Kethani

Kethani

3.3 3
by Eric Brown
     
 

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It takes an alien race to show us our humanity
When a mysterious alien race known as the Kéthani make contact with the people of Earth they bring with them the dubious gift of eternal life. These enigmatic aliens will change the course of the human race forever but also touch people's lives on a personal level, not least in a small town in the English… See more details below

Overview

It takes an alien race to show us our humanity
When a mysterious alien race known as the Kéthani make contact with the people of Earth they bring with them the dubious gift of eternal life. These enigmatic aliens will change the course of the human race forever but also touch people's lives on a personal level, not least in a small town in the English countryside. But do the Kéthani have a hidden agenda and will the human race choose to evolve or turn in on itself in the face of this momentous revelation?

Kéthani is a superbly crafted novel that examines the consequences of first contact with an alien race, and the choices faced by those whose lives are touched by these visitors from the stars. This is moving and powerful science fiction.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Pleasant but evasive, this episodic novel posits a future where the alien Kéthani give humanity a sort of immortality. Upon their deaths, people with Kéthani implants are resurrected on the aliens' home world with improved bodies and minds and given the choice of returning home or spreading the Kéthani gospel throughout the galaxy. As religions and governments struggle to adjust, Brown (Helix ) focuses on the experiences of neighbors and friends in a small English village, keeping the vibe as low-key as their evenings in the local pub. When a member of another alien race kills one of the Kéthani, the characters begin to wonder who the antagonists are and what they're trying to do, as well as who (or what) the Kéthani themselves are and why they are aiding (or manipulating) humankind. But each section ends just when it should begin, dissolving tension and leaving these questions unanswered. The result is an unsatisfying cop-out. (May)

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Kirkus Reviews - Kirkus Reviews
Near-future alien-contact story cycle from British author Brown (Helix, 2007, etc.) comprising nine previously published pieces plus three originals (one a collaboration) and other linked material that connects the various stories into an approximation of a novel. The Kethani announce themselves by instantaneously erecting huge crystal monuments, later known as Onward Stations, all over the world. Their gift is immortality: Anybody that receives one of their implants will be resurrected and given the choice of returning to Earth or journeying among the stars as ambassadors. The returnees are psychologically improved, too; the crime rate among them is zero. Many cultures at first react violently, but as the years pass this dwindles into insignificance. These developments are filtered through the stories told by a group of friends in the local pub in a Yorkshire village, including the sometime narrator, doctor Khalid Azzam. One of the friends, Richard Lincoln, becomes a ferryman, that is, he collects the implanted ones after death and transmits them to the Kethani starship for resurrection. Richard's wife, Barbara, hates and fears the Kethani, and resists implantation-until she has a deathbed conversion. Local detective Doug Standish ponders the impossible murder of a woman who didn't really seem to exist. Khalid, probably the least convincing character, grows angry and resentful at his wife Zara's intellectual growth; they part, and Khalid commits suicide while contriving to make it look like a murder. Resembling a cross between John Wyndham and Bob Shaw: Beautifully rendered and quietly effective, though once you get the idea the impact diminishes.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781849973557
Publisher:
Rebellion Publishing Ltd
Publication date:
03/31/2009
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
668,199
File size:
0 MB

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