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flutterbudget
September 27th, 2009, 01:26 PM
I read this in 2000 or 2001. I think it was a novel, although it could have possible been a short story.

A small group of people is exploring a moon (Titan?) using a pair of virtually piloted un-manned gliders/planes. I remember that one of the crew was terminally ill. They found some weird "tar pools" that turned out to be quasi-lifeforms(?), and I think there was some sort of accident where a woman was absorbed by one of the pools and the dying man later flew into it intentionally.

I believe this was written by one of the same authors who contributed stories to Far Horizons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Far_horizons) (I somehow came to one book through the other?), but I can't remember who (I am positive it wasn't Brin. Certainly not McCaffrey. It doesn't really seem like Le Guin.), and I can't find any descriptions of anything like this that they have written. Maybe I'm just looking in the wrong places...

Thanks!

Charlie
February 24th, 2014, 01:09 PM
I believe the book you are looking for is "Titan" by Stephan Baxter. Published in 1997, it is about a one-way trip to Titan on a shoe-string NASA budget.

Charlie

Pennarin
February 25th, 2014, 05:39 PM
Titan is about the moon, yes, but both characters slowly die, not just one. There are no gliders, unmanned or otherwise, but a modified Space Shuttle.

It somewhat resembles Adam-Troy Castro's "The Astronaut from Wyoming". It contains a manned glider set on Mars, with two characters, and one that dies in an accident, and a discovery of martian life.

There are no pools, though, no tar. So this a gamble. But check for yourself, his awesome story is free (http://worldtracker.org/media/library/English%20Literature/C/Castro,%20Adam%20Troy/Castro,%20Adam-Troy%20-%20astronaut.htm) online.