Flint and Freer's latest collaboration (after 2007's Pyramid Power) doesn't bring anything original to space opera, but its fast pace and pulpy premise make for an engaging if shallow adventure. When a vast relic made up of massive bubbles approaches a star system inhabited by sentient space-faring aliens, a team of researchers is sent to investigate. Soon after the inquisitive aliens enter one of the bubbles, they're attacked by its murderously insane human inhabitants. Alien xenobiologist Kretz barely escapes into another bubble, and in order to get safely back to his ship, he must somehow traverse numerous virtually inaccessible environments, all populated by divergently evolving human societies. Flint and Freer's action-packed, often humorous story ultimately lacks substance but makes it up in fun. (Oct.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
A Slow Train to Arcturusby Eric Flint, Dave Freer
"When the planet Miran observed an enormous vessel that was approaching their star system. they sent a spaceship to rendezvous with the mysterious visitor. The vessel's design was odd - a multitude of separate globular habitats in a long string - and most of the alien team that entered one of the habitats were slaughtered by savage creatures called "humans."" "One of… See more details below
"When the planet Miran observed an enormous vessel that was approaching their star system. they sent a spaceship to rendezvous with the mysterious visitor. The vessel's design was odd - a multitude of separate globular habitats in a long string - and most of the alien team that entered one of the habitats were slaughtered by savage creatures called "humans."" "One of the aliens had barely managed to escape to another habitat where the humans were more friendly, if rather technologically backward. But one of his crewmates was in danger and he needed to get back to his spaceship. He would need one human's help to do that." They would have to travel through several more habitats, each one isolated from the other, each with its own bizarre dangers and customs. And friendliness toward strangers was not one of those customs.
When an exploratory team from the planet Miran rendezvousing with an enormous alien starship is attacked by the aliens, known as humans, one survivor, Kretz, finds sanctuary in another part of the ship with a group of humans who seem friendly and technologically deficient. Learning that the starship consists of detachable habitats filled with populations in search of their own planets, Kretz attempts to enlist a human ally to help him make his arduous way through various human social groups, some friendly, some not, to return to his own world. With its combination of hard sf, quirky humor, and fast-paced action, Flint and Freer's latest joint foray (after Rats, Bats & Vats and Pyramid Scheme) have created another sf adventure that belongs in most libraries.
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I love anything written by Dave Freer! Dave had me hooked from the first when I read Pyramid Scheme years ago. Dave is one of those rare writers that can write in many different styles and Genres, from Humor to Hard Science Fiction. Slow Train to Arcturus falls into the latter category, however, it is not a dry read. It is a true page turner of the finest kind! Mr. Freer weaves humor and hard science effortlessly together in this tale from the mankind's distant future. It is an excellent read, and I too agree with Mr. Freer, we need to get back to exploring space, Up close and personal like!
When the humongous weird looking vessel entered their system, leaders of planet Miren become concerned. They send a ship filled with scientists and other researchers to investigate the encroaching craft with its strange massive bubble-like habitats.----------- Upon entering an orb, humans inside attack the alien visitors from Miren. Most of the outsiders are killed as they are not soldiers and the ship's residents are insane berserkers. Miren xenobiologist Kretz escapes the slaughter by entering a different biosphere containing other humans, friendlier but unhelpful as they do not have the means to get him to his vessel. Kretz realizes quickly to get back to his ship and eventually Miren, he must pass through several of these contained circular environments filled with humans at different stages of development many hostile towards his species.------------ This is a fun often humorous outer space opera. The story line is hyper fast and filled with non stop action, but that is a two edged sword because the plot never goes deep into the various groups that the Miren meet or the purpose of the multi habitat spacecraft. Still this is an engaging tale with the neat twist of the humans entering the alien specie sector with hostility that pulp space opera fans will enjoy.--------------- Harriet Klausner