Odyssey (Priscilla

Odyssey (Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins Series #5)

3.9 18
by Jack McDevitt
     
 

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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 Academy pilot Valentina Kouros and the team of the starship Salvator will soon discover that their odyssey is no mere public-relations ploy, for the moonriders are not a harmless

Overview

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 Academy pilot Valentina Kouros and the team of the starship Salvator will soon discover 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.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
Jack McDevitt's pulse-pounding deep-space science fiction adventure featuring protagonist Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins (previously encountered in Omega, Chindi, Deepsix, et al.) is a 23rd-century cautionary tale of sorts. After decades of political shortsightedness and overall disregard concerning the interstellar space program -- namely, continued government cuts in funding -- the inevitable has happened: An overused and inadequately maintained spaceship breaks down and disappears during hyperflight. The media uproar shines a glaring light on the maligned space program, which is increasingly being perceived as a massive black hole of a boondoggle into which boatloads of taxpayer's money enter and never return. In a desperate attempt to renew popular interest in space exploration, Director of Operations Hutch and the rest of the brain trust at the World Academy for Science and Technology (McDevitt's equivalent to NASA) plan a mission to study "moonriders," mysterious black globular spacecraft that have been seen in the skies around numerous deep-space research facilities and popular interstellar tour destinations.

Along for the ride is editor Gregory MacAllister, a major-league skeptic whom the Academy hopes to wow with sites like the ancient orbiting temple left by the Monument-Makers at 61 Cygni, the very first planet to be found with multicellular life forms, the thousands-of-miles-long hypercollider being used in the Origins Project, etc. But when the semimythical moonriders redirect an asteroid and destroy an orbiting hotel in the process of being built, humankind's interest in the space program is suddenly at an all-time high -- and so is their fear of being annihilated by alien invaders…

McDevitt has been called the next coming of Isaac Asimov for good reason. Combining thought-provoking, hard science fiction speculation with compelling, character-driven story lines, McDevitt -- like Asimov -- is a master of conveying a goose bump-inducing sense of awe and wonder, not only about the mysteries awaiting us in the vastness of space but also about the possible future paths of humankind. Paul Goat Allen
Library Journal
Journalist Gregory MacAllister launches a campaign to end the prestigious Space Academy's deep space program in favor of a last-ditch attempt to rescue Earth from global warming. In response, the academy sends the Starship Salvator to explore the "moonriders," strange lights seen in nearby planetary systems. MacAllister joins the expedition and helps discover that the moonriders are far more deadly than first thought. The author of Chindi and other novels featuring the academy succeeds in visualizing a believable future of space exploration as well as believable personalities whose lives and loves put a human face on scientific speculation. Expert storytelling and a thorough grounding in hard science strongly recommend this to most libraries. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Another adventure set in the same universe as Chindi (2002). With no intelligent, technologically advanced aliens yet discovered, and an Earth possibly dying from global warming and ecological chaos, interstellar travel is slowly withering, with only a handful of haulage companies and Orion Tours regularly plying the space lanes. Opinionated journalist (but with informed, witty opinions) Gregory MacAllister vocally supports the Earth-first faction. However, a sudden spate of UFO sightings-"moonriders"-persuades politically appointed Academy bigwig Michael Asquith to send a vessel, Salvator, to investigate, although ops chief Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins isn't convinced. So pilot Valya Kouros, a skeptical MacAllister, PR flack Eric Samuels and 15-year-old Amy Taylor, daughter of a powerful politico, depart to swing by the moonrider hotspots-including super-expensive supercollider project Origins-to drop off some monitors and investigate. All goes according to plan until, astonishingly, one of the monitors captures two globe-shaped moonriders rendezvousing with a wandering asteroid and changing its course. The ship's AI, Bill, predicts the redirected rock will smack into planet Terranova, devastating its developed but non-intelligent life forms. It then emerges that a half-constructed orbiting hotel is about to be pulverized by a huge asteroid. Salvator will assist with evacuating the hotel, dropping off Amy, MacAllister and Samuels at an orbiting spaceship museum. That night, Amy receives a visit from a being that resembles a too-tall Hutch, warning that the moonriders intend to destroy Origins, and soon. Surely Amy was dreaming-except that MacAllister discovers there's a minuscule chancethat Origins could destroy the entire universe. A low-key, reasonably surprising and involving tale, although not among McDevitt's best. Agent: Ralph Vicinanza/Ralph M. Vicinanza Ltd.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101208625
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/30/2007
Series:
Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins Series , #5
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
432
Sales rank:
69,778
File size:
1 MB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Jack McDevitt is a former naval officer, taxi driver, customs officer and motivational trainer. He is a multiple Nebula Award finalist who lives in Georgia with his wife Maureen.

