icehenge,the secret lies, perhaps, in the chaotic decades of the Martian Revolution, in the lost memories of those who have lived for centuries.

The Memory of Whiteness

Kim Stanley Robinson

In 3229 A.D., human civilization is scattered among the planets, moons, and asteroids of the solar system. Billions of lives depend on the technology derived from the breakthroughs of the greatest physicist of the age, Arthur Holywelkin. But in the last years of his life, Holywelkin devoted himself to building a strange, beautiful, and complex musical instrument that he called The Orchestra.

Johannes Wright has earned the honor of becoming the Ninth Master of Holywelkin's Orchestra. Follow him on his Grand Tour of the Solar System, as he journeys down the gravity well toward the sun, impelled by a destiny he can scarcely understand, and is pursued by mysterious foes who will tell him anything except the reason for their enmity.

The Planet on the Table

Kim Stanley Robinson

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction - (1986) - essay
  • Venice Drowned - (1981) - novelette
  • Mercurial - (1985) - novelette
  • Ridge Running - (1984) - shortstory
  • The Disguise - (1977) - novella
  • The Lucky Strike - (1984) - novelette
  • Coming Back to Dixieland - (1976) - novelette
  • Stone Eggs - (1983) - shortstory
  • Black Air - (1983) - novelette

Recovering Apollo 8

Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Sidewise-winning and Hugo-nominated Novella

In a world where Apollo 8 veered tragically off course, the event sent the astronauts, and the space program, hurtling into space, lost and helpless. The tragedy so affected eight-year-old Richard Johansenn that he dedicates his life -- and the fortune he amasses along the way -- to recovering the capsule. But Richard's quest proves more complicated than a simple recovery mission, causing him to question the meaning of life, the meaning of death and the heroisms in between.

Flashforward

Robert J. Sawyer

A scientific experiment begins, and as the button is pressed, the unexpected occurs: everyone in the world goes to sleep for a few moments while everyone's consciousness is catapulted more than twenty years into the future. At the end of those moments, when the world reawakens, all human life is transformed by foreknowledge.

Mindscan

Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer's Hominids, the first volume of his bestselling Neanderthal Parallax trilogy, won the 2003 Hugo Award, and its sequel, Humans, was a 2004 Hugo nominee. Now he's back with a pulse-pounding, mind-expanding standalone novel, rich with his signature philosophical and ethical speculations, all grounded in cutting-edge science.

Jake Sullivan has cheated death: he's discarded his doomed biological body and copied his consciousness into an android form. The new Jake soon finds love, something that eluded him when he was encased in flesh: he falls for the android version of Karen, a woman rediscovering all the joys of life now that she's no longer constrained by a worn-out body either.

But suddenly Karen's son sues her, claiming that by uploading into an immortal body, she has done him out of his inheritance. Even worse, the original version of Jake, consigned to die on the far side of the moon, has taken hostages there, demanding the return of his rights of personhood. In the courtroom and on the lunar surface, the future of uploaded humanity hangs in the balance. Mindscan is vintage Sawyer -- a feast for the mind and the heart.

Quantum Night

Robert J. Sawyer

Experimental psychologist Jim Marchuk has developed a flawless technique for identifying the previously undetected psychopaths lurking everywhere in society. But while being cross-examined about his breakthrough in court, Jim is shocked to discover that he has lost his memories of six months of his life from twenty years previously--a dark time during which he himself committed heinous acts.

Jim is reunited with Kayla Huron, his forgotten girlfriend from his lost period and now a quantum physicist who has made a stunning discovery about the nature of human consciousness. As a rising tide of violence and hate sweeps across the globe, the psychologist and the physicist combine forces in a race against time to see if they can do the impossible--change human nature--before the entire world descends into darkness.

Lockstep

Karl Schroeder

When seventeen-year-old Toby McGonigal finds himself lost in space, separated from his family, he expects his next drift into cold sleep to be his last. After all, the planet he’s orbiting is frozen and sunless, and the cities are dead. But when Toby wakes again, he’s surprised to discover a thriving planet, a strange and prosperous galaxy, and something stranger still - that he’s been asleep for 14,000 years.

Welcome to the Lockstep Empire, where civilization is kept alive by careful hibernation. Here cold sleeps can last decades and waking moments mere weeks. Its citizens survive for millenia, traveling asleep on long voyages between worlds. Not only is Lockstep the new center of the galaxy, but Toby is shocked to learn that the Empire is still ruled by its founding family: his own.

Toby’s brother Peter has become a terrible tyrant. Suspicious of the return of his long-lost brother, whose rightful inheritance also controls the lockstep hibernation cycles, Peter sees Toby as a threat to his regime. Now, with the help of a lockstep girl named Corva, Toby must survive the forces of this new Empire, outwit his siblings, and save human civilization.

A Wreath of Stars

Bob Shaw

Ironically, for Gilbert Snook, who considered himself the human equivalent of a neutrino, a particle able to travel through the Earth without disturbing any other particle, it all started with the panic that followed the sighting of the anti neutrino planet as it approached Earth. Earth was unaffected but Snook ended up in a small African Republic teaching English to diamond miners. Then the miners started seeing ghosts and Snook found himself at the centre of a bizarre and far reaching scientific discovery and in the middle of some very dirty political infighting.

Between the Strokes of Night

Charles Sheffield

In the 277th century, Earth is dead, but mankind survives in colonies scattered across the galaxy. To these new worlds come the Immortals, beings with strange ties to ancient Earth who seem to live forever, who can travel light years in days - and who use their strange powers to control the existence of ordinary mortals. On the planet Pentecost, a small group sets out to find and challenge the Immortals. But in the search they themselves are changed: as Immortals, they discover a new threat, not just to themselves, but to the galaxy itself.

The Masks of Time

Robert Silverberg

Vornan-19 fell from the sky, naked, and landed on the Spanish steps in Rome on Christmas afternoon toward the end of the Millennium. And for Leo Garfield things would never be the same. For he is an acknowledged expert in the time reversal properties of sub-atomic particles... and Vornan-19 claims to come from far in the future. Whether or not he is telling the truth, a nervous and edgy world accepts the charming and magnetically charismatic Vornan as some kind of messiah. Even Garfield and his fellow scientists fall under Vornan's spell. But, has he really traveled across time -- or is he just a charlatan and a fraud?

Tower of Glass

Robert Silverberg

Simeon Krug has a vision--and the vast wealth necessary to turn dream into reality. What he wishes is to communicate with the stars, to answer signals from deep space. The colossal tower he's constructing for this purpose soars above the Arctic tundra, and the seemingly perfect androids building it view Krug as their god. But, Krug is only flesh-and-blood, and when his androids discover the truth, their anger knows no bounds... and it threatens much more than the tower.

Cosmic Engineers

Clifford D. Simak

Two reporters looking for a story in the outer reaches of the Solar System come upon a derelict spaceship. Inside, they find the only inhabitant, a beautiful young woman who has been imprisoned for a thousand years in suspended animation, suspended but aware for the whole time. Together they set off on a grand adventure across the vastness of space and time in a search for a race known as the Cosmic Engineers on a mission to save the universe. Originally published as a short novel in Astounding Stories in 1939 and later expanded in this 1950 version, Cosmic Engineers shows the scope and imagination of one of science fictions true masters, Clifford Simak.

Originally serialized in Astounding Science Fiction in 1939.

Seveneves: A Novel

Neal Stephenson

What would happen if the world were ending?

A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.

But the complexities and unpredictability of human nature coupled with unforeseen challenges and dangers threaten the intrepid pioneers, until only a handful of survivors remain...

Five thousand years later, their progeny--seven distinct races now three billion strong--embark on yet another audacious journey into the unknown... to an alien world utterly transformed by cataclysm and time: Earth.

Flare

Roger Zelazny
Thomas T. Thomas

In the mild climate of a decades-long Maunder minimum—a recurring cessation in sunspot activity—humankind has explored the solar system and expanded to the farthest planets. No one is prepared when the Sun awakes with a massive flare that has been a million years in development deep within the stellar core. Its burst of electromagnetic energy, followed by a shower of ionized particles, rips across the system with devastating results. A team of astronomers led by the indomitable Sultana Carr reestablishes the science of solar physics and helps to heal the devastation.

Her Smoke Rose Up Forever

James Tiptree, Jr.

These 18 darkly complex short stories and novellas touch upon human nature and perception, metaphysics and epistemology, and gender and sexuality, foreshadowing a world in which biological tendencies bring about the downfall of humankind. The Nebula Award-winning short story "Love Is the Plan, the Plan Is Death," the Hugo Award-winning novella "The Girl Who Was Plugged In," and the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novella "Houston, Houston, Do You Read?" are included.

Table of Contents

Pandora's Gun

James Van Pelt

What would you do if you controlled powers that were once attributed to gods? What if what you had heard was right: sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic? High school student Peter Van Meer finds an impossible treasure that seems too good to be true. Now, he must work with his two best friends to unlock its secrets before it threatens to spill out its unknown dangers into the world. Chased by the police, the FBI, and men in blue suits, they soon realize that Peter's discovery is much, much more than they bargained for.

The Voyage of the Space Beagle

A. E. Van Vogt

An all-time classic space saga, The Voyage of the Space Beagle is one of the pinnacles of Golden Age SF, an influence on generations of stories. An episodic novel filled with surprises and provocative ideas, this is the story of a great exploration ship sent out into the unknown reaches of space on a long mission of discovery. They encounter several terrifying alien species, including the Ix, who lay their eggs in human bodies, which then devour the humans from within when they hatch. This is one of the most entertaining and gripping stories in all of classic SF.

Good-Bye, Robinson Crusoe and Other Stories

John Varley

This stellar collection by John Varley contains eleven provocative, utterly distinctive stories and novellas. None of them are currently available in any other book. Some have been unavailable in any form for twenty-five years or more. The result is a publishing event that no admirer of Varley--or of first-rate imaginative fiction--can afford to miss.

The bulk of these stories comprise what the author calls a 'Grand Tour of the Solar System,' moving from one thoroughly imagined setting to another with deceptive ease. 'The Funhouse Effect' is a tale of mystery, intrigue, and illusion that takes place on a mechanized comet moving toward the sun s corona. 'Retrograde Summer' is an account of gender reversals and family secrets set against the radically unstable backdrop of Mercury. 'Bagatelle' pits a recurring Varley character--Police Chief Anna-Louise Bach--against a living bomb that threatens to devastate Luna's Dresden City. Other stories range from Venus ('In the Bowl') to an underground 'disneyland' on Pluto ('Good-Bye, Robinson Crusoe') to the unexplored reaches of deep space ('The Black Hole Passes'). The collection ends with two very different offerings that are nonetheless vintage Varley. 'The Unprocessed Word' is a whimsical reflection on one writer s relationship with a ubiquitous, constantly evolving technology, while 'The Manhattan Phone Book (Abridged)' is a brief, absolutely chilling meditation on the consequences of nuclear proliferation.

Whatever the tone, style, or subject matter, Varley remains in complete control of this impressively varied material. Good-Bye, Robinson Crusoe and Other Stories provides intellectual stimulation and pure entertainment in equal measure, and bears the unmistakable hallmark of a master storyteller on every page.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction - essay
  • The Funhouse Effect - (1976) - novelette
  • Retrograde Summer - (1975) - novelette
  • In the Bowl - (1975) - novelette
  • Blue Champagne - (1981) - novella
  • Bagatelle - (1976) - novelette
  • Equinoctial - (1977) - novella
  • Good-Bye, Robinson Crusoe - (1977) - novelette
  • Lollipop and the Tar Baby - (1977) - novelette
  • The Black Hole Passes - (1975) - novelette
  • The Unprocessed Word - (1986) - shortstory
  • The Manhattan Phone Book - (1984) - shortstory

The Cookie Monster

Vernor Vinge

Hugo and Locus Award winning and Nebula Award nominated novella. It originally appeared in Analog Science Fiction and Fact, October 2003. The story can also be found in the anthologies Science Fiction: The Best of 2003, edited by Karen Haber and Jonathan Strahan, The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-First Annual Collection (2004), edited by Gardner Dozois and Digital Rapture: The Singularity Anthology (2012), edited by John Kessel and James Patrick Kelly.

Bolo!

David Weber

Controlled by their tireless electronic brains which were programmed to admit no possibility of defeat, the gigantic robot tanks known as Bolos were almost indestructible, and nearly unstoppable. Their artificial intelligences were designed to make them selflessly serve and protect humans throughout the galaxy and made each Bolo the epitome of the knight sans peur et sans reproche, and often far more noble than the humans who gave them their orders.

Now, David Weber, New York Times best-selling author of the Honor Harrington series, continues the history of the Bolo, in four short novels, one of them published here for the first time. One Bolo is driven over the edge by the very humans it is pledged to protect. Another Bolo must decide whether or not to disobey when it is given an order that constitutes genocide. A third must hunt one of its own kind whose robot brain is damaged and rescue two children which the deranged Bolo thinks it is protecting from a nonexistent enemy. And more, including as a bonus, David Weber's own authoritative technical history of the Bolo, all in a volume that will be irresistible both for David Weber's huge readership and Bolo fans everywhere.

The Martian

Andy Weir

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

H. G. Wells Complete Short Story Omnibus

H. G. Wells

This collection of short stories by H. G. Wells is the most comprehensive yet, and showcases the hugely fertile imagination of the great author, whose ideas and storylines remain hugely relevant to this day.

Note: This is a leather-bound collectors edition available for pre-order only.

Paradox: Stories Inspired by the Fermi Paradox

Ian Whates

The Fermi Paradox is the apparent contradiction between the high probablity of extraterrestrial civilizations' existence and the lack of contract with such civilizations.

In Paradox, a selection of the world's leading science fiction authors are joined by physicists and other scientists in this collection of exciting and original stories inspired by Fermi's famous paradox, daring to ask...

Where is everyone?

Contents:

  • 7 - Fermi Paradox: An Introduction - essay by Marek Kakula and Rob Edwards
  • 17 - Catching Rays - shortfiction by David L. Clements
  • 39 - The Big Next - shortfiction by Pat Cadigan
  • 47 - Baedeker's Fermi - shortfiction by Adam Roberts
  • 61 - Zeta Reticuli - shortfiction by Paul Cornell
  • 69 - The Ambulance Chaser - shortfiction by Tricia Sullivan
  • 81 - Lost to Their Own Devices - shortfiction by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • 89 - In the Beginning - shortfiction by Gerry Webb
  • 105 - The Trial of the Creator, The Trial of the Creation - shortfiction by Paul Di Filippo
  • 121 - Stella by Starlight - shortfiction by Mike Resnick and Robert T. Jeschonek
  • 139 - Fermi's Doubts - shortfiction by George Zebrowski
  • 149 - Audiovisionary - shortfiction by Stephanie Saulter
  • 165 - Aether - shortfiction by Robert Reed
  • 173 - The End of the World - shortfiction by Keith Brooke and Eric Brown
  • 187 - The Worldmaker - shortfiction by Rachel Armstrong
  • 209 - Atonement, Under the Blue-White Sun - shortfiction by Mercurio D. Rivera

Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang

Kate Wilhelm

Before becoming one of today's most intriguing and innovative mystery writers, Kate Wilhelm was a leading writer of science fiction, acclaimed for classics like The Infinity Box and The Clewiston Test.

Now one of her most famous novels returns to print, the spellbinding story of an isolated post-holocaust community determined to preserve itself, through a perilous experiment in cloning. Sweeping, dramatic, rich with humanity, and rigorous in its science, Where Later the Sweet Birds Sang is widely regarded as a high point of both humanistic and "hard" SF, and won SF's Hugo Award and Locus Award on its first publication. It is as compelling today as it was then.

Terraforming Earth

Jack Williamson

When a giant meteor crashes into the earth and destroys all life, the small group of human survivors manage to leave the barren planet and establish a new home on the moon. From Tycho Base, men and woman are able to observe the devastated planet and wait for a time when return will become possible.

Generations pass. Cloned children have had children of their own, and their eyes are raised toward the giant planet in the sky which long ago was the cradle of humanity. Finally, after millennia of waiting, the descendants of the original refugees travel back to a planet they've never known, to try and rebuild a civilization of which they've never been a part.

The fate of the earth lies in the success of their return, but after so much time, the question is not whether they can rebuild an old destroyed home, but whether they can learn to inhabit an alien new world--Earth.

Bellwether

Connie Willis

Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation. Bennet O'Reilly works with monkey group behavior and chaos theory for the same company. When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. But a series of setbacks and disappointments arise before they are able to find answers to their questions.

The Doors of His Face, The Lamps of His Mouth (collection)

Roger Zelazny

Here are strange, beautiful stories covering the full spectrum of the late Roger Zelazny's remarkable talents. In Doors of His Face, The Lamp of His Mouth, Zelazny's rare ability to mix the dream-like, disturbing imagery of fantasy with the real-life hardware of science fiction is on full display. His vivid imagination and fine prose made him one of the most highly acclaimed writers in his field.

Table of Contents

Stories in the original edition:

Stories added in later editions:

  • "The Furies"
  • "The Graveyard Heart"

Fool's War

Sarah Zettel

For 500 years we have carried our ancient hatreds and millennia-old wars into interstellar space. With them have gone the seeds of new self-aware lifeforms mutating from artificial intelligences, technoviruses, and info-flow. Beings with no bodies and no limits, evolving to leap from cyberspace to outer space. Beings born to be our rivals...

Katmer Al Shei, owner of the starship Pasadena, does not know she is carrying a live entity in her ship's computer systems. Or that the electronic network her family helped weave holds a new race fighting for survival. Or that her ship's professional Fool is trying to avert a battle that could destroy entire worlds. And when Al Shei learns the truth, all she'll really know is that it's time to take sides...

Cowl

Neal Asher

In the far future, the Heliothane Dominion is triumphant in the solar system, after a bitter war with their Umbrathane progenitors. But some of the Umbrathane have escaped into the distant past, where they can position themselves to wreak havoc across time and undo their defeat. The most fanatical of them is the superhuman Cowl, more monstrous than any of the creatures outside his prehistoric redoubt.

Cowl sends his terrifying hyperdimensional pet, the torbeast, hunting through all the timelines for human specimens. It sheds its scales -- each one an organic time machine -- where its master orders. Anyone who picks one up is dragged back to the dawn of time, where Cowl awaits. Then the beast can feed, growing ever larger . . .

In our own near-future, Tack is one of U-gov's programmable killers. When a scale latches onto him, his doom seems inevitable, but the Heliothane have other ideas: they can use Tack against Cowl. Tack is no stranger to violence, but the Heliothane, hardened in their struggle for humanity's very existence, have much to teach him. He will need it all for his encounter with Cowl.

Once one of Tack's targets, Polly escaped with her life when a torbeast scale snatched her. Now, like Tack, she must learn fast as she is dragged back to Day Zero. To cheat death again, she will have to help him save the human race.

With Cowl, Neal Asher, acclaimed author of Gridlinked and The Skinner, has created his most powerful novel yet.

Sphere

Michael Crichton

In the middle of the South Pacific, a thousand feet below the surface of the water, a huge vessel is discovered resting on the ocean floor. It is a spaceship of phenomenal dimensions, apparently undamaged by its fall from the sky. And, most startling, it appears to be at least three hundred years old.

But even more fantastic—and frightening—is what waits inside . . .

The Andromeda Strain

Michael Crichton

The United States government stands warned that sterilization procedures for returning space probes may be inadequate to guarantee uncontaminated re-entry to the atmosphere. When a probe satellite falls to the earth two years later, and lands in a desolate area of northeastern Arizona, the bodies that lie heaped and flung across the ground, have faces locked in frozen surprise. The terror has begun.

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

Karen Joy Fowler

Meet the Cooke family: Mother and Dad, brother Lowell, sister Fern, and Rosemary, who begins her story in the middle. She has her reasons. "I was raised with a chimpanzee," she explains. "I tell you Fern was a chimp and already you aren't thinking of her as my sister. But until Fern's expulsion... she was my twin, my funhouse mirror, my whirlwind other half and I loved her as a sister." As a child, Rosemary never stopped talking. Then, something happened, and Rosemary wrapped herself in silence.

In We Are All Completely beside Ourselves, Karen Joy Fowler weaves her most accomplished work to date—a tale of loving but fallible people whose well-intentioned actions lead to heartbreaking consequences.

The Black Cloud

Fred Hoyle

Earth was dying...

One fourth of its population was dead. The rest had little time to live.

A mass of interstellar matter had invaded the solar system, fling planets out of orbit and blocking off the sun. In that titanic disaster, Man had one small chance to survive: Appeal to an alien intelligence that might exist and that might - or might not - care enough to help!

We All Died at Breakaway Station

Richard C. Meredith

When race survival teetered in the balance...

Captain Absolom Bracer, with an artificial brainpan and synthetic eyes. Astrogation officer Gene O'Gwynn, a lady with a plastic face. Weapons officer Akin Darby and Communications officer Miss Cyanta, both with assorted prosthetic parts.

These were the officers of the Iwo Jima, one of the two heavy battle-cruiser starships protecting the vast cumbersome Rudolph Cragston, a hospital ship returning to Earth with thousands of wounded in cold sleep.

These brutally injured officers had been restored to temporary, artificial life to do this job because no intact man or woman could be spared from the main conflict.

But then Breakaway Station, a vital link with Earth, was suddenly threatened..

The Testament of Jessie Lamb

Jane Rogers

A rogue virus that kills pregnant women has been let loose in the world, and nothing less than the survival of the human race is at stake.

Some blame the scientists, others see the hand of God, and still others claim that human arrogance and destructiveness are reaping the punishment they deserve. Jessie Lamb is an ordinary sixteen-year-old girl living in extraordinary times. As her world collapses, her idealism and courage drive her toward the ultimate act of heroism. She wants her life to make a difference. But is Jessie heroic? Or is she, as her scientist father fears, impressionable, innocent, and incapable of understanding where her actions will lead?

Set in a world irreparably altered by an act of biological terrorism, The Testament of Jessie Lamb explores a young woman's struggle to become independent of her parents. As the certainties of her childhood are ripped apart, Jessie begins to question her parents' attitudes, their behavior, and the very world they have bequeathed her.

Contact

Carl Sagan

It is December 1999, the dawn of the millennium, and a team of international scientists is poised for the most fantastic adventure in human history. After years of scanning the galaxy for signs of somebody or something else, this team believes they've found a message from an intelligent source--and they travel deep into space to meet it. Pulitzer Prize winner Carl Sagan injects Contact, his prophetic adventure story, with scientific details that make it utterly believable. It is a Cold War era novel that parlays the nuclear paranoia of the time into exquisitely wrought tension among the various countries involved. Sagan meditates on science, religion, and government--the elements that define society--and looks to their impact on and role in the future. His ability to pack an exciting read with such rich content is an unusual talent that makes Contact a modern sci-fi classic.

The Highest Frontier

Joan Slonczewski

One of the most respected writers of hard SF, it has been more than ten years since Joan Slonczewski's last novel. Now she returns with a spectacular tour de force of the college of the future, in orbit. Jennifer Ramos Kennedy, a girl from a rich and politically influential family (a distant relation descended from the famous Kennedy clan), whose twin brother has died in an accident and left her bereft, is about to enter her freshman year at Frontera College.

Frontera is an exciting school built with media money, and a bit from tribal casinos too, dedicated to educating the best and brightest of this future world. We accompany Jenny as she proceeds through her early days at school, encountering surprises and wonders and some unpleasant problems. The Earth is altered by global warming, and an invasive alien species called ultraphytes threatens the surviving ecosystem. Jenny is being raised for great things, but while she's in school she just wants to do her homework, go on a few dates, and get by. The world that Jenny is living in is one of the most fascinating and creative in contemporary SF, and the problems Jenny faces will involve every reader, young and old.

Armor

John Steakley

Body armor has been devised for the commando forces that are to be dropped on Banshee-the home of the most implacable of humanity's enemies. A trooper in this armor is a one-man, atomic-powered battle fortress, but he will have to fight a nearly endless horde of berserk, hard-shelled monsters.

Cycle of Fire

Hal Clement

Stranded on an alien planet, light years from home, wandering from blistering heat to searing cold, Nils Kruger was not a happy man. So when he met another being - even though it wasn't human - things seemed to be looking up. The alien might be helpless, or it might be dangerous, but one thing was for sure - they stood a better chance for survival if they worked together. But as the two creatures overcame their mutual suspicion, as they worked together, as the language barrier was broken down, Nils came to a terrifying conclusion - this alien was more intelligent than a human. And to it, Nils was the alien.

Natives of Space

Hal Clement

Well know as the author of Mission of Gravity, Cycle of Time, Close to Critical and for his many other extraordinarily realistic creations of extra-terrestrials, it is remarkable that Hal Clement's novelettes have never appeared in book form before.

Here are three of the best - each dealing with a different aspect of communication with creatures so alien to mankind that the first thing to do is throw speech out the window!

What happens next is strictly up to the ingenuity of writers like Mr. Clement, who visualizes a lively time for mankind among his counterparts from other planets.

The Invisible Man

H. G. Wells

This masterpiece of science fiction is the fascinating story of Griffin, a scientist who creates a serum to render himself invisible, and his descent into madness that follows.

The Invincible

Ace SF Special, Series 2: Book 4

Stanislaw Lem

An interstellar 2nd-class cruiser called Invincible, lands on Regis III which seems bleakly uninhabited, to investigate the loss of sister ship, Condor. The crew finds evidence of a form of quasilife, born thru evolution of autonomous, self-replicating machines. The evolution was controlled by robot wars. The survivors are swarms of minuscule, insectoid machines. Individually or in small groups they're harmless & capable of only simple behavior. However, when bothered, they form huge swarms displaying complex behavior arising from self-organization & are able to defeat an intruder by a powerful surge of EMI. Some members of the crew suffer complete memory erasure as a consequence. Big clouds are also capable of high speed travel to the troposphere. The angered crew attempts to fight the enemy, but eventually recognize the meaninglessness of their efforts in the most direct sense of the word.

The novel turns into an analysis of the relationship between different life domains & their place in the cosmos. It's a thought experiment demonstrating that evolution may not necessarily lead to dominance by intellectually superior life forms. The plot also involves a Conrad-like dilemma, juxtaposing human values & the efficiency of mechanical insects.

The Peace War

Across Realtime: Book 1

Vernor Vinge

The Peace War is quintessential hard-science adventure. The Peace Authority conquered the world with a weapon that never should have been a weapon--the "bobble," a spherical force-field impenetrable by any force known to mankind. Encasing governmental installations and military bases in bobbles, the Authority becomes virtually omnipotent. But they've never caught Paul Hoehler, the maverick who invented the technology, and who has been working quietly for decades to develop a way to defeat the Authority.

With the help of an underground network of determined, independent scientists and a teenager who may be the apprentice genius he's needed for so long, he will shake the world, in the fast-paced hard-science thriller that garnered Vinge the first of his four Hugo nominations for best novel.

Marooned in Realtime

Across Realtime: Book 2

Vernor Vinge

Multiple Hugo Award winner Vernor Vinge takes readers on a fifty-million-year trip to a future where humanity's fate will be decided in a dangerous game of high-tech survival. In this taut thriller, a Hugo finalist for Best Novel, nobody knows why there are only three hundred humans left alive on the Earth fifty million years from now. Opinion is fiercely divided on whether to settle in and plant the seed of mankind anew, or to continue using high-energy stasis fields, or "bobbles," in venturing into the future.

When somebody is murdered, it's obvious someone has a secret he or she is willing to kill to preserve.The murder intensifies the rift between the two factions, threatening the survival of the human race. It's up to 21st century detective Wil Brierson, the only cop left in the world, to find the culprit, a diabolical fiend whose lust for power could cause the utter extinction of man.

Filled with excitement and adventure, Vinge's tense SF puzzler will satisfy readers with its sense of wonder and engaging characters, one of whom is a murderer with a unique modus operandi.

Cuckoo's Egg

Age of Exploration: Book 3

C. J. Cherryh

They named him Thorn. They told him he was of their people, although he was so different. He was ugly in their eyes, strange, sleek-skinned instead of furred, clawless, different. Yet he was of their power class: judge-warriors, the elite, the fighters, the defenders.

Thorn knew that his difference was somehow very important -- but not important enough to prevent murderous conspiracies against him, against his protector, against his caste, and perhaps against the peace of the world. But when the crunch came, when Thorn finally learned what his true role in life was to be, that on him might hang the future of two worlds, then he had to stand alone to justify his very existence.

Polaris

Alex Benedict: Book 2

Jack McDevitt

The luxury space yacht Polaris carried an elite group of the wealthy and curious thousands of light-years from Earth to witness a spectacular stellar phenomenon. It never returned. The search party sent to investigate found the Polaris empty and adrift in space, the fate of its pilot and passengers a mystery.

Sixty years later, prominent antiquities dealer Alex Benedict is determined to find the truth about Polaris-no matter how far he must travel across the stars, no matter the risk.

