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The Uplift War (The Uplift Saga, Book 3) Mass Market Paperback – June 1, 1987

96 customer reviews
Book 3 of 6 in the Uplift Saga Series

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Editorial Reviews Review

Billions of years ago, an alien race known as the Progenitors began the genetically engineered techniques by which non-intelligent creatures are given intelligence by one of the higher races in the galaxy. Once "Uplifted," these creature must serve their patron race before they, in turn, can Uplift other races. Human intelligence, which developed by itself (and brought about the Uplifting of chimpanzees and dolphins), is an affront to the aliens who plan an attack, threatening a human experiment aimed at producing the next Uplift. Such is the premise of this novel, which won the 1988 Hugo Award.


"The Uplift books are as compulsive reading as anything ever published in the genre."
--The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction

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Product Details

  • Series: Uplift Trilogy (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Spectra; English Language edition (June 1, 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553279718
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553279719
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 1.1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (96 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,326 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Brin is a scientist, public speaker and world-known author. His novels have been New York Times Bestsellers, winning multiple Hugo, Nebula and other awards. At least a dozen have been translated into more than twenty languages.

David's latest novel - Existence - is set forty years ahead, in a near future when human survival seems to teeter along not just on one tightrope, but dozens, with as many hopeful trends and breakthroughs as dangers... a world we already see ahead. Only one day an astronaut snares a small, crystalline object from space. It appears to contain a message, even visitors within. Peeling back layer after layer of motives and secrets may offer opportunities, or deadly peril.

David's non-fiction book -- The Transparent Society: Will Technology Make Us Choose Between Freedom and Privacy? -- deals with secrecy in the modern world. It won the Freedom of Speech Award from the American Library Association.

A 1998 movie, directed by Kevin Costner, was loosely based on his post-apocalyptic novel, The Postman. Brin's 1989 ecological thriller - Earth - foreshadowed global warming, cyberwarfare and near-future trends such as the World Wide Web. David's novel Kiln People has been called a book of ideas disguised as a fast-moving and fun noir detective story, set in a future when new technology enables people to physically be in more than two places at once. A hardcover graphic novel The Life Eaters explored alternate outcomes to WWII, winning nominations and high praise.

David's science fictional Uplift Universe explores a future when humans genetically engineer higher animals like dolphins to become equal members of our civilization. These include the award-winning Startide Rising, The Uplift War, Brightness Reef, Infinity's Shore and Heaven's Reach. He also recently tied up the loose ends left behind by the late Isaac Asimov: Foundation's Triumph brings to a grand finale Asimov's famed Foundation Universe.

Brin serves on advisory committees dealing with subjects as diverse as national defense and homeland security, astronomy and space exploration, SETI and nanotechnology, future/prediction and philanthropy.

As a public speaker, Brin shares unique insights -- serious and humorous -- about ways that changing technology may affect our future lives. He appears frequently on TV, including several episodes of "The Universe" and History Channel's "Life After People." He also was a regular cast member on "The ArciTECHS."

Brin's scientific work covers an eclectic range of topics, from astronautics, astronomy, and optics to alternative dispute resolution and the role of neoteny in human evolution. His Ph.D in Physics from UCSD - the University of California at San Diego (the lab of nobelist Hannes Alfven) - followed a masters in optics and an undergraduate degree in astrophysics from Caltech. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the California Space Institute. His technical patents directly confront some of the faults of old-fashioned screen-based interaction, aiming to improve the way human beings converse online.

Brin lives in San Diego County with his wife and three children.

You can follow David Brin:

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

66 of 68 people found the following review helpful By illiandantic on November 18, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Currently, there are six books in Brin's Uplift saga. It's kind of hard to categorize these books as elements of a series, though. The first three books in the saga, "Sundiver," "Startide Rising," and "The Uplift War," are not really a trilogy or a series in the normal sense. Instead, "Sundiver" relates to the rest of the saga as Tolkien's "The Hobbit" relates to his "Lord of the Rings:" it sets the stage for all the rest of the books in the saga. "Startide Rising" and "The Uplift War" describe completely different plotlines originating from the same event far distant, time wise and space wise, from "Sundiver". In a pinch, you could read these books in any order and not really miss anything. They describe different points in time and space of the same Universe. Of course, the best order is the one listed, above.

