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The Forge of God Paperback – August 11, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

An award-winning SF writer of great promise, Bear has in recent years turned away from the startling, visionary concepts that made his reputation. Now, with his recent novel Eon and this new book, he is producing mainstream disaster stories that just happen to be SF. The 1990's present humanity with a dilemma when two groups of aliens arrive on Earth. The first invaders introduce themselves as altruistic ambassadors, but the second warn that their predecessors are actually unstoppable planet-eaters who will utterly destroy the world. The American president accepts this message as the ultimate judgment and calls for fervent prayers to appease the Forge of God. Meanwhile, military men plot to blow up spaceships, and both scientists and lay people help the second alien race preserve Earthly achievement. SF readers may wonder where the earlier Bear has gone, but others should enjoy this smooth, professional performance.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

The disappearance of one of Jupiter's moons, the appearance of "little green men" in Australia and the American Southwest, and the sudden presence of unidentifiable objects on a collision course inside the Earth's core add up to the inescapable conclusion that the Earth has been invaded by an enemy it cannot fight. Powerfully and gracefully written, the latest novel by the author of Eon and Blood Music stands far above most examples of "doomsday" science fiction. Recommended. JC
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1st edition (August 11, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765301075
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765301079
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #389,282 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Greg Bear is the author of more than thirty books, spanning thrillers, science fiction, and fantasy, including Blood Music, Eon, The Forge of God, Darwin's Radio, City at the End of Time, and Hull Zero Three. His books have won numerous international prizes, have been translated into more than twenty-two languages, and have sold millions of copies worldwide. Over the last twenty-eight years, he has also served as a consultant for NASA, the U.S. Army, the State Department, the International Food Protection Association, and Homeland Security on matters ranging from privatizing space to food safety, the frontiers of microbiology and genetics, and biological security.

Customer Reviews

Very distracting from the story.
edward p schindler
By the end of the book, you actually care what is going to happen to the human race.
The book lasted only as long as the flight and the first two days of the holiday..
M. McAllister

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

62 of 68 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 1, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Novels don't get much better than this. Bear really penned a true classic here. I've read many different versions of the end of the Earth, but this one truly spooked me. The aliens Bear creates are so thoroughly cold, calculating, and without compassion that even the mere possibility of a race like that in existance is a frightening thought. Also, the way that Bear has the aliens destroy the earth is chilling in itself. The methodology that they employ in setting up the Earth's destruction is simply unforgettable. But what really got me about this book was the human element that Bear employed. Though Bear didn't do deep character development, he did enough so that the reader could identify with them. As the end approached, I was able to feel the total helplessness, anger, dismay, and unjustness of it all that Bear conveyed through his characters. That Bear set one of the scenes of the end in Yosemite, one of my favorite places, just got me all the more. Ultimately, what Bear succeeded in doing was to not only have us face our own mortality, but to have us ponder just how precious life really is. I for one was not aware that I was so afraid of dying, and one of his character's desire to stay alive as long as possible to experience all that he could was a sentiment I myself would feel all the way to the frightening end. This book affected me in ways thousands of other novels could not, and has left a haunting impression. Highly reccommended to anyone who enjoys great writing at its absolute best.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By on April 14, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Forge of God chronicles what has to be the most effective demolition of the Earth since it was pulverized to make way for a new hyperspatial bypass (see The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.) It's a fascinating question - short of using some kind of implausible Death Star-like superweapon, how do you convincingly destroy an entire planet? Well, Greg Bear provides the answer. In the buildup to the main event, strange landings and encounters take place and confusion abounds among the hapless life forms inhabiting the surface, as things gain a truly ominous momentum. I found The Forge of God extremely compelling, in a downbeat sort of way; as usual, Greg Bear strikes a near-perfect balance between the science and the storytelling. One question still remained in my mind - why? Genocide, it must be said, is not unknown among us humans, yet we usually require a few centuries of tit-for-tat mayhem before taking this option. On the other hand, these are aliens we're dealing with, who might regard us much as we regard your average garden pest. A couple of final thoughts; firstly, for anyone who still thinks that nuclear weapons would "blow up the world X times" - no chance. Secondly, that all our eggs are still in one basket; for the sake of future generations, we must expand offworld. Just in case.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By J. Cook on December 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
What is character development and human drama? What is suspense? You might say that these are both necessary "pauses" in the story that make the narrative more interesting and believable. For my (sci-fi loving) tastes, Bear went a little overboard on both, but non-sci-fi buffs may disagree. In a very Hitchcock-like manner, we never get to meet, understand or battle the real alien antagonists. If we experienced a similar invasion, the sad truth is that most of us would never have a clue what was actually happening. For this reason Bear's style is genius... intentional or not, the reader's experience is much the same as the characters: they don't have any idea what sort of deception is being conducted by the aliens or even if there is a deception. The invader's power is so totally beyond the realm of human defenses, that ultimately all they can do is sit back and watch the earth be dismantled in a grandiose and sadistically aloof way that may haunt you for years. When compared to typical mass market sci-fi (movies/TV etc.) the final act provides nothing short of jaw dropping astonishment. But it takes a loooong time to get there and those devices that deliver believable characters and pages and pages of suspense, start to get rather frustrating for a sci-fi aficionado. By the end, you are left with so many questions that you may wonder whether such bafflement is worth while... should an alien invasion have a happy ending or not? Enter: Anvil of Stars, now we're cooking! All of your frustrations are soothed (eventually) and the technological wonders are heaped on by the spaceship load. After absorbing the lengthy trials and tribulations of Forge's characters, it feels like a bit if a letdown that only one makes it to the sequel.Read more ›
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 18, 2014
Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book, especially the ending. That said, I got annoyed enough at times to almost stop reading it. First of all, I had a tough time keeping all the characters in order especially since there was so much skipping around in the story. Arthur, Francine, Marty (aka Martin) Danielle her husband...don't remember his name and their daughter. Hicks, Ed, Minelli, Rottersomething or other, Rogers, Crockerman, Frank Topp, Harry, Feinman, Renslaw, Stella, Betsy, Inez, Lehrman, Ithaca, Irwin, Schwartz, Tishman, Frederick Hale, Fusetti, Samshow, Tanya (Fusetti), Sand, Kemp, Walt...and on and on. I just wasn't certain who was of real importance at times. I finally just gave up trying to remember who everybody was and decided not to care much about names. You know that feeling when you've been briefly introduced to someone and then can't remember what their name is or if it's even important to the story. The other problem I found quite distracting was the numerous errors I believe are OCR errors. Hopefully the publisher will read this and correct some of them. About halfway through the book I decided to just stop and highlight some of the mistakes I found. They were very distracting to me especially when I was in a particulary engrossing part of a story...the errors made me lose the moment! Here goes: Ail should be all (This one happened many times throughout the text), wail =wall, hp=lip, fife=life, niagic=magic, Reuhen=Reuben, steadilv=steadily, ambi = anti, I ' m = I'm, speculation . = speculation., yisiting = visiting, unnecessary : = unnecessary, Uves = lives, hps = lips, = the one, LeBar-on = LeBaron, beheves = believes, momand = mom and, uve = live, you.coming = you coming, I with an accent on top of the I, 3uena = Buena, phytoplank-ton = phytoplankton. Despite these criticisms the ending was an emotional one for me and to be fair, I found it a good story.
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