Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Astropolis: Earth Ascendant - Sean Williams


Astropolis: Earth Ascendant
Sean Williams
Ace

Science Fiction

Nearly a million years in the future, the galaxy, once united, has been broken apart into competing systems by a phenomenon called the Slow Wave. The wave severed the Line that once connected all worlds under one, cohesive rule. Now, Imre Bergamasc, First Prime of the Returned Continuum travels the galaxies in an attempt to bring everything back together. Imre has all the time he needs to complete his mission. His consciousness is transmitted through the Line into a hardcaster, a device that gives new bodies to Imre and his companions.

Many worlds are content to live in isolation, away from Earth and its rules. This attitude is not acceptable to Imre, who uses all means at his disposal, military and diplomatic, to achieve his goals. He is always aware that assassins and – from his perspective – terrorists wait on every world, bent on his death. This time, however, his consciousness is late in arriving, hijacked by an intelligence with a message: return to Earth. Earth is 20,000 light years away from his current position, and it’s not the next scheduled stop. But something tells Imre that he needs to be there.

Fans of hard scifi will love this look at a far future society, where nearly anything is possible. Through various technologies, and individual can live for millennia. That’s a lot of time to develop military and political strategies. The story is presented from Imre’s point of view, but it’s easy to empathize with the views of others. Within the framework of technology and intrigue live individuals who are still quite human and familiar. Read it for technology, read it for the politics, read it for the space opera; no matter how you approach it, it’s an entertaining ride.

Rating: 7 ½
May 2008
ISBN# 978-0-441-01585-6 (paperback)

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