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Eon Mass Market Paperback – October 15, 1991

4.0 out of 5 stars 213 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Way Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

YA In the year 2000, a huge potato-shaped asteroid, nicknamed the Stone by Americans, appears in orbit around the earth. Exploration shows that it is divided into seven man-made, hollowed-out chambers, indicating that it had been inhabited. Scientists discover that it was built by Earth people, but in the far distant future, and that a nuclear war is imminent. It becomes crucial that theoretical mathematician Patricia Vasquez discover why the former habitants left and where they went. Although Eon is far too long, its story of futuristic cities and life forms stirs the imagination. Readers travel to worlds where humans may exist as memories in the City Memory Bank, corporeal representatives (ghosts) or incarnations. Other humanoid life forms also exist, and in an amazing array of shapes, from snake-like creatures to floating blobs. Bear's creativity provides a richness to an intricate, complex plot. It's unfortunate that the length may deter all but the most avid sci/fi fans. Pam Spencer, Mount Vernon High School Library, Fairfax, Va.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Sharing aspects of Calrke's Rendevouz with Rama, its uniqueness arises from bear's bold imagination. Bear is a writer of passionate vision. Eon is his grandest work yet.” ―Locus

Eon may be the best constructed hard SF epic yet.” ―The Washington Post

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Product Details

  • Series: Eon (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Science Fiction (October 15, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812520475
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812520477
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.3 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (213 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #834,283 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
Besides being a very entertaining and somewhat epic near-future space adventure, Greg Bear's novel "Eon", having been published in 1985, will likely be very interesting to anyone old enough to have experienced and appreciated the last years of the Cold War in the 1980s.
It was somewhat serendipitous that I came to read "Eon". I found myself away from home with no reading plans. I visited a comic book store that had some used books for sale. This book "Eon" appeared to be the best of the available sci-fi and the price was only [amount]. I am now very pleased that I happened up on this bargain.
In "Eon", after some interesting fireworks just outside our solar system, an asteroid with some very strange characteristics mysteriously settles into a neat orbit around the Earth and its moon. The surface of the asteroid indicates intelligent activity in its past and investigators find some very interesting things inside. Because I greatly enjoyed Greg Bear's slow revelation of it in the story, I will say no more about the contents of the asteroid.
I enjoyed the technical descriptions of interesting space (and other) technology in this novel, and I found the strong and romantic personalities of the several main characters refreshing. However, the characteristic of this novel that I found most interesting and thought-provoking was the tension in the story that was brought about by the Cold War context.
In 1985, when this novel was written, I was 20 years old - old enough to have experienced the Cold War and participated in "the mindset" associated with it. Reading "Eon" was quite a flashback experience for me. It was fascinating to me to realize how much my mindset has changed since the fall of the Berlin Wall and the dissolution of the U.S.S.R.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I read a lot of books, most of them over and over again. I think because I read so much that I forget most of the books I've read, which is okay because then I get to read them again some day down the road. EON was not like that for me. EON I read once, sat down and read it again. And I've never touched it again, because I remember it.

A warning though, this thing is EPIC, there are a lot of characters, and a lot of ideas. It also totally blew my mind at the end, but If you are looking for some light reading this isn't it. If you are up for a serious but entertaining piece of science fiction check this out.
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Format: Paperback
Things start out interesting enough in this book and there are some great and new ideas used here. The mystery of The Stone keeps you turning pages for quite some time, and simply on that point, reading Eon isn't a complete waste of time, though having finished the book, I wish I'd stopped halfway through.

There's some obviously sloppy authoring here that I would think a truly great author wouldn't let go to print. Namely, the ridiculous sex scenes as mentioned by other reviewers. Not only do they come out of nowhere, are completely unbelievable, and have absolutely no relevance to the story, but are gratuitous enough to make one wonder whether they have stopped reading a hard sci-fi novel and started reading Penthouse forum. I don't mean to say I'm morally outraged or anything - more intellectually insulted. Their inclusion reminds me of the obligatory nude scene in cheap 80s B-movies that without which, wouldn't make a profit.

Most of my other complaints have already been addressed ad nauseum here, so I'll just touch on a few things: The physical descriptions of the settings are inconsistent or vague, and especially annoying are the weak analogies we're often given instead. Characters have numerous problems with believability, most being 2D stock archetypes of some stereotype (i.e. the wide-eyed genius heroine, the alpha-female leader, mindless evil russians, etc.). Their descriptions are equally lacking - all we know about most are one or two useless facts, like being tall or blonde. Basically, all the elements of a narrative were missing, plot included. I get the feeling that the author came up with this great idea about the asteroid and its contents, then just dropped a bunch of faceless characters and something he felt resembled a story into it to call it a book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Greg Bear, and specifically Eon, opened the door to "realistic" sci-fi for me. You know how some people will roll their eyes when you say you like science fiction? It's because they are thinking of those kinds of stories that are so far removed from life as we know it as to seem almost cartoonish. That's the stuff I read (and admit, still love!) before Eon happened to me.

Eon was the first sci-fi novel I read that came out of the box reading like a relevant current-day thriller or political drama and slowly pulled you into the future. The story and characters are brilliant, and the science is very believable. Even as you are whisked down the timeline of human evolution, it makes sense because you already see society changing as technology influences it.

This novel has haunted me for years, and I return to visit it from time to time. It's not just a story: it feels like a real place that I've been before and in some odd way, almost homesick for.
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