Tuesday, December 1, 2009

TIME’S EYE: Arthur C. Clarke and Stephen Baxter

Publisher: Del Rey
Date published: January 2004
ISBN: 978-0345452481
Science fiction
Obtained via publisher

Reviewed by Valerie

The Firstborn have been watching the Earth for eons. Humans have no knowledge of the Firstborns, they do not know that they are being watched, until one day, the Earth moves and things change and suddenly, large orbs appear in the air. They float, they seem to be watching. Time has changed too. It looks like the world has been carved up and put back together, mixing time, climate and geography. Now, there are two main armies, on their way to Babylon, where the only radio signals on the planet seem to be coming from. Ghengis Khan, together with people who arrived back on earth via outer space and Alexander, with some British troops from the nineteenth century, including journalist, Rudyard Kipling. With them are three United Nations peacekeeping troops. They all believe that in Babylon lays power and knowledge. Who will get there first?

I used to read a lot of Arthur C. Clarke as a teen and thoroughly enjoyed it. I was quite excited to get this book. I haven’t read anything from Stephen Baxter, but after reading this collaboration, it seems that this is another author I will have to look up. For science fiction fans, this is a tremendously, interesting book. Not only do we have different histories mixed up and a myriad of different characters and cultures coming together, but spattered between the pages are some very nice philosophical questions thrown in that will make the reader think. Especially, Rudyard Kipling who is an intriguing character, a young man, yet wise with his thoughts and questions. Then there is the plot, a gigantic plot where you may wonder where everything is leading to. This is the first book in a planned trilogy and it is somewhat of a finished story, but I am looking forward to more. I know hard-core science fiction fans will love this story!


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