|Submitted by Maj |
(Jan 04, 2002)
This is the first novel in the first uplift trilogy (but it's not essential to read previous books to enjoy David Brin's excellent series of novels).
Aliens exist. Everyone of them has been 'uplifted' by older alien races- the older race discovers the younger race and nurtures it until the younger race comes into maturity, after which the younger race owes the older race a debt for years to come. This has been the way for eons. Then we came along- humans are the only race to reach the stars without a parent race.
The author throws many interesting ideas at us as to how we would react in this situation.
-potential spoilers- will keep this paragraph short and stick to the start of the book-
For example, everyone would react differently to the aliens, but there would be 2 extreme ends to this spectrum - some people would be xenophibic, another proportion would strive to be around aliens all the time, welcome them, cherish them (xenophillic). There's a 'galactic library' used by all the other races - should we use it, and use it as gospel, or should we still try to find our own discoveries despite the fact they may be discovered already.
On top of all this, there's a mystery adventure going on in the background. There's a possibility that the sun may contain life. This book covers the early exploits of the sundiver project steeped in mishaps and intrigue.
This book is written extremely well, and is packed full of ideas. The adventure story is well above average. It's not the type of book you can get through too quickly (like Jurassic Park for example), but it feeds your mind full of ideas you wouldn't consider normally, and doesn't get too much into theoretical mumbo jumbo like Greg Bear's Eon did. Unlike some novels I've read, the ideas presented don't detract from the story they enhance it.
The scary thing is I didn't get bored of this novel.