e99 Online Shopping Mall

Geometry.Net - the online learning center Help  
Home  - Authors - Bear Greg (Books)

  1-20 of 100 | Next 20
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  

click price to see details     click image to enlarge     click link to go to the store

1. Darwin's Radio/Darwin's Children
2. Eternity
3. City at the End of Time
4. Hull Zero Three
5. Quantico: A Novel
6. Moving Mars: A Novel
7. Foundation and Chaos: The Second
8. The Forge of God
9. Legacy
10. Mariposa
11. The Collected Stories of Greg
12. Blood Music
13. Anvil of Stars: The Sequel to
14. Halo: Cryptum: Book One of the
15. Eon
16. Slant
17. Darwin's Radio
18. Songs of Earth And Power
19. Anvil of Stars
20. Star Wars: Rogue Planet

1. Darwin's Radio/Darwin's Children
by Greg Bear
Kindle Edition: Pages (2003-03-04)
list price: US$17.95
Asin: B000QCQ9K2
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Darwin's Radio


Greg Bear's powerfully written, brilliantly inventive novels combine cutting-edge science and unforgettable characters, illuminating dazzling new technologies--and their dangers. Now, in Darwin's Radio, Bear draws on state-of-the-art biological and anthropological research to give us an ingeniously plotted thriller that questions everything we believe about human origins and destiny--as civilization confronts the next terrifying step in evolution.

A mass grave in Russia that conceals the mummified remains of two women, both with child--and the conspiracy to keep it secret . . . a major discovery high in the Alps: the preserved bodies of a prehistoric family--the newborn infant possessing disturbing characteristics . . . a mysterious disease that strikes only pregnant women, resulting in miscarriage. Three disparate facts that will converge into one science-shattering truth.

Molecular biologist Kaye Lang, a specialist in retroviruses, believes that ancient diseases encoded in the DNA of humans can again come to life. But her theory soon becomes chilling reality. For Christopher Dicken--a "virus hunter" at the Epidemic Intelligence Service--has pursued an elusive flu-like disease that strikes down expectant mothers and their offspring. The shocking link: something that has slept in our genes for millions of years is waking up.

Now, as the outbreak of this terrifying disease threatens to become a deadly epidemic, Dicken and Lang, along with anthropologist Mitch Rafelson, must race against time to assemble the pieces of a puzzle only they are equipped to solve. An evolutionary puzzle that will determine the future of the human race . . . if a future exists at all.

A fiercely intelligent, utterly enthralling novel of adventure and ideas, genetics and evolution, a fast-paced thriller that is grounded in the timeless human themes of struggle, loss, and redemption, Darwin's Radio is sure to become one of the most talked-about books of the year.

Darwin's Children

Eleven years have passed since SHEVA, an ancient retrovirus, was discovered in human DNA—a retrovirus that caused mutations in the human genome and heralded the arrival of a new wave of genetically enhanced humans. Now these changed children have reached adolescence . . . and face a world that is outraged about their very existence. For these special youths, possessed of remarkable, advanced traits that mark a major turning point in human development, are also ticking time bombs harboring hosts of viruses that could exterminate the “old” human race.

Fear and hatred of the virus children have made them a persecuted underclass, quarantined by the government in special “schools,” targeted by federally sanctioned bounty hunters, and demonized by hysterical segments of the population. But pockets of resistance have sprung up among those opposed to treating the children like dangerous diseases—and who fear the worst if the government’s draconian measures are carried to their extreme.

Scientists Kaye Lang and Mitch Rafelson are part of this small but determined minority. Once at the forefront of the discovery and study of the SHEVA outbreak, they now live as virtual exiles in the Virginia suburbs with their daughter, Stella—a bright, inquisitive virus child who is quickly maturing, straining to break free of the protective world her parents have built around her, and eager to seek out others of her kind.

But for all their precautions, Kaye, Mitch, and Stella have not slipped below the government’s radar. The agencies fanatically devoted to segregating and controlling the new-breed children monitor their every move—watching and waiting for the opportunity to strike the next blow in their escalating war to preserve “humankind” at any cost. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking, great study on human xenophobia against mild, near future, scifi backdrop
After a soft start with some characters who weren't portrayed as likeable, even one of the resulting main character, this became deeply involving, first to the idea of human evolution both back into history and then forward beyond Homo sapiens sapiens (present us).As one who has studied primatology, primate evolution, and physical anthropology:this was a treat.It turns "Clan of the Cave Bear" upside down.Humans, who do the science and name the names, but are also captive of our own belief systems and seemingly unbridled arrogance to nature and out planetary co-habitants, see us as the top of the chain, the optimal end-product, arising out of the "inferior" Great Apes, to whom we assign a separate genus inspite of the close genetic similarities.Even the primate evolution scientists are wont to see the gibbons "breaking off" the main chain, followed by the "a" common ancestor of the present orangs of Summatra and Borneo, then in some order by chimps and gorillas, with humans in the winner's circle.Another line tells a different story, with evidence from Ardis, a more human-like entity, older than the separation of gorillas and chimps.There is a lot of thinking and evidence being put together or re-assembled to indicate that chimps and gorillas may be devolutions from our side of the house - a more orangutan-ish side.

Back to the book:the explorations of the "chimp-like" xenophobia (the inside troop bonding vs external troop aversion) are dead-on.Baer explores how present humans are threatened, first by change at all (mere difference), second by having to face the suspicion that the difference may be "better."

How do we regard our "geniuses" now?In middle-school, in high school, in the workplace?

4-0 out of 5 stars Great read!
Great read.Greg Bear sets up a "What If" then brings it to life.What if evolution worked in jumps and spurts?What if mothers started having children of another species?What if YOU had a baby that was part of the next species of humanity?There is a lot of medical mumbo-jumbo which may detract from the book for some readers but it is meticulously researched and does help to bring you into the story.

The only unnecessary part of the story is the sudden and inexplicable "epiphany" of one of the scientists who suddenly starts communicating with God.No... not just praying for help... she really has a sort of meeting with God.That does detract from the book but we will give the author a bit of a pass on that one because the scenes are short.

All in all it's just a great read and at a great price.Nice job!

4-0 out of 5 stars great read
thought provoking well reasoned social implications liked it bundled but darwins radio was the best and can certainly stand alone

4-0 out of 5 stars Engaging Scifi Story
I loved this book!It was spellbinding.I haven't been this engaged in a story since Jurassic Park.I found myself trying to steal a few minutes wherever I could to finish this book.It is a great story with well developed characters.It also really makes you think about what it means to be human.

The included sequel in this kindle version is very convenient because you will want to know what happens to your characters.I highly recommend this book. ... Read more

2. Eternity
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 416 Pages (2007-10-02)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0765357771
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Multiple Nebula and Hugo Award-winner Greg Bear returns to the Earth of his acclaimed novel EonÂ--a world devastated by nuclear war.  The crew of the asteroid-starship Thistledown has thwarted an attack by the Jarts by severing their link to the Way, an endless corridor that spans universes.  The asteroid settled into orbit around Earth and the tunnel snaked away, forming a contained universe of its own. 
Forty years later, on Gaia, Rhita Vaskayza recklessly pursues her legacy, seeking an Earth once again threatened by forces from within and without.  For physicist Konrad Korzenowski, murdered for creating The Way, and resurrected, is compelled by a faction determined to see it opened once more.  And humankind will discover just how entirely they have underestimated their ancient adversaries.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent service
the product came in perfect condition very quickly - precisely what I ordered with no hassle what so ever

4-0 out of 5 stars Not as mind-blowing as Eon, but a pretty good trip nontheless
I enjoyed this deep trip into The Way.I enjoyed how Bear explored the ramifications of The Way's existence and how mundane humans and future humans deal with it.It didn't have the same awe factor as Eon, though.This is probably because we've already been spoiled to the big reveal, about the nature of The Stone, The Way and the people aboard it.It was fresh when I first read it.My take may also be tempered by the fact that I first read Eon in high school and I didn't come to read Eternity until 15+ years later.

In any case, I did enjoy it.Bear spends more time exploring the characters he introduced in Eon, which was very welcome.His first foray with these characters was a little flat, but Eternity makes up for it by giving them dimensions and nuances.

If you read Eon, you should definitely read Eternity.

5-0 out of 5 stars Captivation
Got this book for my husband and didn't realize it was a series. However, my husband couldn't put it down. I immediately ordered more books by Mr. Bear. My husband has added him to his list of favorite authors.

2-0 out of 5 stars The Way collapses- the parallel universe hatch closes
The story of Eon (1985) continues. Earth is struggling from the ravages of nuclear war. On The asteroid-starship from the far future, the other end of The Way has been blocked. Konrad Korzenowski, the designer of The Way, is determined to see it opened once more. Then an avatar from the end of Time comes to take a form of former member to suggest that they must destroy the ultimate marvel of science in order to save the Universe's plan, The Mind's.

This is continuation of the The Way, an infinite corridor through space-time which traverses and encompasses whole universes, parallel universes. In between, a story of parallel reality of Gaia is told. If The Way is opened, the unscrupulous Jarts threaten to destroy everybody and everything in the civilization. We follow the slow development of the City politics, how key members struggle to decide if opening the Way should be allowed or not. In the end the Way is opened, but Jart war does not commence, because their God's signaler, the avatar, has a message that would fulfill their destined destruction path over other species. The Mind convinces everyone that The Way must be destroyed because it threatens to abort the ultimate goal - and purpose - of all creation. The sequel is Legacy (1995).

Two (2) stars. Written in 1988 every piece of grandeur of universe should be present in this storyline. But the prose has difficulties to convey the majestic bells, along the footsteps of Niven's Ringworld (1970), to sing. It's a slow plod and the reader keep waiting for something, anything to happen. The awaited Jarts menace is nicely built just to be watered down by playing the inconceivable God-card, the avatar. Every time there is gleam of action, it is damped, or the direction of interest is taken away and directed to a dead end. None of the dramatic tension is allowed to lapse. The characters change often to resist developing any personality in them for reader to care what they do or whom they interact. Taking a psychological vacation, escapism with this book is more like following a cubist painting that fails to capture interest.

5-0 out of 5 stars Stunning
Makes EON look like a childrens book. I wish Bear still wrote books like this. ... Read more

3. City at the End of Time
by Greg Bear
Paperback: 496 Pages (2009-08-25)
list price: US$16.00 -- used & new: US$8.02
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0345448405
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
In a time like the present, in a world that may or may not be our own, three young people–Ginny, Jack, and Daniel–dream of a decadent, doomed city of the distant future: the Kalpa. But more than dreams link these three: They are fate-shifters, born with the ability to skip across the surface of the fifth dimension, inhabiting alternate versions of themselves. And each guards an object whose origin and purpose are unknown: gnarled, stony artifacts called sum-runners that persist unchanged through all versions of time.

Hunted by others with similar powers who seek the sum-runners on behalf of a terrifying, goddess-like entity known as the Chalk Princess, Ginny, Jack, and Daniel are drawn into an all but hopeless mission to rescue the future–and complete the greatest achievement in human history. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (63)

3-0 out of 5 stars Apparently the universe will end in a ho-hum yawn of tedium
I like Greg Bear. His books generally provide a very pleasant diversion and can provoke a thought or two. City at the End of Time, however, almost made it to the dubiously-elite level of being one of the very few books I've started but couldn't finish. It's hard to believe that a story with such an audacious scope could possibly leave one eyeing the 'percentage' level on the Kindle, hoping for it to somehow accelerate to 100, but this one did.

Reasons: multiple story lines, none of which advanced very quickly; deficient characterization that left me pulling for no one; repetitive scene description--albeit beautifully-written--that seemed to do nothing so much as to provide padding.

There are far better--in fact, great (eg Forge of God, Darwin's Radio)-- Greg Bear books out there. Don't let this be the first one you read.

3-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant but boring
I am a huge fan of Greg Bear. Because Mr. Bear hit it out of the park (so to speak) with Eon and Eternity, I am always willing to buy and read his novels. Sometimes Mr. Bear is great (as with Eon, Eternity, Psychlone, Strength of Stones, and Blood Music), sometime he is very good (as with Moving Mars, The Forge of God, Anvil of Stars, Darwin's Radio, and Darwin's Children), and sometimes he is average (as with Legacy, Slant, The Queen of Angels, Vitals, Quantico, Songs of Earth and Power). Of course, Mr. Bear's "average" exceeds the very best works by most writers of speculative fiction.

"City at the End of Time" is the worst Greg Bear novel I have ever read. Mr. Bear's "worst" is still okay; it just was not as good as his previous works. It is great that many of you loved this novel; however, since this novel is "fantasy," it probably will not satisfy those of you who love Mr. Bear for his (nearly pure) science fiction. While this novel is brilliant, it was ultimately boring due to its slow, repetitive plotting, and its use of well-worn ideas which have been seen in numerous novels previously.

This novel is brilliant in many ways; but it contains many plot elements which I hate. For example, Mr. Bear resorted to a deus ex machina ending. (I HATE such endings.) Not only that, his deus ex machina is a group of cats!!! (How utterly ridiculous!) I detest novels based on the writers-create-universes theme. Beside being narcissistic and generally stupid, it is (by now) quite overused, having turned up in novels by Samuel R. Delany, Robert A. Heinlein, Philip K. Dick, Stephen King, Dan Simmons, and many others. I hate novels that use the idea that human consciousness or observation determines reality. (Oh, vain, vain mutant killer apes! The Universe has no need of You.) I am annoyed by novels that use the idea of the multiverse (parallel realities and alternate versions of characters), alternate time lines, and time travel in general. Lastly, I generally dislike fantasy novels (except for Roger Zelazny novels, of course).

In spite of using all of the personally disagreeable plot elements mentioned above, I did appreciate Mr. Bear's clever use of mythology and symbolism. I also appreciated his writing style in this novel - - - although it seemed to be borrowed from later-days Samuel R. Delany.

