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Pushing Ice

Pushing Ice

Scritto da Alastair Reynolds

Narrato da John Lee


Pushing Ice

Scritto da Alastair Reynolds

Narrato da John Lee

valutazioni:
4.5/5 (92 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
19 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Nov 2, 2010
ISBN:
9781400179602
Formato:
Audiolibro

Descrizione

2057. Humanity has raised exploiting the solar system to an art form. Bella Lind and the crew of her nuclear-powered ship, the Rockhopper, push ice. They mine comets. And they're good at it.



The Rockhopper is nearing the end of its current mission cycle, and everyone is desperate for some much-needed R & R, when startling news arrives from Saturn: Janus, one of Saturn's ice moons, has inexplicably left its natural orbit and is now heading out of the solar system at high speed.



As layers of camouflage fall away, it becomes clear that Janus was never a moon in the first place. It's some kind of machine-and it is now headed toward a fuzzily glimpsed artifact 260 light-years away. The Rockhopper is the only ship anywhere near Janus, and Bella Lind is ordered to shadow it for the few vital days before it falls forever out of reach.



In accepting this mission, she sets her ship and her crew on a collision course with destiny-for Janus has more surprises in store, and not all of them are welcome.
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Nov 2, 2010
ISBN:
9781400179602
Formato:
Audiolibro

Informazioni sull'autore

Alastair Reynolds was born in Barry, South Wales, in 1966. He studied at Newcastle and St. Andrews Universities and has a PhD in astronomy. He stopped working as an astrophysicist for the European Space Agency to become a full-time writer. Reynolds is a bestselling author and has been awarded the British Science Fiction award, along with being shortlisted for the Hugo Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the John W. Campbell Memorial Award, the Theodore Sturgeon Award, and the Locus Award.


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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (4/5)
    Forty years from now, we have stepped out into the solar system, mining the asteroids and salvaging ice from comets to provide resources for humanity's expansion. Then, in a moment, the moon Janus, one of Saturn's ice moons, begins to leave first the orbit of the gas giant and then to chart a course out of the solar system...all without showing any sign of the machinery it has hidden carefully for millennia. The Rockhopper, an ice miner captained by Bella Lind, is the closest spacecraft to the rapidly accelerating moon, and it is sent in hot pursuit as Janus aims for a giant structure, light minutes long and centuries away. Then, before Rockhopper can veer away, it is sucked into the vortex created by Janus' subterranean space drive and its crew is shanghaied for an interstellar journey.

    I picked up Pushing Ice on the heels of finishing Reynolds' Hugo Nominated short story Slow Bullets. I'm not sure why I chose Pushing Ice, except that perhaps it was what I could find quickly from the library. Regardless, it immediately gripped me, and I read it quickly. Reynolds seems to have a thing for alien artifacts and their impact on unwitting humans. Slow Bullets deals with a mysterious alien prism that crosses all of human space, minutely changing space to send humanity into a dark age. Revelation Space is about an archeological investigation into the destruction of an entire civilization 9000 years ago and why it might happen again. And in Pushing Ice, we find the crew of the Rockhopper transported by near magical means (See "Clarke's Third Law") to a megastructure so large that entire alien civilizations exist within it...and not always peacefully.

    As the members of the crew of the Rockhopper become the denizens of Janus, they face conflict and tragedy and must develop the means of surviving with scarce resources and a limited gene pool. Months become years and then decades. Personalities clash, and the impact of grudges carry over into the tiny society the develops megastructure where Janus has taken them. Reynolds has a eye for creating intriguing conflicts, posing questions that are not easily answered. The result is wonder filled.

    And yet, there are problems. In such a small society, Reynolds sees humanity as rigid and inflexible, vengeful and impulsive. Grudges are held for years, even when keeping them is cruel and inhuman. Politics in such a small group are unlikely to remain static, and yet only two powers ever rise, and they manage to hold on to control without any real challenge over a period of decades. I just didn't see how society--especially one that is necessarily insular due to its isolated nature--could be so myopically narrow. Could it be, though? Sure, and maybe that's why I could suspend disbelief, even when deus ex machine swooped in to maintain the narrow set of powers Reynolds had set as primary in his story.

