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Titan (NASA Trilogy, Book 2) Mass Market Paperback


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 688 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager (October 7, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061057134
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061057137
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,449,875 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A major new talent!" -- -- Arthur C. Clarke

"Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, and Robert Heinlein succeeded . . . and now Stephen Baxter joins their exclusive ranks, writing science fiction in which the science is right. A sheer pleasure to read!" -- New Scientist

"A major new talent!" -- Arthur C. Clarke

"Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, and Robert Heinlein succeeded . . . and now Stephen Baxter joins their exclusive ranks, writing science fiction in which the science is right. A sheer pleasure to read!" -- New Scientist

About the Author

Stephen Baxter is an acclaimed, multiple-award-winning author whose many books include the Xeelee sequence, the Time Odyssey trilogy (written with Arthur C. Clarke), and The Time Ship, a sequel to H. G. Wells's classic The Time Machine. He lives in England.


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Customer Reviews

Too bad he only wanted to do so for half the book.
edremy@chem1.usc.edu
The book is filled with minor characters that don't often contribute enough (or at all...) to the story.
Mikael Kuoppala
The only redeeming quality of the book are a few passages of creative aerospace engineering.
sleepy in Seattle

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 15, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Titan is a frustrating book because it is obvious that Baxter could've spun a believable and moving tale. The science, as far as I can tell, is accurate, and the mission to Titan, cleverly orchestrated. Why is it so frustrating? Because the message is unrelentlessly negative and pessimistic, and there isn't a single likable character in his very very long tale. One wonders what motivates Stephen Baxter, because if this book is any indication, it appears that everything is dismal and worthless to him. In his world, no one has a sense of wonder, humor, or hope. He complains through one character after another, that the current generation no longer cares about science and space exploration. All they truly care about are themselves, and oh yeah, the internet. He's relentlessly negative about that, too. Even the heroes and heroines of the mission to Titan, spend page after page complaining and whining to one another, with no encouraging words, love, or friendship shared among them. They are on a mission to another world for heaven's sake, you'd think they'd be a little ~excited~ about it. Once they finally get to Titan (a ~7 year trip through space), it's described as a hostile and bitterly cold hell of little to no scientific value. They begin to ask themselves why they bothered to go at all. After reading this novel, an unencouraging, dreary, pessimistic, and humorless adventure, you'll ask yourself why you bothered to tag along.
As a side note, take a trip to SETI@home and check out the downloads (>700 000 at last count), or the keen interest in NASAs Pathfinder Project to Mars, and then tell me people don't care about the universe around them.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Antinomian on November 10, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Possibly, like others interested in science, there were two key disappointing moments in my life that came from knowledge derived from science. One was that it is unlikely to go backwards in time by any known method. The other is that it is unlikely that there's life on Mars or elsewhere in our solar system outside of earth, let alone intelligent life. So that when learning more details about this and reading that the largest moon of Saturn, Titan, has an atmosphere, and well, maybe organic molecules that are the precursor to life, it was as an exciting moment as possible for the possibility of life in our solar system outside of earth. Since then, I had always hoped to write a story about Titan. Well Stephen Baxter has written that book, and as far as I'm concerned no other book strictly about Titan need ever be written. This book is so accurate to what's presently known about Titan, that whenever I read any news about Titan I think back and refer to this book. The thing against this book is that it's written somewhat dryly. However, I've read quite a bit of other sources about Titan, newspaper articles, journals, websites, etc, and if you want to feel what it's like to be on Titan, this is the item to read. Now, this book was written in 1997, but it uncannily predicts some of events that have occurred. Baxter predicts the destruction of one of the space shuttles in a fashion similar to what occurred with Columbia.Read more ›
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 13, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Titan portrays an incredibly bleak and depressing view of the future. Except for one scene on Titan, the entire novel is bereft of the hope or wonder possible in SF. Unrelenting gloom-and-doom. Aldous Huxley was more uplifting. The characters are unworthy of compassion, and are without depth or humanity. The Earth politics are overwrought and highly implausible.
The ending feels entirely out of place and incredibly improbable. For such a seemingly well researched, scientifically possible SF novel, the hand waving here incredible. And the sex scene here defies all reason. Baxter should have stopped before the epilogue.
The novel is also uneven in terms of detail. Baxter chooses to highly detail some scenes, then gloss over other portions. I could have lived without the in-depth bodily function reports on Titan, for example, yet the double Venus flybys were never described at all.
The NASA / USAF / military industrial complex portion seems a pathetically transparent plot device. Baxter should leave the conspiracy theories to Oliver Stone.
Why did I finish this book? Because I was on a 6-hour flight from Boston to Seattle and I couldn't toss it out the window.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Craig Sampson on February 2, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I, like millions of others around the world, sat horrified watching the events of the real life tragedy of the space shuttle Columbia crashing to Earth in Feb 2003. One of the first things that came to my mind was that I read a similar scenario back in 1997 in Stephen Baxters 'Titan'. I quickly grabbed the book and started browsing through the first couple of chapters to discover, to my horror, that the space shuttle portrayed in Titan was Columbia. I remembered back to when I read the book and thought it was one of the best introductions to a SF book I had read in ages. It was my first 'Baxter" novel and I was amazed at the detail of the description of the events of Columbia going down. There was a survivor in the book which helped develop the plot, but the timing early 21st century and naming the shuttle is just a bit to eerie for me. I hope the rest of the events in the book do not lead to fruition as it is quite depressing for mankind. The current events in the world make it hard to be optimistic.
Getting back to the book I found the majority of it a great read, it did have parts that seemed to drag on but Baxters knowledge of Titan is first rate. I have just read Ralph Lorenzs non fiction book 'Lifting Titans Veil' and many of Baxters Titan sequences are acknowledged by Lorenz. I found the last chapter a bit too far fetched and probably would have benefited to being left out all together.
I hope the rest of Titan remains in the fiction category and that man pushes forward into space and one day can visit a wonderous place like Titan.
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