As other reviewers have mentioned, this novel is often slow and repetitive. While reading it, I was reminded of novels by Anthony Trollope in which it is obvious that the writer had no idea how to advance the plot, but he kept writing anyway (a practice Trollope admits to in his autobiography). Just like Trollope, this novel plods along for scores of pages at a time without anything interesting happening or any advancement of the plot. I would not expect this from a master writer such as Greg Bear. "City at the End of Time" is much too long. If Mr. Bear could have condensed this into a novel of some 180 to 200 pages (instead of 476 pages), it might have been great.

Mr. Bear has been my second favorite writer of speculative fiction because of his unique creativity and wild imagination. As most of the ideas explored in "City at the End of Time" have appeared (individually) elsewhere, this novel is little more than an extremely clever collage (patchwork) of old ideas, not the sort of entirely original work I have come to expect from Mr. Bear. If Mr. Bear was the first writer to use these ideas, I would have given this novel a five-star rating; however, since these ideas have appeared time and time again, I was a wee bit bored.

In the end, "City at the End of Time" was brilliant, but boring. Although it was disappointing, I shall continue to buy every Greg Bear book that is published. He is a great writer: I am always hoping he will hit it out of the park (so to speak) one more time again.

1-0 out of 5 stars at least 100 pages too long
This book stunk. I kept waiting for it to get better, or at least less self-absorbed and pretentious. But that never happened. This fantasy (not sf) novel will no doubt be beloved by "literati" reviewers simply because it is "difficult" and "visionary". The ending just dragged on and on. Bottom line -- it could have done with a lot of editing, conducted with a critical eye.

Read some Greg Bear's other books instead. His hard sf, like "Darwin's Radio", totally rocks.

Not this one.

2-0 out of 5 stars Bear's worst sci-fi: bleak, repetitive, boring
Having read fifteen of Bear's science fiction novels and two of his own short story collections, I considered myself very well versed in the books which Bear produced. Everything I read up to Darwin's Children was inventive and usually quite good (though Psychlone and Beyond Heaven's River didn't rank very highly). When Bear wrote Darwin's Children, the sequel to Darwin's Radio, it felt like Bear was taking a shot at the mainstream market, like Crichton does with his brand of science fiction. Sure enough, the next three novels were Deadlines, Vitals and Quantico... all of which I passed up because they weren't written with the same awe and wonder as Eon, Eternity or even Hegira. When I heard that Bear was penning a new science fiction novel, it immediately went on my to-buy list.

Having said all that, The City at the End of Time is NOT written in Bear's grand science fiction tradition as The Forge of God, Blood Music or Moving Mars. Sadly, Bear has taken it to himself to continue to pursue a more mainstream market, only this time his intended target is young adults. This book isn't exactly for the serious science fiction reader unless you like magic stones, enchanted books and mysterious cats, which sounds more like a Fritz Leiber's fun novel `Gather, Darkness' than it does a Gear Bear sci-fi novel.

I just can't wrap my head around what Bear was aiming for, usually never a problem for a 100-books-per-year reader like me. Bear pours too many proper nouns for deities or beings or people or places which are given very little description or purpose (e.g. Chalk Princess, the Librarian, the Mistress, the Great Door, City Prince, the Bleak Warden). Nearly every page the reader is confronted by any number of these proper nouns for which the reader has very little to relate to what their actually reading and trying to understand... does that sound right? Putting a name with a developed character (which Bear did a decent job of) is one way to associate with that character, but why did Bear name the three young `fate-shifters' after alcohol? There's Jack, Daniel and Ginny; mere oversight, maybe.

Along with the endless stream of random proper nouns, there seems to be a theme of repetition which only goes to annoy me rather than plant any firm idea into my skull. Throughout the novel the characters `shiver' about ten times (something which I've noted in other novels as well- too much shivering) and the bleak descriptions of the Chaos are the same for hundreds of pages- black or grey, crusty or brittle, hilly or flat. I'm not sure location in the novel is more bleak- that of Seattle or that of the Chaos. Either way, this novel isn't one to lift your spirits nor would it make a good beach read.

A glossary or appendix would have assisted in understanding the finer points of the novel, but polish it all you like it won't become a better novel. I may just reread some of the older Bear novels to renew my faith in him as one of the great science fiction writers of the 80s and 90s... but no later.

1-0 out of 5 stars Did I miss the prequel?
This review will no doubt come off as snarky....but then, I just spent hours of my life reading boring and unending descriptions of RUBBLE. So I think a little snark is in order. I've read, and enjoyed, several of Greg Bear's other books, so I can't get my arms around this one. Did the author think that a one page explanation of the central issue would enlighten us enough to understand his story? Do slight mythic references and indecipherable babble create a classic? Shall we test our readers with wordplay to see if any of them speak French? "She had always gone to the left - gauche, sinister, awkward". Gauche, do you get it, means "left" in French, he he, snuck that one in. In fact, that was so good, had to repeat it on the next page, and throw in "then turned the other gauche - not adroit". Not to the right! Ah ha! How brilliant. I want a refund of the hundred trillion years of my life it took to slop through this gunk - to no real end. ... Read more

4. Hull Zero Three
by Greg Bear
Hardcover: 320 Pages (2010-11-22)
list price: US$19.99 -- used & new: US$13.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0316072818
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A starship hurtles through the emptiness of space. Its destination-unknown. Its purpose-a mystery.

Now, one man wakes up. Ripped from a dream of a new home-a new planet and the woman he was meant to love in his arms-he finds himself wet, naked, and freezing to death. The dark halls are full of monsters but trusting other survivors he meets might be the greater danger.

All he has are questions-- Who is he? Where are they going? What happened to the dream of a new life? What happened to Hull 03?

All will be answered, if he can survive the ship.

HULL ZERO THREE is an edge-of-your-seat thrill ride through the darkest reaches of space. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (24)

3-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, but not groundbreaking.
The idea of suspended animation and colony ships to the stars to look for a new planet is nothing new.Something going wrong and being waken up early is also not new.What is new is that this premise has been taken on an interesting journey where one man woken up finds how serious the problems are with the ship and explores the mystery of what happened and how the ship became a dangerous environment out to kill him.Competing factions and twists along the way keep the novel interesting.Enjoyable, but not groundbreaking.

3-0 out of 5 stars Small amnesiac protagonist meets big dumb object
Hull Zero Three is an uneven, uneasy marriage of the "amnesiac protagonist" plot (made popular mostly in mystery and suspense fiction, such as "The Bourne Identity") and the "explore the big dumb object" plot (made popular in science fiction, such as "Rendezvous with Rama," "Event Horizon," etc.).Unfortunately, the combination of these plots makes for a muddled read, since a character who doesn't know who or where he is wanders through something he can't adequately describe (because he's also forgotten a lot of words, so he really wouldn't be able to adequately describe his surroundings if he woke up somewhere really mundane) being threatened (or not...he's not really sure) by things he doesn't know the names of and again can't adequately describe.

It is pretty obvious from the outset that the character is on a generation ship and that things have gone HORRIBLY WRONG (as things always seem to do on generation ships...it's a wonder anyone builds them, really...don't those people read science fiction?).So the suspense really all revolves around what has gone wrong and will the characters be able to set it right.It's too bad that Bear chose such an annoying way to tell this story, because I thought the situation (when it is finally revealed very late in the novel) was actually pretty interesting and if he'd made the story about THAT instead of about an amnesiac character slowly making this discovery, it would have been a much better novel.

3-0 out of 5 stars at what cost?
The survival of the race, evidently, depends on the survival and success of the Ship. But the creatures that we care about have been infected by conscience. That may be a problem for the Ship. An intriguing adventure that discusses how we learn, what are memories, and that basic right or wrong. Good enough to spend time with.

4-0 out of 5 stars A return to Epic Space SF for Bear--with a twist
After an extended period where Greg Bear, once known for Hard "Big Idea" SF such as Eon and the Forge of God, took a detour into biological SF and near-future thrillers, Greg Bear has returned to his roots with Hull Zero Three.

Showing that he has learned from his sojourn in other realms, however, Hull Zero Three is both a return to Hard SF, and shows his evolution as a writer.Instead of a big canvas approach to his subject, as I expected, Hull Zero Three has a much tighter focus.

Hull Zero Three tells the story of the narrator, nameless through much of the narrative, as he awakens, mysteriously, on board a spacecraft.Memories of arriving at a planet, memories of a former life, and a slow recollection of past memory tug at him.Even through all of this, however, on the cold and deadly spacecraft, the narrator has a larger problem than remembering who and what he is:Simple Survival.

With its tight focus, protagonist unsure of the past or future, uncertain and unreliable allies, strange monsters(!) and the setting of a ship hurtling through space, I was reminded of another odd duck of a novel that was atypical of its author: A Short, Sharp Shock by Kim Stanley Robinson. Like Hull Zero Three, it was both typical and utterly unique to Robinson's oeuvre, a striking story that, while not entirely successful, was still amazingly memorable years later.

Hull Zero Three fills that niche for Bear.No massive scale looks at the spacecraft, no wonder-busting grand canvas. This is a personal, dark story (very dark once the full details of the situation emerge). Lots of interesting speculation and a working out of the implications of the technology. And, given that much of the novel is a "chase scene", the book moves at a frentic, breakneck pace. Instead of just the usual infodumps, we learn the background in a drip and drab sort of fashion. It requires the reader to pay attention to get the whole picture of what is happening on the ship.

Oh, and the prose. Bear has polished and improved his prose and dialogue, giving a fuller reading experience than some of his earlier works, which often were stronger on ideas than on characters or story. Not here. This book works on all levels.

The ending is a bit muddled, and I wonder if its a case of editing, or a strange choice on the part of the writer to jump forward, and then back again in a bit of a whiplash fashion. Narratively and otherwise, that is my main complaint with the book.

It's also amazingly short. Clocking in at only just over 300 pages, its a brief, intense, dark work from a writer who has been away from his core output for far too long. Welcome back, Greg Bear.Let's see what else you can do with your new tools.

4-0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Put it Down, but...
Greg Bear always writes amazing stories, and this is certainly one of them.I had to finish the book so I could find out what happens!The story is about a massive effort to colonize the stars gone bad, where people wake up to find a situation they don't understand - in fact, not even knowing why they are there, what the purpose is for them, etc.

I would have liked the story to spend less time with the characters trying to figure out what was happening and fighting for their lives, and more on what happened after they found out what was happening.For example, a few chapters on arrival at the new world would have been really cool.

However, as I said in the title, I could not put the book down, it is an engaging read - you really REALLY want to figure out what happened to the ship, and why things have gone completely wrong (and how to fix it). ... Read more

5. Quantico: A Novel
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 478 Pages (2008-03-11)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$1.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1593154739
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A near-future thriller that pits young FBI agents against a brilliant, homegrown terrorist.

It's the second decade of the twenty-first century, and terrorism has escalated almost beyond control. The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem has been blown to bits by extremists and, in retaliation, thousands have died in another major attack on the United States. New weapons are being spawned in remote basement labs. No one feels safe.

In North America, the FBI uses cutting-edge technology to thwart domestic terrorists. Sat-linked engine blockers stop drug-traffickers cold; devices the size of Magic Markers test for bio-hazards on the spot; 3-D projectors reconstruct crime scenes from hours-old evidence; and sophisticated bomb suits protect against all but the most savage forces. Despite all this, the War on Terror has reached a deadly stalemate.

Now the FBI has been dispatched to deal with a new menace. Like the Anthrax threat of 2001, a plague targeted to ethnic groups--Jews or Muslims or both--has the potential to wipe out entire populations. But the FBI itself is under political assault. There's a good chance agents William Griffin, Fouad Al-Husam, and Jane Rowland will be part of the last class at Quantico. As the young agents hunt a brilliant homegrown terrorist, they join forces with veteran bio-terror expert Rebecca Rose. But the plot they uncover--and the man they chase--proves far more complex than anyone expects. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (23)

4-0 out of 5 stars Thriller of the near future
I love Greg Bear's writing.Several of my all-time favorite works of science fiction came from his incredible imagination.I delayed reading Quantico only because books about biohazards/mass murders/terrorists really set me on edge.And this one certainly did so, too.Bear's great storytelling however made it weirdly enjoyable. The story is told from several points of view.One chapter may be from the perspective of the main perp; another chapter from a young FBI agent, etc.It all comes together in a very satisfying way.

As the FBI tries to locate a potential anthrax killer with a new delivery system, it is under fire from the powers that be in Washington.It looks like the agency may be disbanded.Set in the second decade of this century, there is lots of new tech and methodology that the agents use as they find their way through a labyrinth of hatred, betrayal, conflicting agencies, crazy racists, and psychologically wounded bad guys.Our heroes, Special Agent Rebecca Rose and Special Agent William Griffin, along with several other agents lead us on an adventure that holds the fate of the world.From Washington state to Mecca, we see them and their colleagues as they try to figure out exactly who and what they are confronting.

Clearly, I don't want to give to much away in this remarkable book.Read it!

3-0 out of 5 stars High tech terror
The tech and training are good. The plot slow and sometimes murky. Who are the bad guys? The hardcover bookcover had more info than was found in the book. But the good outweighs the bad and I'm in for the next one.

4-0 out of 5 stars Quantico Review
Quantico is near future, hard core science fiction.It doesn't quite make it into military science fiction, but almost.There were minor issues with continuity and I found the red herring plot twist a little strained, but it didn't detract.The story is fast paced and engaging.Overall, a good solid read and a good springboard for more books set in the same world.Quantico: A Novel

2-0 out of 5 stars Very very slow...
Really, I usually like Bear's books, but this one was slow and disjointed.I had great difficulty finishing it.

3-0 out of 5 stars Its Good but not Greg Bears Best.
Quantico is a novel written by Greg Bear.I am a huge fan of the work done by Greg Bear.I have read many of his novels.

Like some of his other books the story starts with a seemingly unrelated event.The story builds up a story about terrorism.When I really like a book I don't like to give too much away because I would rather have someone read the book themselves then to tell too much about the book.

Just a little hint of the plot of the story is good.There is a plot of bio terrorism that is being put together.The FBI agents are only beginning to find out about the plot.In the book find out how some old dot matrix printers and the death of an old terrorist called the Patriarch are related.Also a new ploy by a terrorist with an agenda all his own.The terrorist has connections that make him exceptionally hard to catch.