Seeker

Alex Benedict: Book 3

Jack McDevitt

Thousands of years after an entire colony mysteriously disappears, antiquities dealer Alex Benedict comes into possession of a cup that seems to be from the Seeker, one of the colony's ships. Investigating the provenance of the cup, Alex and his assistant Chase follow a deadly trail to the Seeker-strangely adrift in a system barren of habitable worlds. But their discovery raises more questions than it answers, drawing Alex and Chase into the very heart of danger.

Echo

Alex Benedict: Book 5

Jack McDevitt

A new novel of the fantastic unknown by the national bestselling author of Time Travelers Never Die.

Eccentric Sunset Tuttle spent his life searching in vain for forms of alien life. Thirty years after his death, a stone tablet inscribed with cryptic, indecipherable symbols is found in the possession of Tuttle's onetime lover, and antiquities dealer Alex Benedict is anxious to discover what secret the tablet holds. It could be proof that Tuttle had found what he was looking for. To find out, Benedict and his assistant embark on their own voyage of discovery-one that will lead them directly into the path of a very determined assassin who doesn't want those secrets revealed.

Firebird

Alex Benedict: Book 6

Jack McDevitt

Forty-one years ago the renowned physicist Chris Robin vanished. Before his disappearance, his fringe science theories about the existence of endless alternate universes had earned him both admirers and enemies.

Alex Benedict and Chase Kolpath discover that Robin had several interstellar yachts flown far outside the planetary system where they too vanished. And following Robin's trail into the unknown puts Benedict and Kolpath in danger...

Coming Home

Alex Benedict: Book 7

Jack McDevitt

Thousands of years ago, artifacts of the early space age were lost to rising oceans and widespread turmoil. Garnett Baylee devoted his life to finding them, only to give up hope. Then, in the wake of his death, one was found in his home, raising tantalizing questions. Had he succeeded after all? Why had he kept it a secret? And where is the rest of the Apollo cache?

Antiquities dealer Alex Benedict and his pilot, Chase Kolpath, have gone to Earth to learn the truth. But the trail seems to have gone cold, so they head back home to be present when the Capella, the interstellar transport that vanished eleven years earlier in a time/space warp, is expected to reappear. With a window of only a few hours, rescuing it is of the utmost importance. Twenty-six hundred passengers—including Alex’s uncle, Gabriel Benedict, the man who raised him—are on board.

Alex now finds his attention divided between finding the artifacts and anticipating the rescue of the Capella. But time won’t allow him to do both. As the deadline for the Capella’s reappearance draws near, Alex fears that the puzzle of the artifacts will be lost yet again. But Alex Benedict never forgets and never gives up—and another day will soon come around…

Adrift on the Sea of Rains

Apollo Quartet: Book 1

Ian Sales

When nuclear war breaks out and the nations of the Earth are destroyed, a group of US astronauts are marooned on the lunar surface. Using the "torsion field generator", a WWII Nazi Wunderwaffe previously known as the Bell, they hope to find an alternate Earth that did not suffer nuclear armageddon. But once they do discover one, how will they return home? They have a single Lunar Module, which can carry only four astronauts into lunar orbit...

The Eye with Which the Universe Beholds Itself

Apollo Quartet: Book 2

Ian Sales

For fifteen years, Earth has had a scientific station on an exoplanet orbiting Gliese 876, humanity's only presence outside the Solar System. But a new and powerful telescope at L5 can detect no evidence of Phaeton Base, even though it should be able to do so. So the US has sent Colonel Bradley Elliott, USAF, to investigate. Twenty years before, Elliott was the first, and to date only, man to land on the Martian surface. What he discovered there gave the US the stars, but it might also be responsible for the disappearance of Phaeton Base...

Then Will the Great Ocean Wash Deep Above

Apollo Quartet: Book 3

Ian Sales

It is April 1962. The Korean War has escalated and the US is struggling to keep the Russians and Chinese north of the 38th parallel. All the men are away fighting, but that doesn't mean the Space Race is lost. NASA decides to look elsewhere for its astronauts: the thirteen women pilots who passed the same tests as the original male candidates. These are the Mercury 13: Jerrie Cobb, Janey Hart, Myrtle Cagle, Jerri Sloan, Jan Dietrich, Marion Dietrich, Bernice Steadman, Wally Funk, Sarah Gorelick, Gene Nora Stumbough, Jean Hixson, Rhea Hurrle and Irene Leverton. One of these women will be the first American in space. Another will be the first American to spacewalk. Perhaps one will even be the first human being to walk on the Moon. Beneath the surface of the Atlantic Ocean, deep in the Puerto Rico Trench north of San Juan, lies a film bucket from a KH-4 Corona spy satellite. It should have been caught in mid-air by a C-130 from the 6549th Test Group. That didn't happen. So the US Navy bathyscaphe Trieste II must descend twenty thousand feet to retrieve the bucket, down where light has never reached and the pressure is four tons per square inch. But there is more in the depths than anyone had expected, much more. This is not our world. But it very nearly was.

All That Outer Space Allows

Apollo Quartet: Book 4

Ian Sales

It is 1965 and Ginny Eckhardt is a science fiction writer. She's been published in the big science fiction magazines and is friends with many of the popular science fiction authors of the day. Her husband, Walden, has just been selected by NASA as one of the New Nineteen Apollo astronauts... which means Ginny will be a member of the Astronaut Wives Club. Although the realities of spaceflight fascinate Ginny, her genders bars her from the United State space programme. Her science fiction offers little in the way of consolation--but perhaps there is something she can do about that... Covering the years 1965 to 1972, when Walden Eckhardt lifts-off aboard Apollo 15 as the mission's lunar module pilot, this is Ginny's life: wife, science fiction writer, astronaut wife... because that is ALL THAT OUTER SPACE ALLOWS.

The Black Star Passes

Arcot, Morey and Wade: Book 1

John W. Campbell, Jr.

THREE AGAINST THE STARS!

A sky pirate armed with superior weapons of his own invention...

First contact with an alien race dangerous enough to threaten the safety of two planets...

The arrival of an unseen dark sun whose attendant marauders aimed at the very end of civilization in this Solar System...

These were the three challenges that tested the skill and minds of the brilliant team of scientist-astronauts Arcot, Wade, and Morey. Their initial adventures are a classic of science fiction which first brought the name of their author, John W. Campbell, Jr., into prominence as a master of the inventive imagination -- long before he became the editor of Astounding/Analog and changed the field of science fiction forever!

Collection of three Arcot, Wade and Morley stories originally published in 1930: "Piracy Preferred", "Solarite", and "The Black Star Passes." With an introduction by Campbell.

Before the Golden Age: Science Fiction Classics of the Thirties

Before the Golden Age: Book 1

Isaac Asimov

Asimov combines many of his science fiction favorites from the thirties with his personal reflections on his early years, interests, and influences.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction - (1974) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • Part One: 1920 to 1930 - (1974) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • Part Two: 1931 - (1974) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • The Man Who Evolved - (1931) - shortstory by Edmond Hamilton
  • The Jameson Satellite - (1931) - novelette by Neil R. Jones
  • Submicroscopic - (1931) - novelette by S. P. Meek
  • Awlo of Ulm - (1931) - novella by S. P. Meek
  • Tetrahedra of Space - (1931) - novelette by P. Schuyler Miller
  • The World of the Red Sun - (1931) - novelette by Clifford D. Simak
  • Part Three: 1932 - (1974) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • Tumithak of the Corridors - (1932) - novella by Charles R. Tanner
  • The Moon Era - (1932) - novella by Jack Williamson

Blindsight

Blindsight: Book 1

Peter Watts

Two months since the stars fell...

Two months since sixty-five thousand alien objects clenched around the Earth like a luminous fist, screaming to the heavens as the atmosphere burned them to ash. Two months since that moment of brief, bright surveillance by agents unknown.

Two months of silence, while a world holds its breath.

Now some half-derelict space probe, sparking fitfully past Neptune's orbit, hears a whisper from the edge of the solar system: a faint signal sweeping the cosmos like a lighthouse beam. Whatever's out there isn't talking to us. It's talking to some distant star, perhaps. Or perhaps to something closer, something en route.

So who do you send to force introductions on an intelligence with motives unknown, maybe unknowable? Who do you send to meet the alien when the alien doesn't want to meet?

You send a linguist with multiple personalities, her brain surgically partitioned into separate, sentient processing cores. You send a biologist so radically interfaced with machinery that he sees x-rays and tastes ultrasound, so compromised by grafts and splices he no longer feels his own flesh. You send a pacifist warrior in the faint hope she won't be needed, and the fainter one she'll do any good if she is. You send a monster to command them all, an extinct hominid predator once called vampire, recalled from the grave with the voodoo of recombinant genetics and the blood of sociopaths. And you send a synthesist-an informational topologist with half his mind gone-as an interface between here and there, a conduit through which the Dead Center might hope to understand the Bleeding Edge.

You send them all to the edge of interstellar space, praying you can trust such freaks and retrofits with the fate of a world. You fear they may be more alien than the thing they've been sent to find.

But you'd give anything for that to be true, if you only knew what was waiting for them...

Echopraxia

Blindsight: Book 2

Peter Watts

Prepare for a different kind of singularity in Peter Watts' Echopraxia, the follow-up to the Hugo-nominated novel Blindsight.

It's the eve of the twenty-second century: a world where the dearly departed send postcards back from Heaven and evangelicals make scientific breakthroughs by speaking in tongues; where genetically engineered vampires solve problems intractable to baseline humans and soldiers come with zombie switches that shut off self-awareness during combat. And it's all under surveillance by an alien presence that refuses to show itself.

Daniel Bruks is a living fossil: a field biologist in a world where biology has turned computational, a cat's-paw used by terrorists to kill thousands. Taking refuge in the Oregon desert, he's turned his back on a humanity that shatters into strange new subspecies with every heartbeat. But he awakens one night to find himself at the center of a storm that will turn all of history inside-out.

Now he's trapped on a ship bound for the center of the solar system. To his left is a grief-stricken soldier, obsessed by whispered messages from a dead son. To his right is a pilot who hasn't yet found the man she's sworn to kill on sight. A vampire and its entourage of zombie bodyguards lurk in the shadows behind. And dead ahead, a handful of rapture-stricken monks takes them all to a meeting with something they will only call "The Angels of the Asteroids."

Their pilgrimage brings Dan Bruks, the fossil man, face-to-face with the biggest evolutionary breakpoint since the origin of thought itself.

Bowl of Heaven

Bowl of Heaven: Book 1

Larry Niven
Gregory Benford

In this first collaboration by science fiction masters Larry Niven (Ringworld) and Gregory Benford (Timescape), the limits of wonder are redrawn once again as a human expedition to another star system is jeopardized by an encounter with an astonishingly immense artifact in interstellar space: a bowl-shaped structure half-englobing a star, with a habitable area equivalent to many millions of Earths...and it's on a direct path heading for the same system as the human ship.

A landing party is sent to investigate the Bowl, but when the explorers are separated--one group captured by the gigantic structure's alien inhabitants, the other pursued across its strange and dangerous landscape--the mystery of the Bowl's origins and purpose propel the human voyagers toward discoveries that will transform their understanding of their place in the universe.

Planet of the Damned

Brion Brandd: Book 1

Harry Harrison

72 hours in Hell! Dis was a harsh, inhospitable, dangerous place and the Magter made it worse. They might have been human once -- but they were something else now. The Magter had only one desire -- to kill everything, themselves, their planet, the universe if they could. Brion Brandd was sent in at the eleventh hour. His mission was to save Dis, but it looked as though he was going to preside over its annihilation.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Captain Grant and Captain Nemo Universe: Book 2

Jules Verne

An American frigate, tracking down a ship-sinking monster, faces not a living creature but an incredible invention -- a fantastic submarine commanded by the mysterious Captain Nemo. Suddenly a devastating explosion leaves just three survivors, who find themselves prisoners inside Nemo's death ship on an underwater odyssey around the world from the pearl-laden waters of Ceylon to the icy dangers of the South Pole . . .as Captain Nemo, one of the greatest villians ever created, takes his revenge on all society.

More than a marvelously thrilling drama, this classic novel, written in 1870, foretells with uncanny accuracy the inventions and advanced technology of the twentieth century and has become a literary stepping-stone for generations of science fiction writers.

Circuit

Circuit: Book 1

Melinda M. Snodgrass

The setting is the moon, where newfound industrial strength gives the frontier communities a chance to show independence from the Earth nations that established them. A leading constitutionalist and friend of the U.S. president, Justice Cabot Huntington is sent in to regain control. The stiff-necked judge looks forward to writing precedents for space law, but when his first decision leads to the death of Soviet miners he must reevaluate his position and acknowledge his own complicity in the deadly power struggle that comes to implicate both the Russian and American leaders in the miners' murders.

Snodgrass's idealistic portrait of the spacers is appealing if broad and rather simple, and the protests against martial law, the courtroom theatrics and the spacegoing shootouts keep the action boiling.

Circuit Breaker

Circuit: Book 2

Melinda M. Snodgrass

Judge Cabot Huntington becomes caught in the middle of a conflict between ruthless, corrupt industrial powers on Earth and a group of proud, determined colonists over newly discovered diamond mines on Mars.

Final Circuit

Circuit: Book 3

Melinda M. Snodgrass

Judge Cabot Huntingdon, dodging impeachment, is hiding among the Belters. The Fifteenth Circuit Court has been suspended, leaving those who live in the belt, on Mars, or on the Moon, on their own. In those territories there is no judicial system approved by Earth, and therefore no judicial buffer against Earth's assaults.

Now terrorists in the Belt have hijacked a spaceship carrying antimatter and are threatening the Earth with it.

It's clearly going to be tough for Judge Cabot to keep the Earth and the Belt from each other's necks, notwithstanding the dubious "help" of his well-connected family.

They Shall Have Stars

Cities in Flight: Book 1

James Blish

Also published as Year 2018!

2018 AD. The time of the Cold Peace, worse even than the Cold War. The bureaucratic regimes that rule from Washington and Moscow are indistinguishable in their passion for total repression. But in the West, a few dedicated individuals still struggle to find a way out of the trap of human history. Behind the screen of official research their desperate project is nearing completion...

Pandora's Star

Commonwealth Saga: Book 1

Peter F. Hamilton

Critics have compared the engrossing space operas of Peter F. Hamilton to the classic sagas of such sf giants as Isaac Asimov and Frank Herbert. But Hamilton's bestselling fiction--powered by a fearless imagination and world-class storytelling skills--has also earned him comparison to Tolstoy and Dickens. Hugely ambitious, wildly entertaining, philosophically stimulating: the novels of Peter F. Hamilton will change the way you think about science fiction. Now, with Pandora's Star, he begins a new multivolume adventure, one that promises to be his most mind-blowing yet.

The year is 2380. The Intersolar Commonwealth, a sphere of stars some four hundred light-years in diameter, contains more than six hundred worlds, interconnected by a web of transport "tunnels" known as wormholes. At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth, astronomer Dudley Bose observes the impossible: Over one thousand light-years away, a star... vanishes. It does not go supernova. It does not collapse into a black hole. It simply disappears. Since the location is too distant to reach by wormhole, a faster-than-light starship, the Second Chance, is dispatched to learn what has occurred and whether it represents a threat. In command is Wilson Kime, a five-time rejuvenated ex-NASA pilot whose glory days are centuries behind him.

Opposed to the mission are the Guardians of Selfhood, a cult that believes the human race is being manipulated by an alien entity they call the Starflyer. Bradley Johansson, leader of the Guardians, warns of sabotage, fearing the Starflyer means to use the starship's mission for its own ends,.

Pursued by a Commonwealth special agent convinced the Guardians are crazy but dangerous, Johansson flees. But the danger is not averted. Aboard the Second Chance, Kime wonders if his crew has been infiltrated. Soon enough, he will have other worries. A thousand light-years away, something truly incredible is waiting: a deadly discovery whose unleashing will threaten to destroy the Commonwealth... and humanity itself.

Could it be that Johansson was right?

Judas Unchained

Commonwealth Saga: Book 2

Peter F. Hamilton

Peter F. Hamilton's superbly imagined, cunningly plotted interstellar adventures are conceived on a staggeringly epic scale and filled with fully realized human and alien characters as complex as they are engaging. No mere world builder, Hamilton creates entire universes–and he does so with irresistible flair and intelligence. His previous novel, the acclaimed Pandora's Star, introduced the Intersolar Commonwealth, a star-spanning civilization of the twenty-fourth century. Robust, peaceful, and confident, the Commonwealth dispatched a ship to investigate the mystery of a disappearing star, only to inadvertently unleash a predatory alien species that turned on its liberators, striking hard, fast, and utterly without mercy.

The Prime are the Commonwealth's worst nightmare. Coexistence is impossible with the technologically advanced aliens, who are genetically hardwired to exterminate all other forms of life. Twenty-three planets have already fallen to the invaders, with casualties in the hundreds of millions. And no one knows when or where the genocidal Prime will strike next.

Nor are the Prime the only threat. For more than a hundred years, a shadowy cult, the Guardians of Selfhood, has warned that an alien with mind-control abilities impossible to detect or resist–the Starflyer–has secretly infiltrated the Commonwealth. Branded as terrorists, the Guardians and their leader, Bradley Johansson, have been hunted by relentless investigator Paula Myo. But now evidence suggests that the Guardians were right all along, and that the Starflyer has placed agents in vital posts throughout the Commonwealth–agents who are now sabotaging the war effort. Is the Starflyer an ally of the Prime, or has it orchestrated a fight to the death between the two species for its own advantage?

Caught between two deadly enemies, one a brutal invader striking from without, the other a remorseless cancer killing from within, the fractious Commonwealth must unite as never before.

This will be humanity's finest hour–or its last gasp.

Downbelow Station

Company Wars (Union-Alliance): Book 3

C. J. Cherryh

Pell's Station, orbiting the alien world simply called Downbelow, had always managed to remain neutral in the ever escalating conflict between "The Company," whose fleets from Earth had colonized space, and its increasingly independent and rebellious colony worlds. But Pell's location--on the outer edge of Earth's defensive perimeter-- makes her the focal point in the titanic battle of colony worlds fighting for independence...

Merchanter's Luck

Company Wars (Union-Alliance): Book 4

C. J. Cherryh

The fateful meeting between the owner of a tramp star-freighter that flies the Union planets under false papers and fake names and a proud but junior member of a powerful starship-owning family leads to a record-breaking race to Downbelow Station--and a terrifying showdown at a deadly destination off the cosmic charts.

Rimrunners

Company Wars (Union-Alliance): Book 5

C. J. Cherryh

Bet Yaeger, heroine of the Hugo Award-winning "Downbelow Station", has hit bottom. She is jobless, homeless and starving. Once a marine, she enlists on the first ship that docks, only to find it crewed by her sworn enemies whose mission is to hunt down the fleet Bet has spent her life serving.

Tripoint

Company Wars (Union-Alliance): Book 6

C. J. Cherryh

A social outcast, Thomas Bowe is caught between the rivalry of two merchant spaceships, one headed by his father and one by the woman whom his father had raped long ago.

Coyote

Coyote Series: Book 1

Allen Steele

Coyote marks a dramatic new turn in the career of Allen Steele, Hugo Award-winning author of Chronospace. Epic in scope, passionate in its conviction, and set against a backdrop of plausible events, it tells the brilliant story of Earth's first interstellar colonists-and the mysterious planet that becomes their home.

The crime of the century begins without a hitch. On July 5th, 2070, as it's about to be launched, the starship Alabama is hijacked-by her captain and crew. In defiance of the repressive government of The United Republic of Earth, they replace her handpicked passengers with political dissidents and their families. These become Earth's first pioneers in the exploration of space. Captain R.E. Lee, their leader. Colonel Gill Reese, the soldier sent to stop Lee. Les Gilles, the senior communications officer, a victim of a mistake that will threaten the entire mission. Crewman Eric Gunther, who has his own agenda for being aboard. His daughter, Wendy, a teenager who will grow up too quickly.

Jorge and Rita Montero, ordinary people caught up in extraordinary circumstances. And their son Carlos, who will become a hero in spite of himself. After almost two-and-a-half centuries in cold sleep, they will awaken above their destination: a habitable world named Coyote. A planet that will test their strength, their beliefs, and their very humanity. In Coyote, Allen Steele delivers a grand novel of galactic adventure-a tale of life on the newest of frontiers.

Coyote Rising

Coyote Series: Book 2

Allen Steele

The continuing epic of Earth's first space colonists--and their fight against a repressive government to reclaim their world in the name of freedom.

Dangerous Visions

Dangerous Visions: Book 1

Harlan Ellison

Anthologies seldom make history, but Dangerous Visions is a grand exception. Harlan Ellison's 1967 collection of science fiction stories set an almost impossibly high standard, as more than a half dozen of its stories won major awards - not surprising with a contributors list that reads like a who's who of 20th-century SF.

Table of Contents:

  • Foreword 1-The Second Revolution - (1967) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • Foreword 2-Harlan and I - (1967) - essay by Isaac Asimov
  • Thirty-Two Soothsayers - (1967) - essay by Harlan Ellison
  • Evensong - (1967) - shortstory by Lester del Rey
  • Flies - (1967) - shortstory by Robert Silverberg
  • The Day After the Day the Martians Came - (1967) - shortstory by Frederik Pohl
  • Riders of the Purple Wage - (1967) - novella by Philip José Farmer
  • The Malley System - (1967) - shortstory by Miriam Allen deFord
  • A Toy for Juliette - shortstory by Robert Bloch
  • The Prowler in the City at the Edge of the World - novelette by Harlan Ellison
  • The Night That All Time Broke Out - (1967) - shortstory by Brian W. Aldiss
  • The Man Who Went to the Moon - Twice - (1967) - shortstory by Howard Rodman
  • Faith of Our Fathers - novelette by Philip K. Dick
  • The Jigsaw Man - (1967) - shortstory by Larry Niven
  • Gonna Roll the Bones - novelette by Fritz Leiber
  • Lord Randy, My Son - (1967) - shortstory by Joe L. Hensley
  • Eutopia - (1967) - novelette by Poul Anderson
  • Incident in Moderan - (1967) - shortstory by David R. Bunch
  • The Escaping - (1967) - shortstory by David R. Bunch
  • The Doll-House - (1967) - shortstory by James Cross
  • Sex and/or Mr. Morrison - shortstory by Carol Emshwiller
  • Shall the Dust Praise Thee? - (1967) - shortstory by Damon Knight
  • If All Men Were Brothers, Would You Let One Marry Your Sister? - (1967) - novella by Theodore Sturgeon
  • What Happened to Auguste Clarot? - (1967) - shortstory by Larry Eisenberg
  • Ersatz - (1967) - shortstory by Henry Slesar
  • Go, Go, Go, Said the Bird - (1967) - shortstory by Sonya Dorman
  • The Happy Breed - shortstory by John Sladek
  • Encounter with a Hick - (1967) - shortstory by Jonathan Brand
  • From the Government Printing Office - (1967) - shortstory by Kris Neville
  • Land of the Great Horses - shortstory by R. A. Lafferty
  • The Recognition - shortstory by J. G. Ballard
  • Judas - (1967) - shortstory by John Brunner
  • Test to Destruction - (1967) - novelette by Keith Laumer
  • Carcinoma Angels - (1967) - shortstory by Norman Spinrad
  • Auto-da-Fé - (1967) - shortstory by Roger Zelazny
  • Aye, and Gomorrah... - (1967) - shortstory by Samuel R. Delany

The Enemy Stars

David Ryerson

Poul Anderson

Journey Across the Sea of Space

They named her Souther Cross and launched her on the road whose end they would never see. Months afterward shw was moving at half the speed of light; if there was to be enough reaction mass for deceleration and maneuver, the blast must be terminated. And so the long silence came. For four and half centuries the ship would fall.

They manned her by turns, and dreamed other ships and launched them, and saw how a few of the shortest journeys ended. Then they died.

After ten generations, the Souther Cross was not quite halfway to her own goal, though she was the farthest from Earth of any human work...

Deathworld 2

Deathworld: Book 2

Harry Harrison

The planet was unknown... a savagely, primitive place where every man had to kill every other man - or live as a slave.

The inhabitants lived in the early bronze age one minutes, in the the early machines age the next. Technology had degenerated into a number of mysteries jealously guarded by separate brotherhoods.

But Jason din Alt was a gambler. He realized that if he was ever going to get a winning hand in the game, the brotherhoods would need a shuffle....

Deathworld 3

Deathworld: Book 3

Harry Harrison

The planet was called Felicity. The name was a joke... except for those compelled to settle there. Inhabiting it were beings bred for thousands of years for a single purpose: to attack and kill.

Jason knew this. But he also knew the planet on which he lived was moving towards certain disaster. And Felicity was the only spot in the universe where he and his companions could survive. He thought he had worked out a perfect plan. But what awaited him on Felicity went far beyond his wildest imagining....

Coalescent

Destiny's Children: Book 1

Stephen Baxter

George Poole isn't sure whether his life has reached a turning point or a dead end. At forty-five, he is divorced and childless, with a career that is going nowhere fast. Then, when his father dies suddenly, George stumbles onto a family secret: a sister he never knew existed. A twin named Rosa, raised in Rome by an enigmatic cult. Hoping to find the answers to the missing pieces of his life, George sets out for the ancient city.

Once in Rome, he learns from Rosa the enthralling story of their distant ancestor, Regina, an iron-willed genius determined to preserve her family as the empire disintegrates around her. It was Regina who founded the cult, which has mysteriously survived and prospered below the streets of Rome for almost two millennia. The Order, says Rosa, is her real family and, even if he doesn't realize it yet, it is George's family, too. When she takes him into the vast underground city that is the Order's secret home, he feels a strong sense of belonging, yet there is something oddly disturbing about the women he meets. They are all so young and so very much alike.

Stephen Baxter possesses one of the most brilliant minds in modern science fiction. His vivid storytelling skills have earned him comparison to the giants of the past: Clarke, Asimov, Stapledon. Like his great predecessors, Baxter thinks on a cosmic scale, spinning cutting-edge scientific speculation into pure, page-turning gold. Now Baxter is back with a breathtaking adventure that begins during the catastrophic collapse of Roman Britain and stretches forward into an unimaginably distant, war-torn future, where the fate of humanity lies waiting at the center of the galaxy....

Dragon's Egg

Dragon's Egg: Book 1

Robert L. Forward

In a moving story of sacrifice and triumph, human scientists establish a relationship with intelligent lifeforms--the cheela--living on Dragon's Egg, a neutron star where one Earth hour is equivalent to hundreds of their years. The cheela culturally evolve from savagery to the discovery of science, and for a brief time, men are their diligent teachers . . .

Impersonations

Dread Empire's Fall

Walter Jon Williams

Nebula Award-winning author Walter Jon Williams returns to the sweeping space opera adventure of his Praxis universe with Impersonations, an exciting new novel featuring the hero of Dread Empire's Fall!

Having offended her superiors by winning a battle without permission, Caroline Sula has been posted to the planet Earth, a dismal backwater where careers go to die. But Sula has always been fascinated by Earth history, and she plans to reward herself with a long, happy vacation amid the ancient monuments of humanity's home world.

Sula may be an Earth history buff, but there are aspects of her own history she doesn't want known. Exposure is threatened when an old acquaintance turns up unexpectedly. Someone seems to be forging evidence that would send her to prison. And all that is before someone tries to kill her.

If she's going to survive, Sula has no choice but to make some history of her own.

Sandworms of Dune

Dune Sequels: Book 2

Brian Herbert
Kevin J. Anderson

At the end of Frank Herbert's final novel, Chapterhouse: Dune, a ship carrying a crew of refugees escapes into the uncharted galaxy, fleeing from a terrifying, mysterious Enemy. The fugitives used genetic technology to revive key figures from Dune's past--including Paul Muad'Dib and Lady Jessica--to use their special talents to meet the challenges thrown at them.

Based directly on Frank Herbert's final outline, which lay hidden in two safe-deposit boxes for a decade, Sandworms of Dune will answer the urgent questions Dune fans have been debating for two decades: the origin of the Honored Matres, the tantalizing future of the planet Arrakis, the final revelation of the Kwisatz Haderach, and the resolution to the war between Man and Machine. This breathtaking new novel in Frank Herbert’s Dune series has enough surprises and plot twists to please even the most demanding reader.

The Ophiuchi Hotline

Eight Worlds: Book 1

John Varley

After the effortless capture of Earth by vastly superior aliens, humanity is forced to fight for existence on the Moon and other lumps of airless rock. The invention of the Hotline -- a constant stream of data from a star in the constellation Ophiuchus -- facilitates survival and enables the development of amazing new technologies.

Then, after 400 years, humanity's unknown helpers send a bill for their services... and suddenly everything is threatened once again.

