The Barnes & Noble Review
Scottish author Charles Stross' follow-up to his debut novel, Singularity Sky, is so much more than the sum of its parts. A cerebral, hard-core science fiction thriller in the vein of Arthur C. Clarke, with intricate plotlines that would make Agatha Christie proud -- and a witty sense of humor to rival any Paul Di Filippo story -- Iron Sunrise heralds the ascension of a brilliant literary star in the science fiction universe.
When a sun inexplicably explodes, annihilating entire planets, destroying numerous space stations, and killing millions of innocent people, the culprits must somehow be found before another entire planetary system can be obliterated. When Rachel Mansour, a UN special agent, and her husband, Martin, are put on the case, the trail of assassinated ambassadors -- all from the annihilated planetary system -- lead to a massive space cruiser traveling throughout the region. Someone on board is killing off all remaining living connections to the disaster. But who...and why?
Meanwhile, when Wednesday, a goth-obsessed refugee from one of the space stations destroyed in the holocaust, finds herself the target of a kidnapping and later discovers that someone has murdered her entire family, she must survive long enough to figure out why her world has been destroyed, her family slaughtered, and her life ruined.
Readers who enjoy their science fiction heavy on the science will thoroughly enjoy Iron Sunrise. Like the Hugo Awardnominated Singularity Sky, it's intellectual, clever, and thoroughly readable. Paul Goat Allen
Best known for his short fiction, Stross shows that he's a master of the novel form as well in this exciting sequel to 2003's acclaimed Singularity Sky, serving up compelling space opera and cutting-edge tech with a tasty dash of satire. In the 24th century, a McWorld ("bland, comfortable, tolerant... boring") called New Moscow apparently has been destroyed by trade rival New Dresden-but not before New Moscow launched its own Slower-Than-Light (STL) counterstrike: a massive ship accelerated to 80% the speed of light. The U.N., now central Earth government, knows New Dresden was set up. They need the STL's recall code, now known only to a handful of New Moscow's ambassadors-but someone has been systematically assassinating them. U.N. special operative Rachel Mansour and her husband, engineer Martin Springfield, must protect the last living ambassador and find out who's really responsible for the whole mess. Stross skillfully balances suspense and humor throughout, offering readers-especially fans of Iain M. Banks and Ken MacLeod-a fascinating future that seems more than possible. Agent, Caitlin Blasdell at Lisa Dawson Associates. (July 6) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
When the explosion of a G2 star destroys the planet Moscow, the survivors send a counterattack against the suspected attackers, the New Dresden system. When New Dresden denies responsibility, Old Earth agent Rachel Mansour investigates to stave off outright war. Only a teenager named Wednesday knows what's been going on, but she is unaware of her knowledge. The author of Singularity Sky presents another hard sf masterpiece. Purchase for most sf and YA collections. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.