This story takes place in the near future.The story is not very hard to believe that something like it could happen. The fact that the story is believable makes it much better then many others.

I really like the book but I don't think it is one of Greg Bear's best books, but it is still an excellent book. I think any one would enjoy reading it.The writing style is high and shows Greg Bears experience with writing. ... Read more

6. Moving Mars: A Novel
by Greg Bear
Paperback: 448 Pages (2007-05-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$1.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0765318237
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Moving Mars is a story of human courage and love set within the greater saga of a planetary liberation movement.  Mars is a colonial world, governed by corporate interests on Earth.  The citizens of Mars are hardworking, but held back by their lack of access to the best education, and the desire of the Earthly powers to keep the best new inventions for themselves.  The young Martians -- the second and third generations born on Mars -- have little loyalty to Earth, and a strong belief that their planet can be independent.  The revolution begins slowly, but will grow in power over decades of political struggle until it becomes irresistible.
Told through the eyes of an extraordinary character, Casseia Majumdar, a daughter of one of Mars' oldest, most conservative Binding Multiples, Moving Mars is Greg Bear's brilliant conception of the human colonization of the red planet, with lovingly painted details and a grand historical sweep, embellishing an audacious scientific speculation.
Amazon.com Review
In this 1995 Nebula Award-winning novel, a revolution is transformingthe formerly passive Earth-colony of Mars. While opposing political factionson Mars battle for the support of colonists, scientists make a staggeringscientific breakthrough that at once fuels the conflict and creates a unitedMars front, as the technically superior Earth tries to take credit for it.Backed against a wall, colonial leaders are forced to make a monumentaldecision that changes the future of Mars forever. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (74)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great imagination. Moving Mars 10,000 light years. Flight against Earth
I'm a huge Mars fan and life member of the Mars Society so I was interested in this Sci Fi book.

Greg Bear is a well known excellent Sci Fi writer who has won many awards. Moving Mars is a good book but could easily of been a great book ( Its NOT as good as Kim Stanley Robinson's 5 star trilogy Red,Green,Blue Mars) but still a good book

The first part of the book is great( 5 stars) as we see the star character Casseia Majumdar and her friend Charles Franklin as students on Mars. Charles shows Casseia an incredible fossil grotto and there is a fight between the corrupt Mars Government and the students. Good Sci Fi stuff.

However the next 150 pages or so to me were time locked in boring Mars/Earth political crap. I know Greg used this to build up his characters which he does well but it was kind of boring explaining the Mars system of government.This part was kind of slow and boring. We see the Triplet of occupied Moon, Mars and Earth that have commerce with each other and the asteroid "belters".

Charles and the other "Olympians" ( deep thinking scientists with the help of super advanced "thinkers"( computers) develope fantastic technology. Based on achieving absolute zero they are able to arrange matter transfer.However Earth learns this and is afraid of Mars as they could have a super weapon. Earth attacks Mars using covert hidden"locust destroyers" and sabotaging their computer and surveillance systems. Many martians killed. But Mars fights back by sending their moon Phobos into earth orbit and saying cease and desist or we will attack. Earth governments are terrorized by the new Earth moon Phobos and stop their attack.

A little later Earth develops the same technology as the Mars "Olympians" and attacks Mars.

Now Vice President Casseia of the Mars Republic becomes President as President Ti Sandra Erzul is badly injured from the Earth attack and later is killed. Mars is getting wiped out and Casseia dos not want to attack Earth with Charles Franklin and the Olympians technology and kill billions of people. She orders Franklin with the help of the "thinkers" and devices to move Mars ten thousand light years more toward the Galactic center to evade Earth so Earth won't track Mars down and destroy it.

I wont ruin the ending for you. The last 150 pages or so are really great Sci Fi ( 5 star). I just wish Greg Bear got to the good stuff quicker and the reader did not have to plow through 1/3 of a slow paced middle book. Moving Mars could of easily been a 5 star book and Greg Bear shows he is capable of a complete 5 star book. I look forward to reading other books by him.

Moving Mars a good 4 star book with a 5 star beginning and ending but a 3 star middle. Worth buying. I enjoyed it.

1-0 out of 5 stars Moving Mars Runs Out of Gas - Gets Stuck in Deep Space
Set in the year 2171, Moving Mars tells the story of Casseia Majumbar, a young woman who finds herself at the center of a revolution on Mars. Casseia doesn't have any political or leadership aspirations, but events keep pulling her into the spotlight.

The problem with Moving Mars is that it is extremely slow to develop. Many many pages are wasted on dialogue that adds nothing to the story. Other than Casseia there aren't any major characters that developed. Most of the characters in the story just come and go, with no mention of their fates.

As many readers have mentioned, the extremely slow pace of events, makes for a very boring story. Also, the romantic encounters are so juvenile. I wanted to throw up at some of the sequences.

The science in the story is horrendous. So much of it is gibberish that isn't realistic or well thought out. It's also unrealistic how quickly they go from theoretical science to implementation in a matter of months. And how Earth in a couple of weeks can independently catch up and exceed what it took Mars to do in years.

Another problem is that other options aren't considered. For example, rather than Move Mars, wouldn't it be easier to evacuate and go somewhere else?

Overall, I had a hard time finishing this book. Take my advice stay away from this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars "A sane society is a polite society."
If there was a successful colonization of Mars, interacting with the Lunar colonies and Mother Earth, how would these new Martians view life, love, and the universe?Would they be distinguishable from residents of Earth?And I don't mean physically, but rather socially, ethically, and culturally.


In Moving Mars, author Greg Bear focuses more on the social science side of colonization than the physical science side.The three million or so inhabitants of Mars are organized into family/business units, with loyalty to this unit expected.Over time, there is pressure to develop a Mars-wide central government.Some interests on Earth see this as a threat.This is the story of one Martian, Casseia Majumdar, who goes from being a hesitant student activist to becoming president of Mars.It is also the story of the original Martians, the organizing structure of the universe, and treachery.Greg Bear sets his sights high!

Moving Mars is a bit of a sleeper story, with the reader being lulled into a more robust adventure in the second half of the book.However, for the "Mars colonization" aficionado, it's all good!

4-0 out of 5 stars Ambition that delivers.Wow.
Other viewers have covered all the ground and believe them. My two cents:Over the top hard science fiction that still holds up as semi-plausible 15 years later. And that is no small feat.

I ding it one star for not being the best narrative ever. There are plenty of terrific engrossing dramas and character studies out there and this book doesn't come close.But if you crave that hard science fiction "sense of wonder" this is truly as good as it gets.Go.

4-0 out of 5 stars Coming of Age on Mars
Moving Mars (1993) is a standalone SF novel.It is set on Mars during the Statist period and afterward.Earth, Luna and Mars form the Triple alliance.Naturally, Earth has the strongest economy and generates the newest technology.Still, Mars is developing its own resources.

Mars has a creaking political structure.Initially, the settlers had formed Binding Multiples based on the Lunar model.These family-based syndicates owned land, businesses and other resources.Later, the BMs divided Mars into districts run by governors.

In 2171, the governors and the largest BMs accepted a temporary Statist constitution unifying Mars.Freechild Dauble became the President during this trial period.Caroline Connor -- an old friend of Dauble -- was appointed chancellor of the University of Mars at Sinai.

The vote on final acceptance of the new constitution was coming up soon and the Statists feared incidents.So the UMS administration voided the contracts of students suspected of Goback sympathies.They were evicted from their dorms and herded to the train station.

In this novel, Casseia of the Majumdar BM is one of the students voided out of UMS.When her friend Diane goes with other students in protest of the expulsion, Cassie follows her away from the station.

Sean Dickinson and Gretyl Laughton are older students who soon become the leaders of the protest movement.They lead the students to an older section of the UMS campus inhabited only by maintenance robots.There they work out plans for the protest and also include efforts to sabotage UMS communications.Cassie is soon infatuated with Sean.

Charles Franklin is a physicist major at UMS who is attracted to Cassie during the protest.Of course, she is more interested in Sean, but does notice Charles now and then.When the detained students are liberated by Goback forces, Cassie goes back to her family and almost forgets Charles.

Achmed Crown Niger represents the UMS administration in interrogations of the detained students.Later, he returns from exile on Earth to become head of the Cailetet BM.He maintains his contacts with Earth and is often at odds with the other Martian BMs.

In this story, the Statist constitution is rejected and Statist leaders are evicted from Mars.The student protest was futile and foolish.UMS is soon reopened to the voided students.

Instead of returning to UMS, Cassie goes to UM at Durrey Station.There she encounters Charles once again and becames his lover.He is her first lover and seems very considerate.

Cassie learns a little about the Bell Continuum from Charles.He has dedicated his life to studying this obscure subject.Then he asks Cassie to lawbond with him.Although Cassie believes that she loves him, she denies his proposal and the two separate once more.

Cassie decides that she wants to study politics.Mars has a dearth of politicians and almost no experience in the political processes.She eventually wins a position as an apprentice to her third uncle and goes to Earth with him as an envoy of the Martian BMs.

This tale takes Cassie through the eventual unification of Mars.She meets Charles again, becomes involved in his research, and gains the highest political position on the planet.Enjoy!

Recommended for Bear fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of interplanetary colonies, political machinations, and true romance.

-Arthur W. Jordin ... Read more

7. Foundation and Chaos: The Second Foundation Trilogy (Foundation Trilogy Series)
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 416 Pages (1999-05-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061056405
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Isaac Asimov's renowned Foundation Trilogy pioneered many of the familiar themes of modern science fiction and shaped many of its best writers. With the permission and blessing of the Asimov estate, the epic saga left unfinished by the Grand Master himself now continues with this second masterful volume.

With Hari Seldon on trial for treason, the Galactic Empire's long-anticipated migration to Star's End is about to begin. But the mission's brilliant robot leader, R. Daneel Olivaw, has discovered a potential enemy far deadlier--and closer--than he ever imagined. One of his own kind.

A freak accident erases the basic commandments in humaniform robot Lodovik Trema's positronic brain. Now Lodovic's service to humankind is no longer bound by destiny, but by will. To ensure his loyalty, Daneel has Lodovic secretly reprogrammed. But can he be trusted? Now, other robots are beginning to question their mission--and Daneel's strategy. And stirrings of rebellion, too, are infecting their human counterparts. Among them is a young woman with awesome psychic abilities, a reluctant leader with the power to join man and robot in a quest for common freedom.or mutual destruction.

The Foundation Saga Continues

Read Gregory Benford's Foundation's Fear, the first novel in this bold new series and Secret Foundation, the concluding volume from David Brin.Amazon.com Review
This is book number two in the new Second Foundation Trilogy being written by hard science fiction authors Gregory Benford, Greg Bear, and David Brin, otherwise known as the "Killer B's." In this book, Bear continues where Benford's Foundation's Fear left off, as the trial of legendary psychohistorian Hari Seldon is about to begin. Bear writes with a style uncannily similar to Foundation creator Isaac Asimov's, and he even manages to incorporate some of Asimov's own writing in the novel. Aside from thetrial, Bear also focuses on the nearly immortal robots that serve theFoundation, including R. Daneel Olivaw, who is set to guide one of theFoundation's first great undertakings. But Olivaw runs into trouble froman unexpected quarter, his best operative, Lodovik Trema, whose positronicbrain has been irrevocably altered in a strange accident that has given himfreedom from the supposedly immutable laws of robotics. --Craig Engler ... Read more

Customer Reviews (54)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not Too Bad, But . . .
no, it's not Asimov:but Benford's first volume of the three ('Fear') was a first rate piece of writing, offering fascinating characters and possibilities that the other two others virtually ignored:at least Bear tries to do something with them in his 'Chaos' and spins a worthwhile story and creates a fascinating possibility with a new character:and then Brin threw it all away ('Triumph') in a nonsensical poorly constructed space opera, ignoring the other characters and creating very poor one dimensional ones of his own

5 stars for Benford

three stars for Bear

and a measly half a star for Brin

5-0 out of 5 stars Bear writes an excellent addition to the flow of psychohistory
Eventhe master varied the pace, detail, and action from volume to volume in the original series. I find Bear's contribution fits very well into the original stream and I suspect Dr. Asimov would have enjoyed it immensely.

3-0 out of 5 stars Review from a non-foundation fan
I have read the Asimov foundation series, but it was in my teenage years (a looong time ago) and I don't remember much from it.So I came with fairly new eyes to this book, judging it independently from the Asimov books.

I am giving it 3 stars, because it is a good classic sci-fi read, with a wonderful subtext about how thinking machines can become very similar to humans, but also incredibly alien, and vice-versa.I would give it 4 stars, but I think though that trying to fit into the foundation series hurts the non-initiated reader a little, i.e. you miss the little in-jokes and you don't understand the full meaning of all the events.

3-0 out of 5 stars Hari Seldon on trial and rise of mentalics
Hari Seldon, originator of predictive psychohistory, is tried by the authorities on Trantor, capital world of the Galactic Empire, for his treasonable thesis that the Empire will soon fall and that measures must be taken to allow some subsequent restoration of order. At the same time the new breed of humans, mentalists, are springing into existence. One of them, Vara Liso, a deeply disturbed mind, joins the Imperial officers and start to help hunting others of her kind. But she also senses different mind patterns, robots that are she fear are taking control of humankind. R. Daneel Olivaw's plan, Hari Seldon's masterwork, is at stake if this woman can't be stopped. Is there still a chance to save psychohistory?

Of the three add-in books to the Foundation series, this is the most true to the Asimov who died 1992. Where the book 1 Foundation's Fear (1998 by Gregory Benford) -- full of sims and meme entities of neural mesh networks -- almost alienated readers from the to Asimovian universe, this second book (1997 by Greg Bear) manages miraculously to shock absorb the damages done. The last years of Hari Seldon, his agonizing trial, the power struggles behind the aristocrats and surprisingly the robot entanglement are masterfully knitted together. The mystery of the robots and their rebelling groups are revealed; one of the minor flaws of the book because Asimov was keen to keep robots strictly at the background so that reader was kept guessing their influence on the settlement of the Foundation. After this book, there won't be much of a mystery left about the robots. The trilogy ends at book 3, Foundation's Triumph (1999 by David Brin).

