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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all itâ?TMs still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Moonfall Mass Market Paperback – December 9, 1998

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager (December 9, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061051128
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061051128
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #300,282 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Over the last few years, Jack McDevitt has quietly been producing an outstanding collection of science fiction novels. Earlier works such as The Engines of God and Ancient Shores had a thoughtful, archeological-exploration bent, but with Moonfall he takes off the gloves to create a splashy, near-future science fiction thriller with a big cast of characters and a do-or-die attitude. At the center of the story is Charlie Haskell, the U.S. vice president, who in 2024--an election year--has arrived at the American Moonbase to cut the ribbon and declare it operational. But there's a problem, and it's a doozy: a "sun-grazer" comet, with immense mass and speed, is on a collision course with the moon. Haskell, with an eye to his public image, puts himself at the bottom of the evacuation list. But time grows critically short, and soon more than his political future is in jeopardy--broken chunks of moon will begin exploding outwards. If they reach Earth, some of the chunks are big enough to cause an extinction event. McDevitt pays attention to his science while revving the action, and the stakes couldn't be higher: Haskell's choices will decide who lives and who dies--if anyone survives at all. --Blaise Selby --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Racing neck and neck with doomsday, this breathless near-future thriller pits young, single and politically hopeful U.S. V.P. Charlie Haskell and a gigantic international cast of heroic helpers against an interstellar comet that blows the Moon to lethal smithereens and threatens to wipe out life on Earth. Just before the comet is spotted, cancer-riddled President Kolladner dispatches Charlie to the ceremonial opening of the U.S.-led commercial Moonbase, setting Charlie up for a spacewalk into destiny. Loaded with flaming action and fortified with characters from today's headlines, the novel hurtles cinematically from one point of view to another so rapidly that the characters, except for Charlie, tend to blur into one another. After McDevitt explodes the Moon midway through the novel, fearsome tsunamis wreak havoc on both American coasts. With a murderous gang of rocket-hating backwoods militants thrown in for a whisker too much good measure, U.S. know-how and rough-riding true American grit save the day on the ground. In space, Charlie faces more perils than Pauline did?and loses some of his credibility as a result. Overall, though, McDevitt's scrupulous research and ability to bring the arcane intricacies of space engineering within the grasp of the earthbound make this a fine-tuned disaster to remember.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

There ARE a lot characters to keep track of, but the main plot is well focused and moves at a good pace.
C. Hill
While reading it I realized that I really did not care much whether any of the too many poorly sketched people in the book lived or died.
E. Gerba
This is a book I heartily recommend for anyone who likes straight science fiction (no fantasy elements whatsoever).
Joshua Koppel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By David Zampino VINE VOICE on May 23, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Forget "Armeggedon". Forget "Deep Impact". This is THE space/disaster book that SHOULD have been made into a movie. Jack McDevitt's "Moonfall" presents the reader with a gripping plot, solid character development, and cutting edge "hard" science fiction.
From the opening of "Moonbase" to the final hair-raising solutions, this book is not to be missed.
From the coattail-riding Vice-President who wants to be a real hero; the chaplain (yes, unlike many SF writers, McDevitt is not ashamed to recognize that most people have and need a faith) who truly discovers his own faith; the young wife who discovers that her "Casper Milquetoast" husband is far more of a hero than she ever believed; to the brilliant young scientist who finally discovers the solution which may save the planet, McDevitt's characters are deep and believable.
Finally, McDevitt's science is plausible. This is not a novel of the 24th century; rather it is set in the mid 21st century, using technological concepts quite feasible in the near future.
Of all the McDevitt books I own and have read (5), this one is my favorite. Buy it -- you won't regret it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 12, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Good science fiction is just fun to read. In Moonfall, Jack McDevitt has given us a gripping, enjoyable story that held this reader's interest throughout. I don't know if all of the science presented herein is wholly believable, but the author certainly makes it sound plausible. The main characters are inherently interesting, especially Vice President Haskell; McDevitt actually makes the prominent politician very human, noble, and heroic. The story is an exciting twist on the old planetary catastrophe theme--rather than have a comet hit the earth, McDevitt has a comet hit the moon. That major event is really just the start of the action, though, as earth finds itself having to confront the effects of that spectacular explosion. The race to evacuate the newly established Moonbase and then to find a way to avert a potential extinction event on the earth is thrilling and happens in the context of a dramatic, well conceived pace.
While the "macro" story was riveting and well-done, the "micro" stories were slightly problematic. The events are related in a chronological fashion, with constant shifts from one scene to another and back again. It was hard to remember exactly who some of the secondary characters were, and some of them, especially those being employed to relate the devastating events happening on the earth, hardly seemed to belong in the story and, in a couple of cases, seemed to be left dangling at the novel's end. Many of the main characters reacted to events in ways I would not have anticipated.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan Burgoine on July 2, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When I first saw this book, I thought, "Gosh, a meteor hitting the world. How fresh and new," and then rolled my eyes. It took me a second to clue in that the meteor was impacting the moon, not the Earth. At which point I thought, "Well, slightly different, but still likely to be pretty similar."
This wasn't the case. First off, Jack McDevitt's strength lies in his characters. There are a wonderful range of characters in this book, and you don't have a clue who will survive. That's another strength: the plot is not predictable, and the mortality rate is plausible given what is going on.
Set slightly ahead in the future, man has finally opened a base on the moon - just in time for the moon to be in the way of a high-speed meteor. Spotted by accident by an amateur astronomer (one of the only overdone "Seen-it-before" moments of the book), there's a kind of panic pace to the first half of the novel as the people of the moon try desperately to get back to earth and the orbital stations that support the colony.
The second half of the book deals with the fallout - having the moon shattered is even worse than the single meteor, as now the shards of the moon are threatening to fall from the sky...
Throughout this high-paced background however, it is the characters who shine through this novel. It was the first McDevitt I'd read, and it launched me on a McDevitt jag for quite a while after. Give it a shot - there are no Aerosmith soundtracks to make it hurt.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Brian Kelley ( on October 21, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I enjoy catastrophe books, especially dealing with cataclismic natural events. This book about a comet smashing into the moon, with subsequent large chunks of the moon threatening the earth is very intreguing. The characters are well developed, although there may be a few too many characters. The detail in the book is very good and relatively realistic, given its setting in the year 2024. There's also a pretty good jab at Clinton in this book! The only disappointment I felt was that the ending was far too abrupt and anti-climatic, I felt. I had some questions at the end. I would recommend this book.
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