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Eternity Road Kindle Edition

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Eternity Road is set 1,000 years from now, when the world as we know it has been dead for eight centuries, destroyed by a plague that killed most of humanity. Technological artifacts remain, but the knowledge of what they are and how to use them has been lost by a society that has degenerated into a series of city-states. Legend has it that the Roadmakers left a store of knowledge in a place called Haven, but when an expedition from Memphis sets out to find it, only one person returns. The lone, dishonored survivor eventually kills himself, but his son is determined to try again ...

From Library Journal

After a cataclysmic viral plague wiped out humanity sometime in the 21st century, the next civilization arose in isolated pockets. In the Mississippi Valley, Illyrians built their town on what had been the Roadmakers' Memphis. Some believed in the mythical Haven on the eastern ocean where books and other technological wonders had been saved. When all but one member of an expedition dies trying to find Haven, the leader's son joins a second party on the long overland trek east. Unfortunately, the book raises more questions than it answers about the knowledge that was lost, leaving the reader unsatisfied. From the author of Ancient Shores (HarperCollins, 1996); a possible candidate to sf collections.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 390 KB
  • Print Length: 420 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0061054275
  • Publisher: HarperCollins e-books (October 13, 2009)
  • Publication Date: October 13, 2009
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0011GA070
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #257,919 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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51 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Spoering on January 20, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the first novel by Jack McDevitt that I have read and I was impressed by his talent. ETERNITY ROAD is set approximately 1000 years in the future, a plague has decimated Earth's population, and in the United States, where this novel concerns itself with, small cities have banded together and formed the 'Mississippi League'. Ruins from the 'Roadmaker' era are everywhere and the 'Roadmaker' civilization is an enigma, with many questions unanswered. It is from the League that a second expedition sets forth in search of the perhaps mythical 'Haven' where knowledge was supposedly safeguarded after the plague, as civilization unraveled. The first expedition ended in disaster, with only one person returning from the sometimes dangerous wilderness, with an atmosphere of secrecy and intrigue. One person, Chakra, had a brother who was killed on the first expedition, and she wants to find out what happened to him, as the only survivor of the first expedition is the scholar Karik, who did'nt say much about what happened, adding to the mystery. There are several other interesting characters in addition to these.
As per another reader here I also found similarities between this novel and A CANTICLE FOR LEIBOWITZ, a much older novel, and a fine read also. I found ETERNITY ROAD to be engrossing, I found myself reading more and more pages everyday to see what would happen, McDevitt is a master storyteller and very adept at character development and plot layout. In my view the only criticism I see here is that various machines from the Roadmakers were still operating after perhaps one thousand years, that stretches credulity indeed, I take one star off for that. As for comparing this novel to the standard of 'the end of the world as we know it' novels, which is EARTH ABIDES, the later is better, although ETERNITY ROAD is excellent nevertheless.
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Whoop2Do on October 5, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was my first Jack McDevitt book.

It will not be my last.

I truly enjoyed reading this novel. McDevitt's style is smooth and his imagery is vivid. The environment in which he has placed his characters is very well realized. Loved the character of Avila.

But ultimately, this book was a grave disappointment. I don't think that I'm spoiling anything to say that the heroes find what they were looking for, but the end of their quest just failed to satisfy me. I don't know if it was my fault for expecting too much, being a sloppy reader, or what, but my building expectations were not met. I suppose I was expecting a major epiphany, a revelation of some import or even an O'Henry twist, but instead was greeted by the same feeling as receiving socks for Christmas...

Definitely an author I will try again, but with lowered expectations.
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39 of 49 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 12, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm all for a fun SF-inspired adventure, especially one with a compelling quest in familiar environments. Eternity Road is about OUR civilization from the perspective of humans 1000 years from now that somehow have little to no remembrance of the people called "Roadmakers". Nor are they an advanced civilization, closer to 1850's technology and there is no form of government larger than a city. It has the makings of a fun road adventure starring a ragtag bunch searching for a historical treasure.
However, I was constantly bothered by stuff that seemed incredible. Why are books so rare? I'm sure most would have been destroyed over that long a period, but ALL except for six? Yet other Roadmaker artifacts survive that seem impossible - such as a magnetic train system that still runs daily routes and a computer AI that has become sentient, but can't provide much information about who the Roadmakers were. Worse, at one point, a lightning bolt restarts a computer system to help the travellers and move the plot along. I'm no theorist, but I don't see lightning as a reliable or controllable powersource for any future civilization.
Overall, I was not able to enjoy the book because I wasn't sold on these and many other aspects of the plot. Also, I found the author's writing style often "told" me what a character was like as opposed to showing me. It seemed like I was reading the author's notes to himself, which was annoying. I won't be reading any more McDevitt.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Patrick A. Hayden on October 21, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Eternity Road is the first book I've read by Jack McDevitt, but it will most likely not be my last. McDevitt has a style and an ease with characters that is pleasant and subdued. He offers a vivid picture of a different future than the kind we like to imagine.
The book begins in a small community living on the banks of the Mississippi river, at least 700-1000 years from now. Our society, called "The Roadmasters" by the locals, were wiped out in the late 21st century by a plague of unknown origin. The locals know something about The Roadmsters, with some handwritten versions of classic literature remaining, and they constantly scour the ruins around them for clues as to how the great civilization that proceeded them achieved so much, and how it fell so quickly.
The story is about an expidition from the Mississippi river to the East Coast to search for a place called "Haven", where a hero of the past allegedly saved all the great information of The Roadmakers before the plague wiped out all traces. The group that makes the trip is actually the most interesting part of the story. They aren't deepli constructed, but they are better than just sketches, each with their own fears, desires, and hopes for the journey. What they find on their travels is fascinating, but the internal struggles of the group are just as entertaining.
The book is fast paced and delivers on excitement and speculation on what our civilization might be thought of once we are gone. The ending is a bit abrupt, but it answers our questions without insulting us. All in all a great read for sci-fi/fanatsy fans.
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