Three (3) stars. Foundation and Chaos goes back to the roots more in line with the universe Asimov made and the book has well rounded end where the Psychohistorians are exiled to the remote planet Terminus. The narrative smoothly flows between plot lines and words are bursting of good suspense; action is always there or just around the corner. The introduction of Lodovik Trema, which became almost human -- not subjected to the three laws of robotics -- is skillfully mastered. If the gaudy simulations introduced in book 1, Joan D'arc and Voltaire, were banished altogether from this book; if tiresome sounding mathists were called mathematicians and if the robots would have appeared less in the lead roles, the book would have been solid 5. Still twice as good as the book 1. A sturdy read in tradition to the Great Master.

1-0 out of 5 stars One star is too much already
Not even close to the concept, the narrative, and the eloquence of the Master (Isaac Asimov). There is no mystery. What it is is a soap opera with pages upon pages of silly dialogue. If allowed, I suppose that Mr. Bear would throw in a few light-saber fights and describe them blow-by-blow, grunt-by-grunt. A silly, silly book, but to be fair, Benford's Foundation Fear is in the same league (and "Forward" and "Prelude" by the late Master are no gems either.)

The two most interesting characters are Tritch and Mors Planch. Tritch gets a few lines and Planch some more, but not enough.

Why can't Dan Simmons or Vernon Vinge be asked to write a sequel to "Foundation and Earth". Now there's a mystery worth pursuing and with them the Asimov Estate would do well to preserve and honor the spirit of the "Foundation" series.
... Read more

8. The Forge of God
by Greg Bear
Paperback: 480 Pages (2001-08-11)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$6.55
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0765301075
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
This remarkable novel of alien invasion shows off Bears talents to their full effect: science-fictional extrapolation that is stunningly believable; characters who are real and affecting in their heroism and sacrifice. And Bears brilliance as a writer has never been better than in the final, climactic scenes. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (76)

4-0 out of 5 stars 3 1/2 stars
Other reviewers at this site have capably summarized the plot, so I'll limit myself to explaining my rating.I found it interesting to read a novel that departs from a standard sf formula:quick thinking humans outsmart nasty aliens who invade or attempt to destroy the Earth.The Forge of God acknowledges that alien technology may well be superior to ours, and that humans may be powerless to stop aliens who are determined to kill us.

The technical aspects surrounding the planet's destruction and the attempted evacuation of survivors were well done.The story held my interest, but given the drama surrounding the planet's end, I thought the story was less engaging than it could have been.The key human characters (geologists, an astronomer and his family, the president and a Bible thumper) are fairly one dimensional while the aliens (good and bad) are given no characterization at all.

The story's fast pace makes it a quick and easy read.The novel was sufficiently entertaining to earn a recommendation, but there's nothing stellar about this story of interstellar invasion.I'd give it 3 1/2 stars if Amazon offered that option.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book, awesome ending!
I love this type of sci fi.It offers great discussion amongst the characters as to what the alien intentions are, and what might happen.Then the ending was so unexpected.Very satisfying book!

1-0 out of 5 stars The end of mankind and destruction of Earth by a machine civilization
In 1996 Europa vanishes. Jupiter's sixth moon. Arthur Gordon, an astronomer and retired science advisor to the president, can only wonder if somebody is collecting moons. Three months later Edward Shaw, a professor of geology, is hiking with his friends and camping across the early autumn Mojave desert's Death Valley when they chart an anomaly; a misplacement that is not on any map: a hundred-meter tall cinder cone and a hole. Definitely not man-made and recent because it has been missed by satellite surveys. The found ship and a dying alien creature is soon in custody of the US Air Force and government. Elsewhere in Australian desert another spaceship, a duplicate Ayers Rock, with robots lands. Not only that but small spider-like robots start appearing everywhere on the planet. What's going on?

This is story of termination of mankind. Total destruction of earth in way that is completely plausible. A though so devious and ice cold in its sheer inhumanness. The book progresses from introducing the two opposite alien races and bringing Christian believers, like the US president Crockerman, to loose their mind in this biblical genocide. The president believes we are being judged by God. Apathy is all that is left to the people to cope with. The strange chromium spiders at the end prove to be rescuers that cannot stop the machine intelligence intruders, but who can at least collect what reminds: botanical, zoological, genetical material, other specimens and handful of people in arks. The remaining people must witness the crime being committed as It Is The Law.

One (1) star. Written in 1987 this is book 1 in a duology which ends in Anvil of Stars 5 years later. The beginning of the book starts strong with wondering about the opposing messages of crash landed alien and the Australian gourd-shaped robots who promise to bring their scientific knowledge with humanity. The revelation of earth's destruction happens a little too early and it makes a sparkling water bottle to loose all its gas. What is left to follow is death of alien, US President thinking the nation is surrounded by angels, to follow a scientist fighting a battle with cancer, a journalist and others to cope with their lives in this doomsday message. There are lot of characters running wild but the people experiencing this psychological trauma don't seem connect with the reader: everything feels like walking in a flat desert. After the starting point there is very little interesting to see until the horizon where we get to see what the spiders were for. The nature of the planet eaters is by purpose left unexplained for the sequel. Interestingly if one jumps from the beginning to the end, nothing seems to have lost plot wise. A prolonged recitation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Gripping, frightening, unforgiving...
Let me start by saying that this is an amazing book.I had not read fiction in a while when I picked this book up, and hadn't read science fiction in a very long time.I had heard this book was good, and I liked the premise (first contact with aliens that doesn't necessarily go well), but I never imagined this book would be as good as it was.I could not put it down!I read this book in two days, reading it at stop lights in my car, sneaking a few pages at my desk at work, reading it while I ate lunch, and reading all night when I got home in the evenings.I had not had a book hold my interest like that in a long time.
However having said all that, I will add this:this book is very disturbing and because of that, somewhat dangerous.This book will stay with you after you read it.It will change the way you view the possibility of intelligent extraterrestrial life.It's sort of like the liberal person who has a good opinion of his fellow man, then gets mugged, and changes to a hawkish pessimist who doesn't trust others.On the other hand, this book will also make you look at the world around you and truly appreciate all that we have on our planet, and how much we take it all for granted.For any author to be able to create these types of paradigm-shifting changes in his readers is a testament to how well this book is written.Highly recommended, but read at your own peril, it will stay with you (especially the ending).

5-0 out of 5 stars OH, NO .....
... Read more

9. Legacy
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 480 Pages (1996-06-15)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$1.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812524810
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The Way is a tunnel through space and time. The entrance is through the hollow asteroid Thistledown and the space station Axis City that sits at the asteroid's center. From there the Flawships ride the center of the Way, traveling to other worlds and times.

Now the rulers of Axis City have discovered that a huge group of colonists has secretly entered one of the interdicted worlds along the Way. In some ways Lamarkia is very Earth-like--but its biology is extraordinary. A single genetic entity can take many forms, and span a continent. There are only a few of these "ecos" on Lamarkia, and the effect of human interaction on them is unknown.

Olmy Ap Sennon has been sent to secretly assess the extent of the damage. But he will find far more than an intriguing alien biology--for on their new world the secret colonists have returned to the old ways of human history: war, famine, and ecological disaster. On this mission, Olmy will learn about the basics: love, responsibility, and even failure...
... Read more

Customer Reviews (23)

2-0 out of 5 stars More Political and Nightmarish Styled Sc. Fiction
Not a typical Syfy book.It seemed disjointed anf fragmented and although parts were interesting and I had hoped the rest of the book would continue these interesting parts I was disappointed and found myself skimming.I finished the book but would only recommend it for readers wanting rather unusual and schizophrenic flow.

3-0 out of 5 stars Maybe you had to read the earlier books first...
This book is a prequel to Greg Bear's Eon and Eternity, two books I have not read.In Legacy,soldier Olmy Ap Sennon is sent through "the Way" to assess the condition of dissatisfied citizens who fled, illegally or inappropriately, to another world called Lamarckia.He is dropped into Lamarckia and encounters a massacre, which leads him eventually into the midst of a civil war.Life on Lamarckia is not as idealistic and utopian as expected.

The native life on Lamarckia is rather unique.Although there are individual "plants and animals", they are actually "cells" of a single larger organism.There are a very limited number of these large organisms on Lamarckia, who have a strange intelligence, and take samples of any creature within its sphere to mimic if necessary.The complexity of the human genome is difficult to duplicate.


I appreciated the uniqueness of life on Lamarckia, but as a story, it was flat.Olmy Ap Sennon was too good at everything, and his integration into the Lamarckian social fabric was too dependent on him finding a rare "slate" (a personal data recording device) belonging to a scientist and explorer, AND guessing the password.


I'm guessing that you really need to have a better understanding of Bear's earlier books, Eon and Eternity.I hope to read at least one of these in the near future.For me, Greg Bear is kind of hit or miss as an author.This was a miss.

4-0 out of 5 stars An adventure novel pretending to be science fiction.
Simply put this enjoyable little outing is more of an adventure novel pretending to be a science fiction book... Or maybe some kind of gross amalgamation.

Either way, it is a very fun read - looking at the biology and relationships of eco-systems, which if you ask me is devoid from most science fiction.

The writing paints a picture of a truly alien and weird landscape where the biomes of the planet are gigantic organisms that manufacture their own pieces to spread and integrate with their surroundings. Inheriting traits at will instead of random mutation.

Legacy deals with the introduction of a foreign element into this system, the element is Humanity. Struggling to find a foothold on a planet where nothing is as it seems has been harsh, but civilization trudges on with all the old foibles and follies of history repeating themselves on a new landscape.

Bears writing paints horrifying and imaginative pictures of aliens and foreign landscapes so well that you find yourself on a global cruise with ser Olmy and companions holding out against the odds to survive and bring back their secrets.

3-0 out of 5 stars Exploratory and unnecessary
For being a prequel to the great book Eon, this was a huge let down. The simple idea for a Eon prequel is fascinating and using Olmy as a character in a book makes me giddy. Again, such a let down. Legacy should have been an entirely seperate book which explores the planet ofLamarckia.

Lamarckia is such an interesting idea. The plant/foliage/being/queen thing was explored thoroughly. That left me satisfied, at least. But for Legacy to be part of The Way series, I was disappointed. The story starts off well enough with Olmy having to go on a mission to Lamarckia. which is down The Way a bit. Then the story becomes about sailing and biology. Sailing? The only time I want to read about sailing is if the ship is a huge solar sail.

Another redeeming factor of Legacy is the depth in which we get to know Olmy. Olmy was a great guy in both Eon and Eternity. From Legacy, we get to know that he's a ladies man. Unnecessary? Yes.

2-0 out of 5 stars Slow moving tale
One thing I enjoyed about Bear's books such as Anvil of Stars and Eon is his ability to keep the action going. This book, sadly, just drags along, and the action is mostly mundane adventure, unrelated to science fiction. This book really has nothing to do with Eon, except for a few short chapters at the beginning and the end. Ser Olmy enters a weird planet through a gate and the book takes place there. The science fiction angle is uninspired. If you were intrigued by the physics and mystery of the Way, don't follow Olmy through this gate. Surely, Bear has much more to offer than this. ... Read more

10. Mariposa
by Greg Bear
Hardcover: 352 Pages (2009-11-10)
list price: US$25.95 -- used & new: US$5.15
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B003D7JV9S
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

In an America driven to near bankruptcy with crushing foreign debt, the Talos Corporation stands out as a major success story—training soldiers and security forces from around the world and providing logistics and troops for nearly all branches of the United States government. But Talos has another plan in mind—the destruction of the federal system and constitutional law.

Three FBI agents are all that stands between Talos’s CEO Axel Price and the subversion of our nation. Fouad Al-Husam is working undercover in Lion City, Texas, on the Talos Campus—but he may have just overplayed his hand. Agent William Griffin will engage in a desperate diversion to try to rescue Al-Husam, and the top-secret information he literally carries in his blood.

Rebecca Rose is called into action to partner with an unlikely hero: Nathan Trace, one of a team of four who created and programmed the thinking machines that are about to help Axel Price in his plans for domination. Trace and his colleagues were caught up in a violent incident in the Middle East several years ago, and experienced Post-Traumatic Stress disorder. All of them were forcibly enrolled in a treatment program sponsored by Talos Corporation, code-named Mariposa—which supposedly cured their PTSD. But now they are beginning to notice unexpected side effects. The Mariposa subjects are being liberated from nearly all human emotions and concerns—and all mental limits—to become brilliant sociopaths. They are out of control and they must die.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

4-0 out of 5 stars Suprisingly good book
I didn't really expect to like this - from the reviews it seemed a little too pro-spook and right-wing for my tastes. I took a chance because I've enjoyed other Bear books over the years, especially "Darwins Radio". Fortunately Bear's politics turn out to be pretty centrist and don't interfere with a great read. And the political intrigue was laced with the kind of first rate sci-fi that I love. I zipped though this book in 2 days, finding myself stealing time from other activities to keep reading it. It's a page-turner.

Bear's imaginary Mercenary company Talos seems to be a thinly disguised version of real-life Blackwater Security. Mariposa's villian, Talos CEO Axel Price is portrayed as a murderous thug months before real life Blackwater CEO Eric Prince was implicated in political murders: [...]. And (I'll try to avoid spoilers here) other actions Price takes in the book are very close to the latest rumors about Prince. Bear is either a very lucky guesser, or very, very sharp.

The technologies Bear creates here are also fascinating. The idea of a PTSD treatment slowly having unexpected side effects was presented in a very believable and entertaining way. Some of the message passing technologies, while not exactly new, were very clever. To say any more would be a spoiler - just watch out for snakes.

Unlike a lot of sci-fi the characters were believable. I found myself upset when good guys died, and happy when they got rewarded. The end of the book was very satisfying. It left me feeling like I'd glimpsed the near future of America, and there was hope.