The Ophiuchi Hotline was John Varley's first novel, and it received nominations for both the Hugo and Nebula awards he later won both for his book Persistence of Vision.

Robots and Empire

Elijah Bailey / R. Daneel Olivaw: Book 4

Isaac Asimov

Long after his humiliating defeat at the hands of Earthman Elijah Baley, Keldon Amadiro embarked on a plan to destroy planet Earth. But even after his death, Baley's vision continued to guide his robot partner, R. Daneel Olivaw, who had the wisdom of a great man behind him and an indestructable will to win....

Singularity Sky

Eschaton Series: Book 1

Charles Stross

In the twenty-first century man created the Eschaton, a sentient artificial intelligence. It pushed Earth through the greatest technological evolution ever known, while warning that time travel is forbidden, and transgressors will be eliminated. Distant descendants of this ultra high-tech Earth live in parochial simplicity on the far-flung worlds of the New Republic. Their way of life is threatened by the arrival of an alien information plague known as the Festival. As forbidden technologies are literally dropped from the sky, suppressed political factions descend into revolutionary turmoil. A battle fleet is sent from Earth to destroy the Festival, but Spaceship engineer Martin Springfield and U.N. diplomat Rachel Mansour have been assigned rather different tasks. Their orders are to diffuse the crisis or to sabotage the New Republic's war-fleet, whatever the cost, before the Eschaton takes hostile action on a galactic scale.

Iron Sunrise

Eschaton Series: Book 2

Charles Stross

When the planet of Moscow was annihilated, its few survivors launched a counter-attack against the most likely culprit: the neighboring system of New Dresden. But New Dresden wasn't responsible, and as the deadly missiles approach their target, Rachel Mansour, agent for the interests of Old Earth, is assigned to find out who was.

And the one person who knows is a disaffected teenager who calls herself Wednesday Shadowmist. But Wednesday has no idea what she knows...

Fantastic Voyage

Fantastic Voyage: Book 1

Isaac Asimov

Four men and a woman are reduced to a microscopic fraction of their original size, sent in a miniaturized atomic sub through a dying man's carotid artery to destroy a blood clot in his brain. If they fail, the entire world will be doomed.

Fast Forward 1

Fast Forward: Book 1

Lou Anders

Science Fiction is the genre that looks at the implications of technology on society, which in this age of exponential technological growth makes it the most relevant branch of literature going. This is only the start, and the close of the 21st century will look absolutely nothing like its inception.

It has been said that science fiction is an ongoing dialogue about the future, and the front line of that dialogue is the short story. The field has a long history of producing famous anthologies to showcase its distinguished short fiction, but it has been several years since there has been a prestigious all-original science fiction anthology series.

Fast Forward is offered in the tradition of Damon Knight's prestigious and influential anthology series, Orbit, and Frederik Pohl's landmark Star SF. Fast Forward marks the start of a new hard science fiction anthology series, dedicated to presenting the vanguard of the genre and charting the undiscovered country that is the future.

Contributors for the first volume include: Kage Baker, Paolo Bacigalupi, Tony Ballantyne, Stephen Baxter, Elizabeth Bear, A. M. Dellamonica, Paul Di Filippo, Robyn Hitchcock, Louise Marley, Ken MacLeod, Ian McDonald, John Meaney, Larry Niven and Brenda Cooper, Mike Resnick and Nancy Kress, Justina Robson, Pamela Sargent, Mary A. Turzillo, Robert Charles Wilson, Gene Wolfe, and George Zebrowski.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction: Welcome to the Future - essay by Lou Anders
  • YFL-500 - novelette by Robert Charles Wilson
  • The Girl Hero's Mirror Says He's Not the One - shortstory by Justina Robson
  • Small Offerings - shortstory by Paolo Bacigalupi
  • They Came from the Future - poem by Robyn Hitchcock
  • Plotters and Shooters - novelette by Kage Baker
  • Aristotle OS - shortstory by Tony Ballantyne
  • The Something-Dreaming Game - shortstory by Elizabeth Bear
  • No More Stories - shortstory by Stephen Baxter
  • Time of the Snake - shortstory by A. M. Dellamonica
  • The Terror Bard - novelette by Larry Niven and Brenda Cooper
  • p dolce - shortstory by Louise Marley
  • Jesus Christ, Reanimator - shortstory by Ken MacLeod
  • Solomon's Choice - novelette by Mike Resnick and Nancy Kress
  • Sanjeev and Robotwallah - shortstory by Ian McDonald
  • A Smaller Government - shortstory by Pamela Sargent
  • Pride - shortstory by Mary A. Turzillo
  • I Caught Intelligence - poem by Robyn Hitchcock
  • Settlements - shortstory by George Zebrowski
  • The Hour of the Sheep - shortstory by Gene Wolfe
  • Sideways from Now - novella by John Meaney
  • Wikiworld - novelette by Paul Di Filippo

Fast Forward 2

Fast Forward: Book 2

Lou Anders

Fast Forward 2 features all new stories from:

Foreigner

Foreigner: Book 1

C. J. Cherryh

It had been nearly five centuries since the starship Phoenix, lost in space and desperately searching for the nearest G5 star, had encountered the planet of the atevi. On this alien world, law was kept by the use of registered assassination, alliances were defined by individual loyalties not geographical borders, and war became inevitable once humans and one faction of atevi established a working relationship. It was a war that humans had no chance of winning on this planet so many light-years from home.

Now, nearly two hundred years after that conflict, humanity has traded its advanced technology for peace and an island refuge that no atevi will ever visit. Then the sole human the treaty allows into atevi society is marked for an assassin's bullet. The work of an isolated lunatic? ... The interests of a particular faction? ... Or the consequence of one human's fondness for a species which has fourteen words for betrayal and not a single word for love?

Invader

Foreigner: Book 2

C. J. Cherryh

On the world of the atevi, humanity makes up one small enclave, on the island of Mospheira. After the disappearance of the starship Phoenix, only one human representative is allowed to interact with the atevi - the Paidhi, a mixture of ambassador, translator and salesman of advanced technology. In a society where assassination is a recognised form of negotiation, Bren Cameron had been performing his task as Paidhi well.

Then the Phoenix returns, almost two hundred years after its departure.

Recovering from surgery on Mospheira, Cameron must return immediately to the atevi, but he finds his government has already sent a successor, Deanna Hanks, without informing him. And she has managed to alienate major factions against humanity.

Battling against his strangely-silent masters, the deadly atevi and Hanks, Bren Cameron must take risks that could destroy the entire world - or save it for atevi and humanity alike.

Inheritor

Foreigner: Book 3

C. J. Cherryh

Six months have passed since the reappearance of the starship Phoenix - six months during which the alien atevi have striven to reconfigure their fledling space program in a breakneck bid to take their place in the heavens alongside humans. But the return of the Phoenix has added a frighteningly powerful third party to an already volatile situation, polarizing political factions in both human and atevi societies, and making the possibility of all-out planetary war an ever more likely threat.

On the atevi mainland, human ambassador Bren Cameron, in a desperate attempt to maintain the peace, has arranged for one human representative from the Phoenix to take up residence with him in his apartments, while another is stationed on Mospheira, humanity's island enclave. Bren himself is unable to return home for fear of being arrested or assassinated by the powerful arch conservative element who wish to bar the atevi from space.

Responsible for a terrified, overwhelmed young man, and desperately trying to keep abreast of the political maneuverings of the atevi associations, how can Bren Cameron possibly find a way to save two species from a three-sided conflict that no one can win?

Precursor

Foreigner: Book 4

C. J. Cherryh

Over three years have passed since the reappearance of the starship Phoenix - the same ship which two centuries left an isolated colony of humans to fend for themselves on the world of the volatile atevi.

Since that time, humans have lived in exile on the island of Mospheira, using a single diplomat, the paidhi, to trade advanced technology for the continued peace and safety of its people.

But the unexpected return of the Phoenix has shattered forever the fragile, carefully maintained political balance of these two nearly incompatible races. For the captains of the Phoenix offer the atevi something Mospheira never could - access to the stars.

For three breakneck years the atevi labor to build a space shuttle which will bear their representatives to the Phoenix, to strengthen connections with their new human and retain their bid for control of their world. But as soon as the shuttle proves spaceworthy, the captains of the Phoenix suddenly recall their planetary delegates, breaking diplomatic contact and initiating a vicious bid for political dominance.

But the powerful head of the atevi's Western Association is not to be outmaneuvered, and he sends his own paidhi, Bren Cameron, into space to negotiate.

Thrust into a political maelstrom with almost no preparation, Bren is empowered to use any means at his disposal to achieve the atevi's aim. But can Bren gain control of the station and political supremacy for the atevi without sparking a three-sided interspecies war?

Defender

Foreigner: Book 5

C. J. Cherryh

It has been over two centuries since the starship Phoenix disapeared into space, leaving a colony of humans to fend for themselves on the world of the alien atevi.

Since then humans have lived in exile using a single diplomat, the paidhi, to trade bits of advanced technology for continued peace and safety.

Now the unexpected return of the Phoenix has shattered the fragile political balance of these two nearly incompatible races. For the captains of the Phoenix offer the atevi something the planet-bound humans never could - access to the stars. In return the captains ask for atevi manpower and supplies to rebuild their long-derelict space station and refuel their aging starship.

Nearly ten years later, the atevi have three functioning space shuttles, and teams of atevi engineers labor in orbit to renovate the space station.

But these monumental advances not only add a dangerously powerful third party to an already precarious diplomatic situation, but rouse pro- and anti-space factions in atevi society to near-incendiary levels. To help negotiate these treacherous diplomatic waters, Tabini-aiji, the powerful head of the atevi's Western Association, has sent the only human he fully trusts into space: his own paidhi, Bren Cameron.

However the threat of possible invasion by hostile aliens who attacked Phoenix's station in a far-off sector of space hangs over them all. And when one of the senior captains of the Phoenix confesses that this distant station was not completely destroyed, as had been previously thought - that there may be friends and family who still survive - the crew mutinies.

How can Bren hope to mediate on a station overcome by a rebellious crew intent on taking the Phoenix on a rescue mission back into hostile territory?

Explorer

Foreigner: Book 6

C. J. Cherryh

It has been nearly ten years since the starship Phoenix retuned to the abandoned station orbiting the world of the alien atevi. This station, called Alpha, had been deserted for centuries following a rift between a faction of the station's inhabitants and the spacers' autocratic Pilot's Guild. For two hundred years this splinter faction had shared a fragile coexistence with the atevi, living in isolation on the island of Mospheira, communicating with the brilliant but volatile atevi by the use of a single highly trained diplomat, the paidhi, and trading technological information for continued peace and safety.

The unexpected return of the Phoenix has forever changed the lives of both atevi and Mospheirans, for over the ensuing decade, the captains of the Phoenix have brought both the atevi and their human counterparts into space. Their motivation seemed simple: Reunion Station, a human station in another sector of space, had been destroyed by aliens.

But on his deathbed, the senior captain of the Phoenix admits that he lied to the crew - that Reunion was merely damaged, not destroyed, and many people, including family and friends of the Phoenix crew may have survived. At this disclosure, the crew rebels and forces the Phoenix to undertake a rescue mission to Reunion.

But the crew and captains do not go alone, for on board are Bren Cameron, brilliant human paidhi, now representing Tabini-aiji, the atevi ruler, and Tabini's grandmother Ilisidi, the aiji-dowager, a fearsome, wily, and ambitious atevi leader with an agenda of her own.

Trapped in a distant star system with very little fuel left, facing a potentially bellicose alien ship, how can Bren help to avoid interspecies war when the notoriously secretive Pilot's Guild aboard Reunion Station won't even cooperate with their own ship, and may have kept the inhabitants of their own station ignorant of their true situation?

Destroyer

Foreigner: Book 7

C. J. Cherryh

It has been two years since the starship Phoenix left Alpha Station on a rescue mission to a faraway sector of space where over four thousand human spacers were under attack by a hostile alien race.

Now, exhausted from their journey, with resources strained by four thousand extra mouths to feed, the crew of the Phoenix yearns for home. But when the ship makes the final jump into atevi space, things do not seem right. And when they make contact with Alpha, they learn the worst: that supplies to the station have been cut off; that civil war has broken out on the atevi mainland; that the powerful Western Association has been overthrown; and that Tabini-aiji, Bren Cameron's primary supporter and Ilisidi's grandson and ally, is missing and may be dead.

With no one left to lead the Western Association, Ilisidi and Bren know that the survival of their allies lies in their hands. And with the atevi world at war, the only safe landing strip lies on the human colony at Mospheira. Although there are many dangers inherent in bringing a powerful atevi leader such as Ilisidi onto human lands, Bren realizes they have no choice but to do so.

But even if they safely survive their landing, will Bren and Ilisidi together prove strong enough to muster the remaining shards of the Western Association and regain control of their planet?

Pretender

Foreigner: Book 8

C. J. Cherryh

Exhausted from a two-year rescue mission in space, the crew of the starship Phoenix return home to find disaster: civil war has broken out, the powerful Western Association has been overthrown, and Tabini-aiji, its forceful leader, is missing and may be dead.

In a desperate move, Bren Cameron - brilliant human paidhi to Tabini-aiji - and Tabini's grandmother Ilisidi, the aiji-dowager, along with Cajeiri, Tabini's eight-year-old heir, make planetfall and succeed in reaching the mainland.

Ancient, but still brilliant and forceful, Ilisidi seeks refuge at the estate of an old ally. As Ilisidi's and Bren's bodyguards struggle to update the manor's antiquated defense systems, Tabini-aiji arrives at the door.

As word of Tabini's whereabouts circulates, clans allied with Tabini descend upon the estate, providing a huge civilian presence that everyone involved hopes will deter impending attack by the usurpers.

But as more and more supporting clans arrive, Bren finds himself increasingly isolated, and it becomes clear that both his extremely important report of alien contact in space, and even his life, rest on the shoulders of only two allies: Ilisidi and Cajeiri.

Can one elderly ateva and an eigh-year-old boy - himself a prime target for assassination - protect Bren, a lone human involved in a civil war that most atevi believe he caused?

Deliverer

Foreigner: Book 9

C. J. Cherryh

In the aftermath of civil war, the world of the atevi is still perilously unstable. Tabini-aiji, powerful ruler of the Western Association, along with his son and heir, and his human paidhi, Bren Cameron, have returned to their seat of power. The usurper, Murini, has escaped to the lands of his supporters, but the danger these rebels pose is far from over. Ilisidi, Tabini's grandmother, the aiji-dowager, has returned to her ancient castle in the East, for though she supports the rule of her grandson, she also has powerful ties in the lands of the rebels, and she seeks to muster whatever support she can from among those enemy strongholds.

In his father's heavily armed and tightly guarded headquarters, eight-year-old Cajeiri is horribly bored. Two years on an interstellar starship surrounded by human children have left him craving excitement and the company of his peers. But unbeknownst to this dissatisfied youngster he has become a target for forces bent on destroying his father's rule and everything it stands for. Though still a child, Cajeiri embodies a unique threat to the venerable, tradition-defined lifestyle of his people. For this innocent young boy is the first ateva youth to have lived in a human environment, surrounded by human children. And after hundreds of years of fragile, tenuous atevi-human coexistence, Cajeiri may very well be the first ateva to ever truly understand the so similar yet so dangerously different aliens who share his home planet and threaten the hidebound customs of his race.

Conspirator

Foreigner: Book 10

C. J. Cherryh

The civil war among the alien atevi has ended. Tabini-aiji, powerful ruler of the Western Association, along with Cajeiri, his son and heir, and his human paidhi, Bren Cameron, have returned to the Bujavid, their seat of power. But factions that remain loyal to the opposition are still present, and the danger these rebels pose is far from over. Since the rebellion, Bren Cameron's apartment in the capital has been occupied by an old noble family from the Southern district - the same district from which the coup was initiated. This family now claims loyalty to Tabini, but the aiji is dubious, and dealing with these possible rebel infiltrators will require finesse on Tabini's part. To avoid additional conflict, Bren has decided to absent himself from the Bujavid and visit Najida, his country estate on the west coast, for the month before the legislature resumes its session. It has been more than two years since Bren was last at his idyllic country retreat, and he relishes the thought of the peace and tranquillity his lovely coastal home affords.

Tabini-aiji has once again taken over the job of training his young son in the traditional ways of the atevi, and has Cajeiri under strict supervision. But after two years in space, surrounded by human children, with only his great-grandmother, the aiji-dowager Ilisidi, as guardian and teacher, Cajeiri bristles in this highly controlled and boring environment. He misses his human associates in space, he misses the company of his wily great-grandmother, who allowed him more liberty than his parents do, but most of all, he misses his close association with nand' Bren.

Desperate for freedom and adventure, disregarding the obvious danger, Cajeiri escapes the tightly guarded Bujavid with his young bodyguards and sets out secretly to join Bren on the coast.

Determined to insure his son's safety, Tabini recalls Ilisidi from her home in the East, asking her to find Cajeiri and secure him at Bren's estate.

But it has been a long time since Bren has been to Najida, and the war has shifted allegiances in many quarters. A district that once was considered a safe haven might now be a trap. And with Bren, Cajeiri, and Ilisidi all under one roof and separated from their allies, that trap is now baited.

Deceiver

Foreigner: Book 11

C. J. Cherryh

The civil war among the alien atevi is over. Tabini-aiji, dynamic ruler of the Western Association, has reclaimed his former power, and once again resides in the capital. But factions that remain loyal to the opposition are still present, and the danger these rebels pose is far from over.

Bren Cameron, the brilliant human diplomat allied with Tabini, has graciously chosen to visit Najida, his country estate on the west coast. He feels that the political tensions in the capital might ease if he is not present, and after two years in space and his return to a planet still imperiled by revolution, he relishes the peace and tranquillity his lovely coastal home affords.

But peace and tranquillity are not in the cards for Bren.

Desperate for freedom and adventure, disregarding the obvious danger, Cajeiri, Tabini's young son, escapes the tightly guarded capital with his bodyguards and arrives to surprise Bren in the country. But he is not the only surprise guest, for Ilisidi, the aiji-dowager, Tabini's wily and powerful grandmother, has been dispatched to secure her great-grandson's safety.

However, Najida, formerly a safe haven, is no longer the sanctuary it once was. For a neighbor's estate - the ancestral home of Lord Geigi, a close associate of Bren's - has been left without strong leadership. Lord Geigi now resides on and runs the atevi space station, and in his absence, rebel clans have infiltrated his home. When these rebels attack Bren, Cajeiri, and the dowager, they have no choice but to recall Geigi from space.

With Lord Geigi, Ilisidi, Bren, and Cajeiri all under one roof, they pose an irresistible target for the enemy. And Bren's pastoral retreat, now swarming with bodyguards, becomes a locked-down and armed fortress. These four individuals - three of the most powerful politicians on the planet, and the heir to the aiji - are not without their own resources. But can they overcome their adversaries and end this guerilla war that is the last vestige of revolution?

Betrayer

Foreigner: Book 12

C. J. Cherryh

In the wake of civil war, Bren Cameron, the brilliant human diplomat allied with Tabini-aiji, dynamic atevi leader of the Western Association, has left the capital and sought temporary refuge at his country estate, Najida. But Najida has proven to be the opposite of a safe haven. For though the rebel usurper has been killed by Tabini's forces, and the capital has been purged of his factions, insurgents still persist in other districts, and their center of power, the Marid, lies perilously close to Bren's western coastal estate.

Now, Bren, along with Ilisidi, Tabini's powerful grandmother, and Cajeiri, Tabini's young son and heir, is trapped inside Najida, which has been transformed into an armed fortress and is surrounded by enemies.

But ancient, wily Ilisidi is not inclined to be passive, and in a brazen and shockingly dangerous maneuver, she sends Bren and his bodyguards into enemy territory. He is to travel to the palace of the leader of the Marid, a young lord named Machigi, in a district virtually at war with the Western Association. Bren's mission is to attempt to negotiate with Machigi - an atevi lord who has never actually seen a human - and somehow persuade him to cease his hostile actions against the West.

Though Bren does gain admittance to Machigi's home, and even an audience with the young lord, Ilisidi has not given him any explicit directions about this negotiation, and Bren is unsure what he is sanctioned to offer. He knows that Machigi is a young autocrat who rules a fractious, faction-ridden clan, and that his continued hospitality is not guaranteed.

Bren's genius for negotiation and his extensive knowledge of atevi politics, history, and economics enable him to make a daring trade offer to Machigi - one that seems to interest the young warlord. But Machigi is understandably suspicious of Ilisidi's motives, and to Bren's utter shock, evokes an ancient law.

Bren wears the white ribbon that for the last two centuries has identified the single official human-atevi negotiator. But before humans landed, this white ribbon represented a specialized negotiator between atevi adversaries - a mediator who agreed to represent both sides with equal loyalty. These ancient mediators frequently ended up dead.

Can Bren stay alive, and not alienate Ilisidi or Tabini, while also representing the interests of their enemy?

Intruder

Foreigner: Book 13

C. J. Cherryh

Civil war on the world of the atevi seems to be over, but diplomatic disputes and political infighting continue unabated. Bren Cameron, brilliant human diplomat allied with the dominant Western Association, has just returned to the capital from his country home on the coast. But his sojourn was anything but restful. Attacked by rebel forces hoping to kill not only him, but also Ilisidi, the grandmother, and Cajieri, the young son, of Tabini-aiji, the powerful head of the Western Association, Bren and his resourceful associates have had a small war of their own to contend with. And this small war has ended with a daring proposition: that their longtime enemy Machigi, having been double-crossed by his allies and approached by Ilisidi with an offer of alliance, will sign a trade agreement with her Eastern district-a situation which has upset both the rebels and the loyal north.

But Bren's accustomed role as negotiator for Tabini, Ilisidi, and their associates has suddenly changed radically—for Machigi, to Bren's utter shock, has evoked an ancient law. Bren wears the white ribbon that for the last few centuries has identified the single official human-atevi negotiator. But before humans landed, this white ribbon represented a specialized negotiator between atevi adversaries—a mediator who agreed to represent both sides with equal loyalty. These ancient mediators frequently ended up dead.

Now back in the capital, Bren finds that things are even more complicated than they previously were. He has now been put in the precaroius position of representing both Ilisidi and Machigi to the congress, and is becoming embroiled with both conservative and liberal factions. Meanwhile, Tabini-aiji is enraged to have lost the personal negotiator who has been his associate for decades, and is also jealous of any other party who stands to influence his young son. But there are even more dangerous things afoot, for Bren's bodyguard has warned him there is a crisis inside the immensely dangerous Assassins' Guild, and that the recent dustup with the Shadow Guild, a rebellious faction within the Assassins, may be only the beginning.

The Forever War

Forever War: Book 1

Joe Haldeman

Private William Mandella is a hero in spite of himself -- a reluctant conscript drafted into an elite military unit, and propelled through space and time to fight in a distant thousand-year conflict. He never wanted to go to war, but the leaders on Earth have drawn a line in the interstellar sand -- despite the fact that their fierce alien enemy is unknowable, unconquerable, and very far away. So Mandella will perform his duties without rancor and even rise up through the military's ranks... if he survives. But the true test of his mettle will come when he returns to Earth. Because of the time dilation caused by space travel the loyal soldier is aging months, while his home planet is aging centuries -- and the difference will prove the saying: you never can go home....

Forever Free

Forever War: Book 3

Joe Haldeman

William Mandela is a genetic throwback, one of the small group of humans who fought and survived the Forever War. They returned to find humanity has evolved into a group mind called Man. Surrounded by a society that is too autocratic and intrusive, living a dull existence which cannot compare to the certainties of combat and feeling increasingly alienated, the veterans plan an escape to the future by means of space travel and relativity. But when their ship starts to fail, their journey becomes a search for the Unknown, the elusive entity responsible.

The Forge of God

Forge of God: Book 1

Greg Bear

On September 28th, a geologist working in Death valley finds a mysterious new cinder cone in very well-mapped area.

On October 1st, the government of Australia announces the discovery of an enormous granite mountain. Like the cinder cone, it wasn't there six months ago....

Something is happening to Planet Earth, and the truth is too terrifying to consider....

Anvil of Stars

Forge of God: Book 2

Greg Bear

The Forge of God described the destruction of Earth itself by self-replicating robots, Von Neumann machines designed to use the planet's mass to create more robotic creatures and spread throughout the Galaxy. Only a few humans have survived, aided by a mysterious alien race known only as “The Benefactors”, who arrived at Earth too late.

Now the small group of human survivors is determined to track down the criminal race who launched the planet killers. Humanity is given a starship by The Benefactors, and driven only by revenge they set out to find the unknown beings who are responsible for the destruction of Earth, and many other worlds.

Earth Unaware

Formic War: Book 1

Orson Scott Card
Aaron Johnston

The mining ship El Cavador is far out from Earth, in the deeps of the Kuiper Belt, beyond Pluto. Other mining ships, and the families that live on them, are few and far between this far out. So when El Cavador's telescopes pick up a fast-moving object coming in-system, it's hard to know what to make of it. It's massive and moving at a significant fraction of the speed of light.

El Cavador has other problems. Their systems are old and failing. The family is getting too big for the ship. There are claim-jumping corporate ships bringing Asteroid Belt tactics to the Kuiper Belt. Worrying about a distant object that might or might not be an alien ship seems...not important.

They're wrong. It's the most important thing that has happened to the human race in a million years. The first Formic War is about to begin.

Earth Afire

Formic War: Book 2

Orson Scott Card
Aaron Johnston

One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. This is the story of the First Formic War.

Victor Delgado beat the alien ship to Earth, but just barely. Not soon enough to convince skeptical governments that there was a threat. They didn't believe that until space stations and ships and colonies went up in sudden flame.

And when that happened, only Mazer Rackham and the Mobile Operations Police could move fast enough to meet the threat.

Earth Awakens

Formic War: Book 3

Orson Scott Card
Aaron Johnston

The story of The First Formic War continues in Earth Awakens.

Nearly 100 years before the events of Orson Scott Card's bestselling novel Ender's Game, humans were just beginning to step off Earth and out into the Solar System. A thin web of ships in both asteroid belts; a few stations; a corporate settlement on Luna. No one had seen any sign of other space-faring races; everyone expected that First Contact, if it came, would happen in the future, in the empty reaches between the stars. Then a young navigator on a distant mining ship saw something moving too fast, heading directly for our sun.

When the alien ship screamed through the solar system, it disrupted communications between the far-flung human mining ships and supply stations, and between them and Earth. So Earth and Luna were unaware that they had been invaded until the ship pulled into Earth orbit, and began landing terra-forming crews in China. Politics and pride slowed the response on Earth, and on Luna, corporate power struggles seemed more urgent than distant deaths. But there are a few men and women who see that if Earth doesn't wake up and pull together, the planet could be lost.

Four Hundred Billion Stars

Four Hundred Billion Stars: Book 1

Paul J. McAuley

Dorothy Yoshida, an astronomer and telepath, joins the archaelogical team exploring the mysterious ruins of a nearly dead planet that shows some signs of returning to life.

Prelude to Space

Galaxy Science Fiction: Book 3

Arthur C. Clarke

Here is the compelling story of the launching of Prometheus -- Earth's first true spaceship -- and of the men who made it happen.

Dirk Alexson:
Chronicler of the greatest space adventure of all time, he was chosen to immortalize the incredible story of the men and their heroic mission.

Sir Robert Derwent:
Direct-General of Interplanetary -- London Headquarters for the international space-flight project -- he was the man who got the mission off the ground and into the pages of history.

Professor Maxton:
The world's leading atomic engineer, he designed the huge ship's drive units and he waited with the rest of the world to see if the project would be a success.

The Patchwork Girl

Gil Hamilton: Book 2

Larry Niven

In a break from his usual ARM duties, Hamilton is an acting U.N. Delegate on the moon, attending a conference on Lunar Law. The Belt Delegate, Chris Penzler, is shot by a laser in an apparent murder attempt. The shot came from outside of the window of his personal quarters, which looks out onto the lunar surface. The only person known to be outside on the lunar surface at the time of the attempt is Naomi Mitchison, a tourist and old flame of Gil's.

Gil believes Naomi to be innocent of shooting Penzler, but suspects that she may be lying in order to hide an equally serious crime.

Mentats of Dune

Great Schools of Dune: Book 2

Kevin J. Anderson
Brian Herbert

Gilbertus Albans has founded the Mentat School, a place where humans can learn the efficient techniques of thinking machines. But Gilbertus walks an uneasy line between his own convictions and compromises in order to survive the Butlerian fanatics, led by the madman Manford Torondo and his Swordmaster Anari Idaho.

Mother Superior Raquella attempts to rebuild her Sisterhood School on Wallach IX, with her most talented and ambitious student, Valya Harkonnen... who also has another goal-to exact revenge on Vorian Atreides, the legendary hero of the Jihad, whom she blames for her family's downfall.

