Probability Sun

Probability Sun

5.0 1
by Nancy Kress
     
 

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Salvation or Annihilation?

A strange artifact has been discovered on a distant planet, an artifact that may be the key to humanity's salvation. For we at war with the Fallers, an alien race bent on nothing short of genocide, and this is a war we are losing. The artifact is not only a powerful weapon, but possibly the rosetta stone to a lost

Overview

Salvation or Annihilation?

A strange artifact has been discovered on a distant planet, an artifact that may be the key to humanity's salvation. For we at war with the Fallers, an alien race bent on nothing short of genocide, and this is a war we are losing. The artifact is not only a powerful weapon, but possibly the rosetta stone to a lost superscience . . . a superscience that the Fallers may have already decoded. Or it may be a doomsday machine that could destroy the very fabric of space.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Sequel, as predicted, to Kress's wonderful alien-contact yarn Probability Moon (2000). Humanity is at war with the ruthless, xenophobic, uncommunicative alien Fallers. Planet World's furry, intelligent humanoids somehow "share reality": they think and react alike, or suffer the consequence of blinding head pain. Also on World reposes an ancient artifact, a relic of some vanished race, that can generate a shield impenetrable to directed-energy weapons. On another setting, the artifact causes heavy radioactive elements to explode. And, by manipulating probability, the artifact gives rise to the Worlders' shared reality. A second expedition to World, led by the masterfully diplomatic Colonel Lyle Kaufman, includes genius physicist Thomas Capelo—he'll study the artifact—and gene-modified Marbet Grant, supernaturally capable of interpreting body language and involuntary cues, to interrogate a captured Faller. Though the Fallers already possess the shield against energy beams, Capelo makes no progress toward understanding the physics behind the device. Marbet makes little headway in communicating with her captive. The artifact, Capelo learns, might protect the Solar System against Faller attack—but if they remove the artifact from World, the inhabitants' shared reality will collapse, along with their civilization. Then Marbet shows her Faller a model of the artifact, for which treasonous act she's arrested and thrown into the brig—leaving all Lyle's plans in ruins. Kress's always-excellent characters wrestle with a splendid array of puzzles and problems, human, alien, and scientific: another resounding success for this talented, sure-footed writer.
From the Publisher
"Kress's always excellent characters wrestle with a splendid array of puzzles and problems, human, alien, and scientific: another resounding success for this talented sure-footed writer."-Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

"The author grounds her morally complex plot in the physics of probability. As usual with Kress, her eccentric characters add depth. Readers will start this novel because of Kress's reputation, will read it for the adventure and will like it for the characters and the science."—Publishers Weekly

"The immediate sequel to Probability Moon. The questions that permeate the tightly paced story are whether scientists and the military can cooperate to learn the nature of the artifact—scientific storehouse or doomsday machine—and whether either of those parties will procure the cooperation of the captive Faller, whose perception of reality is unfathomably different from that of any of the humans. Displaying a typically strong synthesis of Kress' many gifts, the novel leaves the door wide open for at least one successor."—Booklist

"Kress has blended such a nice set of surprises and inevitabilities that you should learn and read and enjoy them for yourself. You don't have to read Probability Moon to have a good time, but you'll probably search it out anyway."—San Diego Union-Tribune

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781466825260
Publisher:
Tom Doherty Associates
Publication date:
02/17/2003
Series:
Probability Trilogy , #2
Sold by:
Macmillan
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
279,819
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Nancy Kress was born and raised in upstate New York, where she spent most of her childhood either reading or playing in the woods. She earned a bachelor's and master's degree in education, as well as an M.A. in English. While she was pregnant with the second of her two sons, she started writing fiction. She had never planned on becoming a writer, but staying at home full-time with infants left her time to experiment.

In 1990 she went full-time as an SF writer. The first thing she wrote in this new status was the novella version of Beggars In Spain, which won both the Hugo and the Nebula Award. She is the author of more than twenty books, including more than a dozen novels of science fiction and fantasy, as well as three story collections, and two books on writing. Of her most recent novels, Probability Space (Tor, 2002) won the John W. Campbell Award for Best SF novel. Her short fiction has appeared in all the usual places, garnering her one Hugo and three Nebula Awards. Her work has been translated into Swedish, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Japanese, Croatian, Lithuanian, Romanian, Greek, Hebrew, and Russian. She is also the monthly "Fiction" columnist for Writer's Digest Magazine and she teaches writing regularly at various places, including Clarion and The Writing Center in Bethesda, Maryland. She currently resides in Rochester, New York.


Nancy Kress was born and raised in upstate New York, where she spent most of her childhood either reading or playing in the woods. She earned a bachelor's and master's degree in education, as well as an M.A. in English. While she was pregnant with the second of her two sons, she started writing fiction. She had never planned on becoming a writer, but staying at home full-time with infants left her time to experiment. In 1990 she went full-time as an SF writer. The first thing she wrote in this new status was the novella version of Beggars In Spain, which won both the Hugo and the Nebula Award. She is the author of more than twenty books, including more than a dozen novels of science fiction and fantasy, as well as three story collections, and two books on writing. Probability Space (Tor, 2002) won the John W. Campbell Award for Best SF novel. Her short fiction has appeared in all the usual places, garnering her one Hugo and three Nebula Awards. Her work has been translated into Swedish, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Japanese, Croatian, Lithuanian, Romanian, Greek, Hebrew, and Russian. She is also the monthly "Fiction" columnist for Writer's Digest Magazine and she teaches writing regularly at various places, including Clarion and The Writing Center in Bethesda, Maryland. She currently resides in Rochester, New York.

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Probability Sun 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
A couple of centuries into the future, the Fallers are defeating the Earthlings in an interstellar war. Time seems to be running out for the Terrans as nothing works against their unbeatable foes.

Desperate, the Terrans return to World, a place whose sentient inhabitants Worlders kicked humans off planet due to different ¿realities¿ (see PROBABILITY MOON). The human crew consists of scientists and military, but the two groups have different agendas when it comes to the artifact they plan to study on World. The soldiers plan to use the machine without testing it in a last chance effort to defeat the seemingly infallible Fallers. However, the scientists worry that activating this gizmo from a long defunct advanced race could lead to a universal doomsday. Even before they can study the machine, the Earthlings must find a means of obtaining the help of the empathic Worlders who probably will boot the Terrans off planet again.

PROBABILITY SUN is the usual great science fiction novel expected by genre fans of Nancy Kress. The story line is fast-paced, loaded with action, and contains strong characterizations including the alien races. World seems like a real world and the future remains bleak for humanity, but not quite as dark as PROBABILITY MOON that is if the Worlders cooperate, and the artifact can be activated and controlled. Ms. Kress continues to provide some of the best the genre has to offer when the emphasis is on the science as much if not more so as the fiction.

Harriet Klausner