My only complaint with this book is that it was over too soon. I guess I'll have to go back and read it's predecessor, Quantico.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very fine Greg Bear book
I enjoyed this book because I like Greg Bear's writing and story telling style and this is one of his better recent efforts.I recommend this book to Greg Bear fans and especially fans of the Queen of Angels universe because it is somewhat of a prequel to those books.Many of the themes in Queen of Angels begin to take shape in this book in no uncertain terms, even the characters and institutions from Queen of Angels and Slant are in this book if only in passing. Mariposa lays the ground work for the artificial intelligence, psychological manipulation of society, and futuristic criminal investigative techniques that appear in earlier Bear books with this theme (he has others, try Eon for hard sci-fi).

4 stars may be a little high, but I can't give it 3 stars because it is better than that.Quantico is the pre-cursor to this book so you may want to read that first to know a little more about the characters, but I found Quantico unsatisfying from a sci-fi perspective.Quantico was a near-term future crime story, Mariposa felt more futuristic than that but not at all like the future of Queen of Angels with full A.I. and some space exploration.Mariposa is a solid addition to the Greg Bear collection.

3-0 out of 5 stars Near-future Suspense
In a very dystopian near-future, America is falling apart (close to bankrupt due to foreign debt, services closing down, etc.) and ripe for a take-over, particularly by the Talos Corporation, which has been gaining power and wealth by supplying all kinds of government services ala Blackwater.Three FBI agents, working pretty much without official sanction, since the FBI has lost independence and power, are looking into the activities of Talos CEO Axel Price, hoping to discover his plans before it's too late.

Fouad is working undercover in Texas, at Talos's headquarters, William Griffin is checking into a series of murders and acts of terrorism, thought to be related to Talos.And Rebecca Rose is drawn back from an extended sabbatical with the bombing of a conference she attends and then by the President of the U.S., who personally requests she look into a murder perpetrated by the Vice President.Clues lead to Mariposa--a secret project supposedly for developing a new way to treat post-traumatic stress.It seems that the test subjects have experienced strange side effects and now they are being killed off one-by-one, and Rebecca herself was a former patient...

This is an effective tale of suspense and action, but I felt that the characters were not quite developed enough for me to feel the danger of the situation.Perhaps reading the earlier book that also features some of them might have helped, but a book needs to stand at least a bit on its own.There were a lot of interesting ideas going on, but these too didn't seem to be as developed as thoroughly as they could be in order to involve the reader.And the climax seemed a little too easily achieved.

1-0 out of 5 stars Plodding and lacks plausibility
A totally disjointed "thriller". Agencies, technologies and situations are implausible. Main characters are just well enough developed to be unlikable. The "bad guys" are stereotypical to the point of being cartoonish. It is obvious that Bear spent little effort in thinking about how the scientific and biologic tools he blithely inserts into the plot might possibly work. Perhaps the book has a dynamite ending but I can't say because I gave up about half way through.

I picked this up because I did enjoy some of Bear's early SF writing. IMO he now appears to have completely lost that spark of intelligent creativity that marked some of his early works.

Note this was published Nov 2009 and now is on Amazon at 64% discount. I imagine it will soon, if not already, be on remaindered shelves near you for $1.49.

4-0 out of 5 stars For adults: and then as always, the rewards
We often read action novels for the pleasures of being caught up in their momentums, and then returning refreshed, and with a sense of justice fulfilled, where it might not always be as clearly so out in our regular world.

To have a writer with the imagination and insight of Greg Bear make the story means you get a lot to consider about as well, with unusual and thoughtful surprises at many points along the way.

Actually, I think it's those surprises, which appear all around the central plot, that make this book.

In writing about a possible near future from the turmoil of the present, you can feel a powerful artist's instinct drawing in what it knows must be there, the doors and windows through which our better humanity will find its ways to escape, and build something better.

In fact, we grow to understand, experience with, and then wish very well for some quite unexpectedly transitional persons; as well as appreciate to encounter shadowy personalities that it never will be quite possible to fully meet; and meanwhile along the way, find somehow incredibly sympathetic a backgrounded, partially aware computer intelligence which is different from any before -- though of course Greg has already been justly famous for giving us a taste of our yearnings through these beings we might make, who may have sometimes wider yet differently attuned vision from our own, and help us see our world whole.

An adventure, then, but with thoughtfulness also. There's violence as one might expect, and some one might not, so be ready for that, and the pace of the opening chapters.

In some fellow-feeling with one of it's central character's paths, this book may be a kind of desert passage we probably won't have to take, but will do better from having known about. ... Read more

11. The Collected Stories of Greg Bear (Tom Doherty Associates Books)
by Greg Bear
Paperback: 656 Pages (2003-03-19)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$10.06
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 076530161X
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Greg Bear is one of the greatest science fiction writers of the late twentieth century. He has a powerful voice, combining the intense rationality of science with the intensely passionate characters that can only be created by a writer who loves humanity. Bear’s novel Moving Mars won the Nebula Award in 1994, and he did it again, in 2000, with Darwin’s Radio. He has been honored with Hugo and Nebula nominations for novel-length work eight more times.

But Greg Bear’s short fiction is even more astounding, as this powerful career retrospective demonstrates. This collection contains Bear’s earliest published fiction from the late 1960s and early 1970s as well his remarkable award-winning work from the ‘80s and ‘90s—stories like the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novella- length version of “Blood Music” and the Hugo and Nebula Award-winner “Tangents.”

This Collection is enhanced by brand-new introductions for each story, commentary, and reminiscences by Greg Bear.
Amazon.com Review
This collection of Greg Bear's major short fiction ably demonstrates why Bear is one of science fiction's most popular authors. The multiple Hugo and Nebula award winner offers here a feast of his most famous stories and novellas, accompanied by thoughtful introductions and afterwords that provide insight into the writer and his process. Standouts include "Blood Music," a precise and chilling tale of human cells that become individually intelligent; "The Wind from a Burning Woman," in which despair and anger inspire a young woman's terrible act of vengeance; "The White Horse Child," a loving look at the nascence of the creative impulse; and "Dead Run," in which the road to hell is paved with concrete, and not all intentions are good. This extensive collection is chock full of good stories told with Bear's characteristic intelligence and flair. While he examines big questions of science, politics and religion, Bear's driving force as a writer is his curiosity about the human spirit. --Roz Genessee ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Buy it if you like Bear or really good sci-fi
This gets a five out of five easily. No, not every story is that good, and as a matter of fact there are a couple stories that I didn't like, and I think one or two that I couldn't even get through. But this compilation has the novella Hardfought, a story that Bear himself says may be the best thing he's ever written in the foreword, and I think he might be right. Hardfought is one of the best far future stories that's been written, and ranks up there with Frank Herbert and such as far as quality goes. It would earn this collection 5 out of 5 even if the rest of the stories were nothing but Harry Potter fan fiction... just ignore the poetry.

The compilation also has the short story Blood Music, which I thought was much better than the full novel, so that may be of interest to Bear fans.

There are a few other stories of very good quality, such as Judgment Engine and The Venging, and the rest- with some exceptions- are all pretty good.

At 16$ this book is a really good deal. I'm pretty sure I paid around more than that and I don't regret it at all.

4-0 out of 5 stars Not Free SF Reader
A large collection from Bear.He talks about how he is not really too comfortable with producing anything particularly short.There are also some supernatural and the odd horror story included, as well, something with doesn't particularly seem to be his forte, going by the numbers.

A 3.38 average for this lot, if you just wanted the top stuff you could probably get Tangents instead, other than Hardfought, that is.

Anyway, this is a decent bunch, and that is about it.

Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Blood Music [SS] - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Sisters - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : A Martian Ricorso - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Schrödinger's Plague - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Heads - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Wind from a Burning Woman - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Venging - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Perihesperon - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Scattershot - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : A Plague of Conscience - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Always Never - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The White Horse Child - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Dead Run - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Petra - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Webster - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Through Road No Whither - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Tangents - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Visitation - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Richie by the Sea - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Sleepside Story - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Judgment Engine - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Fall of the House of Escher - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Way of All Ghosts A Myth from Thistledown - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : MDIO Ecosystems Increase Knowledge of DNA Languages (2215 C.E.) [Deep Ice and DNA Languages] - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Hardfought - Greg Bear

Microcolony kill failure transfer overrun.

4 out of 5

Designer defect death.

3.5 out of 5

First contact rapid overtaking.

2.5 out of 5

Coin toss experimental global philosophy pandemic probability.

3.5 out of 5

Scientology scummy scammer's skull storage shocker shattered.

4.5 out of 5

Floating megaboom backdown refusal.

3.5 out of 5

Singular h*ll.

3 out of 5

Sunny end.

3 out of 5

There's a bear in there, and a chair as well. Really, if you get hit by a probability disruptor enough times you might berry likely pick up anything, girly.

4 out of 5

Bloke not the messiah.

2.5 out of 5

Son story sins.

2.5 out of 5

Trucking h*ll, man.

3.5 out of 5

Gargoyle boys and girls.

3.5 out of 5

Dictionary definition not the same as the real thing.

3 out of 5

I see bad things for the SS.

3.5 out of 5

Music just adds that extra dimension.

4 out of 5

G0d-three finds trying to blow scientist minds more entertaining.

3.5 out of 5

No Sigmund, one sea-monster, one boy, but combined.

2.5 out of 5

Escort pruning promotes renewal.

3.5 out of 5

Large scale libraries need some old fashioned teaching.

3.5 out of 5

Blame Wodewick, virtually.

3.5 out of 5

Had enough.

3 out of 5

Big ice melt mutant discovery may not be uplifting.

3.5 out of 5

Spacehawk history problems.

4 out of 5

3.5 out of 5

5-0 out of 5 stars Greg Bear Stuns!
This is an astonishing series of stories. It seems almost impossible that one mind could cover this kind of scope and do it so entertainingly and well.

As you can tell, I LOVED this book!

5-0 out of 5 stars Strong anthology
Greg Bear is the winner of numerous prestigious awards in all the categories.This particular collection contains many of his short stories (21), and three novellas.The stories have all been printed before, but not in one volume and would be impossible to obtain in their original format.Each tale includes an introduction that is new.Fans of the author and science fiction readers in general will relish The Collected Works of Greg Bear in spite of the near breaking of the $30.00 barrier as this anthology displays the talent of one of the late twentieth century genre's top spinners.

Harriet Klausner ... Read more

12. Blood Music
by Greg Bear
Paperback: 294 Pages (2008-12-03)
list price: US$17.95
Isbn: 0759241740
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
In the tradition of the greatest cyberpunk novels, Blood Music explores the imminent destruction of mankind and the fear of mass destruction by technological advancements. Blood Music follows present-day events in which the fears concerning the nuclear annihilation of the world subsided after the Cold War and the fear of chemical warfare spilled over into the empty void of nuclear fear. An amazing breakthrough in genetic engineering made by Vergil Ulam is considered too dangerous for further research, but rather than destroy his work, he injects himself with his creation and walks out of his lab, unaware of just quite how his actions will change the world. Author Greg Bear's treatment of the traditional tale of scientific hubris is both suspenseful and a compelling portrait of a new intelligence emerging amongst us, irrevocably changing our world. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (81)

3-0 out of 5 stars Interesting
An interesting premise and fairly unpredictable, but I had a difficult time enjoying his writing style.Nonetheless, like any great science fiction, this book gives you much to think about and is yet another great title in the SF Masterworks series.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well worked premise
This one is a reread, following through on my first take several years ago. Story of a scientist that develops renegade living nanotechnology, and how it transforms the world. This book stood up quite favorably on a second reading, where previously I was most interested in the more conventional first half, this time I liked the way the longer-term process played out. It is strongly interesting as a novel about the singularity, transhumanism and a radically alien form of life than doesn't use any of these terms. The nooctye civilization moves in the span of a few weeks and a couple hundred pages to an interesting science innovation, than a weird mutation, than a renegade viral menace, and then an in depth civilization more compassionate, numerous and advanced than humanity. The story is constantly in motion, continually showing the pace of change for the new civilization and the way they transform the world around them, till by the end the whole of the universe is being reworked. The book benefits from it's ultimately optimistic nature, the way the transformation is shown to be extremely disorienting and incomprehensible but ultimately benevolent in character.

In support of the story the characterization is decent and there are a number of poignant personal moments. The larger story heavily invests in the main concept beyond character, however, and it succeeds due to tight pace and overall strength of execution. A reminder that Greg Bear could really write, back in the day, and that themes of radical change to the human condition were in some ways better served before it was linked to self-conccious buzzwords of the genre.

Similar to and better than: Accelerando by Charles Stross

Similar to and worse than: Rainbows End by Vernor Vinge

1-0 out of 5 stars Great novel, awful publisher. Buy a different print.
This review and rating is only about this printing, by a company called "E-Reads". I have lots of great things to say about the novel but a lot of it has already been said by the other reviewers.

This printing is unacceptably terrible, and I can't imagine anyone proofread it. There is at least one mistake on every page, and that is not an exaggeration. Punctuation is the least of its problems. Words are actually replaced with words that you can guess look like the intended word, but are far from it. Often the word "nun" shows up instead of "him", as one of many, many examples, and many sentences are so disjointed that you have to read them two or three times to figure out what Greg Bear actually wrote in the first place.

The printing reminds me of some e-books I have read, ones that have obviously been scanned from actual printed pages and word-recognition software used to generate the e-book, as there are always such mistakes in those renditions. It's my belief that this is a print from such a scan, which I know makes no sense (printing from a scan instead of printing from the source material) but I can see no other way these mistakes were made. The publisher's name, E-Reads, certainly suggests this is what happened, and research will show you they are an e-book publisher.

It isn't only annoying, it makes it hard to keep reading. Do not, I repeat do not buy this printing. Find another one. I'll write to E-Reads to find out what is going on here, and will be returning my copy to Amazon, as I would not disgrace my bookshelf with such an awfully published novel.

EDIT: I've found out that this is a Print On Demand book, and so was likely not proofread by the publisher. Beware of books like this.