Meanwhile, Josef Venport conducts his own war against the Butlerians. VenHold Spacing Fleet controls nearly all commerce thanks to the superior mutated Navigators that Venport has created, and he places a ruthless embargo on any planet that accepts Manford Torondo's anti-technology pledge, hoping to starve them into submission. But fanatics rarely surrender easily...

The Mentats, the Navigators, and the Sisterhood all strive to improve the human race, but know that as Butlerian fanaticism grows stronger, the battle will be to choose the path of humanity's future-whether to embrace civilization, or to plunge into an endless dark age.

Mindstar Rising

Greg Mandel Trilogy: Book 1

Peter F. Hamilton

Greg Mandel, late of the Mindstar Battalion, has been many things in his life. Commando. Freedom fighter. Assassin. Now he's a freelance operative with a very special edge: telepathy.

In the high-tech, hard-edged world of computer crime, zero-gravity smuggling, and artificial intelligence, Greg Mandel is the man to call when things get rough. But when an elusive saboteur plagues a powerful organization known as Event Horizon, Mandel must cut his way through a maze of corporate intrigue and startling new scientific discoveries.

And nothing less than the future is at stake.

A Quantum Murder

Greg Mandel Trilogy: Book 2

Peter F. Hamilton

Professor Edward Kitchener, a double Nobel laureate researching quantum cosmology for the powerful Event Horizon conglomerate, has been savagely murdered. But was he the victim of industrial espionage, personal revenge, or a crime of passion by one of his handpicked team of live-wire students?

Event Horizon needs to know, and fast, so Greg Mandel, PSI-boosted veteran of the infamous Mindstar Battalion, must embark on an urgent investigation that ultimately leads him to an astounding confrontation with a past, which, according to the dead man's theories, might never have happened.

The Nano Flower

Greg Mandel Trilogy: Book 3

Peter F. Hamilton

Peter F. Hamilton is one the rising stars of science fiction in the nineties. His epic space adventure, The Reality Dysfunction, was a major international bestseller, while his near future thrillers, Mindstar Rising and A Quantum Murder, introduced an intriguing new hero in the character of Greg Mandel, a freelance operative whose telepathic abilities give him a crucial edge in the high tech world of the twenty-first century. Now Mandel returns in a spectacular new adventure that blows open the possibilities of the next century.

Julia Evans: billionairess, owner of Event Horizon, for fifteen years undisputed power behind the world's economic renaissance. And in trouble. With her computer-genius husband missing and rival companies suddenly claiming to have acquired a technology impossibly superior to anything on Earth, Julia has no time to notice an anonymously delivered flower. But this flower has genes millions of years in advance of terrestrial DNA.

Is it a cryptic alien message or a poignant farewell from her husband? Only Greg Mandel can discover its origin, but he is not alone in his desperate search. A vicious mercenary killer, a jade merchant, and a high-priced courtesan all have a part to play. It was never going to be easy, but as Greg and Julia discover, simply being first in the race isn't nearly good enough as the Nano Flower starts to bloom....

Isle of the Dead

Gregg Press Science Fiction Series: Book 30

Roger Zelazny

Centuries in the future, Francis Sandow is the only man alive who was born as long ago as the 20th century. His body is kept young and in perfect health by advanced scientific methods; he has amassed such a fortune that he can own entire planets; and he has become a god. No, not a god of Earth, but one of the panetheon of the alien Pei'ans: he is Shimbo of Darktree, Shrugger of Thunders. Yet he doesn't believe that his personality has merged with the ancient consciousness of Shimbo, that he really can call down the skies upon his enemies. The time comes, however, when Francis Sandow must use these powers against the most dangerous antagonist in the universe: another Pei'an god -- Shimbo's own enemy, Belion. And Belion has no doubt whatever of his own powers....

Fire Time

Gunnar Heim: Book 2

Poul Anderson

Anu, red giant companion-star to Bel and Ea, was relentlessly approaching Ishtar-scorching the land, forcing the barbarians of the North ever southward away from the inferno. Fire Time was fast confronting the planet; civil war broke out as the Tassui led their forces against the army of the Gathering in a desperate struggle for survival.

The Gathering anxiously awaited help from the human colony in Primavera. Jill Conway and other colonists like her hoped to save the civilization of Ishtar and they relied on the Navy of the Federation of Earth to do so. But now the Federation was engaged in its own war with Naqsa, an interstellar war that seemingly had no end. And no end meant no help for Ishtar....

Rocannon's World

Hainish Cycle: Book 1

Ursula K. Le Guin

This debut novel from preeminent science-fiction writer Ursula LeGuin introduces her brilliant Hainish series, set in a galaxy seeded by the planet Hain with a variety of humanoid species, including that of Earth. Over the centuries, the Hainish colonies have evolved into physically and culturally unique peoples, joined by a League of All Worlds.

Earth-scientist Rocannon has been leading an ethnological survey on a remote world populated by three native races: the cavern-dwelling Gdemiar, the elvish Fiia, and the warrior clan, Liuar. But when the technologically primitive planet is suddenly invaded by a fleet of ships from the stars, rebels against the League of All Worlds, Rocannon is the only survey member left alive. Marooned among alien peoples, he leads the battle to free this newly discovered world and finds that legends grow around him as he fights.

Planet of Exile

Hainish Cycle: Book 2

Ursula K. Le Guin

The Earth colony of Landin has been stranded on Werel for ten years, and ten of Werel's years are over 600 terrestrial years, and the lonely and dwindling human settlement is beginning to feel the strain. Every winter, a season that lasts for 15 years, the Earthmen have neighbors: the humanoid hilfs, a nomadic people who only settle down for the cruel cold spell. The hilfs fear the Earthmen, whom they think of as witches and call the farborns. But hilfs and farborns have common enemies: the hordes of ravaging barbarians called gaals and eerie preying snow ghouls. Will they join forces or be annihilated?

City of Illusions

Hainish Cycle: Book 3

Ursula K. Le Guin

Falk was a fully grown man, alone in the dense forest, with no trail to show where he had come from and no memory to tell who - or what - he was.

The forest people took him in and raised him almost as a child, teaching him to speak, training him in forest lore, giving him all the knowledge they had.

But they could not solve the riddle of his past, and finally he had to set out on a perilous quest to Es Toch, the City of the Shing, the Liars of Earth, the Enemy of Mankind.

There he would find his true self - and a universe of danger....

The Word for World is Forest

Hainish Cycle: Book 6

Ursula K. Le Guin

The colonizing earthmen's persistent exploitation and abuse of the Athsheans' delicately balanced culture and ecology forebode extraterrestrial genocide or vengeful rebellion.

Halting State

Halting State: Book 1

Charles Stross

In the year 2018, Sergeant Sue Smith of the Edinburgh constabulary is called in on a special case. A daring bank robbery has taken place at Hayek Associates, a dot-com startup company that's just been floated on the London stock exchange. The suspects are a band of marauding orcs, with a dragon in tow for fire support, and the bank is located within the virtual reality land of Avalon Four. For Smith, the investigation seems pointless. But she soon realizes that the virtual world may have a devastating effect in the real one-and that someone is about to launch an attack upon both...

The Last Policeman

Hank Palace: Book 1

Ben H. Winters

What's the point in solving murders if we're all going to die soon, anyway?

Detective Hank Palace has faced this question ever since asteroid 2011GV1 hovered into view. There's no chance left. No hope. Just six precious months until impact.

The Last Policeman presents a fascinating portrait of a pre-apocalyptic United States. The economy spirals downward while crops rot in the fields. Churches and synagogues are packed. People all over the world are walking off the job—but not Hank Palace. He's investigating a death by hanging in a city that sees a dozen suicides every week—except this one feels suspicious, and Palace is the only cop who cares.

The first in a trilogy, The Last Policeman offers a mystery set on the brink of an apocalypse. As Palace's investigation plays out under the shadow of 2011GV1, we're confronted by hard questions way beyond "whodunit." What basis does civilization rest upon? What is life worth? What would any of us do, what would we really do, if our days were numbered?

Helliconia Spring

Helliconia: Book 1

Brian W. Aldiss

A planet orbiting binary suns, Helliconia has a Great Year spanning three millennia of Earth time: cultures are born in spring, flourish in summer, then die with the onset of the generations-long winter.

Helliconia is emerging from its centuries-long winter. The tribes of the equatorial continent emerge from their hiding places and are again able to dispute possession of the planet with the ferocious phagors. In Oldorando, love, trade and coinage are being redisovered,

This is the first volume of the Helliconia Trilogy -- a monumental saga that goes beyond anything yet created by this master among today's imaginative writers.

The Legacy of Heorot

Heorot: Book 1

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle
Steven Barnes

Bestselling science-fiction superstars Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle combine their talents with those of rising young author Steven Barnes in an extraordinary adventure of humankind's first outpost in the farthest reaches of space.

Beowulf's Children

Heorot: Book 2

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle
Steven Barnes

This powerhouse trio of science fiction greats united to further explore the island paradise of Camelot from their classic novel, Legacy of Herorot. A new generation is growing up on the island paradise of Camelot, ignorant of the Great Grendel Wars fought when their parents and grandparents first arrived on Earth. Setting out for the mainland, this group of young rebels feels ready to fight any grendels that get in their way. On Avalon, however, there are monsters which dwarf the ones their parents fought, and as the group will soon learn, monsters also dwell in the human heart.

Resurgence

Heritage Universe: Book 5

Charles Sheffield

Hans Rebka, interstellar trouble-shooter, had solved the mystery of the gigantic Artefacts built by a race that vanished millions of years ago, and at the same time had defeated the warlike Zardalu, onetime tyrannical rulers of the galaxy. But that was only a warm-up for the main event. In one arm of the galaxy, something is destroying whole stellar systems. Investigating the wave of stellar destruction, Rebka and his motley crew of humans and aliens discover a battle beginning that may determine the ultimate fate of the galaxy itself. Rebka and company must act quickly. Unfortunately, they are trapped on a planet directly in the path of destruction...

Code of Conduct

Jani Kilian: Book 1

Kristine Smith

Captain Jani Killian had been Evan Van Reuter's lover eighteen years ago, when a Commonwealth diplomatic corps, sent to establish peaceful relations with the alien idomeni, took sides in a civil war. Jani was presumed killed in the ensuing bloodbath, and Evan went on to become the Commonwealth's Interior Minister. But Jani survived as well more or less. Doctors gave her a new face and patched her broken body together with illegally obtained idomeni genetic materials. They healed her of everything but her memory of the desperate actions she had taken -- sure to result in summary execution should Commonwealth authorities discover her existence.

Which makes it unwise to refuse Evan's request for help in solving the mystery of his wife's death. There is no shortage of suspects, and the trail draws Jani back into the trauma of Rauta Shiraa and secrets long buried there, secrets someone has killed to protect. If she isn't careful, she'll wind up the next victim -- assuming her own body doesn't kill her first. For after eighteen years, her rebuilt body is failing. Jani is dying. Or is she being reborn?

Rules of Conflict

Jani Kilian: Book 2

Kristine Smith

Anarchy Rules

For eighteen years, Captain Jani Kilian has been hiding from her bloody past. Now she faces trial for what she once did, what she knows now, and what she has become.

Eighteen years ago, she was saved by a radical -- and illegal -- medical procedure that added alien genetic material to her own. But her hybrid body is breaking down. And so is everything else.

Relations between the human and alien "idomeni" races are deteriorating as rapidly as Jani Kilian's augmentation. And Jani's reemergence has caused old wounds to reopen and new wounds to form. Perhaps it's time for a damaged soldier to stop fighting; to let the desperate architects of a vast and devouring conspiracy keep the truth well hidden; to let the universe and everyone in it go straight to Hell.

Perhaps not...

Law of Survival

Jani Kilian: Book 3

Kristine Smith

A human-idomeni hybrid with a very bad reputation, former Captain Jani Kilian is out of hiding and officially a civilian. But peace is not an option. Suddenly an important player in the Commonwealth's delicate dealings with the alien idomeni, Jani has inadvertently incurred the wrath of top powers in politics, finance, diplomacy, and crime. Her war is not yet over, just moving to a higher plane. There's no truth to the timeworn adage that old soldiers never die; they do... and sometimes badly. Jani Kilian's come back to a new world that's not brave but definitely in peril. And "kill or be killed" is her only real choice...because now only one law remains.

Contact Imminent

Jani Kilian: Book 4

Kristine Smith

Former captain Jani Kilian is a genetically altered human-idomeni hybrid who acts as a bridge of communication between two fiercely incompatible races. With intergalactic civil war looming large -- with renegades in the Service secretly plotting extermination -- Jani Kilian is being pulled once more into perilous space. Because a horrific act of terror is about to ignite a long-feared conflict between human and alien…and the key to the survival or destruction of human civilization is waiting for her somewhere on the edge of the universe.

Endgame

Jani Kilian: Book 5

Kristine Smith

Ever since contact was first made between humans and the alien idomeni, tensions between the two races have been frequent and bloody. As the first genetically altered human-idomeni hybrid, former Captain Jani Kilian serves as a lightning rod for the anger, outrage, and hatreds of both sides. And now the ex-soldier finds herself in the unwanted role of diplomat—serving the interests of her hybrid enclave, Thalassa, the only place in the universe that welcomes renegade humans, hybrids, and aliens alike.

But the all-powerful Commonwealth intends to bring Thalassa to its knees, and the time for diplomacy is at an end. With death surrounding her, Jani Kilian must return to where her nightmare began and once again take on her most powerful persona: warrior. For as the game approaches its inevitable conclusion, she knows only two options remain: victory... or extermination.

Julian: A Christmas Story

Julian Comstock

Robert Charles Wilson

Hugo- and Sturgeon-nominated Novella

This dystopian speculative fiction novella is told from the perspective of teenager Adam Hazzard, who lives in the rural town of Williams Ford, in the state of Athabaska (today a region in Canada, but in the story, a part of the greater United States) in 2172, at a time when technology has regressed to 19th century levels. The story deals with his relationship with his friend Julian Comstock (later in life called Julian Conqueror or Julian the Agnostic), an aristocratic boy of his age with radical beliefs about God, science, and evolution, notably his beliefs in DNA and the Moon Landings, in defiance of the omnipresent and theocratic Church of the Dominion of Jesus Christ on Earth, which came about as a result of the end of oil in the 21st century, a time which was later interpreted as a Biblical Tribulation.

Julian is the nephew of the President, Deklan Comstock, and it is rumored that Deklan may send Julian to fight in the Labrador War against the European powers, in order to quiet dissent against him that his family does not care about the soldiers. The story centers on how Adam and Julian will avoid the coming draft and remain alive despite Julian's beliefs.

This novella was expanded into the novel Julian Comstock, A Story of the 22nd Century.

This novella is available online by permission of the author and publisher here (pdf) and here (html).

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park: Book 1

Michael Crichton

An astonishing technique for recovering and cloning dinosaur DNA has been discovered. Creatures once extinct now roam Jurassic Park, soon-to-be opened as a theme park. Until something goes wrong...and science proves a dangerous toy.

Starfarers

Kith

Poul Anderson

When evidence of an advanced civilization is discovered by SETI astronomers, an expedition into the far reaches of the galaxy is planned and an eclectic team of scientists is chosen to make the trip. But because the origin of the alien signals is thousands of light-years away, the crew will age only a few years while millennia pass on Earth. And though they are ready to face the ramifications of such a voyage, none of the starfarers are prepared for what awaits them at the outer edge of the cosmos--or back at the planet they once called home.

World of Ptavvs

Known Space: Book 2

Larry Niven

A reflective statue is found at the bottom of one of Earth's oceans, having lain there for 1.5 billion years. Since humans have recently developed a time slowing field and found that one such field cannot function within another, it is suspected that the "Sea Statue" is actually a space traveler within one of these time fields. Larry Greenberg, a telepath, agrees to participate in an experiment: a time-slowing field is generated around both Greenberg and the statue, shutting off the stasis field and revealing Kzanol. Kzanol is a living Thrint a member of a telepathic race that once ruled the galaxy through mind control.

Protector

Known Space: Book 4

Larry Niven

Phssthpok the Pak had been traveling for most of his thirty-two thousand years. His mission: save, develop, and protect the group of Pak breeders sent out into space some two and a half million years before...

Brennan was a Belter, the product of a fiercely independent, somewhat anarchic society living in, on, and around an outer asteroid belt. The Belters were rebels, one and all, and Brennan was a smuggler. The Belt worlds had been tracking the Pak ship for days -- Brennan figured to meet that ship first...

He was never seen again -- at least not by those alive at the time.

A Gift from Earth

Known Space: Book 5

Larry Niven

Plateau, a colony in the Tau Ceti system, was settled by humans some 300 years before the plot begins. The colony world itself is a Venusian type planet with a dense, hot, poisonous atmosphere. It would be otherwise uninhabitable, except for a tall monolithic mesa that rises 40 miles up into a breathable layer in the upper atmosphere. This gives the planet a habitable area about half the size of California. The Captain of the first colony vessel named the feature Mount Lookitthat (from his interjection at first sight of it), and the colony became known as Plateau.

After landing the slower-than-light ships, the Crew sign an agreement, called the Covenant of Planetfall, with their former passengers (who had just emerged from suspended animation and were in a weak bargaining position). This agreement gives the Crew (and their descendants in perpetuity) all control over the new colony. A system of medical care evolves, in which organ transplantation is the only method of treatment, even for cosmetic defects (such as baldness); a justice system evolves, with all crimes punishable by death, followed by involuntary donation of the decedent's transplantable organs (including skin, scalp, and teeth). Not surprisingly, only Colonists are ever arrested for crimes; and only Crew are eligible to receive transplants. Some Colonists become dissatisfied with the system and form a dissident group called the "Sons of Earth."

Neutron Star (collection)

Known Space: Book 7

Larry Niven

One of Niven's most beloved characters, Beowulf Shaeffer, is forced to take a dangerous mission to explore a neutron star. The last group who went there never came back alive, but Shaeffer faces life imprisonment if he doesn't take the job. Will he determine the mysterious force that turned the prior crew to hamburger before he suffers a similar fate?

Hugo Award winner "Neutron Star" and seven other groundbreaking stories and novellas by the author of RINGWORLD. Well-known Niven characters -- including Beowulf Schaeffer, Sigmund Ausfaller, Nessus and other alien Puppeteers, the ferocious Kzinti -- appear in these pages. As Tom Clancy says, "The scope of Larry Niven's work is so vast that only a writer of supreme talent could disguise the fact as well as he can."

Contents:

  • Neutron Star
  • A Relic of the Empire
  • At the Core
  • The Soft Weapon
  • Flatlander
  • The Ethics of Madness
  • The Handicapped
  • Grendel

Fleet of Worlds

Known Space II: Book 1

Larry Niven
Edward M. Lerner

Fleet of Worlds marks Larry Niven's first full novel-length collaboration within his Known Space universe, the playground he created for his bestselling Ringworld series. Teaming up with fellow SF writer Edward M. Lerner, Fleet of Worlds takes a closer look at the Human-Puppeteer (Citizens) relations and the events leading up to Niven's first Ringworld novel.

Kirsten Quinn-Kovacs is among the best and brightest of her people. She gratefully serves the gentle race that rescued her ancestors from a dying starship, gave them a world, and nurtures them still. If only the Citizens knew where Kirsten's people came from....

A chain reaction of supernovae at the galaxy's core has unleashed a wave of lethal radiation that will sterilize the galaxy. The Citizens flee, taking their planets, the Fleet of Worlds, with them.

Someone must scout ahead, and Kirsten and her crew eagerly volunteer. Under the guiding eye of Nessus, their Citizen mentor, they explore for any possible dangers in the Fleet's path--and uncover long-hidden truths that will shake the foundations of worlds.

Luna: New Moon

Luna: Book 1

Ian McDonald

Having woven intricate and gripping plots around thought provoking looks at the future of countries like India, Brazil and Turkey, Ian McDonald now turns his attention to the moon. Luna is a gripping thriller about five corporate families caught in a bitter battle for supremacy in the harsh environment of the moon. It's very easy to die on the moon but with its vast mineral wealth its also easy to make your fortune. This is SF that will be perfect for fans of Kim Stanley Robinson and Ken Macleod alike.

Told over two volumes this will do for the moon what the award winning River of Gods did for India, the award-winning Brasyl for Brazil and the award winning The Dervish House for Turkey - it will give it a vibrant, extraordinary and believable future.

Luna: Wolf Moon

Luna: Book 2

Ian McDonald

A Dragon is dead.

Corta Helio, one of the five family corporations that rule the Moon, has fallen. Its riches are divided up among its many enemies, its survivors scattered. Eighteen months have passed .

The remaining Helio children, Lucasinho and Luna, are under the protection of the powerful Asamoahs, while Robson, still reeling from witnessing his parent's violent deaths, is now a ward--virtually a hostage-- of Mackenzie Metals. And the last appointed heir, Lucas, has vanished of the surface of the moon.

Only Lady Sun, dowager of Taiyang, suspects that Lucas Corta is not dead, and more to the point--that he is still a major player in the game. After all, Lucas always was the Schemer, and even in death, he would go to any lengths to take back everything and build a new Corta Helio, more powerful than before. But Corta Helio needs allies, and to find them, the fleeing son undertakes an audacious, impossible journey--to Earth.

In an unstable lunar environment, the shifting loyalties and political machinations of each family reach the zenith of their most fertile plots as outright war erupts.

Luna: Wolf Moon continues Ian McDonald's saga of the Five Dragons.

Accelerando

Macx Family

Charles Stross

For three generations, the Macz family has struggled to cope with the rampant technological achievements that have rendered humans near obsolete. And mankind's end encroaches even closer when something starts to dismantle the nine planets of the solar system in an effort to annihilate all biological lifeforms.

Manifold: Time

Manifold: Book 1

Stephen Baxter

The year is 2010. More than a century of ecological damage, industrial and technological expansion, and unchecked population growth has left the Earth on the brink of devastation. But as the world's governments turn inward, one man dares to gamble on a bolder, brighter future. That man--Reid Malenfant--has a very different solution to the problems plaguing the planet: the exploration and colonization of space.

Battling national sabotage and international outcry, Malenfant's bootstrap company builds a spacecraft, plots its course, and trains the genetically enhanced Sheena 5 for her one-way journey. As apocalyptic riots sweep the globe, Malenfant launches the rocket. But Sheena has plans of her own. And even as she sets them in motion, the situation on Earth grows more desperate and violent.

Now Malenfant--together with a brilliant but disturbed mathematician, a child prodigy, and his ex-wife--must gamble the very existence of time and space on a single desperate throw of the dice. The odds are a trillion to one against him...

Or are they?

Manifold: Origin

Manifold: Book 3

Stephen Baxter

In the year 2015, astronaut Reid Malenfant is flying over the African continent, intent on examining a mysterious glowing construct in Earth's orbit. But when the very fabric of the sky tears open, spilling living creatures to the ground and pulling others inside (including his wife, Emma), Malenfant's quest to uncover the unknown becomes personal. While desperately searching to discover what happened to the woman he loves, Malenfant embarks upon an adventure to the very fount of human development... on earth and beyond.

The Martians

Mars Trilogy

Kim Stanley Robinson

A glorious companion volume to Robinson's world-wide bestselling trilogy.

All Colours Mars

Red Mars. Green Mars. Blue Mars...

The Mars trilogy has rapidly assumed the status of modern science fiction classic, capturing the imagination of hundreds of thousands of readers around the world. Now, with The Martians, comes Kim Stanley Robinson essential companion to the Mars series. New novellas and short stories head the collection, featuring many of the trilogy's central characters in events previously only hinted at in the novels. Added to this are works on Martian mythology, poetry, character histories, alternative scenarios to the events that actually took place in the trilogy and finally various pieces which the author omitted in the final edit.

In short, The Martians is a unique collection of previously unpublished fiction, a fascinating addition to Robinson's oeuvre, and a must for all lovers of the red planet.

Contents:

  • Michel in Antarctica
  • Exploring Fossil Canyon
  • The Archaea Plot
  • The Way the Land Spoke to Us
    • The Great Escarpment
    • Flatness
  • Maya and Desmond
  • Four Teleological Trails
    • Wrong way
    • Mistakes can be good
    • You can't lose the trail
    • The natural genius
  • Coyote Makes Trouble
  • Michel in Provence
  • Green Mars
  • Arthur Sternbach Brings the Curveball to Mars
  • Salt and Fresh
  • The Constitution of Mars
  • Some Worknotes and Commentary on the Constitution, by Charlotte Dorsa Brevia
  • Jackie on Zo
  • Keeping the Flame
  • Saving Noctis Dam
  • Big Man in Love
  • An Argument for the Deployment of All Safe Terraforming Technologies
  • Selected Abstracts from The Journal of Areological Studies, vols. 56-64
  • Odessa
  • Sexual Dimorphism
  • Enough Is as Good as a Feast
  • What Matters
  • Coyote Remembers
  • Sax Moments
  • A Martian Romance
  • If Wang Wei Lived on Mars and other poems
    • Visiting
    • After a Move
    • Canyon Colour
    • Vastitas Borealis
    • Night Song
    • Desolation
    • The Names of the Canals
    • Another Night Song
    • Six Thoughts on the Uses of Art
      • What's in My Pocket
      • In the Finale of Beethoven's Ninth
      • Reading Emerson's Journal
      • The Walkman
      • Dreams Are Real
      • Seen While Running
    • Crossing Mather Pass
    • Night in the Mountains
      • Camp
      • The Ground
      • Writing by Starlight
    • Invisible Owls
    • Tenzing
    • The Soundtrack
    • A Report on the First Reported Case of Areophagy
    • The Reds' Lament
    • Two Years
    • I Say Goodbye to Mars
  • Purple Mars

Red Mars

Mars Trilogy: Book 1

Kim Stanley Robinson

For eons, sandstorms have swept the barren desolate landscape of the red planet. For centuries, Mars has beckoned to mankind to come and conquer its hostile climate. Now, in the year 2026, a group of one hundred colonists is about to fulfill that destiny.

John Boone, Maya Toitavna, Frank Chalmers, and Arkady Bogdanov lead a mission whose ultimate goal is the terraforming of Mars. For some, Mars will become a passion driving them to daring acts of courage and madness; for others it offers and opportunity to strip the planet of its riches. And for the genetic "alchemists, " Mars presents a chance to create a biomedical miracle, a breakthrough that could change all we know about life... and death.

The colonists place giant satellite mirrors in Martian orbit to reflect light to the planets surface. Black dust sprinkled on the polar caps will capture warmth and melt the ice. And massive tunnels, kilometers in depth, will be drilled into the Martian mantle to create stupendous vents of hot gases. Against this backdrop of epic upheaval, rivalries, loves, and friendships will form and fall to pieces--for there are those who will fight to the death to prevent Mars from ever being changed.

Green Mars

Mars Trilogy: Book 2

Kim Stanley Robinson

Thousands of years hence, many races inhabit a universe where a mind's potential is determined by its location in space, from superintelligent entities in the Transcend, to the limited minds of the Unthinking Depths, where only simple creatures and technology can function. Nobody knows what strange force partitioned space into these "regions of thought," but when the warring Straumli realm use an ancient Transcendent artifact as a weapon, they unwittingly unleash an awesome power that destroys thousands of worlds and enslaves all natural and artificial intelligence.

Fleeing the threat, a family of scientists, including two children, are taken captive by the Tines, an alien race with a harsh medieval culture, and used as pawns in a ruthless power struggle. A rescue mission, not entirely composed of humans, must rescue the children-and a secret that may save the rest of interstellar civilization.

Mars: the Green Planet. Man's dream of a new world is underway but corrupted. Red Mars is gone, ripped apart by the violent and failed revolution of 2062. The First Hundred have scattered or died, and for the moment their dreams with them. The rebels are underground, dreaming of their utopia. The transnational corporations have a dream, too. Mars can be plundered -- for the benefit of a ravaged Earth. It can be terraformed to suit Man's need -- frozen lakes form, lichen grows, the atmosphere slowly becomes breathable.

But most importantly, Mars can be owned. On Earth, countries are bought and sold by the transnationals. Why not Mars too? Man's dream is underway, but so is his greatest test. The survivors of the First Hundred -- Hiroko, Nadia, Maya and Simon among them -- know that technology alone is not enough. Trust and co-operation are need to create a new world -- but these qualities are as thin on the ground as the air they breathe.

Blue Mars

Mars Trilogy: Book 3

Kim Stanley Robinson

The red planet is red no longer, as Mars has become a perfectly inhabitable world. But while Mars flourishes, Earth is threatened by overpopulation and ecological disaster. Soon people look to Mars as a refuge, initiating a possible interplanetary conflict, as well as political strife between the Reds, who wish to preserve the planet in its desert state, and the Green "terraformers". The ultimate fate of Earth, as well as the possibility of new explorations into the solar system, stand in the balance.

The Forever Machine

Masters of Science Fiction: Book 26

Frank Riley
Mark Clifton

The government ordered it built: a thinking machine that could foresee catastrophe and eliminate human error. Research trainee Joe Carter sees another possibility--create a machine that will make ordinary people telepathic--and immortal.