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Odyssey (Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins Series #5) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
The earth is in trouble as global warming doomsayers of the early twenty-first century prove right. Space has proven a big expensive failure as the costs overshadow the few benefits. However with pandemic ecological disaster hammering the home world, space is a viable option to save humanity. Many scientists feel it is too late to resuscitate earth though some people like reporter Gregory MacAllister insist Earth-first movement is the best chance to rescue the populace as space means only a select few might survive. However, the debate abruptly changes when UFO sightings dubbed 'moonriders' occur circling the Pleiades. Since this is the first possible encounter with an alien race, especially one that is technically advanced, Academy leader Michael Asquith sends a ship to investigate. Much of the crew having been in space remains as skeptical as MacAllister is that they will find any sentient extraterrestrial. Still operations chief Priscilla 'Hutch' Hutchins, pilot Valya Kouros, public relations expert Eric Samuels, MacAllister and teenager Amy Taylor head to the moonrider sighting. Thus when a sighting of two moonriders occur, everyone on board the earth vessel is stunned especially when it looks as if these aliens are planning massive destruction, but why remains as elusive as to how to prevent this from happening. --- Jack McDevitt¿s provides an interesting futuristic space ODYSSEY filled with a delightful twist involving the motive of the enigmatic moonriders. The story line set in the same universe as CHINDI takes its time to paint the dismal picture of a dying planet with choices confronting humanity (an extension of today¿s debates between environment and development, and space vs. earth). The cast feels a bit odd for a first encounter (a PR, a teen and a reporter), but fans of Mr. McDevitt will appreciate his cautionary tale that we better do something today or pay an exorbitant amount tomorrow that spins into an outer space opera. --- Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed it and waiting for the nexr one.
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plappen More than 1 year ago
Odyssey, Jack McDevitt, 2006, ISBN 9780441014330 This far-future novel is about mankind's attempt to learn the truth behind mysterious lights in space called moonriders. Space travel and industrialization just has not paid off the way humanity had hoped. The search for intelligent life has been disappointing. On Earth, there is a growing call to cut the space exploration budget, and focus on domestic issues, like global warming. In a last-ditch effort, the Academy puts together a mission to investigate moonriders, once and for all. The modern equivalent of UFOs, they have been seen by many, but no one has gotten a close look at them. The mission takes on added urgency when an asteroid misses Earth by a whisker (in astronomical terms), and no one knew it was coming. A luxury hotel under construction orbiting a nearby planet is destroyed by another asteroid. Both incidents are blamed on moonriders. The mission, including the journalist leading the campaign to cut the space fleet, discovers that the incidents blamed on moonriders have a much more Earthly origin. They also see, up close and personal, that the moonriders are not to be trifled with, when they attack a supercollider, thousands of kilometers long, under construction many light years away. Here is another gem of a story from McDevitt. It's an intelligent piece of space opera, it does a good job of combining ideas and action, and it is recommended.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book even though there's not a lot happening. Its an excellent space adventure that builds and builds to a short action sequence at the end, but I think it works because the characters are great. They really carry you along. It's a believable future. McDevitt does a great job projecting the way the world might be and introduces a mystery that affects everyone's lives. It's a quick read even thought its low key. I got through it in a couple days and had a good time. I recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Jack McDevitt and read everything he writes. Some things I like better than others and Odyssey is 'others.' It takes a long time to get to the real point and there is much too much legal business. One of the saving graces of this book is 'Hutch'. I would love Mr McDevitt to go back a little and do another book with Hutch as the main character when she was still the pilot. Do read this and I recommend it but it is not my favorite McDevitt book.