5-0 out of 5 stars Type A ++++++++++
I had never heard of Greg Bear when I discovered this book, sitting on its own in the rear corner of a rear shelf in a tiny bookstore I happened to stop in while waiting for a bus. I picked it up, read ten pages, bought it and didn't put it down until that morning (several hours later).Mr. Bear is one of those rare talents who knows his science COLD but can spin that knowledge into tales that are both fantastically imaginative and intellectually challenging.If you haven't read this story and you fancy yourself a fan of science fiction or, frankly, great fiction of any sort, do yourself a HUGE favor and buy this book.

It is worth every penny. More than.

Thank you, Mr. Bear, wherever you are.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good book - Iffy Publisher
The book was great, but the publisher was kinda cheap. They saved costs by not reviewing the book, in any way at all, for spelling errors... which are rampant. Not just little errors, like a switched vowel, I mean serious word failures. Many times I had to *stop reading* and figure out what they were trying to say because I wasn't even sure the thing in question was a word at all. The book also has problems with missing periods and missing quotation marks (you will just run into a lone quotation mark out of nowhere, and have to figure out where its match should go, this happened often).

So, overview: Great book, don't hesitate to buy it if you like sci-fi. You might want to look into a different publisher though if you don't want to deal with the errors. ... Read more

13. Anvil of Stars: The Sequel to Forge of God
by Greg Bear
Hardcover: 434 Pages (1992-05)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$6.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0446516015
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The sequel to Forge of God follows the mission of a select group of human survivors as they search in the Ship of Law for the aliens who destroyed their planet. 25,000 first printing. Tour. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Sequel to the Classic Original
Bear produced a delicious and fascinating sequel when he wrote this book.I love the original.The sequel is wonderful but in different ways.Where the original was about average people dealing with a very earthly doom, the follow on is about a group of young but diverse people seeking revenge under very alien circumstances and surroundings.It is Hard Science fiction at its best.There are so many incredible elements of technology explored in the book, it is captivating.

The characters are vivid and very well developed.The conflicts and growth they go through during their voyage are very realistic and moving.

This is one of my all time favorite sci-fi novels and deserves a place beside quite a few Hugo Award winning novels.

Highly Recommended!

3-0 out of 5 stars Not bad, not good
If you are a Greg Bear fan, then you will enjoy this book. Other than that, I believe the reading public will not be so enthralled. This is the follow-up to The Forge of God. The Forge of God is a true masterpiece, Anvil of Stars is not. The Earth is destroyed, the good guys are going to get the bad guys, and the law is the law. That is all you need to know for this book and you know it early. Bear tries to develop believable characters which he succedes at very nicely. The problem here is the story itself, which seems very disoriented and the story never seems to gel no matter how he tries to study group dynamics or species interactions. The main characters are the children of the original survivors of The Forge of God, which is a nice touch with a different view of the problem. You could do a lot worse than Anvil of Stars, but you can do a lot better also.

5-0 out of 5 stars Anvil of Stars : The Sequel to Forge of God
This book is a tour de force, the whole concept behind it is so large thati was in awe when i completed the novel. After the Earth was decimated,there is a slim chance that earths children can determine who isresponsible for the planets destruction and possibly avenge that crime.Unfortunately the plot is slow to develop and until you get to the finalthird of the book it can leave you wondering if the story is actually goinganywhere. But i can assure you it is. I won't recommend this book if youare someone who can't stay focused if a novel gets slow for a bit, but ifyou can handle a few slow parts this is as good of a hard science fictionbook as you will ever find.

2-0 out of 5 stars Such a shame
The first book, Forge of God, was a true masterpiece. This sequel however is less than worthy to be called a sequel. The story it self is not very interesting, therefore I will not mention it. The characters are ever sowrongly put to words, most of them are children, it's mentioned quite a fewtimes, but none of them acts like children. Sure they might be lastchildren to have seen Earth, but is this a reason to have them act likegrown-ups? I think not, they act illogical and one dimensional.

A shame,the first book was truly enjoyable, the second book wasn't even a truesequel. ... Read more

14. Halo: Cryptum: Book One of the Forerunner Saga
by Greg Bear
 Hardcover: 352 Pages (2011-01-04)
list price: US$24.99 -- used & new: US$14.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0765323966
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

15. Eon
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 512 Pages (1991-10-15)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$2.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812520475
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The 21st century was on the brink of nuclear confrontation when the 300 kilometer-long stone flashed out of nothingness and into Earth's orbit. NASA, NATO, and the UN sent explorers to the asteroid's surface...and discovered marvels and mysteries to drive researchers mad.

For the Stone was from space--but perhaps not our space; it came from the future--but perhaps not our future; and within the hollowed asteroid was Thistledown. The remains of a vanished civilization. A human--English, Russian, and Chinese-speaking--civilization. Seven vast chambers containing forests, lakes, rivers, hanging cities...

And museums describing the Death; the catastrophic war that was about to occur; the horror and the long winter that would follow. But while scientists and politicians bickered about how to use the information to stop the Death, the Stone yielded a secret that made even Earth's survival pale into insignificance.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (90)

3-0 out of 5 stars Dated, Descriptively Deficient Science Fiction
This highly acclaimed science fiction work, written in 1986, suffers somewhat from age, as many of the Cold War political tensions and technological advances are now largely obsolete.In addition, it fits neatly into the genre of science fiction novels that feature huge, self contained, inter-stellar habitats.While it stacks up nicely with Ringworld, it is inferior in quality to Rendezvous With Rama and The Reality Dysfunction, in my opinion.

Boiled down, a huge, man-made object appears in Earth orbit at the height of Cold War tension and pending nuclear annihilation.Technologically superior NATO forces explore and inhabit "The Rock" and the Russkies are none too happy.Issues involving the time/space continuum rear their ugly heads and wide spread chaos ensues, in this and other alternate times and places.

Putting aside the issue of obsolescence (which the author cannot completely control), much of my unhappiness with the novel centered upon what I felt was trite and almost juvenile dialogue.Also troubling are many of the physical and technical explanations and descriptions.Especially in the Rama/Ringworld genre of science fiction, descriptions of the main character (the habitats) are extremely important.

In this respect, I've never understood why illustrations are not an automatic component of such a work.While I found the descriptive prose relative to Thistledown tolerable, once investigation of The Way, its portals and ultimately Axis City began, the tortured descriptive language lost me almost completely.As a result, the final 200 pages or so were something of a blur, as inability to understand the physical environment made an understanding of many of the scientific and physics theories virtually impossible.Can't recommend.

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Reading
I don't know how I missed this gem in my years of reading sci fi.I even read alot of Greg Bear's other books as well.

I loved this book from beginning to end.And it amazes me that it was written 20 years ago.Mr. Bear's vision of the future as indicated in this book is fabulous.

I can see how the other reviewers may think this is too confusing, it is very scientific.But then again I love reading crazy theories and different dimensions.

In short I highly recommend this book and very pleased to see that there is a sequel!

5-0 out of 5 stars A standard candle.
EON had the greatest magnitude of plot acceleration this reviewer has ever seen. Its Cold War, dipole rhetoric, refreshing in this monopole age of asymmetric "terrorism", is hardly obsolete but waits for China to rouse. The characters are 2D+ and textured, the space combat chilling and tense, the depiction of future cultures sobering, the depiction of "The Way" staggering, the handling of hard science concepts very competent. This reviewer recalls no unjustified or inexplicable fancy - everything was nailed together very well. For those who fear Zaphod Beeblebrox's experience in the Total Perspective Vortex, EON's last chapter with Pavel Mirsky is not for you.

2-0 out of 5 stars The Stone and parallel universes
An 300 km long and 100km wide object is entering the solar System. The Stone, a gigantic spaceship. Patricia Vasquez, a brilliant mathematician, is called to explore its 7 huge chambers: cities, forests, lakes and rivers. But no occupants exist on The Stone. In one of the libraries a horrifying fact is revealed: the Earth will enter nuclear war. A book published ahead of the time explains all the details. Was the Stone coming from future? Patricia's job is to explain what's with the 7th chamber. It has no end. It extends beyond the psychical dimensions of The Stone. And where have the people, apparently human, that once lived in The Stone, gone?

The biggest mystery in the book surrounds the 7th chamber. It is found to be the entry of The Way, singularity that extends further into the time. In the second half of the book the plot examine the possibilities of traveling between many parallel universes and the reader gets a chance to meet the originals, Earth citizens from alternative future, who had moved forward along The Way big to a overbuilt futuristic city and who had formed a very controlled society. The story also depicts Cold War chess atmosphere where The Stone is invaded by the Russians. To the storyline the effect of Russians is disconnectness rather than suspense. The book contains lot of mathematics, alternate geometries, n-spaces, distorted spacial coordinates which will please the hard SF readers. Some readers may consider this technical overkill. The sequels are Eternity (1988) and Legacy (1995).

Two (2) stars. The beginning is well done. The novel starts out with attempts at character development and exploration of The Stone. The reader wants to know more about the secret libraries and their content. The kidnapping of the lead character, Patricia, by the "originals", yanks the plot completely elsewhere. The Patricia's role in the story diminishes to shreds when the kidnapper, Olmy, virtual reality character, steps in place. This switch disrupts the balance too much and reader has difficulties to attach any of the other walk-on characters and city politics. The parallel universes aspect of Patricia finding another Earth is more like a weed than elementary part of the story. In the end many of the scattered points wear out the reader. Eon is like brilliant, high tech engine which bit by bit disassembles into pieces. Tiring read.

1-0 out of 5 stars Big Waste of Time
I could go on and on about how this book goes on and on...In short, this is one of those books that you finish reading not because you enjoy reading it.You finish it because, as I kept thinking whenever I picked it up, "I've put so much time into this.I can't put it down now.Finish already so I can start something else!" ... Read more

16. Slant
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 512 Pages (1998-06-15)
list price: US$6.99 -- used & new: US$0.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812524829
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
In the sixth decade of the twenty-first century, Earth has been transformed. Nanotechnology has been perfected, giving humans the ability to change their environment and themselves down to the cellular level. And the study of the mind has brought a revolution in human psychotherapy and artificial intelligence.

It's a sane and perfect world. Almost.
Amazon.com Review
This is the sequel to Greg Bear's popular Queen of Angels, and,like most of this award-winning author's works, it's a stunner. Bearis right at home with the computer and nano technologies that underliehis near-future society. With most of the world's ills having beencured by nanotech, humanity is free to turn its explorations inward,to the mind. Advanced therapies have all but eliminated emotionalimbalance, and things have never been better. But when public defenderMary Cho begins investigating a double-murder, she uncovers the truth:all of the high tech is failing, and things will never be worse. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (47)

3-0 out of 5 stars In a therapied society
A mental illness is showing its head in various parts of the world. The therapied model citizens are breaking up. What is behind this uprising of mental plague? One of the key figures in society, a high natural, businessman Terence Crest, is murdered. Police Mary Choy is called to discreetly investigate the murder. Only that all the supposed foolproof security recordings have been retroactively erased. Something hack in a billionaire's system through all the firewalls. And Martin Burge, specializing in core therapy failures, was amongst the last few that saw Terance alive. What's the connection?

In this information society, where serious bodily transformations are the norm, therapy is commodity to genuinely make people better. Only few corrective notches are needed to compensate pathic imbalances where initial and secondary therapy fail. The book is about speculating what would happen when the ideology is taken to the extremes. There will always be splinter groups that will arrange a conspiracy to fight back.

Three (3) stars. Written in 1997 this is book 2 in duology, started in 1990 by Queen of Angels. The first book's world of crime, punishment, nature of consciousness and the theme of future therapied dystopian society is in threat to collapse. The social criticism is subtle underneath the cynicism. In an economy of all satisfying machines there is clear class struggle between the elite naturals and working class who are unwilling to undergo therapy. The story is not exactly cyberpunk although there is an AI Jill who is learning grow up to make up her own mind against another AI, whose parameters are quite different. The schism between these two AIs, description of corporative control, conspiracy, exploring data flow used as currency, exploring social data trends, are leaps improved compared to the first book. There is a problem with the phasing. Most of the book is building very vivid picture of the society but the erupted action and police work is merged together only at the very end. The maturity of the work is self evident but the book has more levels than what is needed to be inventive. A surrealism put in scifi.

3-0 out of 5 stars Spanner thrown into the gears of greatness
I can say that I have read every single Greg Bear novel he has written up to the point of of Slant. So, reading Slant was a capstone in the bibliography of Bear. Naturally, I was looking forward to reading Slant as the Queen of Angles had a promising plot: psychology, artificial intelligence and crime story. However, Queen of Angels didn't live up to the grandeur of previous Bear novels so perhaps he could make up for it by writing a sequel which would bring more of the plot into the light and trump the half-failure of Queen of Angels.

Important topics which relate to the plot are artificial intelligence and the systems used to create the sentience, the use of therapy to treat excessive emotion is humans, the use of nanotechnology in military applications and cryogenics to preserve the body after death. The sheer combination of these technologies benchmarks Slant as an eager yet progressive science fiction book. Bear, naturally talented in writing sci-fi since 1979 (Psychlone and Hegira) weaves the sciences into a great plot which earns the book 5-stars... so where did he go wrong?

Bear threw a spanner into the gears of greatness: gratuitous, unfathomably-connected-to-the-plot sex scenes. He works up the sex scenes to the point where psychology of sexual relations must play out in the final scenes and connect itself to nanotechnology and data usage. Yet half way through the novel, the sex dries up as does the relation to the plot, whereby it's dominated by artificial intelligence and the inevitable attack on the cryogenic storage center. Perhaps Bear felt that he had to "sex-up" his novel to make it saucy or entertaining, but the sexing-up just makes an incomprehensible mess of the first half.

3-0 out of 5 stars a bit tedious
Short version: my first exposure to Greg Bear; seemed a bit tedious (the pacing seemed a bit off -- like in fits and starts); the climax/wrap-up went well but seemed to start too early and fold in on itself, dragging out.Some neat concepts presented and certainly a chilling and plausible future (even if he seems to be beveling the edges of his science a bit (if you know what I mean)).