Quarantine World

Masters of Science Fiction: Book 27

Murray Leinster

A classic adventure from a Sci-Fi Hall-of-Famer. The only connecting links between the galaxy's countless colonized new worlds are the Med ships--lone starships each carrying one man and one beast. Roving the uncharted vastness of deep space, Calhoun and his tormal are one such pair, and at each planetfall, they fight not only plagues and epidemics, but humans bent on death and destruction.

Contents:

  • 3 - The Mutant Weapon - [Med Service - 2] - (1959) - novel
  • 101 - Plague on Kryder II - [Med Service] - (1964) - novella
  • 155 - Ribbon in the Sky - [Med Service] - (1957) - novelette
  • 203 - Quarantine World - [Med Service] - (1966) - novella

Close to Critical

Mesklin: Book 2

Hal Clement

The Tenebrans are intelligent, but primitive by human standards. Yet scientists from Earth have found ways to train and educate some of the Tenebrans. This training becomes crucial when two beings—a young girl from Earth and the son of an alien diplomat—are marooned in a bathyscape that is headed toward the surface of the planet, where neither can hope to survive.

Mission of Gravity

Mission of Gravity: Book 1

Hal Clement

For a profit -- and adventure -- Barlennan would sail thousands of miles across uncharted waters, into regions where gravity itself played strange tricks. He would dare the perils of strange tribes and stranger creatures -- even dicker with those strange aliens from beyond the skies, though the concept of another world was unknown to the inhabitants of the disk-shaped planet of Mesklin.

But in spite of the incredible technology of the strangers and without regard for their enormous size, Barlennan had the notion of turning the deal to an unsuspected advantage for himself . . . all in all a considerable enterprise for a being very much resembling a fifteen-inch caterpillar!

Star Light

Mission of Gravity: Book 2

Hal Clement

The Return of Barlennan

Dhrawn was a giant rock ball, more than 3,000 time the mass of Earth. Perhaps a planet, perhaps a nearly dead star, these 17 billion square miles of mystery cried out for investigation. But its corrosive atmosphere and crushing gravity assured that no human would ever set foot on its surface.

Those hardy, caterpillar-like Mesklinites, on the other hand, were ideally suited to explore Dhrawn, and their leader certainly knew a good deal when he saw one. So Barnennan, a shrewd sea captain if ever there was one, struck a sharp bargain with the Earth men for his services in leading the expedition.

But the humans might not have been so pleased with their side of the bargain, if they had known Barlennan had plans of his own for Dhrawn...

Voyage

NASA Trilogy: Book 1

Stephen Baxter

The story of the US manned space programme of the 1970s and 1980s - as it should have happened. Kennedy is shot in 1963, but not killed, only invalided and forced to retire. Under his uniting influence, the first manned Ares probe lifts off for Mars in 1986.

Titan

NASA Trilogy: Book 2

Stephen Baxter

Paula Benacerraf is appointed to oversee the dismantling of the Shuttle fleet after another disaster. Instead, she listens to the scientist, Rosenberg, who wants to explore the life Cassini discovers on Titan. Humans are hurled to the edge of the Solar System. To the edge, also, of sanity.

Moonseed

NASA Trilogy: Book 3

Stephen Baxter

It Eats Planets. And It's Here.

It starts when Venus explodes into a brilliant cloud of dust and debris, showering Earth with radiation and bizarre particles that wipe out all the crops and half the life in the oceans, and fry the ozone layer. Days later, a few specks of moon rock kicked up from the last Apollo mission fall upon a lava crag in Scotland. That's all it takes...

Suddenly, the ground itself begins melting into pools of dust that grow larger every day. For what has demolished Venus, and now threatens Earth itself, is part machine, part life-form: a nano-virus, dubbed Moonseed, that attacks planets.

Four scientists are all that stand between Moonseed and Earth's extinction, four brilliant minds that must race to cut off the virus and save what's left of Earth--a pulse-stopping battle for discovery that will lead them from the Earth's inner core to a daredevil Moon voyage that could save, or damn, us all.

Orbital Decay

Near Space: Book 1

Allen Steele

Winner of the Locus Best First Novel Award

Popeye Hooker knows that space isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. A former fisherman who takes a job building low orbital stations to escape a failed relationship, he finds that in space, construction work is still a grind. And when they aren’t building the space stations that will usher humanity into the stars, Sam Sloane and the rest of the beamjacks get high, blast the Grateful Dead, and stare through telescopes at the world they left behind. But life in orbit is about to get much more interesting.

Nestled among the life support equipment that keeps them alive and the entertainment systems that keep them happy, the beamjacks find something astonishing. Turns out, their home isn’t just a space station — it’s a giant antenna designed to spy on every inhabitant of Earth. It’s the greatest privacy invasion ever perpetrated, and the beamjacks won’t stand for it.

They may not be pioneers, but these roughnecks are about to become revolutionaries.

Needle

Needle Series: Book 1

Hal Clement

Two ships race in from outer space and crash in the Pacific Ocean. One contains a hunter, entrusted with a vital mission. The other, his quarry - corrupt, evil, a criminal from an unearthly civilisation light years away. Yet both these creatures had one thing in common - they were unable to exist alone. Each needed a host, a human body they could invade and control...

Nightfall

Nightfall

Isaac Asimov
Robert Silverberg

The story came about when, in 1988, Marty Greenberg suggested Asimov find someone who would take his forty-seven year old short story, "Nightfall", and - keeping the story essentially as written - add a detailed beginning and a detailed ending to it. This resulted in the 1990 publication of the novel, Nightfall by Isaac Asimov and Robert Silverberg. As Asimov relates in the Robert Silverberg chapter of his autobiography, "...Eventually, I received the extended Nightfall manuscript from Bob [Silverberg]... Bob did a wonderful job and I could almost believe I had written the whole thing myself. He remained absolutely faithful to the original story and I had very little to argue with.

These two renowned writers have invented a world not unlike our own--a world on the edge of chaos, torn between the madness of religious fanaticism and the stubborn denial of scientists. Only a handful of people on the planet Lagash are prepared to face the truth--that their six suns are setting all at once for the first time in 2,000 years, signaling the end of civilization!

Old Man's War

Old Man's War: Book 1

John Scalzi

John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First he visited his wife's grave. Then he joined the army.

The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce-and aliens willing to fight for them are common. The universe, it turns out, is a hostile place.

So: we fight. To defend Earth (a target for our new enemies, should we let them get close enough) and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has gone on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

Earth itself is a backwater. The bulk of humanity's resources are in the hands of the Colonial Defense Force, which shields the home planet from too much knowledge of the situation. What's known to everybody is that when you reach retirement age, you can join the CDF. They don't want young people they want people who carry the knowledge and skills of decades of living. You'll be taken off Earth and never allowed to return. You'll serve your time at the front. And if you survive, you'll be given a generous homestead stake of your own, on one of our hard-won colony planets.

John Perry is taking that deal. He has only the vaguest idea what to expect. Because the actual fight, light-years from home, is far, far harder than he can imagine-and what he will become is far stranger.

Fortune's Pawn

Paradox: Book 1

Rachel Bach

Devi Morris isn't your average mercenary. She has plans. Big ones. And a ton of ambition. It's a combination that's going to get her killed one day - but not just yet.

That is, until she just gets a job on a tiny trade ship with a nasty reputation for surprises. The Glorious Fool isn't misnamed: it likes to get into trouble, so much so that one year of security work under its captain is equal to five years everywhere else. With odds like that, Devi knows she's found the perfect way to get the jump on the next part of her Plan. But the Fool doesn't give up its secrets without a fight, and one year on this ship might be more than even Devi can handle.

Honor's Knight

Paradox: Book 2

Rachel Bach

Devi Morris has a lot of problems. And not the fun, easy-to-shoot kind either.

After a mysterious attack left her short several memories and one partner, she's determined to keep her head down, do her job, and get on with her life. But even though Devi's not actually looking for it -- trouble keeps finding her. She sees things no one else can, the black stain on her hands is growing, and she is entangled with the cook she's supposed to hate.

But when a deadly crisis exposes far more of the truth than she bargained for, Devi discovers there's worse fates than being shot, and sometimes the only people you can trust are the ones who want you dead.

Heaven's Queen

Paradox: Book 3

Rachel Bach

From the moment she took a job on Captain Caldswell's doomed ship, Devi Morris' life has been one disaster after another: government conspiracies, two alien races out for her blood, an incurable virus that's eating her alive.

Now, with the captain missing and everyone -- even her own government -- determined to hunt her down, things are going from bad to impossible. The sensible plan would be to hide and wait for things to blow over, but Devi's never been one to shy from a fight, and she's getting mighty sick of running.

It's time to put this crisis on her terms and do what she knows is right. But with all human life hanging on her actions, the price of taking a stand might be more than she can pay.

Blue Remembered Earth

Poseidon's Children: Book 1

Alastair Reynolds

One hundred and fifty years from now, in a world where Africa is the dominant technological and economic power, and where crime, war, disease and poverty have been banished to history, Geoffrey Akinya wants only one thing: to be left in peace, so that he can continue his studies into the elephants of the Amboseli basin. But Geoffrey’s family, the vast Akinya business empire, has other plans. After the death of Eunice, Geoffrey’s grandmother, erstwhile space explorer and entrepreneur, something awkward has come to light.

Eunice’s ashes have already have been scattered in sight of Kilimanjaro. But the secrets she died with are about to come back out into the open, and they could change everything.

On the Steel Breeze

Poseidon's Children: Book 2

Alastair Reynolds

Chiku Yellow is earthbound: living a peaceful life on a changing world as humanity explores a thousand new ways to experience life.

Chiku Red is space-bound: blasted into deep space to investigate Eunice Akinya's last journey, and maybe discover the final secrets of space travel.

Chiku Green is planet-bound: travelling thousands of lightyears to the planet Crucible. A new home for humankind; it's a habitable planet hosting a fascinating alien labyrinth.

All three are Chiku Akinya.

All three are pivotal to our future in space.

All three are in danger...

Poseidon's Wake

Poseidon's Children: Book 3

Alastair Reynolds

Two hundred years after the fall of Mechanism, human society has achieved a kind of stability. There are colonies beneath the oceans, throughout the solar system, and beyond: on the worlds of extrasolar systems. Vast hemirelativistic ships connect these colonies, travelling at half the speed of light. Or rather they would, if the ominous presence of the alien Watchkeepers had not led to an enforced moratorium on interstellar travel.

But when a seemingly impossible radio signal reaches the colony Crucible, everything changes:

Send Ndege

Its origin is unpopulated, unexplored space. No one could be there at least, not if they travelled using human technology so who could have sent it? How did they get there? And what use do they have for the disgraced scientist Ndege Akinya?

Finding the answers will require one of the greatest expeditions humankind has ever launched, a journey further than ever attempted before, conducted under the implacable scrutiny of the Watchkeepers.

But as a mission is prepared on Crucible, it turns out they werent the only ones to see the message or its potential...

Ultima

Proxima: Book 2

Stephen Baxter

The astonishing new SF novel from multi-award winning author Stephen Baxter - a dizzying exploration of alternate universes and deep time.

Fresh from his latest collaboration with Terry Pratchett on the Long Earth sequence Stephen Baxter now returns to the mysteries and challanges first hinted at in his acclaimed novel PROXIMA.

In PROXIMA we discovered ancient alien artifacts on the planet of Per Ardua - hatches that allowed us to step across light years of space as if we were stepping into another room. The universe opened up to us. Now in ULTIMA the consequences of this new freedom make themselves felt. And we discover that there are minds in the universe that are billions of years old and they have a plan for us. For some of us. But as we learn the true nature of the universe we also discover that we have countless pasts all meeting in this present and that our future is terrifyingly finite. It's time for us to fight to take back control.

This is grand scale, big idea SF of the best possible sort. It is set to build on the massive success of PROXIMA and define Stephen Baxter's work going forward.

Queen of Angels

Queen of Angels: Book 1

Greg Bear

Los Angeles 2047, a city on the eve of the Binary Millennium. Public Defender Mary Choy faces her toughest assignment yet - to bring back Emanuel Goldsmith, acclaimed poet turned mass killer, from the heart of a Caribbean island that is about to explode in revolution.

Moving Mars

Queen of Angels: Book 3

Greg Bear

Moving Mars is a story of human courage and love set within the greater saga of a planetary liberation movement. Mars is a colonial world, governed by corporate interests on Earth. The citizens of Mars are hardworking, but held back by their lack of access to the best education, and the desire of the Earthly powers to keep the best new inventions for themselves. The young Martians -- the second and third generations born on Mars -- have little loyalty to Earth, and a strong belief that their planet can be independent. The revolution begins slowly, but will grow in power over decades of political struggle until it becomes irresistible.

Told through the eyes of an extraordinary character, Casseia Majumdar, a daughter of one of Mars' oldest, most conservative Binding Multiples, Moving Mars is Greg Bear's brilliant conception of the human colonization of the red planet, with lovingly painted details and a grand historical sweep, embellishing an audacious scientific speculation.

Rendezvous with Rama

Rama Series: Book 1

Arthur C. Clarke

At first, only a few things are known about the celestial object that astronomers dub Rama. It is huge, weighing more than ten trillion tons. And it is hurtling through the solar system at inconceivable speed. Then a space probe confirms the unthinkable: Rama is no natural object. It is, incredible, an interstellar spacecraft. Space explorers and planet-bound scientists alike prepare for mankind's first encounter with alien intelligence. It will kindle their wildest dreams... and fan their darkest fears. For no one knows who the Ramans are or why they have come. And now the moment of rendezvous awaits -- just behind a Raman airlock door.

Rama II

Rama Series: Book 2

Gentry Lee
Arthur C. Clarke

Years ago, the enormous, enigmatic alien spacecraft called Rama sailed through our solar system as mind-boggling proof that life existed -- or had existed -- elsewhere in the universe. Now, at the dawn of the twenty-third century, another ship is discovered hurtling toward us. A crew of Earth's best and brightest minds is assembled to rendezvous with the massive vessel. They are armed with everything we know about Raman technology and culture. But nothing can prepare them for what they are about to encounter on board Rama II: cosmic secrets that are startling, sensational -- and perhaps even deadly.

The Garden of Rama

Rama Series: Book 3

Arthur C. Clarke
Gentry Lee

In the year 2130 a mysterious spaceship, Rama, arrived in the solar system. It was huge, but empty - apparently abandoned. By the time Rama departed for its next unknown destination many wonders had been uncovered, but few mysteries solved. Only one thing was clear: everything the enigmatic builders of Rama did, they did in threes.

Eighty years later the second alien craft arrived in the solar system. This time, Earth had been waiting. Now Rama II is on its way out of the solar system. Aboard it are three humans, two men and a woman, left behind when the expedition departed. Ahead of them lies the unknown, a voyage no human has ever experienced; and at the end of it may lie the truth about Rama.

Rama Revealed

Rama Series: Book 4

Arthur C. Clarke
Gentry Lee

Years after the appearance in the solar system of the immense, deserted spaceship, Rama, a second craft arrived, destined to become home for a group of human colonists. But now the colony has become a brutal dictatorship, terrorizing its own inhabitants. Nicole Wakefield, condemned to death for treason, has escaped to New York. There she is reunited with her husband, but pursuit is not far behind and they are forced to flee to the subterranean corridors of New York inhabited by the menacing octospiders. So begins the greatest adventure of the Rama cycle, a story of massive scope and extraordinary revelations.

The Gate To Futures Past

Reunification: Book 2

Julie E. Czerneda

Betrayed and attacked, the Clan fled the Trade Pact for Cersi, believing that world their long-lost home. With them went a lone alien, the Human named Jason Morgan, Chosen of their leader, Sira di Sarc. Tragically, their arrival upset the Balance between Cersi's three sentient species. And so the Clan, with their newfound kin, must flee again.

Their starship, powered by the M'hir, follows a course set long ago, for Clan abilities came from an experiment their ancestors--the Hoveny--conducted on themselves. But it's a perilous journey. The Clan must endure more than cramped conditions and inner turmoil.

Their dead are Calling.

Sira must keep her people from answering, for if they do, they die. Morgan searches the ship for answers, afraid the Hoveny's tech is beyond his grasp. Their only hope? To reach their destination.

Little do Sira and Morgan realize their destination holds the gravest threat of all....

Diamond Dogs, Turquoise Days

Revelation Space

Alastair Reynolds

Diamond Dogs

The planet Golgotha--supposedly lifeless--resides in a remote star system, far from those inhabited by human colonists. It is home to an enigmatic machinelike structure called the Blood Spire, which has already brutally and systematically claimed the lives of one starship crew that attempted to uncover its secrets. But nothing will deter Richard Swift from exploring this object of alien origin...

Turquoise Days

In the seas of Turquoise live the Pattern Jugglers, the amorphous, aquatic organisms capable of preserving the memories of any human swimmer who joins their collective consciousness. Naqi Okpik devoted her life to studying these creatures--and paid a high price for swimming among them. Now, she may be the only hope for the survival of the species--and of every person living on Turquoise...

Galactic North

Revelation Space

Alastair Reynolds

Centuries from now, the basic right to expand human intelligence beyond its natural limits has become a war-worthy cause for the Demarchists and Conjoiners. Only vast lighthugger starships bind these squabbling colonies together, manned by the panicky and paranoid Ultras. And the hyperpigs just try to keep their heads down. The rich get richer. And everyone tries not to think about the worrying number of extinct alien civilizations turning up on the outer reaches of settled space...because who's to say that humanity won't be next?

Revelation Space

Revelation Space: Book 1

Alastair Reynolds

Dr. Dan Sylveste, an archaeologist who has for years been fascinated with the long-dead alien race the Amarantin, is about to discover something that could change the course of mankind. But before he can act on anything his wife is killed and he is captured when a coup sweeps across the planet Resurgam. Meanwhile, an astonishing ship bearing a crew of militaristic cyborgs and a kidnapped Gunnery Officer is bearing down on Resurgam, crossing light years of space to enlist Sylveste's help to save their metamorphosing Captain. Only Sylveste, or, more accurately, the software programme containing his father's knowledge that he carries in his mind, can save the Captain. None of them can anticipate the cataclysm that will result when they meet, a cataclysm that will sweep through space and could determine the ultimate fate of humanity.

Chasm City

Revelation Space: Book 2

Alastair Reynolds

Tanner Mirabel was a security specialist who never made a mistake - until the day a woman in his care was blown away by Argent Reivich, a vengeful young postmortal. Tanner's pursuit of Reivich takes him across light-years of space to Chasm City, the domed human settlement on the otherwise inhospitable planet of Yellowstone.

But Chasm City is not what it was. The one-time high-tech utopia has become a Gothic nightmare: a nanotechnological virus has corrupted the city's inhabitants as thoroughly as it has the buildings and machines. Before the chase is done, Tanner will have to confront truths which reach back centuries, towards deep space and an atrocity history barely remembers.

Redemption Ark

Revelation Space: Book 3

Alastair Reynolds

Many, many millennia ago, the Inhibitors seeded the universe with machines designed to detect life and then suppress it... but after hundreds of millions of years, the machines started to fail and intelligent cultures started to emerge. Then Dr Dan Sylveste and the crew of Infinity discovered what had happened to the Amarintin race... and awakened the Inhibitors.

On Yellowstone, where no one is quite who they appear, the Inquisitor and the planet's Most Wanted War Criminal are watching as the Inhibitors turn a small group of planets into raw materials. Whatever they are building with those materials is not good for Humanity.

Once again, Al Reynolds has produced a stunning, universe-spanning space opera of mind-blowing proportions. Big in size, big in concepts, REDEMPTION ARK will leave you gasping at its audacity and breathless at its conclusion.

Absolution Gap

Revelation Space: Book 4

Alastair Reynolds

Mankind has endured centuries of horrific plague and a particularly brutal interstellar war ...but there is still no time for peace and quiet. Stirred from aeons of sleep, the Inhibitors - ancient alien killing machines - have begun the process of ridding the galaxy of its latest emergent intelligence: mankind.

As a ragtag bag of refugees fleeing the first wave of the cull head towards an apparently insignificant moon light-years away, they discover an avenging angel, a girl born in ice. She has the power to lead mankind to safety, and the ability to draw down their darkest enemy. And on a planet where vast travelling cathedrals crawl towards the treacherous fissure known as Absolution Gap, an unsettling truth becomes apparent: to beat one enemy, it may be necessary to forge an alliance with something much, much worse ...

The Prefect

Revelation Space: Book 5

Alastair Reynolds

Tom Dreyfus is a Prefect, a law enforcement officer with the Panoply. His beat is the multi-faceted utopian society of the Glitter Band, that vast swirl of space habitats orbiting the planet Yellowstone, the teeming hub of a human interstellar empire spanning many worlds.

His current case: investigating a murderous attack against one of the habitats that leaves nine hundred people dead, a crime that appalls even a hardened cop like Dreyfus. But then his investigation uncovers something even more potentially dangerous-a covert plot by an enigmatic entity seeking nothing less than total control of the Glitter Band...

Rocket Girls

Rocket Girls: Book 1

Housuke Nojiri

Rock it with the offer of a space lifetime!

Yukari Morita is a high school girl on a quest to find her missing father. While searching for him on the Solomon Islands, she receives the offer of a lifetime--she'll get the help she needs to find her father, and all she need do in return is become the world's youngest, lightest astronaut. Yukari and her teen friends, all petite, are the perfect crew and cargo for the Solomon Space Association's launches, or will be once they complete their rigorous and sometimes dangerous training.

Rocket Girls: The Last Planet

Rocket Girls: Book 2

Housuke Nojiri

Ad Astra, baby!

When the Rocket Girls accidentally land in the yard of Yukari Morita's old school, it looks as though their experiment is ruined. Luckily, the geeky Akane is there to save the day. Fitting the profile--she's intelligent, enthusiastic, and petite--Akane is soon recruited by Solomon Space Association. Yukari and Akane are then given the biggest Rocket Girl mission yet: a voyage to the edge of the solar system and the minor planet of Pluto to save a NASA probe.

Midnight at the Well of Souls

Saga of the Well World: Book 1

Jack L. Chalker

Entered by a thousand unsuspected gateways -- built by a race lost in the clouds of time -- the planet its dwellers called the Well World turned beings of every kind into something else. There spacefarer Nathan Brazil found himself companioned by a batman, an amorous female centaur and a mermaid -- all once as human as he.

Yet Nathan Brazil's metamorphosis was more terrifying than any of those...and his memory was coming back, bringing with it the secret of the Well World.

For at the heart of the bizarre planet lay the goal of every being that had ever lived -- and Nathan Brazil and his comrades were...lucky?...enough to find it!

Neptune's Brood

Saturn's Children: Book 2

Charles Stross

The year is AD 7000. The human species is extinct-for the fourth time-due to its fragile nature.

Krina Alizond-114 is metahuman, descended from the robots that once served humanity. She’s on a journey to the water-world of Shin-Tethys to find her sister Ana. But her trip is interrupted when pirates capture her ship. Their leader, the enigmatic Count Rudi, suspects that there’s more to Krina’s search than meets the eye.

He’s correct: Krina and Ana each possess half of the fabled Atlantis Carnet, a lost financial instrument of unbelievable value-capable of bringing down entire civilizations. Krina doesn’t know that Count Rudi suspects her motives, so she accepts his offer to get her to Shin-Tethys in exchange for an introduction to Ana.

And what neither of them suspects is that a ruthless body-double assassin has stalked Krina across the galaxy, ready to take the Carnet once it is whole-and leave no witnesses alive to tell the tale...

Midshipman's Hope

Seafort Saga: Book 1

David Feintuch

A hideous accident kills the senior officer of UNS Hibernia, leaving a terrified young officer with the daunting taskof saving 300 colonists and crew aboard a damaged ship, on a 17-month gauntlet to reach Hope Nation. With no chance of rescue, Nicholas Seafort must overcome despair and exhaution, malfunctions and mutiny, in the name of duty.

The Swarm

Second Formic War: Book 1

Orson Scott Card
Aaron Johnston

Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston return to their Ender's Game prequel series with this first volume of an all-new trilogy about the Second Formic War in The Swarm.

The first invasion of Earth was beaten back by a coalition of corporate and international military forces, and the Chinese army. China has been devastated by the Formic's initial efforts to eradicate Earth life forms and prepare the ground for their own settlement. The Scouring of China struck fear into the other nations of the planet; that fear blossomed into drastic action when scientists determined that the single ship that wreaked such damage was merely a scout ship.

There is a mothership out beyond the Solar System's Kuiper Belt, and it's heading into the system, unstoppable by any weapons that Earth can muster.

Earth has been reorganized for defense. There is now a Hegemon, a planetary official responsible for keeping all the formerly warring nations in line. There's a Polemarch, responsible for organizing all the military forces of the planet into the new International Fleet. But there is an enemy within, an enemy as old as human warfare: ambition and politics. Greed and self-interest. Will Bingwen, Mazer Rackam, Victor Delgado and Lem Juke be able to divert those very human enemies in time to create a weapon that can effectively defend humanity in the inexorable Second Formic War?

3001: The Final Odyssey

Space Odyssey: Book 4

Arthur C. Clarke

One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind--and just as the Monolith may be stirring once again . . .

Spin State

Spin Trilogy: Book 1

Chris Moriarty

UN Peacekeeper Major Catherine Li has made thirty-seven faster-than-light jumps in her lifetime - and has probably forgotten more than most people remember. But that's what backup hard drives are for. And Li should know; she's been hacking her memory for fifteen years in order to pass as human. But no memory upgrade can prepare Li for what she finds on Compson's World: a mining colony she once called home and to which she is sent after a botched raid puts her on the bad side of the powers that be. A dead physicist who just happens to be her cloned twin. A missing dataset that could change the interstellar balance of power and turn a cold war hot. And a mining "accident" that is starting to look more and more like murder...

Suddenly Li is chasing a killer in an alien world miles underground where everyone has a secret. And one wrong turn in streamspace, one misstep in the dark alleys of blackmarket tech and interstellar espionage, one risky hookup with an AI could literally blow her mind.

Spin Control

Spin Trilogy: Book 2

Chris Moriarty

Call Arkady a clone with a conscience. Or call him a traitor. A member of the space-faring Syndicates, Arkady has defected to Israel with a hot commodity: a genetic weapon powerful enough to wipe out humanity. But Israel’s not buying it. They’re selling it–and Arkady–to the highest bidder.

As the auction heats up, the Artificial Life Emancipation Front sends in Major Catherine Li. Drummed out of the Peacekeepers for executing Syndicate prisoners, Li has now literally hooked up with an AI who has lived many lifetimes and shunted through many bodies. But while they have their own conflicting loyalties to contend with, together they’re just one player in a mysterious high-stakes game....

Raising Caine

Tales of the 22nd Century: Book 3

Charles E. Gannon

Caine Riordan, reluctant diplomatic and military intelligence operative, has just finished playing his part repulsing the Arat Kur's and Hkh'Rkh's joint invasion of Earth.

But scant hours after the attackers surrender, the mysterious but potentially helpful Slaasriithi appeal to Caine to shepherd a diplomatic mission on a visit to their very alien worlds. The possible prize: a crucial alliance in a universe where the fledgling Consolidated Terran Republic has very few friends.

But Caine and his legation aren't the only ones journeying into the unknown reaches of Slaasriithi space. A group of renegade K'tor are following them, hoping to destroy humanity's hopes for a quick alliance. And that means finding and killing Caine Riordan.

Assuming that the bizarre and dangerous Slaasriithi lifeforms don't do it first.

The Engines of God

The Academy: Book 1

Jack McDevitt

Many years ago humans made a discovery in the far reaches of the solar system - a huge statue of an alien creature, with a description that defied all efforts of translation. But except for a set of footprints on Jupiter's moon, there is no trace of the race that has left it behind.

Deepsix

The Academy: Book 2

Jack McDevitt

A spellbinding epic adventure of discovery, catastrophe, and survival from one of the most masterful storytellers in speculative fiction.

In the year 2204, tragedy and terror forced a scientific team to prematurely evacuate Maleiva III. Twenty-one years later, the opportunity for scientists to study this galactic rarity -- a life-supporting planet -- is about to vanish forever, as a rogue gas giant has invaded the planetary system on a deadly collision course with the world they are now calling Deepsix.

A superluminal pilot for the Academy of Science and Technology, Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins is the only even remotely qualified professional within lightyears of Deepsix. With less than three weeks left before the disaster, she and a small scientific team -- including Randall Nightingale, a survivor of the original expedition who was made the scapegoat for its failure -- must descend to the surface, and glean whatever they can about the doomed planet's lifeforms and lost civilizations.

