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Too many characters with too many agendas vie for prestige and power en route to Saturn aboard the Space Habitat Goddard in Hugo winner Bova's middling follow-up to Jupiter (2001) and Venus (2002). Ten thousand intellectuals and scientists, mostly people who don't agree with the authoritarian regimes controlled by the religious fundamentalists who've taken over Earth's governments, have volunteered, been asked or been forced to leave on the long one-way journey. Among them are Malcolm Eberly, recruited by the Holy Disciples from a prison in Vienna with strict instructions to ensure the population chooses the path of righteousness. Eberly agrees to his covert task, confident he can impose his own rule, but he finds that gaining control is harder than he thought. Holy Disciple spies continually get in his way, while one of his subordinates murders for a promotion. Blackmail, subterfuge and another planned murder pile on top of Eberly's machinations to rig an election. Though Bova thoroughly explores human motivation and desires, readers will have a hard time figuring out who to root for-is Eberly a good guy or a bad guy?-and an even harder time caring about characters insufficiently fleshed out. Most memorable is the setting, the Goddard, with its echoes of the sailing ships that transported convicts to Botany Bay.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Bova continues his epic of solar system exploration by taking refugees from Earth's formidable fundamentalist theocracies on the long voyage to Saturn. The theocracies, by the way, continue as monoliths of villainy but are more in the background here than in Jupiter (2001). Bova's voyagers continue to be well-done archetypes for the most part, hardly as cliche-ridden as the characters in early space-advocacy fiction. The pacing is brisk, and lumps in the exposition are kept under control despite the temptations of yammering on about the technology necessary for the voyage and the wonders of Saturn's system. Regarding the latter, though--now that Arthur C. Clarke has retired and Charles Sheffield has departed, Bova is definitely the man to do justice to the astronomical marvels of the Saturnian system with its enormous potential as a second home for humanity, especially in the complex environments of its moons. Loud, prolonged applause, then, for the strengths of this book. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
For me this book started out quite slow but hang in there and enjoy the myriad of thrilling adventures that await you. Read morePublished 7 months ago by R. Carlyle
Bova writes an account of an ambitious project--sending a self-contained human habitat into orbit around Saturn. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Ircel Harrison
As usual, Bova makes another great read. He thickens the plot until the very end before it's finally resolved, leaving you wondering what's gonna happen next the whole wayPublished on August 4, 2013 by Evan
I received it in the mail on time, I haven't been able to read it yet since I bought many Ben Bova books at oncePublished on June 7, 2013 by Di
The space habitat Goddard, filled with political exiles, social misfits, scientists, and engineers, is on its way to orbit around Saturn. Read morePublished on July 7, 2012 by Philip P. Giunta
Somehow I missed this book when it came out in MMPB in 2004. I recently saw it for sale, purchased it and now understand a little bit about Mr. Read morePublished on April 26, 2012 by Michael Lynn Mcguire
This book is a very fast enjoyable read about power, greed, and corruption in space. The rise of nanotechnology and the people for it, and the people against it. Read morePublished on March 15, 2012 by NY Librarian
As a disclaimer for my review, I'll mention that I'm trying to read all of the Grand Tour (17ish) books by Ben Bova in their chronological order - which is not the order they were... Read morePublished on July 27, 2011 by Steve King
Ben Bova's Saturn continues the author's Grand Tour...novels about the trials, tribulations, and discoveries of Humanity's expansion into the Solar System. Read morePublished on November 24, 2010 by themarsman