4-0 out of 5 stars Tilted Upward & Sideways & Down
SLANT is an exciting, visionary complicated, detailed, winding novel that has two major flaws:(1) It pales in comparison with the prequel.QUEEN OF ANGELS was one of the best science fiction novels of all time in my opinion (2) The story is hard to follow as is the action.There are so many unrelated characters, situations and ideas that their synthesis was a work of art. Many times I was uncomfortable with the rampant in-your-face redundant sex which was used for both analogy and parable. It seemed gratuitous in parts although it was not (in the end it meshed into the plot appropriately).

Like the previous novel, ths is the tranquil future wher things like murders and cruelty should have been removed from the human race and yet they persist.PD Mary is back and this time she is reversing her Transform that raised her height, changed her body and gave her ebony skin.She is still a dedicated, almost obsessive police woman who seemingly lives for the job. This is a book about politics - left and right.The current attempt by the Purity Patrol on the Left and the Morality Police on the Right merge in a nightmarish future in which therapy is seen as not only socially acceptable but increasingly socially required.Human emotions again are on full display - greed, pleasure, pain and oh yes, love. The therapist of the mass murderer in QUEEN OF ANGELS is back along with a former military man who discovers that he is not who he thinks he is.

The many plotlines are finally resolved although the ending is more Indian Jones than Carl Sagan. Especially good was the nano-virus even if this has been used by other writers (Reynolds, Morgan, etc) Bear's writing has a grittiness, a description of the dark future without the necessity to describe.Unlike other sci-fi writers his characters do not mention an invention and then explain to the nearest person what it is and how it works.The meaning and use of such objects and concepts emerge through the plot and the action.My Grade:B

3-0 out of 5 stars Not Free SF Reader
Even nanothings fall apart.

In a sequel of sorts to Queen of Angels - some of the same characters reappear, but Mary is no longer a cop, she is now a public defender, for example.

You have an altered people elite, a separatist Idaho, AI that have breakdowns, and a whole bunch of frenetic other pieces of live that converged into something that Bear suggests is rather unstable.

This is not helped when a plot to change everyone is uncovered.

A passable book, perhaps a bit better than Queen of Angels - could go 3.25 for this one.

... Read more

17. Darwin's Radio
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 544 Pages (2000-07-05)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0345435249
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Ancient diseases encoded in the DNA of humans wait like sleeping dragons to wake and infect again--or so molecular biologist Kaye Lang believes. And now it looks as if her controversial theory is in fact chilling reality. For Christopher Dicken, a "virus hunter" at the Epidemic Intelligence Service, has pursued an elusive flu-like disease that strikes down expectant mothers and their offspring. Then a major discovery high in the Alps --the preserved bodies of a prehistoric family--reveals a shocking link: something that has slept in our genes for millions of years is waking up.

Now, as the outbreak of this terrifying disease threatens to become a deadly epidemic, Dicken and Lang must race against time to assemble the pieces of a puzzle only they are equipped to solve--an evolutionary puzzle that will determine the future of the human race . . . if a future exists at all.Amazon.com Review
All the best thrillers contain the solution to a mystery, andthe mystery in this intellectually sparkling scientific thriller ismore crucial and stranger than most. Why are people turning againsttheir neighbors and their newborn children? And what is causing anepidemic of still births? A disgraced paleontologist and a geneticengineer both come across evidence of cover-ups in which thegovernment is clearly up to no good. But no one knows what's reallygoing on, and the government is covering up because that is what, inthrillers as in life, governments do. And what has any of this to dowith the discovery of a Neanderthal family whose mummified faces showsigns of a strange peeling?

Greg Bear has spent much of his recentcareer evoking awe in the deep reaches of space, but he made his namewith BloodMusic, a novel of nanotechnology that crackled withintelligence. His new book is a workout for the mind and a stunningread; human malignancy has its role in his thriller plot, but its realvillain, as well as its last best hope, is the endless ingeniouscruelty of the natural world and evolution. --Roz Kaveney,Amazon.co.uk ... Read more

Customer Reviews (281)

4-0 out of 5 stars A gripping sci-fi thriller
Disgraced archaeologist Mitch Rafelson follows a pair of relic hunters across a glacier to a cave in the Alps that contains an impossible secret.

Biologist Kaye Lang investigates a mass grave near Geordi, in the former Soviet republic of Georgia, and makes a startling discovery.

Officials at the CDC struggle to comprehend a strange new disease killing expectant mothers and their babies.

Three events more intimately related than anyone might imagine. Something is rewriting our genetic blueprint, and time is running out for the human race.

In his Nebula Award-winning novel, Darwin's Radio, Greg Bear spins a globe-spanning tale that is one part apocalyptic thriller, one part near-future speculation, and one part meditation on the nature of humanity and the forces that drive us to adapt and thrive in a constantly-changing world.

How might coping with changes in our environment change us? What adaptations might be necessary? While the evolutionary mantra is "adapt or die," Bear draws our attention to the fact that it's easier said than done. Human beings don't take kindly to change, and when, in Darwin's Radio, evolution gets up-close and personal,society begins to crumble.

Perhaps more terrifying than the relentless progress of a genetic disease is the response of the federal health authorities and the scientific establishment. For the government bureaucrats, the first priority is protecting their own interests. Science takes a back seat to political expediency, even as the crisis spirals out of control. As for the scientists, the idea that our future as a species might be determined by something more sophisticated and intentional than random chance or brute-force competition gives them a collective case of the vapors. Even as the evidence stacks up for something disturbingly intelligent behind the new epidemic, they cling to the comfort of timeworn paradigms about how biological change happens.

The story shines in its well-researched speculations about human genetics, but follows the familiar formulas of the scientific thriller until Kaye Lang decides to become her own research subject. As she applies her intellect and skills to make sense of what exactly is going on, she finds herself swept along in the tide of forces physical and emotional that defy rational analysis. She begins to realize that nothing can stop the change that is coming, and fighting it may be precisely the wrong answer. At this point, the story really starts to wrestle not only with what might happen, but with what it could mean to us as individuals.

It's a gripping and very emotional story. A few characters border on cliche', like the self-interested government bureaucrats, corrupt scientists scrambling for research funding, and those eternal bogeymen of scientific "progress," fundamentalist Christian demagogues.

National governments promote abortion as a solution to the impact of the disease on the unborn, presumptively condemning an entire generation of children to death, but a groundswell of opposition to this policy arises and is sympathetically depicted. The ultimate message of the story is unambiguously pro-life.

Despite the caricatures, I found it striking that it was the idea of a design behind human creation and development that gave the scientific community their most profound shivers. It didn't seem to matter whether the source was God, some unfathomable intelligence, or an emergent process of our own genetic hardware, the scientists to a man (or woman) fought the idea of anything beyond aimless random chance guiding the biological fate of humanity, to their last tooth and nail. I don't think Bear is far off the mark in depicting that reaction. When science stops searching for truth and chooses instead to defend conventional thought and the status quo against all challenges, it stops being science and becomes something quite irrational, a religion without a moral compass, particularly dangerous in the kind of crisis described in Darwin's Radio.

The ending screams for a sequel, and there is one: Darwin's Children. Perhaps I'll get to it sooner than I did Darwin's Radio. Hey, it could happen.

I'd rate this at an R for adult situations, some explicit sexuality, and some rough language. Not for kids.

4-0 out of 5 stars If you like scifi served up cold, with some real science in it, give this a try
I listened to an audio version of this which was well read by Stefan Rudnicki.Darwin's Radio is a good example of hard scifi, i.e. fiction that is well rooted in legitimate and plausible science, even if the events that take place are probably impossible.The story follows two scientists, one a medical researcher named Kaye Lang, and the other Mitch Rafelson, some type of anthropologist or museum researcher who has run into trouble with the authorities.They are both on the trail of something weird, which turns out to be the biggest scientific event in decades, if not centuries.

The story begins with the museum researcher discovering the corpse of a prehistoric humanoid in a high mountain cave.At the same time, Lang is researching a bizarre virus (Herod's Flu or SHEVA) that seems to cause women to become pregnant, regardless of whether they have been having sex.Another main character is a wiley Southerner, Christopher Dicken, who is one of the leaders of the Centers for Disease Control.As the virus begins to spread, political pressure starts to grow.Lang comes to believe that the virus is not an illness, but something that is triggering a leap forward in human evolution.She is overruled by her colleagues, who bow to public opinion, and begin treating the phenomenon like an illness that needs to be stamped out.The number of unusual pregnancies begins to grow, and Lang strikes up an affair with the anthropologist and becomes pregnant with a SHEVA fetus.

Bear writes in a clear, cool, intelligent manner.His characterizations are not the richest, and there is not much lightness or humor, but these matters do not diminish the pleasures of the narrative.He creates a believable depiction of contemporary scientists confronting a bizarre new event, and is very good at depicting the bureacratic maneuvering that transpires as the phenomenon begins to spread.He provides what sounded to my unscientifically trained critical faculty to be at least plausible, if not actually possible, scientific explanations.And that is, of course, what counts, because this is a work of fiction.I began describing the book to a scientist relative, and she cut me off, saying that she was only interested in real science, not loony, fictional science.This makes perfect sense, since this kind of book is meant not to educate in an entertaining manner, but to entertain in an educated manner - and it succeeds in doing so.

1-0 out of 5 stars Terrible
I find it difficult to believe that this and similar horror / thriller stuff was written by the same Greg Bear who authored Eon, Eternity, and Anvil of Stars.

All I can figure is he's reached a life stage where he feels a need for mass audience and especially a movie contract or two. The poetic justice is this: beyond the gross-out factor his writing is now just plain bad. Maybe that's part of the recipe for this market.

1-0 out of 5 stars No plot, no character development, just speculation
To put it frankly, this book had no plot; it was merely a 600-page character treatment for the virus. Throughout the entire novel, the protagonist never actually does anything. She is a brilliant scientist, but never gets around to actually doing any science, and instead just sits in her ivory tower and talks about highly technical biology to other biologists.

The most frustrating part is that not only is the story boring, but the opportunities to make it more interesting are so glaringly obvious. The protagonist is a woman of child-bearing age, the demographic affected by the virus, but she doesn't contract it until the last third of the book. Even then, her big heroic choice is to... do nothing, and let it run its course. The most egregious example of this problem is when Dicken is in a large crowd that starts to get agitated, just when a riot is about to break out... he gets out of the crowd and the scene ends. The next chapter opens with a newspaper headline telling us how many people died. At that point, if he had made it that far, the editor should have written "Show, don't tell" in big red letters across the page, and sent back the manuscript.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Evolutionary Gigantic Jump!
"Darwin's Radio" is the first novel I've read from Greg Bear. I am sci-fi fan yet usually those author defined as "hard sci-fi" ones are not my favorites. After reading reviews on this book I decided to give it a try.
Well I was delighted! The only "hard" stuff in the novel is Bear's excellent grip on bioscience (at least for layman as I am). He presents his background "facts" very plausibly, clear and by no means boring.

The story starts with several different lines and characters spread all over the world. They will converge and contribute to increase action momentum.
A dormant humankind feature is triggered by social stress and evolution is launched thru wild paths. How government, international organizations and individuals react to face this threat/opportunity is the core of the book.

Characters are well described with real motivations, interests and human depth. The reader may empathize deeply with some of them and ardently hate others, which are another Greg Bear's strong point.

It is a gripping and thought provoking tale. Do not miss this trip!

Reviewed by Max Yofre.
... Read more

18. Songs of Earth And Power
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 704 Pages (1996-11-15)
list price: US$6.99 -- used & new: US$91.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812536037
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The Song of Power opened the gateway to the Realm of the Sidhe, allowing young Michael Perrin to slip through. Now Michael faces years of captivity and deadly struggles for the future of the Realm and of Earth--leading finally to a terrible confrontation on the streets of Los Angeles, with the soul of humanity at stake.

Weaving the power of music, poetry, and myth into a headlong narrative of nearly overwhelming intensity, Song of Earth and Power is one of the most original fantasy epics of our time, a vast tapestry of relentless suspense, terrible beauty, and brilliant imagination. Originally published years ago in two parts, it now returns in a new edition rewritten by the author and published in a single volume as he originally intended. Wrote Analog on its original appearance: "A delight....A vision of Faery that may owe a bit to a wish to do it right. Read it."
... Read more

Customer Reviews (34)

5-0 out of 5 stars Replacement for a favorite book
This book was a replacement purchase for a very well read book that finally fell apart, it was read so many times!I really love this story and will read it many more times.

2-0 out of 5 stars A very dull read
This book came highly recommended but I feel it was a disappointment. It is long winded, dull, confusing and never really picks up. There are some good fantasy world ideas but has a Tolkien-esque never ending slow pace. Very blah and a waste of time.

5-0 out of 5 stars Strongly written, new creation mythos, intricate new world
"The Infinity Concerto" - Book One in the Songs of Earth and Power omnibus - is multi-layered and textured. I believe it will likely take me several readings to find all the meanings that are embedded in this story. The basic storyline revolves around Michael Perrin, a thoughtful young man who wants to be a poet. He befriends a composer named Arno Waltiri, who it is said wrote a concerto called The Infinity Concerto that was so unusual that it not only drove its listeners mad but also that many of those listeners disappeared. Waltiri claims that the concerto was primarily inspired by a man called David Clarkham, who subsequently disappeared; Arno gives Michael a key and a piece of paper with directions to follow, that should lead him to Clarkham. Waltiri dies soon thereafter. Despite warnings from Waltiri's wife Golda that Waltiri repented of his choice to give these to him, Michael decides to go ahead and follow the directions - and ends up somewhere . . . that is not Earth anymore. Forced to learn to survive, Michael has to grow up and grow strong very quickly - but is he just a pawn in some hidden power struggle? Or is he something else altogether?

Some sections of this part of the text seemed rather slow moving, but everything was necessary for the plot. Because the plot is so intricate, at times ponderous prose is necessary to bring about all the necessary information. All-in-all, I found book one quite enjoyable.

The Serpent Mage" - book two - picks up shortly after Infinity Concerto leaves off. Michael Perrin is back home, living with his parents and continuing his training. Arno Waltiri has left his estate and the disposition of his papers and recordings to Michael. Waltiri has also left his house to Michael and eventually Michael moves in and begins to go through the papers.