There is more to this strange and complex world, however, than anyone could have imagined: hidden predators stone cities under the ice remnants of a warlike, primitive society, yet with inexplicable hints of an impossible technology buried in the rubble ... and in orbit around the soon to be demolished planet. The deeper Hutch and her team delve, the more puzzles are revealed within puzzles, and startling discoveries lead only to greater and more perplexing questions.

But then the unthinkable occurs. An earthquake destroys the explorers' only means of escape. As scientists and sightseers who have come to witness the spectacular end of Deepsix watch helplessly from miles above, Hutch and her people must survive somehow on a hostile planet going rapidly mad. And with the clock ticking relentlessly toward an unavoidable apocalypse, they must find some way, any way, to get off before Deepsix plunges like a pebble into the limitless depths of the rampaging gas giant.

From the acclaimed author of Infinity Beach comes the ultimate survival adventure -- a riveting, relentlessly suspenseful, awesomely possible tale with a firm foundation in hard science which showcases the best and the worst aspects of complex human nature. It is yet another stunning achievement by Jack McDevitt, proving without a doubt that he is indeed the true heir to Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke.

Omega

The Academy: Book 4

Jack McDevitt

A civilization-destroying omega cloud has switched direction, heading straight for a previously unexplored planetary system -- and its alien society. And suddenly, a handful of brave humans must try to save an entire world -- without revealing their existence.

Odyssey

The Academy: Book 5

Jack McDevitt

To boost waning interest in interstellar travel, a mission is sent into deep space to learn the truth about "moonriders," the strange lights supposedly being seen in nearby systems. But the team soon discovers that their odyssey is no mere public-relations ploy, for the moonriders are not a harmless phenomenon. They are very, very dangerous-in a way that no one could possibly have imagined.

Pattern Recognition

The Blue Ant Trilogy: Book 1

William Gibson

Cayce Pollard is an expensive, spookily intuitive market-research consultant. In London on a job, she is offered a secret assignment: to investigate some intriguing snippets of video that have been appearing on the Internet. An entire subculture of people is obsessed with these bits of footage, and anybody who can create that kind of brand loyalty would be a gold mine for Cayce's client. But when her borrowed apartment is burgled and her computer hacked, she realizes there's more to this project than she had expected.

Still, Cayce is her father's daughter, and the danger makes her stubborn. Win Pollard, ex-security expert, probably ex-CIA, took a taxi in the direction of the World Trade Center on September 11 one year ago, and is presumed dead. Win taught Cayce a bit about the way agents work. She is still numb at his loss, and, as much for him as for any other reason, she refuses to give up this newly weird job, which will take her to Tokyo and on to Russia. With help and betrayal from equally unlikely quarters, Cayce will follow the trail of the mysterious film to its source, and in the process will learn something about her father's life and death.

Green Earth

The Capital Code

Kim Stanley Robinson

GREEN EARTH takes the stories first told in FORTY SIGNS OF RAIN, FIFTY DEGREES BELOW and SIXTY DAYS AND COUNTING and combines them in a fully updated, compressed and compelling single volume.

Catastrophe is in the air. Increasingly strange weather events are pummelling the Earth. When the Gulf Stream shuts down and the Antarctic ice sheet starts melting, climate extremes multiply, and some winters hit like an ice age. New US President Phil Chase is on a mission: he's determined to solve climate change. His science advisor, Frank Vanderwal, is a bit more messed up. When massive floods hit Washington, Frank finds himself living in a treehouse and in love with a woman who's definitely not what she seems, one who will draw him into the shadowy world of Homeland Security, and other, blacker agencies. Only science can save the day. Frank knows he has to find a way to save the world so that science can proceed.

Forty Signs of Rain

The Capital Code: Book 1

Kim Stanley Robinson

The bestselling author of the classic Mars trilogy and The Years of Rice and Salt returns with a riveting new trilogy of cutting-edge science, international politics, and the real-life ramifications of global warming as they are played out in our nation’s capital—and in the daily lives of those at the center of the action. Hauntingly realistic, here is a novel of the near future that is inspired by scientific facts already making headlines.

When the Arctic ice pack was first measured in the 1950s, it averaged thirty feet thick in midwinter. By the end of the century it was down to fifteen. One August the ice broke. The next year the breakup started in July. The third year it began in May. That was last year.

It’s an increasingly steamy summer in the nation’s capital as Senate environmental staffer Charlie Quibler cares for his young son and deals with the frustrating politics of global warming. Charlie must find a way to get a skeptical administration to act before it’s too late—and his progeny find themselves living in Swamp World. But the political climate poses almost as great a challenge as the environmental crisis when it comes to putting the public good ahead of private gain.

While Charlie struggles to play politics, his wife, Anna, takes a more rational approach to the looming crisis in her work at the National Science Foundation. There a proposal has come in for a revolutionary process that could solve the problem of global warming—if it can be recognized in time. But when a race to control the budding technology begins, the stakes only get higher. As these everyday heroes fight to align the awesome forces of nature with the extraordinary march of modern science, they are unaware that fate is about to put an unusual twist on their work—one that will place them at the heart of an unavoidable storm.

With style, wit, and rare insight into our past, present, and possible future, this captivating novel propels us into a world on the verge of unprecedented change—in a time quite like our own. Here is Kim Stanley Robinson at his visionary best, offering a gripping cautionary tale of progress—and its price—as only he can tell it.

Fifty Degrees Below

The Capital Code: Book 2

Kim Stanley Robinson

When the storm got bad, scientist Frank Vanderwal was at work, formalizing his return to the National Science Foundation for another year. He'd left the building just in time to help sandbag at Arlington Cemetery. Now that the torrent was over, large chunks of San Diego had eroded into the sea, and D.C. was underwater.

Shallow lakes occupied the most famous parts of the city. Reagan Airport was awash and the Potomac had spilled beyond its banks. Rescue boats dotted the saturated cityscape. Everything Frank and his colleagues in the halls of science and politics feared had culminated in this massive disaster. And now the world looked to them to fix it.

Whatever Frank can do, now that he is homeless, he'll have to do from his car. He's not averse to sleeping outdoors. Years of research have made him hyperaware of his status as just another primate. That plus his encounter with a Tibetan Buddhist has left him resolved to live a more authentic life.

Hopefully, this will prepare him for whatever is to come.

For even as D.C. bails out from the flood, a more extreme climate change looms. With the melting of the polar ice caps shutting down the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, another Ice Age could be imminent. The last time it happened, eleven thousand years ago, it took just three years to start.

Sixty Days and Counting

The Capital Code: Book 3

Kim Stanley Robinson

By the time Phil Chase is elected president, the world’s climate is far on its way to irreversible change. Food scarcity, housing shortages, diminishing medical care, and vanishing species are just some of the consequences. The erratic winter the Washington, D.C., area is experiencing is another grim reminder of a global weather pattern gone haywire: bone-chilling cold one day, balmy weather the next.

But the president-elect remains optimistic and doesn’t intend to give up without a fight. A maverick in every sense of the word, Chase starts organizing the most ambitious plan to save the world from disaster since FDR–and assembling a team of top scientists and advisers to implement it.

For Charlie Quibler, this means reentering the political fray full-time and giving up full-time care of his young son, Joe. For Frank Vanderwal, hampered by a brain injury, it means trying to protect the woman he loves from a vengeful ex and a rogue “black ops” agency not even the president can control–a task for which neither Frank’s work at the National Science Foundation nor his study of Tibetan Buddhism can prepare him.

In a world where time is running out as quickly as its natural resources, where surveillance is almost total and freedom nearly nonexistent, the forecast for the Chase administration looks darker each passing day. For as the last–and most terrible–of natural disasters looms on the horizon, it will take a miracle to stop the clock . . . the kind of miracle that only dedicated men and women can bring about.

Call Me Joe

The Collected Short Works of Poul Anderson: Book 1

Poul Anderson

Table of Contents:

  • Editor's Introduction (Rick Katze) 6
  • Poul Anderson (Greg Bear) 7
  • Call Me Joe 11
  • Prayer in War 36
  • Tomorrow's Children 37
  • Kinnison's Band 57
  • The Helping Hand 58
  • Wildcat 77
  • Clausius' Chaos 100
  • Journey's End 101
  • Heinlein's Stories 107
  • Logic 108
  • Time Patrol 129
  • The First Love 156
  • The Double-dyed Villains 157
  • To a Tavern Wench 177
  • The Immortal Game 178
  • Upon the Occasion of Being Asked to Argue That Love and Marriage Are Incompatible 186
  • Backwardness 187
  • Haiku 195
  • Genius 196
  • There Will Be Other Times 222
  • The Live Coward 223
  • Ballade of an Artificial Satellite 240
  • Time Lag 241
  • The Man Who Came Early 266
  • Autumn 283
  • Turning Point 284
  • Honesty 294
  • The Alien Enemy 295
  • Eventide 307
  • Enough Rope 308
  • The Sharing of Flesh 329
  • Barbarous Allen 353
  • Welcome 354
  • Flight to Forever 360
  • Barnacle Bull 399
  • To Jack Williamson 411
  • Time Heals 412
  • MacCannon 425
  • The Martian Crown Jewels 426
  • Then Death Will Come 438
  • Prophecy 439
  • Sea Burial 444
  • Einstein's Distress 444
  • Kings Who Die 445
  • Ochlan 466
  • Starfog 467

The Empress of Mars

The Company: Book 9

Kage Baker

When the British Arean Company founded its Martian colony, it welcomed any settlers it could get. Outcasts, misfits and dreamers emigrated in droves to undertake the grueling task of terraforming the cold red planet--only to be abandoned when the BAC discovered it couldn't turn a profit on Mars.

This is the story of Mary Griffith, a determined woman with three daughters, who opened the only place to buy a beer on the Tharsis Bulge. It's the story of Manco Inca, whose attempt to terraform Mars brought a new goddess vividly to life; of Stanford Crosley, con man extraordinaire; of Ottorino Vespucci, space cowboy and romantic hero; of the Clan Morrigan, of the denizens of the Martian Motel, and of the machinations of another Company entirely, all of whom contribute to the downfall of the BAC and the founding of a new world. But Mary and her struggles and triumphs is at the center of it all, in her bar, the Empress of Mars.

Based on the Hugo-nominated novella of the same name, this is a rollicking novel of action, planetary romance, and high adventure.

Jumping Off the Planet

The Dingilliad: Book 1

David Gerrold

A trip to the Moon? Sounds like the perfect family vacation. Only for 13-year-old Charles "Chigger" Dingillian his family is anything but perfect. His parents fight so much they put the 'dis' into dysfunctional. So when he and his brothers find themselves halfway to the Moon Chigger hits on a plan: if his parents can't find a way to work things out, why not just divorce them? Sound crazy? Until it works.

Charles and his brothers are on their own. But their bid for freedom hits a roadblock when Chigger suspects they are targets of an interstellar manhunt. What do these Big Corporations want? And why?

Their only hope is to jump off the planet...

Leviathan Wakes

The Expanse: Book 1

James S. A. Corey

Humanity has colonized the solar system - Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond - but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for - and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations - and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe.

James S. A. Corey is a collective pseudonym for authors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck.

Caliban's War

The Expanse: Book 2

James S. A. Corey

We are not alone.

The alien protomolecule is clear evidence of an intelligence beyond human reckoning. No one knows what exactly is being built on Venus, but whatever it is, it is vast, powerful, and terrifying.

When a creature of unknown origin and seemingly impossible physiology attacks soldiers on Ganymede, the fragile balance of power in the Solar System shatters. Now, the race is on to discover if the protomolecule has escaped Venus, or if someone is building an army of super-soldiers.

Jim Holden is the center of it all. In spite of everything, he's still the best man for the job to find out what happened on Ganymede. Either way, the protomolecule is loose and Holden must find a way to stop it before war engulfs the entire system.

CALIBAN'S WAR is an action-packed space adventure following in the footsteps of the critically acclaimed Leviathan Wakes.

James S. A. Corey is a collective pseudonym for authors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck.

The Faded Sun: Kesrith

The Faded Sun Trilogy: Book 1

C. J. Cherryh

This is the story of three people: Sten Duncan, a soldier of humanity; Niun, last warrior of the mri, humanity's enemies; and Melein, priestess-queen of the final fallen mri stronghold. It is the story of two mighty species fighting for a galaxy, humanity driving out from Earth, and the enigmatic regul struggling to hold their stars with mri mercenaries. It is a story of diplomacy and warfare, of conspiracy and betrayal, and of three flesh-and-blood people who found themselves thrown together in a life-and-death alliance.

The Faded Sun: Shon'jir

The Faded Sun Trilogy: Book 2

C. J. Cherryh

Sten Duncan had saved the lives of the last warrior and the last priestess-queen of mankind's enemies, the mri. He had come to understand their ways and to value their code of honor. When they planned their escape and he was ordered to trap them, Sten fled into space with them instead. Far across the cosmos was their forgotten homeworld. He could help them find it--and maybe there find the secret that had eluded the military masters of Terra.

The Faded Sun: Kutath

The Faded Sun Trilogy: Book 3

C. J. Cherryh

When the third volume begins, the regul are in a state of disarray as a result of the assassination. Duncan returns to the mri and joins them in seeking assistance from the Elee, the other surviving race of ancient Kutath. After a new Elder has risen among the regul, they renew their attack on the Mri. This time humanity acts to halt the genocide, and as a result form a new partnership with the Mri.

The Cassini Division

The Fall Revolution: Book 3

Ken MacLeod

Ellen May Ngewthu is a young woman with centuries of experience, a soldier and leader of the Cassini Division, the elite defense force of the utopian Solar Union. Here in the twenty-fourth century, the forts of the Division, in orbit around a mysteriously transformed Jupiter, are the front line in humanity's long standoff with the unknowable posthumans--godlike and remote beings descended from the people who transformed themselves with high technology centuries ago.

The posthumans' capacities are unknown . . . but we know they disintegrated Ganymede, we know they punched a wormhole into Jovian space, and we know that the very surface of the solar system's largest planet has been altered by their incomprehensible artifacts. Worst of all, we know that they have been bombarding the solar system with powerful data viruses for generations.

Now Ellen has a plan to rid humanity of this threat once and for all. But she needs to recruit the right people to her cause--and convince them to mistrust the posthumans as much as she does.

Her quest will take her to the mid-Atlantic towers of Solar Union Earth, to the green ruins of London, and, in the farthest reaches of human space, to the long-separated libertarian colony of New Mars. In the process, much will be revealed--about history, about power, and about what it is to be human.

Foundation

The Foundation Series: Book 1

Isaac Asimov

For twelve thousand years the Galactic Empire has ruled supreme. Now it is dying. But only Hari Sheldon, creator of the revolutionary science of psychohistory, can see into the future--to a dark age of ignorance, barbarism, and warfare that will last thirty thousand years. To preserve knowledge and save mankind, Seldon gathers the best minds in the Empire--both scientists and scholars--and brings them to a bleak planet at the edge of the Galaxy to serve as a beacon of hope for a fututre generations. He calls his sanctuary the Foundation.

But soon the fledgling Foundation finds itself at the mercy of corrupt warlords rising in the wake of the receding Empire. Mankind's last best hope is faced with an agonizing choice: submit to the barbarians and be overrun--or fight them and be destroyed.

Second Foundation

The Foundation Series: Book 3

Isaac Asimov

Isaac Asimov's Foundation novels are one of the great masterworks of science fiction. As unsurpassed blend of nonstop action, daring ideas, and extensive world-building, they chronicle the struggle of a courageous group of men and women dedicated to preserving humanity's light in a galaxy plunged into a nightmare of ignorance and violence thirty thousand years long.

After years of struggle, the Foundation lies in ruins—destroyed by the mutant mind power of the Mule. But it is rumored that there is a Second Foundation hidden somewhere at the end of the Galaxy, established to preserve the knowledge of mankind through the long centuries of barbarism. The Mule failed to find it the first time—but now he is certain he knows where it lies.

The fate of the Foundation rests on young Arcadia Darell, only fourteen years old and burdened with a terrible secret. As its scientists gird for a final showdown with the Mule, the survivors of the First Foundation begin their desperate search. They too want the Second Foundation destroyed…before it destroys them.

Foundation's Edge

The Foundation Series: Book 4

Isaac Asimov

At last, the costly and bitter war between the two Foundations had come to an end. The scientists of the First Foundation had proved victorious; and now they retum to Hari Seldon's long-established plan to build a new Empire that the Second Foundation is not destroyed after all-and that its still-defiant survivors are preparing their revenge. Now the two exiled citizens of the Foundation-a renegade Councilman and the doddering historian-set out in search of the mythical planet Earth. . .and proof that the Second Foundation still exists. Meanwhile someone-or something-outside of both Foundations sees to be orchestrating events to suit its own ominous purpose. Soon representatives of both the First and Second Foundations will find themselves racing toward a mysterious world called Gaia and a final shocking destiny at the very end of the universe!

Foundation and Earth

The Foundation Series: Book 5

Isaac Asimov

The fifth novel in Asimov's popular Foundation series opens with second thoughts. Councilman Golan Trevize is wondering if he was right to choose a collective mind as the best possible future for humanity over the anarchy of contentious individuals, nations and planets. To test his conclusion, he decides he must know the past and goes in search of legendary Earth, all references to which have been erased from galactic libraries. The societies encountered along the way become arguing points in a book-long colloquy about man's fate, conducted by Trevize and traveling companion Bliss, who is part of the first world/mind, Gaia.

Prelude to Foundation

The Foundation Series: Book 6

Isaac Asimov

It is the year 12,020 G.E. and Emperor Cleon I sits uneasily on the Imperial throne of Trantor. Here in the great multidomed capital of the Galactic Empire, forty billion people have created a civilization of unimaginable technological and cultural complexity. Yet Cleon knows there are those who would see him fall - those whom he would destroy if only he could read the future.

Hari Seldon has come to Trantor to deliver his paper on psychohistory, his remarkable theory of prediction. Little does the young Outworld mathematician know that he has already sealed his fate and the fate of humanity. For Hari possesses the prophetic power that makes him the most wanted man in the Empire... the man who holds the key to the future - an apocalyptic power to be know forever after as the Foundation.

Forward the Foundation

The Foundation Series: Book 7

Isaac Asimov

A stunning testament to his creative genius. Forward The Foundation is a the saga's dramatic climax -- the story Asimov fans have been waiting for. An exciting tale of danger, intrigue, and suspense, Forward The Foundation brings to vivid life Asimov's best loved characters: hero Hari Seldon, who struggles to perfect his revolutionary theory of psychohistory to ensure the survival of humanity; Cleon II, the vain and crafty emperor of the Galactic Empire.

Great Sky River

The Galactic Center Series: Book 3

Gregory Benford

At the center of the galaxy, a small band of humans, trapped on the barren world of Snowglade and facing extinction, discovers that they will play a new role in the order of the universe.

Furious Gulf

The Galactic Center Series: Book 5

Gregory Benford

The passengers on the spaceship Argo, pursued by hostile ""mechs,"" must face their doubts about their captain's obsession with finding the galaxy's True Center, an obsession that even troubles the captain's son.

This Day All Gods Die: The Gap into Ruin

The Gap Cycle: Book 5

Stephen R. Donaldson

Stephen R. Donaldson's thrilling Gap series--The Real Story, Forbidden Knowledge, A Dark and Hungry God Arises, and Chaos and Order--introduced us to an adventure as vast as the galaxy and unpredictable as the human heart. It is the work of a storytelling genius with more than ten million copies of his books in print worldwide. Now in this dark, intense story, Donaldson delivers the thrilling conclusion to one of the most powerful science fiction stories ever told.

The countdown has begun. The battleworn crew of Trumpet is in disarray, as they attempt to pursue the pirate ship Soar and her captain Sorus Chatelaine. With one crew member infected by the Amnion and another stranded in the vacuum of space, all their hopes lie with Angus Thermopyle, once a bloodthirsty pirate, now a cyborg working against his will for the United Mining Companies Police--the strongest, most rapacious force in all of human space. As Angus, Morn Hyland, and her force-grown son Davies race for home across the vast reaches of forbidden space, they have no way of knowing that the final confrontation between Warden Dios and The Dragon has begun. Or that the fate of all humankind hangs in the balance.

Hammerfall

The Gene Wars: Book 1

C. J. Cherryh

Marak has suffered the madness his entire life. He is a prince and warrior, strong and shrewd and expert in the ways of the desert covering his planet. In the service of his father, he has dedicated his life to overthrowing the Ila, the mysterious eternal dictator of his world. For years he has successfully hidden the visions that plague him -- voices pulling him eastward, calling Marak, Marak, Marak, amid mind-twisting visions of a silver tower. But when his secret is discovered, Marak is betrayed by his own father and forced to march in an endless caravan with the rest of his world's madmen to the Ila's city of Oburan.

Instead of death, Marak finds in Oburan his destiny, and the promise of life -- if he can survive what is surely a suicidal mission. The Ila wants him to discover the source of the voices and visions that afflict the mad. Despite the danger sof the hostile desert, tensions within the caravan, and his own excruciating doubts, Marak miraculously reaches his goal -- only to be given another, even more impossible mission by the strange people in the towers.

According to these beings who look like him yet act differently than anyone he has ever known, Marak has a slim chance to save his world's people from the wrath of Ila's enemies. But to do so, he must convince them all -- warring tribes, villagers, priests, young and old, as well as the Ila herself -- to follow him on an epic trek across the burning desert before the hammer of the Ila's foes falls from the heavens above.

Powersat

The Grand Tour: Book 1

Ben Bova

Two hundred thousand feet up, things go horribly wrong. An experimental low-orbit spaceplane breaks up on reentry, falling to earth over a trail hundreds of miles long. And it its wake is the beginning of the most important mission in the history of space.

America needs energy, and Dan Randolph is determined to give it to them. He dreams of an array of geosynchronous powersats, satellites which gather solar energy and beam it to generators on Earth, freeing America from its addiction to fossil fuels and breaking the power of the oil cartels forever. But the wreck of the spaceplane has left his company, Astro Manufacturing, on the edge of bankruptcy.

Worse, Dan discovers that the plane worked perfectly right up until the moment that saboteurs knocked it out of the sky. And whoever brought it down is willing and able to kill again to keep Astro grounded.

Now Dan has to thread a dangerous maze. The visible threats are bad enough: Rival firms want to buy him out and take control of his dreams. His former lover wants to co-opt his unlimited-energy idea as a campaign plank for the candidate she's grooming for the presidency. NASA and the FAA want to shut down his maverick firm. And his creditors are breathing down his neck.

Making matters even more dangerous, an international organization of terrorists sees the powersat as a threat to their own oil-based power. And they've figured out how to use it as a weapon in their war against the West.

A sweeping mix of space, murder, romance, politics, secrets, and betrayal, Powersat will take you to the edge of space and the dawning of a new world.

Mars

The Grand Tour: Book 3

Ben Bova

Twenty-five astronauts of the international Mars mission set down on the harsh and unforgiving planet and soon face deadly meteor showers, subzero temperatures, and a mysterious virus.

Return to Mars

The Grand Tour: Book 4

Ben Bova

Six years after the first manned Martian expedition, a second has been announced -- one motivated purely by its profitable potential -- and half-Navajo, half-Anglo geologist Jamie Waterman's conflicted soul is beckoning him back to the eerie, unforgiving planet.

As commander of the new exploratory team, he will have to contend with a bitter and destructive rivalry, a disturbing new emotional attraction, and deadly, incomprehensible "accidents" that appear to be sabotage, all of which could doom the mission to failure.

But there is much more at stake than Waterman's personal redemption and the safety of his crew. For there are still great secrets to be uncovered on this cruel and enigmatic world -- not the least being something he glimpsed in the far distance during his first Martian excursion: an improbable structure perched high in the planet's carmine cliffs; a dwelling that only an intelligent being could have built.

Jupiter

The Grand Tour: Book 5

Ben Bova

Grant Archer only wanted to study astrophysics. But the forces of the "New Morality," the coalition of censorious do-gooders who run 21st-century America, have other plans for him.

To his distress, Grant is torn from his young bride and sent to a research station in orbit around Jupiter, to spy on the scientists who work there. Their work may lead to the discovery of higher life forms in the Jovian system-with implications the New Morality doesn't like at all.

What Grant's would-be controllers don't know is that his loyalty to science may be greater than his desire for a quiet life. But that loyalty will be tested in a mission as dangerous as any ever undertaken-a mission to the middle reaches of Jupiter's endless atmosphere, a place where hydrogen flows as a liquid, and cyclones larger than planets rage for centuries at a time.

What lurks there is more than anyone has counted on...and stranger than anyone could possibly have imagined.

Saturn

The Grand Tour: Book 6

Ben Bova

Second in size only to Jupiter, bigger than a thousand Earths but light enough to float in water, home of crushing gravity and delicate, seemingly impossible rings, it dazzles and attracts us:

SATURN

Earth groans under the thumb of fundamentalist political regimes. Crisis after crisis has given authoritarians the upper hand. Freedom and opportunity exist in space, for those with the nerve and skill to run the risks.

Now the governments of Earth are encouraging many of their most incorrigible dissidents to join a great ark on a one-way expedition, twice Jupiter's distance from the Sun, to Saturn, the ringed planet that baffled Galileo and has fascinated astronomers ever since.

But humans will be human, on Earth or in the heavens-so amidst the idealism permeating Space Habitat Goddard are many individuals with long-term schemes, each awaiting the right moment. And hidden from them is the greatest secret of all, the real purpose of this expedition, known to only a few....

Titan

The Grand Tour: Book 7

Ben Bova

Hugo Award-winning editor, author, scientist, and journalist, Ben Bova is a modern master of near-future science fiction and a passionate advocate of manned space exploration. For more than a decade, Bova has been chronicling humanity's struggles to colonize our solar system in a series of interconnected novels known as "The Grand Tour."

Now, with Titan, Ben Bova takes readers to one of the most intriguing destinations in near space: the extraordinary moon of Saturn which made international headlines last year when the Huygens probe sent back remarkable images of its strange landscapes.

2095. After long months of travel, the gigantic colony ship Goddard has at last made orbit around Saturn, carrying a population of more than of 10,000 dissidents, rebels, extremists, and visionaries seeking a new life. Among Goddard's missions is the study of Titan, which offers the tantalizing possibility that life may exist amid its windswept islands and chill black seas.

When the exploration vessel Titan Alpha mysteriously fails after reaching the moon's surface, long buried tensions surface among the colonists. Eduoard Urbain, the mission's chief scientist, is wracked with anxiety and despair as he sees his life's work unravel. Malcolm Eberly, Goddard's chief administrator, takes ruthless measures to hold onto power as a rash of suspicious incidents threaten to undermine his authority. Holly Lane, the colony's human-resources director, must confront the station's powerful leaders to protect the lives of its people. And retired astronaut Manuel Gaeta is forced to risk his life in a last, desperate attempt to salvage the lost probe.

Torn by intrigue, sabotage, and an awesome discovery that could threaten human space exploration, a handful of courageous men and women must fight for the survival of their colony, and for the destiny of the human race.

Venus

The Grand Tour: Book 10

Ben Bova

The surface of Venus is the most hellish place in the solar system. The ground is hot enough to melt aluminum. The air pressure is so high it has crushed spacecraft landers as though they were tin cans. The sky is perpetually covered with clouds of sulfuric acid. The atmosphere is a choking mixture of carbon dioxide and poisonous gases.

This is where Van Humphries must go. Or die trying.

His older brother perished in the first attempt to land a man on Venus, years before, and his father had always hated Van for surviving when his brother died. Now his father is offering a ten billion dollar prize to the first person to land on Venus and return his oldest son's remains.

To everyone's surprise, Van takes up the offer. But what Van Humphries will find on Venus will change everything--our understanding of Venus, of global warming on Earth, and his knowledge of who he is.

Farside

The Grand Tour: Book 12

Ben Bova

Farside, the side of the Moon that never faces Earth, is the ideal location for an astronomical observatory. It is also the setting for a tangled web of politics, personal ambition, love, jealousy, and murder.

Telescopes on Earth have detected an Earth-sized planet circling a star some thirty light-years away. Now the race is on to get pictures of that distant world, photographs and spectra that will show whether or not the planet is truly like Earth, and if it bears life.

Farside will include the largest optical telescope in the solar system as well as a vast array of radio antennas, the most sensitive radio telescope possible, insulated from the interference of Earth's radio chatter by a thousand kilometers of the Moon's solid body.

Building the Farside observatory is a complex, often dangerous task. On the airless surface of the Moon, under constant bombardment of hard radiation and infalling micrometeoroids, builders must work in cumbersome spacesuits and use robotic machines as much as possible. Breakdowns - mechanical and emotional - are commonplace. Accidents happen, some of them fatal.

What they find stuns everyone, and the human race will never be the same.

Moonrise

The Grand Tour: Moonrise: Book 1

Ben Bova

There is a dream called Moonbase, nurtured by ex-astronaut Paul Stavenger and his wife, Joanna Masterson Stavenger, head of the powerful Masterson Corporation.

