Aboard Null Boundary, a giant starship thousands of years old, four survivors of an ancient alien war are making a desperate journey: Lot, son of a fiery prophet and carrier of an insidious virus that spreads a cultlike religious mania among those it infects; Urban, Lot's boyhood friend from the city of Silk, and a man in search of challenge and adventure; Clemantine, cast adrift when her world was destroyed, and yearning for revenge; and Nikko, sometimes a living man, but always the ship's disembodied mind.
They are bound for unknown territory. Ahead of them loom vast, lightless clouds of dust and gas where stars are born, and where the alien Chenzeme are believed to live. The Chenzeme are an enigmatic race whose automated warships have ravaged the living worlds of the galaxy's Orion arm for millions of years. But why? Null Boundary's crew is driven to find out--though in their quest to discover the source of the Chenzeme, they must also explore the terrible truth of their own past, the meaning of revenge, and the price each one of them is willing to pay for survival.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
The Vast curtain opens with four crew members on the vessel Null Boundary making their centuries-long journey towards the star system of Alpha Cygni. More refugees from a broken civilization than explorers, they seek the Chenzeme, murderers of the human race, whose 30-million-year-old warships prowl the near and far reaches of space, destroying all they encounter.
Linda Nagata is remarkably adept at introducing new concepts without disturbing the flow of the narrative. Vast molds human figures out of a clay of genetic, nano, and virtual technology, allowing their humanity to take primacy: "It came without warning, making no sound. Lot first sensed its presence as a flash of motion in the central tunnel. He looked around, to see a flood spiraling down on him, white water sluicing through an invisible pipe, a snake made of water. It swept into the chamber; it coiled around him, an arm's length away. The coils of the snake melted together, and he was encased in a glistening shell. Charismata of exhilaration rained against his sensory tears, a strange foreign sense of greeting. Tendrils reached out to him from the shell's shimmering white surface, a thousand slender white tendrils brushing him. Faint touches. Where they contacted his skin suit they retracted, but where they touched his bruised face they stayed. Familiarity flooded him, a warm sense of union that eased the black pressure of the cult [virus] forever burning under his skin. A voice whispered in his ear, produced by a trembling membrane on the end of a tendril. 'You know us?'"
Make sure you're in a comfortable position when you start reading: Linda Nagata is light years ahead of her contemporaries in writing heart-racing, hard-science SF. Once this story sinks its teeth into you, you won't hear the phone ringing or care that it's way past bedtime until the last page is turned. --Jhana BachFrom the Publisher:
A last remnant of humanity seeks its ancient enemy....
Praise for Linda Nagata's The Bohr Maker:
"Brilliantly original...Makes her work favorably comparable with that of leading-edge stylists such as Bruce Sterling and Neal Stephenson."
--The Denver Post
--The New York Times Book Review
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description GOLLANCZ, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110575069023