Michael's desires for normality are shattered, however, when he reads a news story about strange bodies discovered in a nearby hotel - one grossly obese, one strangely mummified and in a party dress. Other news stories speak of "hauntings" around the world - Michael suspects that the Sidhe are coming to Earth. If that isn't enough, he is contacted by a musical faculty member from UCLA named Kristine Pendeers who is looking for the Infinity Concerto - Opus 45. She wants to discover and perform it; and she has a friend who, with the help of letters and papers they hope to discover in Waltiri's estate, hopes to finish Mahler's unfinished Symphony. And they then plan play the two pieces together. Once the decision is made to start looking for these materials, Michael begins to fall under various attacks to stop him from completing these tasks.

Hopefully the bits of plot I outlined above don't spoil the book for anyone - I could hardly outline less without being so vague about the basic plot of the book as to be basically providing you with a meaningless synopsis; however, there is so much more to this book than the above. Greg Bear weaves throughout this story a fascinating new mythos about the creation and evolution, de-evolution and re-evolution of man and the universe that I found to be quite astonishing in its depth and breadth. He weaves in references to several world religions and ties them in to his mythos, showing how the original truth was "twisted" over the years to conform to what would best serve those in power. It's a really interesting device and I enjoyed the way it was woven in throughout the story.You may also look at vegetarianism in a whole new light.

There was only one thing about the story that bothered me and I'm not sure if it was because I misinterpreted what I was reading or if it is because of some sort of misogyny on the part of the author. It is mentioned several times throughout the course of the book that "magic is carried by the woman." However, not one single mage shown is a woman. If women carry the magic, why aren't there any female mages? Or, as I said, perhaps I am misinterpreting it, and by "carry" they mean like a recessive gene - they carry the magic, but cannot use it.

Those who are fans of epic fantasy, magical realism, stories of the Sidhe (especially of the darker natures thereof) or simply well-crafted alternate realities, please do not miss this one.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not Free SF Reader
The fantasy here is by way of horror.A human that ends up in this world, after crossing over from our own is basically then stuck in a Clive Barker book, a very nasty and horrific situation.A similar feel to Mark Chadbourn's World's End, or Sean Williams Crooked Letter.

Humans affected by the supernatural powers around them struggle greatly with the concept, apart from the actual basic facts of survival.

3-0 out of 5 stars old-style Greg Bear
Short summary: this is the coming of age of a californian teenager captured in a beautiful (my opinion) and dark fantasy world that has little respect for nonsense.It takes too long a while for the kid to grow up.In the meantime, there are too many, too wordy description of too many unessential details that muddle a very inventive imaginary universe.The book would have been much better it it had been 1/3 shorter.

Some books by Greg Bear I've read fairly recently I also liked a lot, so why not trying some of his older writing.Hmmm.Think again.This one I wanted to put down for good after fifty pages, but on the merit of previous reads I persisted, and thank heavens it got better.But not that much . . ..

The fundamental ideas are original and refreshing, but it took me 150 pages to begin to care for Michael, the protagonist.At page 50 or so, when yet another creative calamity was just about to get him, I found myself rooting for the calamity.

I plodded on, for Bear's sake.Michael grows up, fortunately, but the process is annoying to the reader (me) rather than inspiring.The narrative is fine, yet Mr. Bear gets lost in many winded descriptions that stall the action and add only marginal detail to otherwise very good world-building.More often than not I ended up reading the first sentence and the last sentence of, or just scanning through, too many paragraphs without dialog.

Mr. Bear's writing gets better with time.This early novel of his is not quite ripe yet.The absorption value (how much I get lost in the story) is uneven.Your mileage as a reader will vary--a lot.I cannot really recommend this title, sorry.Three stars because the world is original and crafty, I did finish the book, and there are some good moments :) ... Read more

19. Anvil of Stars
by Greg Bear
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-07-01)
list price: US$9.99
Asin: B003XRERB0
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A Ship of the Law travels the infinite enormity of space, carrying 82 young people: fighters, strategists, scientists; the Children. They work with sophisticated non-human technologies that need new thinking to comprehend them. They are cut off forever from the people they left behind. Denied information, they live within a complex system that is both obedient and beyond their control. They are frightened. And they are making war against entities whose technologies are so advanced, so vast, as to dwarf them ... Read more

20. Star Wars: Rogue Planet
by Greg Bear
Mass Market Paperback: 336 Pages (2001-05-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$2.87
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0345435400
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

The Force is strong in twelve-year-old Anakin Skywalker . . . so strong that the Jedi Council, despite misgivings, entrusted young Obi-Wan Kenobi with the mission of training him to become a Jedi Knight. Obi-Wan? like his slain Master Qui-Gon?believes Anakin may be the chosen one, the Jedi destined to bring balance to the Force. But first Obi-Wan must help his undisciplined apprentice, who still bears the scars of slavery, find his own balance.

Dispatched to the mysterious planet of Zonama Sekot, source of the fastest ships in the galaxy, Obi-Wan and Anakin are swept up in a swirl of deadly intrigue and betrayal. They sense a disturbance in the Force unlike any they have encountered before. It seems there are more secrets on Zonama Sekot than meet the eye. But the search for those secrets will threaten the bond between Obi-Wan and Anakin . . . and bring the troubled young apprentice face-to-face with his deepest fears?and his darkest destiny.

Amazon.com Review
It's an unexpected combination: Greg Bear, author of so many ambitiously complex SF novels, writing about the colorful simplicities of the Star Wars universe. But he carries it off well, with a mix of action-adventure and thoughtful world building that entertains while keeping to the spirit of Lucas's saga.

A few years after the events of The Phantom Menace, young Anakin Skywalker is getting restless--sneaking away from Jedi Temple training to gamble his life in a flying game that's much more bizarre and dangerous than the movie's podracing, even before an alien Blood Carver assassin intervenes. Anakin's character is taking shape now:

But above all, he loved winning.

To turn the boy's frustrated energy to useful ends, the Jedi Council has Obi-Wan Kenobi take Anakin to investigate the remote, enigmatic world Zonama Sekot, whose organic technologies produce magnificent spacecraft, and where a Jedi has vanished without a trace. Secretly pursuing them is a battle squadron captained by the weapons designer who has already blueprinted the Death Star and is being double-crossed by his employer Commander Tarkin.

Rogue Planet's action climaxes as the Jedis learn to grow their own spaceship, the Blood Carver strikes, and two heavily armed fleets converge on helpless-seeming Zonama Sekot. Every faction has secret cards up its sleeve--and Anakin's is a very dangerous wild card indeed. There's final victory and heartbreak, but also loose ends (including even stranger, deadlier aliens) that suggest sequels to follow. Bear does a solidly workmanlike job. --David Langford, Amazon.co.uk ... Read more

Customer Reviews (188)

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating ideas, general reading, not overly memorable.
Overall it was an enjoyable read. There were many fascinating concepts that were key elements in the story plot. Character depth was observed, though not in overt detail; enough to intrigue without dismissing a younger audience. It does not qualify as a must read, but is still worthwhile and partially engrossing.

3-0 out of 5 stars "They love their secrets"
"They love their secrets"
Obi-Wan and Anakin are in the rocky part of their relationship, trying to figure out the Master and Apprentice thing when Mace Windu sends both on a mission to find the missing Jedi Knight, Vergere.Vergere had left for the "rogue planet" Zonoma Sekot over a year ago and hasn't made contact since then.Meanwhile, Tarkin and Raith Sienar have plans to advance their station and secure a niche for the future.
NOTE: Based on audibook and novel.

I Liked:
Greg Bear really does a fine job penetrating the minds of Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi.This is perhaps the absolute best part of the novel: the exploration of who both is and how they behave to each other.At the beginning, Anakin has a thirst for thrills and a yearning to eradicate the pain and dreams he experiences.Obi-Wan frets about how he treats his Padawan.Is he too harsh?Too lenient?Anakin is so talented...but why then does he act so immature?We also have hints about Qui-Gon speaking to them, something revisited in later movies/materials, which is always neat.
The second great thing about this book is how it really ties in with NJO.I enjoyed reading about Vergere, the beginnings of the Farsiders (the Yuuzhan Vong) and the mind planet (which was a weird concept, but it makes sense with the Yuuzhan Vong).Greg Bear did a superb job with intertwining it, so kudos to him.
Lastly, Bear did me a great favor and put our favorite Imperial, Tarkin, in the spotlight.I love how weasley he is and how, even at this time, he is big into driving people to fear him.And then, how Raith Sienar contrasted with him.Very nicely done.

I Didn't Like:
Anakin doesn't act anywhere near twelve.He acts probably about 18.I didn't like how at this age he started having all these uber creepy, demonic dreams.Honestly, it really lessens the blow when we hear it in Attack of the Clones.I mean, if Anakin has been having bad dreams since 12, when Anakin reveals it in Clones, Obi-Wan's response would be like, "So?"All in all, I am not a big fan of every novelist going, "Ooh, Anakin becomes Darth Vader, let's throw in some darkness randomly so people can see it as foreshadowing!"Lame.
Some people really liked the beginning action sequence.For me, it felt out of place.Anakin randomly decides to garbage pit race, a race barely described and highly confusing, just for the thrill.And then Obi-Wan follows him because...?Can we say, "Out of character"?And excuse me, but where did Anakin get the money for the wings?Jedi give allowances now?
Every single alien is brand new from Charza to the Blood Carver.This isn't a bad thing, but couldn't we have at least one tie-in that isn't a stereotyped alien (e.g. Twi'Lek slave girl, Rodian bounty hunter, Hutt crimelord, Wookie soldier, etc.)?
I also felt that Bear spent way too much time on the minor subplot of creating the seedship and not enough on the real reason that Anakin and Obi-Wan were on Zonoma Sekot in the first place (to find Vergere, remember?).They don't do any real investigating, even after their hosts realize they are Jedi.Instead, they are all "wizard" over making a super-fast ship that is going to be destroyed by the end of the book anyway.And when they do learn what happened to Vergere, it is basically handed to them on a silver platter, no investigating necessary.Geesh, what a let down!
Speaking of endings, this had to be the oddest one, with the coda portion.It felt out of place and non-Star Wars.
In fact, much of the novel felt decidedly non-Star Wars.I mean, there were good parts (the shipbuilding WAS interesting, even if it served no purpose to the main plot, the planet WAS interesting, etc.).
I loathed the character of Thracia.I mean, she can leave the Jedi Order, marry, have kids, return, and then jibe Mace Windu, calling him an idiot and becoming the 13th member of the Jedi Council?Can we say...Mary Sue?(Thank God she's not in the book too much.)
And what was the deal with the Blood Carver trying to kill Anakin?Did I miss it or forget?

Dialogue/Sexual Situations/Violence:
A Blood Carver tries to kill Anakin.There is a big end battle sequence.

Greg Bear is noteworthy for his hard scifi.This fact makes it extremely odd that he would have written Star Wars, one of the softest of soft scifi franchises.Bear writes some memorable scenes with Anakin and Obi-Wan, explores their relationship, and truly has some intriguing ideas, but I think he just is writing outside his area of expertise.The novel just doesn't feel like Star Wars.Good author, but not the best book I've ever read.

Brought to you by:
*C.S. Light*

1-0 out of 5 stars Star Wars: Rogue Planet
Star Wars: Rogue Planet, by Greg Bear

I've read this book a few times over the years since it was published in 2000, and it's never felt quite like a "Star Wars" book for me. I'm happy Bear has only written one book in the Extended Universe, as his writing just doesn't fit.

The focus of this book is on Zonama Sekot, a sentient planet that grows spaceships. Anakin and Obi-Wan are sent there to investigate the disappearance of another Jedi Knight, Vergere, but instead are caught up in the planet's fight for survival. The idea of Zonama Sekot is intriguing, but a whole book focused on the planet got old fast.

"Rogue Planet" also features Tarkin and Raith Sienar, who mount an expedition to Zonama Sekot in order to secure the planet's amazing ships. This side plot gets tiresome quickly, and Bear doesn't capture Tarkin's essence or bearing, and instead paints him as a stiff bore.

The chapter structure irritated me a bit, as in 330 pages there are 67 chapters, some consisting of only a single page. It was a little jarring. Bear attempts to foreshadow Anakin's descent to the Dark Side with a mysterious trial, but it doesn't really fit with the rest of the EU. The Coda at the end feels tacked on and unnecessary, and also untrue. I was happy to reach the end of the book, but there's not that much that happens in "Rogue Planet." It's as if I slogged through a boring book for nothing.


2-0 out of 5 stars A weak effort
A wayward planet at the edge to nowwhere.Granted, the book is well written, but too far outside of the star wars genre for my tastes.

Don't read this unless you've read every other Star Wars novel first.

2-0 out of 5 stars Very weak entry into the Star Wars Universe
Greg Bear is supposedly an accomplished science fiction writer with such popular novels as "Eon" and "Darwin's Radio".However, I will never get a chance to find out.After reading Bear's foray into the Star Wars Universe with "Rogue Planet", I'm not inclined to try any of his other material.

I won't say the book was a total bomb like "Shield of Lies" or even a ponderous bore like the Barbra Hambly novels, but "Rogue Planet" clearly demonstrates a lack of understanding about the Star Wars Universe.More importantly, it shows a lack of understanding of the characters from this universe.

This book deals with an inter-prequel story (between Episodes I and II) where Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker have an adventure on the titular planet, Zonoma Sekot, and come in contact with Grand Moff Tarkin and New Jedi Order mainstay, Vergere.For how important a role Zonoma Sekot and Vergere played in the New Jedi Order, they are not very interesting characters in this book.The same holds true for the characterizations of Obi-Wan and Anakin.I couldn't be less interested in their story.

The worst is how Bear portrays Grand Moff Tarkin.It's as if he never watched the first Star Wars movie.Tarkin comes off as an overt, scenery chewing despot, as opposed to his more nuanced menacing portrayal in the film.

Bottom line is that I could not get through this book fast enough, and it wasn't because it was so good.I just wanted to be able to move on to my next book.
... Read more

  1-20 of 100 | Next 20
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  

Prices listed on this site are subject to change without notice.
Questions on ordering or shipping? click here for help.

site stats