There is a future of astonishing possibilities and vital technological development waiting on a lifeless world of astonishing contrasts, where sub-frigid darkness abuts the blood-boiling light -- a future threatened by greed and jealousy, insanity and murder.

The Moon and its mysteries have captivated the Stavenger family, and it will continue to exert its pull upon subsequent generations. For all those who experience its magnificent desolation are haunted by it eternally. Some will be doomed by its pitiless aversion to human life.

And some can never leave.

Moonwar

The Grand Tour: Moonrise: Book 2

Ben Bova

Ben Bova's extraordinary Moonbase Saga continues with a breathtaking near-future adventure rich in character and incident. The action begins seven years after the indomitable Stavenger family has realized its cherished dream of establishing a colony on the inhospitable lunar surface.

Moonbase is now a thriving community under the leadership of Doug Stavenger, a marvel of scientific ahievement created and supported by nanotechnology: virus-size machines that can build, cure, and destroy. But nanotechnology has been declared illegal by the home planet's leaders. And a powerful despot is determined to lay claim to Stavenger's peaceful city... or obliterate it, if necessary. The people of Moonbase--a colony with no arms or military--must now defend themselves from earth-born aggression with the only weapon at their disposal: the astonishing technology that sustains their endangered home.

The Precipice

The Grand Tour: The Asteroid Wars: Book 1

Ben Bova

Once, Dan Randolph was one of the richest men on Earth. Now the planet is spiraling into environmental disaster, with floods and earthquakes destroying the lives of millions. Randolph knows the energy and natural resources of space can save Earth's economy, but the price may be the loss of the only thing he has left--the company he founded, Astro Manufacturing.

Martin Humphries, fabulously wealthy heir of the Humphries Trust, also knows that space-based industry is the way of the future. But unlike Randolph, he doesn't care if Earth perishes in the process. And he knows that the perfect bait to ensnare Dan Randolph--and take control of Astro--is his revolutionary new fusion propulsion system.

As Randolph--accompanied by two fascinating women who are also brilliant astronauts--flies out to the Asteroid Belt aboard a fusion-propelled spacecraft, Humphries makes his move. The future of mankind lies in Randolph's hands.

The Asteroid Wars have begun.

The Rock Rats

The Grand Tour: The Asteroid Wars: Book 2

Ben Bova

Visionary space industrialist Dan Randolph is dead-but his protégé, pilot Pancho Barnes, now sits on the board of his conglomerate. She has her work cut out for her. For Randolph's rival Martin Humphries still wants to control Astro and still wants to drive independent asteroid miners like Lars Fuchs out of business. Humphries wants revenge against Pancho-ands, most of all, he wants his old flame Amanda, who has become Lars Fuchs's wife.

In the struggle over the incalculable wealth of the Asteroid Belt, many will die-and many will achieve more than they ever dreamed was possible.

The Silent War

The Grand Tour: The Asteroid Wars: Book 3

Ben Bova

When corporations go to war, standard business practice goes out the window. Astro Corporation is led by indomitable Texan Pancho Lane, Humphries Space Systems by the rich and ruthless Martin Humphries, and their fight is over nothing less than resources of the Asteroid Belt itself. As fighting escalates, the lines between commerce and politics, boardroom and bedroom, blur--and the keys to victory will include physics, nanotechnology, and cold hard cash.

As they fight it out, the lives of thousands of innocents hang in the balance, including the rock rats who make their living off the asteroids, and the inhabitants of Selene City on Earth's moon. As if matters weren't complicated enough, the shadowy Yamagata corporation sets its sights on taking advantage of other people's quarrels, and space pirate Lars Fuchs decides it's time to make good on his own personal vendetta.

It's a breakneck finale that can end only in earth's salvation--or the annihilation of all that humankind has ever accomplished in space.

The Aftermath

The Grand Tour: The Asteroid Wars: Book 4

Ben Bova

In the wake of the Asteroid Wars that tore across the solar system, Victor Zacharius makes his living running the ore-carrier Syracuse. With his wife and two children he plies the Asteroid Belt, hauling whatever cargo can be found. When the Syracuse stumbles into the middle of a military attack on the habitat Chrysalis, Victor flees in a control pod to draw the attacker's attention away from his family. Now, as his wife and children plunge into the far deeps of space, Victor has been rescued by the seductive Cheena Madagascar. He must do her bidding if he's to have a prayer of ever seeing his family again.

Elverda Apacheta is the solar system's greatest sculptor. The cyborg Dorn was formerly Dorik Harbin, the ruthless military commander responsible for the attack on Chrysalis. Their lives and destinies have been linked by their joint discovery of the alien artifact that had, earlier, profoundly affected industrialist Martin Humphries. Similarly transformed by the artifact's mysterious powers, Apacheta and Dorn now prowl the Belt, determined to find the bodies of the many victims of Harbin's atrocities so that they can be given proper burials.

Kao Yuan is the captain of Viking, owned by Martin Humphries, who's determined to kill Dorn and Elverda because they know too much about the artifact and its power over him. But Viking's second-in-command, Tamara Vishinsky, appears to have the real power on board ship. When Viking catches up to Apacheta and Dorn, their confrontation begins a series of events involving them, the Zacharius family, and Martin Humphries and his son in the transformation of the human solar system...

Gateway

The Heechee Saga: Book 1

Frederik Pohl

Gateway opened on all the wealth of the Universe... and on reaches of unimaginable horror. When prospector Bob Broadhead went out to Gateway on the Heechee spacecraft, he decided he would know which was the right mission to make him his fortune. Three missions later, now famous and permanently rich, Robinette Broadhead has to face what happened to him and what he is... in a journey into himself as perilous and even more horrifying than the nightmare trip through the interstellar void that he drove himself to take!

Beyond the Blue Event Horizon

The Heechee Saga: Book 2

Frederik Pohl

In Book Two of the Heechee Saga, Robinette Broadhead is on his way to making a fortune by bankrolling an expedition to the Food Factory--a Heechee spaceship that can graze the cometary cloud and transfor the basic elements of the universe into untold quantities of food. But even as he gambles on the breakthrough technology, he is wracked with the guilt of losing his wife, poised forever at the "event horizon" of a black hole where Robin had abaondoned her. As more and more information comes back from the expedition, Robin grows ever hopeful that he can rescue his beloved Gelle-Klara Moynlin. After three and a years, the factory is discovered to work, and a human is found aboard. Robin's suffering may be just about over....

Heechee Rendezvous

The Heechee Saga: Book 3

Frederik Pohl

After millennia had passed, Mankind discovered the Heechee legacy (an alien culture that fled to the reative safety of a black hole) -- in particular an asteroid stocked with autonavigating spacecraft. Robinette Broadhead, who had led the expedition that unlocked the many secrets of Heechee technology, is now forced once more to make a perilous voyage into space -- where the Heechee are waiting. And this time the future of Man is at stake....

The Gateway Trip

The Heechee Saga: Book 5

Frederik Pohl

The Heechee were perhaps the greatest and most tantalizing mystery the human race had ever known. The first Heechee artifacts were uncovered on Venus, and in the beginning they were treated as nothing more than costly souvenirs and curiosities for tourists from Earth and Mars. But when an asteroid stocked with autonavigating spacecraft was discovered, suddenly the Heechee universe was thrown wide open, giving birth to the Gateway Corporation and bringing untold riches to the adventurers who risked the unknown to see where those Heechee spacecraft would take them. Many of those brave souls never returned. The ones who did brought back technological wonders that transformed life on Earth -- but of the Heechee themselves there was no sign...

The Gateway Trip, lavishly illustrated by artist Frank Kelly Freas, presents the tales of those perilous journeys and marvelous discoveries, as those intrepid pioneers followed the trail of the elusive Heechee and changed the course of human history forever!

The Boy Who Would Live Forever

The Heechee Saga: Book 6

Frederik Pohl

In 1977 Frederik Pohl stunned the science fiction world with the publication of Gateway, one of the most brilliantly entertaining SF novels of all time. Gateway was a bestseller and won science fiction's triple crown: the Hugo, Nebula, and John W. Campbell Memorial awards for best novel. Now, more than twenty-five years later, Pohl has completed a new novel set in the Gateway universe. The Boy Who Would Live Forever has a sense of wonder and excitement that will satisfy those who loved Gateway and will delight new readers as well.

In Gateway, long after the alien Heechee abandoned their space-station, Gateway (as humans dubbed it) allowed humans to explore new worlds. The Heechee, alarmed by the alien Kugel whose goal was to destroy all organic lifeforms, had already retreated to the galactic core where they now lived in peace. Now, in The Boy Who Would Live Forever, humans with dreams of life among the stars are joining the Heechee at the core, to live there along with those humans and Heechee whose physical bodies have died and their minds stored in electronic memory so that their wisdom passes down through the ages.

Their peace is threatened by the Kugel, who may yet attack the core. But a much greater threat is the human Wan Enrique Santos-Smith, whose blind loathing of the Heechee fuels an insane desire to destroy them and, incidentally, every living being in the galaxy.

Stan and Estrella, two young people from Earth, went to Gateway looking for adventure, and found each other. They settle among the Heechee on Forested Planet of Warm Old Star Twenty-Four, never suspecting that they may be the last best hope to save the galaxy. But with allies like Gelle-Klara Moynlin--one of the galaxy's richest women, who isn't content to just have money, but wants to use her wealth for good, and machine mind Marc Antony-a wonderful chef to thousands of living and stored clients, they are destined to contend with Wan's terrible plan. Frederik Pohl has woven together the lives of these and other memorable characters to create a masterful new novel.

Hyperion

The Hyperion Cantos: Book 1

Dan Simmons

On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all. On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope--and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands.

The Rise of Endymion

The Hyperion Cantos: Book 4

Dan Simmons

In The Rise of Endymion, Dan Simmons brings to a triumphant conclusion one of the most celebrated, compelling, and dramatic science fiction sagas of our time. Brilliant, provocative, unfailingly inventive, the odyssey began with the Hugo Award-winning Hyperion, continued through the critically acclaimed The Fall of Hyperion and Endymion, and now ascends to its greatest heights yet....

The final chapter of this magnificent saga begins with two momentous events: the death and resurrection of Pope Julius XV and the coming-of-age of the new messiah. Her name is Aenea and she is the only person who can counter the pope and his plan to unleash the Pax Fleet, the Church's military wing, on a final genocidal Crusade to gain total dominion over the universe. The Church is allied with the infamous AI Core, which has offered immortality to humankind--or at least to those faithful who pledge total obedience to the Church--but at what terrible price? The Core has its own dark motives and secrets, and only Aenea knows what they are.

Aenea, too, has an ally. Her protector, Raul Endymion, onetime shepherd and convicted murderer, finds her in exile undergoing a strange apprenticeship on Old Earth. Here she has gained access to an information matrix created by the Others--the same mysterious Others who moved Old Earth to save it from the Core. But who are these Others? What has Aenea learned from them? And why has Old Earth been turned into a stage upon which cybrids from the past--from John Keats to Frank Lloyd Wright--repeat historical dramas of human genius for purposes known only to the Others?

The answers to these questions must wait. Together with the android A. Bettik, Endymion and his beloved Aenea embark on a final mission to find and comprehend the underlying fabric of the universe. The surprising nature of this medium and Aenea's ability to instruct her growing army of disciples in its discovery and use could provide the one weapon powerful enough to thwart their enemies while liberating humanity. Meanwhile, the enigmatic Shrike--monster, angel, killing machine--has followed them on their intergalactic sojourn and now stands ready to complete its own mission, revealing at last the long-held secret of its origin and purpose.

In The Rise of Endymion, Dan Simmons masterfully weaves together the complex strands of this extraordinary series. He answers all of the unsolved mysteries posed in the earlier volumes and brings the story full circle to the planet Hyperion, where it all began. A work of unparalleled power and vision, The Rise of Endymion is a masterpiece of the imagination by one of our most gifted writers.

Behind the Throne

The Indranan War: Book 1

K. B. Wagers

Meet Hail: Captain. Gunrunner. Fugitive.

Quick, sarcastic, and lethal, Hailimi Bristol doesn't suffer fools gladly. She has made a name for herself in the galaxy for everything except what she was born to do: rule the Indranan Empire. That is, until two Trackers drag her back to her home planet to take her rightful place as the only remaining heir.

But trading her ship for a palace has more dangers than Hail could have anticipated. Caught in a web of plots and assassination attempts, Hail can't do the one thing she did twenty years ago: run away. She'll have to figure out who murdered her sisters if she wants to survive.

A gun smuggler inherits the throne in this Star Wars-style science fiction adventure from debut author K. B. Wagers. Full of action-packed space opera exploits and courtly conspiracy - not to mention an all-out galactic war - Behind the Throne will please fans of James S. A Corey, Becky Chambers and Lois McMaster Bujold, or anyone who wonders what would happen if a rogue like Han Solo were handed the keys to an empire...

Dauntless

The Lost Fleet: Book 1

Jack Campbell

The Alliance has been fighting the Syndic for a century-and losing badly. Now its fleet is crippled and stranded in enemy territory. Their only hope is Captain John "Black Jack" Geary-a man who's emerged from a century-long hibernation to find he has been heroically idealized beyond belief. Now, he must live up to his own legend.

Fearless

The Lost Fleet: Book 2

Jack Campbell

Captain John "Black Jack" Geary tries a desperate gamble to lead the Alliance Fleet home-through enemy-occupied space-only to lose half the Fleet to an unexpected mutiny.

Courageous

The Lost Fleet: Book 3

Jack Campbell

The Lost Fleet continues its perilous journey home.

Badly damaged and low on supplies, the Alliance Fleet is raiding Syndic mines for raw materials-and Captain "Black Jack" Geary hopes they can continue to remain one step ahead of their enemies. But the Syndics are the least of Geary's worries when he learns of the existence of aliens with the power to annihilate the human race.

Valiant

The Lost Fleet: Book 4

Jack Campbell

“Black Jack” Geary has ordered his fleet back to the Lakota Star System where the Syndics nearly destroyed them, a desperate gamble that may give them a fighting chance of survival—or tear them apart.

Relentless

The Lost Fleet: Book 5

Jack Campbell

After successfully freeing Alliance POWs, "Black Jack" Geary discovers that the Syndics plan to ambush the fleet with their powerful reserve flotilla in an attempt to annihilate it once and for all. And as Geary has the fleet jump from one star system to the next, hoping to avoid the inevitable confrontation, saboteurs contribute to the chaos.

Inherit the Stars

The Minervan Experiment: Book 1

James P. Hogan

The man on the moon was dead. They called him Charlie. He had big eyes, abundant body hair, and fairly long nostrils. His skeletal body was found clad in a bright red spacesuit, hidden in a rocky grave. They didn't know who he was, how he got there, or what had killed him. All they knew was that his corpse was fifty thousand years old -- and that meant this man had somehow lived long before he ever could have existed.

The Gentle Giants of Ganymede

The Minervan Experiment: Book 2

James P. Hogan

Long before the world of the Ganymeans blew apart millennia ago, the strange race of giants had already vanished. All that remained of them was a wrecked ship abandoned on a frozen moon of Jupiter. Now Earth's scientists are there, determined to ferret out the secret of the lost race. But when suddenly the Ganymeans return, they bring with them answers that will reveal the secret of our own as well.

Giants' Star

The Minervan Experiment: Book 3

James P. Hogan

Eons ago, a gentle race of giants fled the planet Minerva, leaving the ancestors of man to fend for themselves. Fifty thousand years ago, Minerva exploded, hurling its moon into an orbit about Earth.

In the twenty-first century, scientists Victor Hunt and Chris Danchekker, doing research on Ganymede, attract a small band of friendly aliens who are lost in time - and who begin to reveal something of the origin of mankind. Finally, man believed that he comprehended his place in the universe... until he learned of the Watchers in the stars. Now Earth finds itself in the middle of a power struggle between a benevolent alien empire and an off-shoot group of upstart humans who hate Earth more than any alien ever could.

Entoverse

The Minervan Experiment: Book 4

James P. Hogan

Human society on Jevlen was falling apart -- and it looked as if JEVEX, the immense super-computer that managed all Jevlenese affairs, was at the heart of the matter. Except that the problems didn't stop when JEVEX was shut down. People were changing -- or being changed. It was almost as if the Jevlenese were being possessed...

Meanwhile, in a very different universe, where magic worked and nothing physical was predictable, holy men caught glimpses of another place, a place where the shape of objects remained unchanged by motion, and cause led directly and logically to effect. And the best part was that when the heart was pure, the mind was focused, and circumstances were right, some lucky souls could actually make the transition to that other universe. If only they all could...

The Mote in God's Eye

The Moties: Book 1

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle

In the year 3016, the Second Empire of Man spans hundreds of star systems, thanks to the faster-than-light Alderson Drive. No other intelligent beings have ever been encountered, not until a light sail probe enters a human system carrying a dead alien. The probe is traced to the Mote, an isolated star in a thick dust cloud, and an expedition is dispatched.

In the Mote the humans find an ancient civilization--at least one million years old--that has always been bottled up in their cloistered solar system for lack of a star drive. The Moties are welcoming and kind, yet rather evasive about certain aspects of their society. It seems the Moties have a dark problem, one they've been unable to solve in over a million years.

The Gripping Hand

The Moties: Book 2

Larry Niven
Jerry Pournelle

Robert Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read." The San Francisco Chronicle declared that "as science fiction, The Mote in God's Eye is one of the most important novels ever published." Now Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, award winning authors of such bestsellers as Footfall and The Legacy of Heorot, return us to the Mote, and to the universe of Kevin Renner and Horace Bury, of Rod Blaine and Sally Fowler.

There, 25 years have passed since humanity quarantined the mysterious aliens known as Moties within the confines of their own solar system. They have spent a quarter century analyzing and agonizing over the deadly threat posed by the only aliens mankind has ever encountered-- a race divided into distinct biological forms, each serving a different function. Master, Mediator, Engineer. Warrior. Each supremely adapted to its task, yet doomed by millions of years of evolution to an inescapable fate. For the Moties must breed-- or die. And now the fragile wall separating them and the galaxy beyond is beginning to crumble.

Humans

The Neanderthal Parallax: Book 2

Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer, the award-winning and bestselling writer, hits the peak of his powers in Humans, the second book of The Neanderthal Parallax, his trilogy about our world and parallel one in which it was the Homo sapiens who died out and the Neanderthals who became the dominant intelligent species. This powerful idea allows Sawyer to examine some of the deeply rooted assumptions of contemporary human civilization dramatically, by confronting us with another civilization, just as morally valid, that has made other choices. In Humans, Neanderthal physicist Ponter Boddit, a character you will never forget, returns to our world and to his relationship with geneticist Mary Vaughan, as cultural exchanges between the two Earths begin.

As we see daily life in another present-day world, radically different from ours, in the course of Sawyer's fast-moving story, we experience the bursts of wonder and enlightenment that are the finest pleasures of science fiction. Humans is one of the best SF novels of the year, and The Neanderthal Parallax is an SF classic in the making.

The Reality Dysfunction, Part 1: Emergence

The Night's Dawn Trilogy - Split Editions: Book 1

Peter F. Hamilton

A nightmare with no end ....

In AD2600 the human race is finally beginning to realise its full potential. Hundreds of colonised planets scattered across the galaxy host a multitude of prosperous and wildly diverse cultures. Genetic engineering has pushed evolution far beyond nature's boundaries, defeating disease and producing extraordinary spaceborn creatures. Huge fleets of sentient trader starships thrive on the wealth created by the industrialisation of entire star systems. And throughout inhabited space the Confederation Navy keeps the peace. A true golden age is within our grasp.

But now something has gone catastrophically wrong. On a primitive colony planet a renegade criminal's chance encounter with an utterly alien entity unleashes the most primal of all our fears. An extinct race which inhabited the galaxy aeons ago called it 'The Reality Dysfunction'. It is the nightmare which has prowled beside us since the beginning of history.

The Neutronium Alchemist, Part 1: Consolidation

The Night's Dawn Trilogy - Split Editions: Book 3

Peter F. Hamilton

Not every fallen angel comes from heaven...

The ancient menace has finally escaped from Lalonde, shattering the Confederation's peaceful existence. Those who succumbed to it have acquired godlike powers, but now follow a far from divine gospel as they advance inexorably from world to world. On planets and asteroids, individuals battle for survival against the strange and brutal forces unleashed upon the universe. Governments teeter on the brink of anarchy, the Confederation Navy is dangerously over-stretched, and a dark messiah prepares to invoke his own version of the final Night. In such desperate times the last thing the galaxy needs is a new and terrifyingly powerful weapon. Yet Dr Alkad Mzu is determined to retrieve the Alchemist - so she can complete her thirty-year-old vendetta to slay a star. Which means Joshua Calvert has to find Dr Mzu and bring her back before the Alchemist can be reactivated. But he's not alone in the chase, and there are people on both sides who have their own ideas about how to use the ultimate doomsday device.

The Neutronium Alchemist, Part 2: Conflict

The Night's Dawn Trilogy - Split Editions: Book 4

Peter F. Hamilton

The souls of those long dead are entering the universe at an alarming rate. Stealing the bodies of the living, they are grouping together into powerful consortiums led by leaders from history. An increasingly desperate Confederation Navy is struggling to stem the tide as the race for the universe's most powerful weapon begins. But if the dead can return to life, who will be the ultimate victors?

The Naked God, Part 1: Flight

The Night's Dawn Trilogy - Split Editions: Book 5

Peter F. Hamilton

Hell just went quantum . . .

The Confederation is starting to collapse politically and economically, allowing the possessed to infiltrate more worlds. Quinn Dexter is loose on Earth, destroying the giant arcologies one at a time. As Louise Kavamagh tries to track him down, she manages to acquire some strange and powerful allies whose goal does not quite match her own. The campaign to liberate Mortonridge from the possessed degenerates into a horrendous land battle of the kind which hasn't been seen by humankind for six hundred years. Then some of the protagonists escape in a very unexpected direction . . .

Joshua Calvert and Syrinx now fly their starships on a mission to find the Sleeping God - which an alien race beleives holds the key to finally overthrowing the possessed.

The Naked God, Part 2: Faith

The Night's Dawn Trilogy - Split Editions: Book 6

Peter F. Hamilton

On Earth, satanist Quinn Dexter possesses a new army of the damned, using them to initiate The Night's Dawn, the entropic annihilation of all Creation. At the same time Joshua Calvert, master of the Lady Macbeth, seeks a miracle in a haystack: the truth behind a legend that 15,000 years ago the alien Tyrathca intercepted a single message from unexplored space beyond Orion: "IT SEES THE UNIVERSE. IT CONTROLS EVERYTHING. OUR ARRIVAL WOKE IT."

Could a God be sleeping somewhere between the stars? And can Joshua possibly find this unknown Deity before The Night's Dawn devours the cosmos?

Probability Space

The Probability Trilogy: Book 3

Nancy Kress

Nancy Kress cemented her reputation in SF with the publication of her multiple-award-winning novella, "Beggars in Spain," which became the basis for her extremely successful Beggars Trilogy (comprising Beggars in Spain, Beggars and Choosers, and Beggars Ride).

And now she brings us Probability Space, the conclusion of the trilogy that began with Probability Moon and then Probability Sun, which is centered on the same world as Kress's Nebula Award-winning novelette, "Flowers of Aulit Prison." The Probability Trilogy has already been widely recognized as the next great work by this important SF writer.

In Probability Space, humanity's war with the alien Fallers continues, and it is a war we are losing. Our implacable foes ignore all attempts at communication, and they take no prisoners. Our only hope lies with an unlikely coalition: Major Lyle Kaufman, retired warrior Marbet Grant, the Sensitive who's involved with Kaufman Amanda, a very confused fourteen-year-old girl and Magdalena, one of the biggest power brokers in all of human space.

As the action moves from Earth to Mars to the farthest reaches of known space, with civil unrest back home and alien war in deep space, four humans--armed with little more than an unproven theory--try to enter the Fallers' home star system. It's a desperate gamble, and the fate of the entire universe may hang in the balance.

The Quantum Thief

The Quantum Thief Trilogy: Book 1

Hannu Rajaniemi

Jean le Flambeur is a post-human criminal, mind burglar, confidence artist and trickster. His origins are shrouded in mystery, but his exploits are known throughout the Heterarchy - from breaking into the vast Zeusbrains of the Inner System to steal their thoughts, to stealing rare Earth antiques from the aristocrats of the Moving Cities of Mars. Except that Jean made one mistake. Now he is condemned to play endless variations of a game-theoretic riddle in the vast virtual jail of the Axelrod Archons - the Dilemma Prison - against countless copies of himself.

Jean's routine of death, defection and cooperation is upset by the arrival of Mieli and her spidership, Perhonen. She offers him a chance to win back his freedom and the powers of his old self - in exchange for finishing the one heist he never quite managed ...

The Quantum Thief is a dazzling hard SF novel set in the solar system of the far future - a heist novel peopled by bizarre post-humans but powered by very human motives of betrayal, revenge and jealousy. It is a stunning debut.

The Causal Angel

The Quantum Thief Trilogy: Book 3

Hannu Rajaniemi

With his infectious love of storytelling in all its forms, his rich characterization and his unrivaled grasp of thrillingly bizarre cutting-edge science, Hannu Rajaniemi swiftly set a new benchmark for Science Fiction in the 21st century. Now, with his third novel, he completes the tale of the many lives, and minds, of gentleman rogue Jean de Flambeur.

Influenced as much by the fin de siècle novels of Maurice leBlanc as he is by the greats of SF, Rajaniemi weaves intricate, warm capers through dazzling science, extraordinary visions of a wild future,and deep conjectures on the nature of reality and story.

In The Causal Angel we will discover the ultimate fates of Jean, his employer Miele, the independently minded ship Perhonnen, and the rest of a fractured and diverse humanity flung throughout the solar system.

The Collapsium

The Queendom of Sol: Book 1

Wil McCarthy

No writer stretches the boundaries of science fiction like Wil McCarthy does. Now this acclaimed author has crafted his most wildly ambitious and stunningly original novel yet, an unforgettable tale set in a wondrous future in which the secrets of matter have been unlocked and death itself is but a memory. A future also imperiled by a bitter rivalry between two brilliant scientists: one perhaps the greatest genius in the history of humankind, the other, its greatest monster...

In the eighth decade of the glorious reign of Her Majesty Tamra Lutui, the Queendom of Sol enjoys a peace and prosperity even gods might envy. In fact, two awesome technologies have given human beings all the powers--and caprices--of the gods they once worshiped. The first is wellstone, a form of programmable matter capable of emulating almost any substance: natural, artificial, even hypothetical. The second is collapsium, a deadly crystal, composed of miniature black holes, that allows the virtually instantaneous transmission of information and matter--including humans--throughout the solar system.

Bruno de Towaji, royal consort and the inventor of collapsium, dreams of building the arc de fin, an almost mythical device capable of probing the farthest reaches of spacetime. Marlon Sykes, de Towaji's rival in both love and science, is meanwhile hard at work on a vast telecommunications project whose first step consists of constructing a ring of collapsium around the sun. But when a ruthless saboteur attacks the Ring Collapsiter and sends it falling toward the sun, the two scientists must put aside personal animosity and combine their prodigious intellects to prevent the destruction of the solar system... and every living thing within it.

In his most daring work yet, Wil McCarthy blasts us into a mythical realm--by turns hilarious, magnificent, and deeply moving--where two archmasters of physics compete for love and honor against a backdrop of stellar catastrophe. The Collapsium is a bold work of the imagination.

The Wellstone

The Queendom of Sol: Book 2

Wil McCarthy

For the children of immortal parents, growing up can be hard to do. A prince will forever be a prince--leaving no chance for Bascal Edward de Towaji Lutui to inherit his parents' throne. So what is an angry young blue blood to do? Punch a hole in the shadow he's been living in by rallying his equally disgruntled companions to make an improbable spaceship, busting out of the so-called summer camp in which their parents have stowed them and making a daring escape across the vastness of space. Ne'er-do-well Conrad Mursk is just along for the joyride--until he realizes this is no typical display of teenage angst. The children are rising up in an honest-to-gods revolution. And, boyo, things are going to get raw.

Gardens of the Sun

The Quiet War: Book 2

Paul J. McAuley

The Quiet War is over. The city states of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn have fallen to the Three Powers Alliance of Greater Brazil, the European Union and the Pacific Community. A century of enlightenment, rational utopianism and exploration of new ways of being human has fallen dark. Outers are herded into prison camps and forced to collaborate in the systematic plundering of their great archives of scientific and technical knowledge, while Earth's forces loot their cities, settlements and ships, and plan a final solution to the 'Outer problem'.

But Earth's victory is fragile, and riven by vicious internal politics. While seeking out and trying to anatomise the strange gardens abandoned in place by Avernus, the Outers' greatest genius, the gene wizard Sri Hong-Owen is embroiled in the plots and counterplots of the family that employs her. The diplomat Loc Ifrahim soon discovers that profiting from victory isn't as easy as he thought.