    Pushing Ice is a fantastic story, a hard science fiction propped up in decidedly non-science struts like resurrection, physical regeneration, near light speed travel, and a machine that can make anything from scratch. Pretty cool stuff, and when combined with the interesting conflicts Reynolds creates, it makes for a cool story.
  • (3/5)
    I liked many aspects of this book. The world building was unique and well done. I enjoyed the role of time in the story. The narrative was part space opera and part soap opera. At times, the political and interpersonal conflicts worked for me, at other times, they did not. Character development for one of the 'protagonists' was lopsided and verged on caricature. There was moments in the book when I did not like any of the main characters, which made for slow going.
  • (3/5)
    sigh. this one just doesn't work: the two central characters are just not credible in either motives or actions, and their decisions are all so wrong-headed and self-serving they are both equally destructive of the larger needs of the colony they are supposed to be (serially) leading; and yet the colony somehow falls in with every changing of the guard, no matter how violent the transition from one worldview to the other. not even the prospect of an end to the human race distracts both parties here from their need to win against each other at every turn. winner take all, up to and including mutually assured destruction, seems to be the only goal that matters. so structurally the book never really feels possible even in its own terms (cf. K.J. Parker, who writes books about revenge obsessions that really feel solid both in terms of the characters portrayed and the situations that arise out of it).
  • (4/5)
    This is an epic space opera by british SF author Alastair Reynolds, and is the first novel of his that I've finished (I partially read it years ago but stuff happened...and it has to go back to the library before I'd finished)Anyway the book concerns itself with a crew of comet miners aboard the ship Rockhopper;the economies of the future are fuelled by ice mined from near-Earth comets. Anyway the crew receives a message calling them away from their current assignment. It seems one of the moons of Saturn has moved from its normal orbit, and the crew aboard Rockhopper is diverted to investigate. As they approach the rogue moon, called Janus, it becomes apparent that it is leaving Saturn orbit and is in fact heading towards a distant star...The book has some cool concepts as you would expect from Reynolds and although it's quite a chunk of a book the action moves at a good pace.The edition I read had a really cool holographic cover which I only noticed when the flash on my camera phone revealed it.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed Reynold's descriptions of the aliens, especially the Musk-dogs were brilliantly visualised. Well worth a listen. I'm looking forward to hearing more of his work and the book was well read.
  • (5/5)
    Holy crap. If you like hard sci-fi with a fast storyline, this book is candy!
  • (5/5)
    Alistair Reynolds at his best,an epic story that never seems to go where you expect it to go.Very Good.
  • (4/5)
    Started off slow enough enough that I almost put it down around 100 pages or so, but picked up admirably shortly thereafter. It suffered a bit from dialog and characterization that felt somewhat flat, but made up for it with the grand scope of its narrative and ideas. I wound up reading the last 150 pages or so in a single sitting, and it's motivated me to give Reynolds' Revelation Space another shot soon...
  • (4/5)
    I'd give it six stars because I think it's supremely well done scifi, but dammit, six stars should be reserved for "this is the best thing I've ever read", right?