Unlike the first three books in the saga, the second three books DO form a series. The first of this trilogy, "Brightness Reef," picks up with yet another totally independent plotline and brand new characters. However, it does contain a central character who ties the first three books into this set. Unfortunately, Brin doesn't say, specifically, who that character is until the very end of the book. Even worse, the last time the character was used was so far back in the saga that it's hard to remember anything about him. The remaining two books, "Infinity's Shore" and "Heaven's Reach," continue sequentially from the first and form a tightly knit trilogy with no breaks in time.

None of these books is "happy" or "light reading." For the most part, they're all intense, heavily detailed and fully characterized books. "Sundiver" is the least "heavy" and most lacking in the realistic feel of the rest of the books.
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64 of 66 people found the following review helpful By L. Voss on September 5, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Important note for buyers: I loved this book, but if you're interested in this book, do not buy the Kindle edition.

I bought most of the Uplift series in Kindle editions: Heaven's Reach, Brightness Reef, Infinity's Shore, Sundiver, Uplift War, and Startide Rising. I was extremely disappointed by the quality of these ebooks. Words were frequently mis-spelled or replaced with similar-looking but incorrect words; words and whole passages were arbitrarily italicized; many words were split with hyphens for no reason. It was confusing, distracting, and eventually irritating. I got the strong impression that all these books had been run rapidly through an OCR system and never checked for correctness or quality. For a publishing company of Ballantine's size and reputation this is ridiculous.

If Ballantine are going to sell ebooks, they should do it properly, and give them the same care and attention they would to physical books. There's no excuse for releasing shoddy digital products.
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39 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Peter Sabin on September 18, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very poor transition from print to eBook. Multiple character recognition mistakes. Publisher's software handles italics badly and their proofreaders either can't read or don't care. For those of you familiar with the work, 'rilla comes through as Villa, fem as fern.

Very annoying.

Since I had similar experiences with SUNDIVER, STARTIDE RISING, and BRIGHTNESS REEF, I make the assumption that this is a publisher issue, not an AMAZON issue.

I wish there was a method for sending proofreading mistakes back to the publisher directly.
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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful By dsrussell VINE VOICE on September 24, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I just finished David Brin's "The Uplift War" (the second novel I have read from this author) and have to admit that I was impressed. My first Brin novel, "The Postman", had its strengths but I was disappointed in his lack of real character development. Happily, the characters in this novel are fleshed-out and surprisingly believable, especially when you consider how difficult it would be to try and breath life into chimpanzees (uplifted or not) or, of all things, big birds!
I was relieved to find out that one doesn't have to start with the first novel in this series (I have since learned that "The Uplift War" is actually the third book). As I read this novel, I could see that there was at least one novel that preceeded it, but this had no adverse effects on this story. "The Uplift War" stands on its own.
Admittedly, this type of novel may not be everyones' cup-of-tea, and I had problems at first with the Gubru aliens (big birds). But it was Brin's characters and eloquent descriptive narration that drew me in. One could really see these birds posturing as they debated. I went from thinking I was reading a fantasy novel to knowing I was reading a good science fiction novel, and one that required solid research.
So, if I liked it that much, why didn't I give it 5 stars? Unless a novel is absolutely unforgettable, and emotionally moves me (in any and all directions), it won't receive 5 stars. Very few novels (of any genre) deserve 5 stars. On a scale of 1 to 10, "The Uplift War" gets a solid 7 from me, which indicates that it is a very good novel, indeed. The idea behind this series is imaginative and far reaching, and if "The Uplift War" is typical of what to expect in this series, I will soon be purchasing more of David Brin's work. And what better recommendation can I give than that?
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