And in Greater Brazil, the Outers' democratic traditions have infected a population eager to escape the tyranny of the great families who rule them. After a conflict fought to contain the expansionist, posthuman ambitions of the Outers, the future is as uncertain as ever. Only one thing is clear. No one can escape the consequences of war - especially the victors.

The Red: First Light

The Red: Book 1

Linda Nagata

There Needs To Be A War Going On Somewhere.

Lieutenant James Shelley commands a high-tech squad of soldiers in a rural district within the African Sahel. They hunt insurgents each night on a harrowing patrol, guided by three simple goals: protect civilians, kill the enemy, and stay alive - because in a for-profit war manufactured by the defense industry there can be no cause worth dying for. To keep his soldiers safe, Shelley uses every high-tech asset available to him - but his best weapon is a flawless sense of imminent danger... as if God is with him, whispering warnings in his ear.

The Trials

The Red: Book 2

Linda Nagata

In the wake of nuclear terrorism, a squad of elite soldiers must combat artificial intelligence and seek justice in this military political thriller, a sequel to The Red: First Light.

Lieutenant James Shelley and his squad of US Army soldiers were on a quest for justice when they carried out the unauthorized mission known as First Light. They returned home to America to face a court-martial, determined to expose the corruption in the chain of command that compelled their actions. But in a country still reeling from the nuclear terrorism of Coma Day, the courtroom is just one battlefield of many.

A new cycle of violence ignites when rumors of the elusive, rogue AI known as the Red go public - and Shelley is, once again, pulled into the fray. Challenged by his enemies, driven by ideals, Shelley feels compelled to act. But are the harrowing choices he makes really his own, or are they made for him, by the Red? And with millions of lives at stake in a game of nuclear cat-and-mouse, does the answer even matter?

Going Dark

The Red: Book 3

Linda Nagata

In the third book in The Red Trilogy, former Army Lt. James Shelley becomes a black ops sniper working for the Red--a suspected rogue artificial intelligence that is ripped from today's headlines.

James Shelley has left his lover, Delphi, and his companion-in-arms, Jayne Vasquez, with a fortune acquired from a fallen oligarch. They believe him to be dead, and he doesn't try to set the record straight. His long-running question has been answered: There are other soldiers like him who have served the purposes of the Red--and he has accepted his place among them. As a soldier of the Red he pursues covert missions designed to nudge history away from existential threats--but that doesn't mean the world is growing more orderly. It's only in the froth of a "managed chaos" that human potential can grow and thrive. Shelley's missions eventually take him into orbit--and into conflict with those he loves--Delphi and Jaynie--who are determined to escape the influence of the Red.

Starfish

The Rifters Trilogy: Book 1

Peter Watts

A huge international corporation has developed a facility along the Juan de Fuca Ridge at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean to exploit geothermal power. They send a bio-engineered crew--people who have been altered to withstand the pressure and breathe the seawater--down to live and work in this weird, fertile undersea darkness.

Unfortunately the only people suitable for long-term employment in these experimental power stations are crazy, some of them in unpleasant ways. How many of them can survive, or will be allowed to survive, while worldwide disaster approaches from below?

Maelstrom

The Rifters Trilogy: Book 2

Peter Watts

This is the way the world ends:

A nuclear strike on a deep sea vent. The target was an ancient microbe-voracious enough to drive the whole biosphere to extinction-and a handful of amphibious humans called rifters who'd inadvertently released it from three billion years of solitary confinement.

The resulting tsunami killed millions. It's not as through there was a choice: saving the world excuses almost any degree of collateral damage.

Unless, of course, you miss the target.

Now North America's west coast lies in ruins. Millions of refugees rally around a mythical figure mysteriously risen from the deep sea. A world already wobbling towards collapse barely notices the spread of one more blight along its shores. And buried in the seething fast-forward jungle that use to be called Internet, something vast and inhuman reaches out to a woman with empty white eyes and machinery in her chest. A woman driven by rage, and incubating Armageddon.

Her name is Lenie Clarke. She's a rifter. She's not nearly as dead as everyone thinks.

And the whole damn world is collateral damage as far as she's concerned....

Ringworld

The Ringworld Series: Book 1

Larry Niven

Pierson's puppeteers, strange, three-legged, two-headed aliens, have discovered an immense structure in a hitherto unexplored part of the universe. Frightened of meeting the builders of such a structure, the puppeteers set about assembling a team consisting of two humans, a puppeteer and a kzin, an alien not unlike an eight-foot-tall, red-furred cat, to explore it. The artefact is a vast circular ribbon of matter, some 180 million miles across, with a sun at its centre - the Ringworld. But the expedition goes disastrously wrong when the ship crashlands and its motley crew faces a trek across thousands of miles of the Ringworld's surface.

The Ringworld Throne

The Ringworld Series: Book 3

Larry Niven

Come back to the Ringworld... the most astonishing feat of engineering ever encountered. A place of untold technological wonders, home to a myriad humanoid races, and world of some of the most beloved science fiction stories ever written!

The human, Louis Wu; the puppeteer known as the Hindmost; Acolyte, son of the Kzin called Chmeee... legendary beings brought together once again in the defense of the Ringworld. Something is going on with the Protectors. Incoming spacecraft are being destroyed before they can reach the Ringworld. Vampires are massing. And the Ghouls have their own agenda--if anyone dares approach them to learn.

Each race on the Ringworld has always had its own Protector. Now it looks as if the Ringworld itself needs a Protector. But who will sit on the Ringworld Throne?

Ringworld's Children

The Ringworld Series: Book 4

Larry Niven

Welcome to a world like no other.

The Ringworld: a landmark engineering achievement, a flat band 3 million times the surface area of Earth, encircling a distant star. Home to trillions of inhabitants, not all of which are human, and host to amazing technological wonders, the Ringworld is unique in all of the universe.

Explorer Louis Wu, an Earth-born human who was part of the first expedition to Ringworld, becomes enmeshed in interplanetary and interspecies intrigue as war, and a powerful new weapon, threaten to tear the Ringworld apart forever. Now, the future of Ringworld lies in the actions of its children: Tunesmith, the Ghould protector; Acolyte, the exiled son of Speaker-to-Animals, and Wembleth, a strange Ringworld native with a mysterious past. All must play a dangerous in order to save Ringworld's population, and the stability of Ringworld itself.

Blending awe-inspiring science with non-stop action and fun, Ringworld's Children, the fourth installment of the multiple award-winning saga, is the perfect introduction for readers new to this New York Times bestselling series, and long-time fans of Larry Niven's Ringworld.

Hidden Empire

The Saga of Seven Suns: Book 1

Kevin J. Anderson

Having colonized other worlds, humans are certain the galaxy is theirs for the taking. But they soon discover the horrifying price of their arrogance when a scientific experiment awakens the wrath of the previously unknown Hydrogues and begins a war.

Beggars In Spain

The Sleepless: Book 1

Nancy Kress

Born in 2008, Leisha Camden is beautiful, extraordinarily intelligent... and one of an ever-growing number of human beings who have been genetically modified to never require sleep.

Once she and "her kind" were considered interesting anomalies. Now they are outcasts - victims of blind hatred, political repression and shocking mob violence meant to drive the "Sleepless" from human society... and, ultimately, from the Earth itself.M

But Leisha Camden has chosen to remain behind in a world that envies and fears her "gift" - a world marked for destruction in a devastating conspiracy of freedom... and revenge.

Axis

The Spin Sequence: Book 2

Robert Charles Wilson

Wildly praised by readers and critics alike, Robert Charles Wilson’s Spin won science fiction’s highest honor, the Hugo Award for Best Novel.

Now, in Spin’s direct sequel, Wilson takes us to the "world next door"--the planet engineered by the mysterious Hypotheticals to support human life, and connected to Earth by way of the Arch that towers hundreds of miles over the Indian Ocean. Humans are colonizing this new world--and, predictably, fiercely exploiting its resources, chiefly large deposits of oil in the western deserts of the continent of Equatoria.

Lise Adams is a young woman attempting to uncover the mystery of her father's disappearance ten years earlier. Turk Findley is an ex-sailor and sometimes-drifter. They come together when an infall of cometary dust seeds the planet with tiny remnant Hypothetical machines. Soon, this seemingly hospitable world will become very alien indeed--as the nature of time is once again twisted, by entities unknown.

Vortex

The Spin Sequence: Book 3

Robert Charles Wilson

Vortex tells the story of Turk Findley, the protagonist introduced in Axis, who is transported ten thousand years into the future by the mysterious entities called “the Hypotheticals.” In this future humanity exists on a chain of planets connected by Hypothetical gateways; but Earth itself is a dying world, effectively quarantined.

Turk and his young friend Isaac Dvali are taken up by a community of fanatics who use them to enable a passage to the dying Earth, where they believe a prophecy of human/Hypothetical contact will be fulfilled. The prophecy is only partly true, however, and Turk must unravel the truth about the nature and purpose of the Hypotheticals before they carry him on a journey through warped time to the end of the universe itself.

The Integral Trees

The State: Book 2

Larry Niven

"Niven has come up with an idea about as far out as one can get.... This is certainly classic science fiction-the idea is truly the hero." -Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine

When leaving Earth, the crew of the spaceship Discipline was prepared for a routine assignment. Dispatched by the all-powerful State on a mission of interstellar exploration and colonization, Discipline was aided (and secretly spied upon) by Sharls Davis Kendy, an emotionless computer intelligence programmed to monitor the loyalty and obedience of the crew. But what they weren't prepared for was the smoke ring-an immense gaseous envelope that had formed around a neutron star directly in their path. The Smoke Ring was home to a variety of plant and animal life-forms evolved to thrive in conditions of continual free-fall. When Discipline encountered it, something went wrong. The crew abandoned ship and fled to the unlikely space oasis.

Five hundred years later, the descendants of the Discipline crew living on the Smoke Ring no longer remember their origins. Earth is more myth than memory, and no recollection of the State remains. But Kendy remembers. And just outside the Smoke Ring, Discipline waits patiently to make contact with its wayward children.

The Smoke Ring

The State: Book 3

Larry Niven

In the free-fall environment of the Smoke Ring, the descendants of the crew of the Discipline no longer remembered their Earth roots -- or the existence of Sharls Davis Kendy, the computer-program despot of the ship. Until Kendy initiated contact once more.

Fourteen years later, only Jeffer, the Citizens Tree Scientist, knew that Kendy was still watching -- and waiting. Then the Citizens Tree people rescued a family of loggers and learned for the first time of the Admiralty, a large society living in free fall amid the floating debris called the Clump. And it was likely that the Admiralty had maintained, intact, Discipline's original computer library.

Exploration was a temptation neither Jeffer nor Kendy could resist, and neither Citizens Tree nor Sharls Davis Kendy would ever be the same again...

Startide Rising

The Uplift Saga: Book 2

David Brin

David Brin's Uplift novels are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction ever written. Sundiver, Startide Rising, and The Uplift War -- a New York Times bestseller -- together make up one of the most beloved sagas of all time. Brin's tales are set in a future universe in which no species can reach sentience without being "uplifted" by a patron race. But the greatest mystery of all remains unsolved: who uplifted humankind?

The Terran exploration vessel Streaker has crashed in the uncharted water world of Kithrup, bearing one of the most important discoveries in galactic history. Below, a handful of her human and dolphin crew battles armed rebellion and a hostile planet to safeguard her secret -- the fate of the Progenitors, the fabled First Race who seeded wisdom throughout the stars.

Eon

The Way Series: Book 1

Greg Bear

The 21st century was on the brink of nuclear confrontation when the 300 kilometer-long stone flashed out of nothingness and into Earth's orbit. NASA, NATO, and the UN sent explorers to the asteroid's surface...and discovered marvels and mysteries to drive researchers mad.

For the Stone was from space--but perhaps not our space; it came from the future--but perhaps not our future; and within the hollowed asteroid was Thistledown. The remains of a vanished civilization. A human--English, Russian, and Chinese-speaking--civilization. Seven vast chambers containing forests, lakes, rivers, hanging cities...

And museums describing the Death; the catastrophic war that was about to occur; the horror and the long winter that would follow. But while scientists and politicians bickered about how to use the information to stop the Death, the Stone yielded a secret that made even Earth's survival pale into insignificance.

The World Before

The Wess'Har Series: Book 3

Karen Traviss

Three strikingly different alien races greeted the military mission from Earth when it reached the planet called Bezer'ej.

Now one of the sentient species has been exterminated -- and two others are poised on the brink of war.

The fragile bezeri are no more, due to the ignorant, desperate actions of human interlopers. The powerful wess'har protectors have failed in their sworn obligation to the destroyed native population -- and the outrage must be redressed.

But those who are coming to judge from the World Before -- the home planet, now distant and alien to the wess'har, whose ancestors left there generations ago -- will not restrict their justice to the individual humans responsible for the slaughter. Earth itself must answer for the genocide. And its ultimate fate may depend on a dead woman: former police officer Shan Frankland, who became something far greater than human before destroying herself in the vast airless depths of space.

WWW: Wake

The WWW Trilogy: Book 1

Robert J. Sawyer

Caitlin Decter is young, pretty, feisty, a genius at math-and blind. Still, she can surf the net with the best of them, following its complex paths clearly in her mind. But Caitlin's brain long ago co-opted her primary visual cortex to help her navigate online. So when she receives an implant to restore her sight, instead of seeing reality, the landscape of the World Wide Web explodes into her consciousness, spreading out all around her in a riot of colors and shapes. While exploring this amazing realm, she discovers something-some other-lurking in the background. And it's getting more and more intelligent with each passing day...

WWW: Watch

The WWW Trilogy: Book 2

Robert J. Sawyer

Award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer continues his "wildly though- provoking" science fiction saga of a sentient World Wide Web.

Webmind is an emerging consciousness that has befriended Caitlin Decter and grown eager to learn about her world. But Webmind has also come to the attention of WATCH-the secret government agency that monitors the Internet for any threat to the United States-and they're fully aware of Caitlin's involvement in its awakening.

WATCH is convinced that Webmind represents a risk to national security and wants it purged from cyberspace. But Caitlin believes in Webmind's capacity for compassion-and she will do anything and everything necessary to protect her friend.

Raft

The Xeelee Sequence: Book 1

Stephen Baxter

Stephen Baxter's highly acclaimed first novel and the beginning of his stunning Xeelee Sequence. A spaceship from Earth accidentally crossed through a hole in space-time to a universe where the force of gravity is one billion times as strong as the gravity we know. Somehow the crew survived, aided by the fact that they emerged into a cloud of gas surrounding a black hole, which provided a breathable atmosphere. Five hundred years later, their descendants still struggle for existence, divided into two main groups. The Miners live on the Belt, a ramshackle ring of dwellings orbiting the core of a dead star, which they excavate for raw materials. These can be traded for food from the Raft, a structure built from the wreckage of the ship, on which a small group of scientists preserve the ancient knowledge which makes survival possible. Rees is a Miner whose curiosity about his world makes him stow away on a flying tree -- just one of the many strange local lifeforms -- carrying trade between the Belt and the Raft.

Accepted as an apprentice scientist, he learns that their world is dying, and that in order to live these survivors must contemplate a journey even more perilous and fantastic than that of their ancestors.

Ring

The Xeelee Sequence: Book 4

Stephen Baxter

Michael Poole's wormholes constructed in the orbit of Jupiter had opened the galaxy to humankind. Then Poole tried looping a wormhole back on itself, tying a knot in space and ripping a hole in time.

It worked. Too well.

Poole was never seen again. Then from far in the future, from a time so distant that the stars themselves were dying embers, came an urgent SOS--and a promise. The universe was doomed, but humankind was not. Poole had stumbled upon an immense artifact, light-years across, fabricated from the very string of the cosmos.

The universe had a door. And it was open...

Vacuum Diagrams

The Xeelee Sequence: Book 5

Stephen Baxter

While the human race struggles against alien oppressors, an even greater epic battle rages between the deadly dark-matter photino birds and their implacable enemy, the Xeelee...

The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Novellas 2015

The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Novellas: Book 1

Paula Guran

The Year's Best Science Fiction and Fantasy Novellas 2015 inaugurates a new annual series of anthologies featuring some of the year's best novella-length science fiction and fantasy. Novellas, longer than short stories but shorter than novels, are a rich and rewarding literary form that can fully explore tomorrow's technology, the far reaches of the future, thought-provoking imaginings, fantastic worlds, and entertaining concepts with the impact of a short story and the detailed breadth of a novel. Gathering a wide variety of excellent SF and fantasy, this anthology of "short novels" showcases the talents of both established masters and new writers.

Table of Contents

  • In Her Eyes by Seth Chambers (Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jan/Feb 2014)
  • The Churn: An Expanse Novella by James S. A. Corey (Orbit)
  • Where the Trains Turn by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen, translated by Liisa Rantalaiho (Tor.com)
  • Yesterday's Kin by Nancy Kress (Tachyon Publications)
  • Claudius Rex by John P. Murphy (Alembical 3, edited by Lawrence M. Schoen and Arthur Dorrance, Paper Golem)
  • The Things We Do For Love by K. J. Parker (Subterranean Press)
  • The Mothers of Voorhisville by Mary Rickert (Tor.com)
  • The Lightning Tree by Patrick Rothfuss (Rogues, edited by George R. R. Martin, Bantam/Titan)
  • Dream Houses by Genevieve Valentine (Wyrm Publishing)

The Three-Body Problem

Three-Body Trilogy: Book 1

Cixin Liu

With the scope of Dune and the commercial action of Independence Day, Three-Body Problem is the first chance for English-speaking readers to experience this multple-award-winning phenomenon from China's most beloved science fiction author, Liu Cixin.

Set against the backdrop of China's Cultural Revolution, a secret military project sends signals into space to establish contact with aliens. An alien civilization on the brink of destruction captures the signal and plans to invade Earth. Meanwhile, on Earth, different camps start forming, planning to either welcome the superior beings and help them take over a world seen as corrupt, or to fight against the invasion. The result is a science fiction masterpiece of enormous scope and vision.

Translation by Ken Liu.

The Dark Forest

Three-Body Trilogy: Book 2

Cixin Liu

With the scope of Dune and the rousing action of Independence Day, this near-future trilogy is the first chance for English-speaking readers to experience this multple-award-winning phenemonenon from China's most beloved science fiction author.

In Dark Forest, Earth is reeling from the revelation of a coming alien invasion—in just four centuries' time. The aliens' human collaborators may have been defeated, but the presence of the sophons, the subatomic particles that allow Trisolaris instant access to all human information, means that Earth's defense plans are totally exposed to the enemy. Only the human mind remains a secret. This is the motivation for the Wallfacer Project, a daring plan that grants four men enormous resources to design secret strategies, hidden through deceit and misdirection from Earth and Trisolaris alike. Three of the Wallfacers are influential statesmen and scientists, but the fourth is a total unknown. Luo Ji, an unambitious Chinese astronomer and sociologist, is baffled by his new status. All he knows is that he's the one Wallfacer that Trisolaris wants dead.

Translated by Joel Martinsen

Note: first published in China in 2008.

Tor Double #1: A Meeting With Medusa / Green Mars

Tor Double: Book 1

Kim Stanley Robinson
Arthur C. Clarke

A Meeting With Medusa:

In leading an expedition through the many-layered Jovian atmosphere in the hydrogen balloon craft Kon-Tiki, Captain Howard Falcon discovers a world where bioluminescent air plankton produce brilliant atmospheric sea-fire, predatory manta-ray creatures dominate the skies, and enormous jellyfish-like beings grow to be over a mile across.

Green Mars:

This is the original Novella that starts Robinson's Mars exploration and not the book of the same name.

This work is centered around climbing Olympus Mons, the tallest mountain on Mars (and the rest of the solar system).

Tor Double #4: Tango Charley and Foxtrot Remeo / The Star Pit

Tor Double: Book 4

John Varley
Samuel R. Delany

Tango Charley and Foxtrot Remeo:

Lunar police officer Anna-Louise Bach helps save a girl surviving on a long-abandoned space station that is about to crash.

The Star Pit:

Space Travel is as easy as jumping on a ship - but only if you're golden...

The Stars, Like Dust

Trantorian Empire: Book 2

Isaac Asimov

Biron Farrell was young and naïve, but he was growing up fast. A radiation bomb planted in his dorm room changed him from an innocent student at the University of Earth to a marked man, fleeing desperately from an unknown assassin.

He soon discovers that, many light-years away, his father, the highly respected Rancher of Widemos, has been murdered. Stunned, grief-stricken, and outraged, Biron is determined to uncover the reasons behind his father's death, and becomes entangled in an intricate saga of rebellion, political intrigue, and espionage.

The mystery takes him deep into space where he finds himself in a relentless struggle with the power-mad despots of Tyrann. Now it is not just a case of life or death for Biron, but a question of freedom for the galaxy.

Cyteen

Unionside (Union-Alliance): Book 2

C. J. Cherryh

In a futuristic world of cybernetics, two young friends become trapped in an endless nightmare of suspicion, surveillance, programmable servants, a centuries-old ruling class, and an enigmatic woman who rules them all.

Superposition

Varcolac: Book 1

David Walton

A Mind-Bending, Near-Future, Science Fiction Technothriller.

Jacob Kelley's family is turned upside down when an old friend turns up, waving a gun and babbling about an alien quantum intelligence. The mystery deepens when the friend is found dead in an underground bunker…apparently murdered the night he appeared at Jacob's house. Jacob is arrested for the murder and put on trial.

As the details of the crime slowly come to light, the weave of reality becomes ever more tangled, twisted by a miraculous new technology and a quantum creature unconstrained by the normal limits of space and matter. With the help of his daughter, Alessandra, Jacob must find the true murderer before the creature destroys his family and everything he loves.

Lady of Mazes

Ventus

Karl Schroeder

Karl Schroeder returns to the same distant future in which Ventus was set, but employing a broader canvas, to tell the story of Teven Coronal, a ringworld with a huge multiplicity of human civilizations. Brilliant but troubled Livia Kodaly is Teven's only hope against invaders both human and superhuman who would destroy its fragile ecologies and human diversity.

Sun of Suns

Virga: Book 1

Karl Schroeder

It is the distant future. The world known as Virga is a fullerene balloon three thousand kilometers in diameter, filled with air, water, and aimlessly floating chunks of rock. The humans who live in this vast environment must build their own fusion suns and towns that are in the shape of enormous wood and rope wheels that are spun for gravity.

Young, fit, bitter, and friendless, Hayden Griffin is a very dangerous man. Hes come to the city of Rush in the nation of Slipstream with one thing in mind: to take murderous revenge for the deaths of his parents six years ago. His target is Admiral Chaison Fanning, head of the fleet of Slipstream, which conquered Haydens nation of Aerie years ago. And the fact that Haydens spent his adolescence living with pirates doesnt bode well for Fannings chances.

Queen of Candesce

Virga: Book 2

Karl Schroeder

Venera Fanning was last seen falling into nothingness at the end of Sun of Suns. Now, in Queen of Candesce, Venera finds herself plunging through the air between the artificial continents of Virga, far from home and her husband, who may or may not be alive. Landing in the ancient nation of Spyre, Venera encounters new enemies and new friends (or at least convenient allies). She must quickly learn who she can trust, and who she can manipulate in order to survive. Queen of Candesce is her story.

Pirate Sun

Virga: Book 3

Karl Schroeder

Return to Virga, a bubble universe artificially separated from our own future universe, and the setting of Sun of Suns and Queen of Candesce.

Chaison Fanning, the admiral of a fleet of warships, has been captured and imprisoned by his enemies, but is suddenly rescued and set free. He flees through the sky to his home city to confront the ruler who betrayed him. And perhaps even to regain his lovely, powerful, and subversive wife, Venera, who he has not seen since she fled with the key to the artificial sun at the center of Virga, Candesce.

Schroeder sets a whole new standard for hard SF space opera.

The Sunless Countries

Virga: Book 4

Karl Schroeder

In an ocean of weightless air where sunlight has never been seen, only the running lights of the city of Sere glitter in the dark. One woman, Leal Hieronyma Maspeth, history tutor and dreamer, lives and dreams of love among the gaslit streets and cafés. And somewhere in the abyss of wind and twisted cloud through which Sere eternally falls, a great voice has begun speaking.

As its cold words reach even to the city walls—and as outlying towns and travelers’ ships start to mysteriously disappear—only Leal has the courage to try to understand the message thundering from the distance. Even the city’s most famous and exotic visitor, the sun lighter and hero named Hayden Griffin, refuses to turn aside from his commission to build a new sun for a foreign nation. He will not become the hero that Leal knows the city needs; so in the end, it is up to her to listen, and ultimately reply, to the worldwasp.

The Time Ships

Wells Sequels: Book 1

Stephen Baxter

There is a secret passage through time

...and it leads all the way to the end of Eternity. But the journey has a terrible cost. It alters not only the future but the "present" in which we live.

A century after the publication of H. G. Wells' immortal The Time Machine, Stephen Baxter, today's most acclaimed new "hard SF" author, returns to the distant conflict between the Eloi and the Morlocks in a story that is at once an exciting expansion, and a radical departure based on the astonishing new understandings of quantum physics.

Ship's Brother

Xuya Universe

Aliette de Bodard

Short story in de Bodard's Xuya universe. It originally appeared in Interzone, #241 July-August 2012. It can also be found in the anthology The Year's Best Science Fiction: Thirtieth Annual Collection (2013), edited by Gardner Dozois

Read the full story for free at Clarkesworld.

The Shipmaker

Xuya Universe

Aliette de Bodard

A Xuya universe story. Winner of the British Science Fiction Association Award, 2010

Read this story online for free at Interzone (PDF).

Yesterday's Kin

Yesterday's Kin

Nancy Kress

Nebula-nominated novella

Aliens have landed in New York. After several months of no explanations, they finally reveal the reason for their arrival.

The news is not good.

Geneticist Marianne Jenner is having a career breakthrough, yet her family is tearing itself apart. Her children Elizabeth and Ryan constantly bicker, agreeing only that an alien conspiracy is in play. Her youngest, Noah, is addicted to a drug that keeps temporarily changing his identity. The Jenner family could not be further apart. But between the four of them, the course of human history will be forever altered.

Earth's most elite scientists have ten months to prevent a disaster--and not everyone is willing to wait.

Anthologized in Paula Guran's The Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Novellas 2015.

A Fire Upon the Deep

Zones of Thought: Book 1

Vernor Vinge

Thousands of years hence, many races inhabit a universe where a mind's potential is determined by its location in space, from superintelligent entities in the Transcend, to the limited minds of the Unthinking Depths, where only simple creatures and technology can function. Nobody knows what strange force partitioned space into these "regions of thought," but when the warring Straumli realm use an ancient Transcendent artifact as a weapon, they unwittingly unleash an awesome power that destroys thousands of worlds and enslaves all natural and artificial intelligence.

Fleeing the threat, a family of scientists, including two children, are taken captive by the Tines, an alien race with a harsh medieval culture, and used as pawns in a ruthless power struggle. A rescue mission, not entirely composed of humans, must rescue the children-and a secret that may save the rest of interstellar civilization.

A Deepness in the Sky

Zones of Thought: Book 2

Vernor Vinge

After thousands of years searching, humans stand on the verge of first contact with an alien race. Two human groups: the Qeng Ho, a culture of free traders, and the Emergents, a ruthless society based on the technological enslavement of minds.

The group that opens trade with the aliens will reap unimaginable riches. But first, both groups must wait at the aliens' very doorstep for their strange star to relight and for their planet to reawaken, as it does every tow hundred and fifty years....

Then, following terrible treachery, the Qeng Ho must fight for their freedom and for the lives of the unsuspecting innocents on the planet below, while the aliens themselves play a role unsuspected by the Qeng Ho and Emergents alike.

More than just a great science fiction adventure, A Deepness in the Sky is a universal drama of courage, self-discovery, and the redemptive power of love.

The Children of the Sky

Zones of Thought: Book 3

Vernor Vinge

After nearly twenty years, Vernor Vinge has produced an enthralling sequel to his memorable bestselling novel A Fire Upon the Deep.

Ten years have passed on Tines World, where Ravna Bergnsdot and a number of human children ended up after a disaster that nearly obliterated humankind throughout the galaxy. Ravna and the pack animals for which the planet is named have survived a war, and Ravna has saved more than one hundred children who were in cold-sleep aboard the vessel that brought them.

While there is peace among the Tines, there are those among them—and among the humans—who seek power... and no matter the cost, these malcontents are determined to overturn the fledgling civilization that has taken root since the humans landed.

On a world of fascinating wonders and terrifying dangers, Vernor Vinge has created a powerful novel of adventure and discovery that will entrance the many readers of A Fire Upon the Deep. Filled with the inventiveness, excitement, and human drama that have become hallmarks of his work, this new novel is sure to become another great milestone in Vinge’s already stellar career.