    Still, really good book. I've got nothing negative to say at all.
  • (5/5)
    Awesome book. There aren't any more in a series :( Really great read!
  • (3/5)
    Pushing IceAuthor: Alastair ReynoldsPublisher: Berkely-Penguin-Ace BooksDate: 2005Pgs: 457Dewey: F REYDisposition: Irving Public Library - South Campus - Irving, TX_________________________________________________REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERSSummary:One of Saturn’s moons has changed trajectory and is accelerating out of the Solar System. The comet miner, Rockhopper, is the only ship who can match trajectories with the escaping moon...or whatever it is. When they catch up with the moon, things don’t go as planned. The Rockhopper’s crew are trapped. Will they make it home or will they get the full tour all the way to the star Spica? If Captain Lind can keep the crew from mutiny or murder, maybe they’ll get home. But will home still be home when they manage to get there._________________________________________________Genre:Science FictionFantasy Hard Science FictionWhy this book:Reynolds. That’s why._________________________________________________Least Favorite Character: Svetlana was one character to begin with but another entirely after the mutiny. She was the hero and, instead, became as much of a martinet, despot, tyrant as she could ever say that Bella or Craig Schrope were. Svetlana is unlikeable and should have been in the psych program same as Schrope instead of the captain’s chair.Pacing:The pace keeps you going. But it does drag on occasion, especially in the long winded filler sections of the story.Word Choice / Usage:Rang the “you’re the only one I can talk to” bell in an early chapter, one of them is going to die. Puts one of these characters in the stereotype “I’m the old doctor and I’m the first to die” role of classic B-movie science fiction. The rabbit hole the author sends them down is even worse than the stereotype.Plot Holes/Out of Character:Bella’s failure to believe her friend and to stand by her when she finds that discrepancy on-site and to side with the CEO, millions of miles behind them on Earth, who screwed her over previously and stands to profit enormously by Rockhopper’s mission, survive or not. Either this was o-o-c or she’s a shitty person. I tend to believe the o-o-c. I expected survivor’s guilt + cynicism from Bella, not tow the company line and turn on her friends. Bella became the ostensible villain and bogeyman because she acted to save their lives from starving and freezing in space with no rescue coming from Earth. And she disappears from the narrative for such long stretches.Svetlana goes from fully realized to murky in sections of the book. Same happens with Bella, but it’s more pronounced with Svieta. Hmm Moments:Wow! Musk Dog culture is brutal. Maybe the living ferns or seaweed that are the Fountainheads aren’t so bad. Imagine what the Dogs do to the Fountainheads in hand to hand combat...hell, battle, imagine what they do when they are being nice.In the spin up to the climax, who do you trust? Not Jim, not the part of him that is Schrope? Bella or Svetlana? Dogs or Ferns? Or the message in the bottle from the future? Hmmpffhh?WTF Moments:The Rockhopper crew’s last act on leaving the comet to pursue Janus was to drop a nuke into the comet that they had just opened up with a deep mine shaft so that “no one else would be getting their hands on it.” Doesn’t make a lot of damned sense. True someone could have claim jumped their partially ready for mining comet, but another ship from the same company could have too. The logic escapes me on the “if we can’t have it, no one can” actions here. The Musk Dogs gristleship is a urine secretion tied together by constant reapplication of more urine. Bet that ship smells wonderful.And, of course, the Musk Dogs piss on your to show ownership, loyalty, and to seal a deal...of course, they do.Meh / PFFT Moments:They’re worried about their logo...as they rocket outsystem chasing a runaway moon that isn’t a moon, but an alien spycraft. I submit that aliens would understand representative ideas and images and, thus, a logo wouldn’t be a huge problem, or worthy of page inches in a story that is already feeling like the editor could have been much more liberal with the razor blade.The whole “everybody loves stable, steady Parry” bit is getting old. And if he is such a great guy, why does he continually kowtow to Svetlana’s paranoia, vindictiveness, and immoral leadership, which becomes more and more and more pronounced.Because Svetlana and Bella needed to be on opposite sides of one more issue after they made up, of course they do. Earth or Spic, a chance or dead in space, exile or shunning, Parry, Musk Dogs or Fountainheads. Most of these, I like to think, friends as good as they are purported to be would have worked some of these out before they festered.Wisdom:Mike Takahashi should be the leader. He and Wang are the only ones who don’t seem to be playing politics with their lives, continually. _________________________________________________Last Page Sound:I would have trusted the wrong branch and gotten everyone killed. Well played. The triple epilogue that puts Bella and Chromis in context for the ending, but leaves Svetlana’s fate to the four winds, as it were, is ambiguous, which is fine, I guess. Too many pages after the climax.Author Assessment:A bit long winded in places where it comes across as filler.Editorial Assessment:This could have been cut down. Could have lost 250 pages easily and been a much, much tighter story with the dietary restriction.Knee Jerk Reaction:it’s alright, meh!_________________________________________________
  • (4/5)
    I actually read this book in a rather disjointed way -- the first two hundred pages or so in one chunk, and the last three hundred pages or so in another, more than a month later. So that might well colour my thoughts on it. Overall, I enjoyed it. Alastair Reynolds' writing is always easy to read, in my opinion, and his plots are interesting, without so much technobabble it becomes incomprehensible to me.

    Character-wise, though, I'm not sure I really feel for them. They're human, with human failings and human virtues, and the way they're written is believable and interesting, but I don't think any of them really made a mark on me. I also felt that the pacing was kind of off -- speeding up dramatically at some points to get to the conclusion. Several things that seem important in terms of character and world-building are just skipped entirely, and barely alluded to afterwards.

    Enjoyable, then, but not my favourite of Reynolds' books.
  • (4/5)
    I really liked this one. One of those big idea books which I tend to like.
  • (5/5)
    Another space opera from Alastair Reynolds. this time not set in his 'Revelation Space' universe. I was expecting a novel mainly about cometary mining, and whilst we get some of that just to set the scene, fairly quickly there is a change of gear as the protagonists are diverted to investigate a Big, (not so) Dumb Object - the Saturnian moon, Janus - that is behaving not as moons are supposed to behave. Very quickly, the characters find themselves in a situation going rapidly out of control.It is the characterisation that drives this book rather than the events. Opinions have differed over how good the characterisation is in this book; I found it better than expected, and also I was suprised to find the characterisation being, for me at least, the key part of the book. The conflict between two powerful women for control of the ship, and their convincing turn and turn abouts as to just who is in the ascendant at ony one time I found very convincing and political.I was also very taken with the way that Reynolds deals with a spaceship with a crew of 150 or so. Most writers, given this premise, focus on a handful of major characters and leave it at that, leaving the rest as mere spear-carriers. Not so Reynolds. Characters keep turning up and then disappearing, either through death or - more commonly - through just not being involved in that part of the story. They are named, they play parts, and the overall impression is just the same as working in any medium to large organisation; there are people you know well, there are people you deal with from time to time, and there are people you hardly ever speak to or hardly recognise in a corridor. This is one of the few novels to put that idea over in any context; and in a way it also underlined the Way of this particular future, where working on a spaceship mining comets in the outer reaches of the Solar System would be a job like any other.The intervention of aliens, when it occurs about two-thirds of the way through the book, is interesting and the aliens themselves are well-drawn. They come bearing gifts, and like most gifts come with a price. The Musk Dogs in particular are very well realised.The denouement was, for me, signalled a few pages in advance with respect to the fates of the two major characters, but that didn't spoil the book for me. Sequels are possible, but none have emerged as yet; perhaps Reynolds is too busy spinning off new ideas for his current multi-book deal with his publisher to draw breath and revisit earlier works?
  • (4/5)
    I've loved every one of Reynolds novels and have read them all -- this was the last in the list for me. I don't have much to say about the story itself other than that it was an epic read as with all his stories.
  • (3/5)
    I really wanted this book to be as awesome as Reynold's others that I have read, which is to say most of them. Sadly it wasn't to be although the book showed promise throughout. It just seemed to be missing something, but I am not quite sure what. If this is your first introduction to this truly great Author, give him another go. I would suggest Revelation space or House of Suns as great introductions to one of the best Sci-fi writers out there.
  • (4/5)
    Of the three Reynolds' books I've read so far, I've enjoyed this one the most. It's a classic story of humans thrown upon a scary and bizarre universe. The crew of a mining ship investigates the strange behavior of one of Saturn's moons and finds themselves trapped far away from home. There are aliens to deal with, and their own factions vying for control.
  • (3/5)
    This books was ALMOST good in so many different ways, but there seemed to be to much going on and to many different ideas that none of them ever received the time to be finished. Sometimes the author seemed to be setting things up for a big surprise or try misleading you down a wrong path but they always felt like half hearted attempts, like "Ignore the man behind the curtain". The book also had 3 different possible plots it could have followed and made a decent story of any of them but all three were kind of messed together to get the story where he wanted it to be. There was plenty of cool ideas and it was a fun read.Janus, one of the duel moons of Saturn, one day leaves it's orbit and starts moving itself out of the solar system. After a little bit it is obvious that is it moving under it's own power and is actually an alien spacecraft. A working ship mining ice asteroids is asked to go check it out as much as possible before it leaves the solar system. The ships crew gets more than they ever imagined.
  • (4/5)
    In the middle of the 21st century, one of Saturn's moons leaves its orbit and starts heading out of the Solar System in the direction of Spica, obviously under power. Only one ship full of comet-herders has any chance of making rendezvous with the "moon" now revealed as an alien spacecraft. But not all of the ice-pushers want to trade in their reliable jobs for an encounter with the unknown... and then things get even more complicated.This one was a page-turner that kept me up late at night; normally, when a story goes into fast forward and a decade passes between chapters, I get detached, but Reynolds kept me wondering "what happens next?"
  • (5/5)
    This has got everything going for it: space opera, first contact, excellent author, and yet ...Asteroid miners happen to be in the right place at the right time to chase after a moon that suddenly takes on all appearances of an alien space-ship and starts whizzing out of the solar system. The chase ensues. A rival spaceship joins the chase. Things start going wrong. Then nothing much happens for the middle third of the book. Then the alien interactions start ratcheting up, and your flagging interest is piqued again. There's some sort of a denouement, and the scene is set for the follow up novel(s). I'm almost talking myself out of the high rating I've given this. I read it over a short period during the holidays, but I get the feeling that if I'd just been reading this at my normal pace then it would have taken weeks and weeks, and I'd have just got bored. There's lots of things to like - in particular the writing - but there's nothing really new. I like mysterious artifacts; I like alien encounters; I like jeopardy and struggling against adversity. However, this is definitely a book for someone who knows what they are letting themselves in for, and is not something I'd recommend for a first time space opera reader. In short, if you liked his other stuff, you'll like this, but don't start here for a gentle introduction.
  • (4/5)
    If you haven't read any Alastair Reynolds books go and read Revelation Space, one of the best science fiction novels ever.Pushing Ice isn't bad either. Initially set in a far closer and more familiar future than other Reynolds novels, it still has the darkness to the narrative that makes his novels so compelling. It also has some great strong characters and the conflicts between them are a key element of what was missing in his previous novel, Century Rain. By the end of this novel we are again in unexplored territory, but it never quite lives up to the Revelation Space novels.
  • (4/5)
    Al Reynolds' new book, Pushing Ice. Bella Lind is captain of Rockhopper, a cometary mining ship working in the distant reaches of the Solar System. When Janus, until now thought to simply be a moon of Saturn, suddenly sheds its ice load and accelerates out of the System, Lind and her crew are the only people in the right place to catch the moon before it leaves for ever.Reynolds jumps all over the place in this book, in terms of both subgenres of SF, and in terms of the timeframe the book is set in - on more than one occasion, the plot advances by significant chunks of time, with major changes for Rockhopper and her crew inbetween, some of which are filled in, others are left to the reader's imagination. Ultimately, the book has more in common with Arthur C Clarke's Rama cycle than perhaps Reynolds would have liked, but it's a satisfying enough read.
  • (4/5)
    The prolonged struggle for control of the spaceship between the two main characters dragged on way too long, until the very last chapter or so, when there was a surprising and beautiful resolution that justified what had until then seemed a rather tedious playground squabble between two sets of mutineers.
  • (4/5)
    "Pushing Ice" tells the tale of a ship and its crew, originally meant to be harvesting comets, instead pulled along by an alien artifact to destinations and times unknown. The central relationship in the book is that of two women; acting captain Bella Lind and chief engineer Svetlana Barseghian. As the ship and its crew advance into the unknown, their relationship, both good and bad (and completely non-romantic) will define the future of the crew.This book is well written, and where it is SF it is great, although there are a few plot holes that Mr. Reynolds left in there. However, there aren't many and they are easy to overlook/forgive. However, in the human interaction side of the story, things seem very forced and melodramatic, not particularly believable. Certain things tie up too neatly, and some characters behave too predictably.Overall this is an enjoyable book, but unlike many of the reviews I read, I would describe it as "not all that and a bag of chips."
  • (4/5)
    Perhaps not his best work but very gripping netherless. The discontinuous time jumps whilst necessary can be disconcerting, and the aliens are enigmatic. There are some themes I'd like to have seen explored further, even if this made the book longer. The human interactions are as ever stunning.
  • (2/5)
    Alastair Reynolds continue his plunge in to the depts of meritocracy. Shallow characters, moronic plots and deus ex machina are some of the pleasures this book will threat you too.
  • (4/5)
    Borrowed this from my mate - Al Reynolds... Great idea this one and well executed too. Reynolds writes with accessibility and verve. Most of his stuff is good, sometimes it is great.