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The Icarus Hunt Mass Market Paperback – July 5, 2000
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Space opera veteran Timothy Zahn, a Hugo award winner and author of the bestselling Star Wars Thrawn trilogy, brings us a tale that's as convoluted and complex as a hyperdrive motor. Although there's plenty of action both in space and on the ground, The Icarus Hunt is primarily a murder mystery. Chapter by chapter, even page by page, the list of suspects and their motivations grows and evolves, constantly shifting as McKell relentlessly cuts through webs of deception and subterfuge. But the murder is only the opening move in a game that could alter the power structure of hundreds of solar systems. Zahn always provides an entertaining ride through the galaxy, and readers will find him very much in his element with this book. --J.B. Peck --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From Library Journal
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
I am more solidly a mystery fan (Zahn is one of extremely few sci-fi authors I enjoy), and as such I was able to truly marvel at what Zahn has accomplished in this one extremely entertaining novel. It will not escape most people's notice that the plot of this novel is a whodunit, and that the sci-fi is only a backdrop. What most people won't realize is that there exists, or once existed, a small sub-genre of whodunits called the "cozy." In order to be properly classified as a cozy, a novel has to have a remote setting with a limited number of players, one of whom is murdered, all of whom are suspects, and a detective who calls them all together at the end for the revealing. Agatha Christie is of course the most famous author of cozies.
I was delighted to find that The Icarus Hunt, despite all improbability, fits very neatly into the catagory of a classic cozy.
Of course this type of book might not necessarily appeal to sci-fi fans who are unfamiliar with the genre of whodunits or the sub-genre of the cozy, but Zahn goes out of his way to make The Icarus Hunt appeal to as wide an audience as possible. Jordan's first-person narrative is often hilarious - to tell a complex story from a first-person perspective is challenging enough anyway, and Zahn triumphs.
Of course there's the typical Zahn - exotic places and bizarre aliens (and plenty of strange-sounding names thrown in just for fun), and the classic Zahn knock-your-socks-off surprises.
All of which makes for one of the most highly enjoyable books I've ever read. I seriously doubt there's another book like it in existence. Highly recommended to fans of any genre!
"The Icarus Hunt"'s main character is Jordan McKell, a star-freighter pilot who plays the role of a poor yet honest private contracter, considering that in reality he is a smuggler working for a huge crime organization. Things couldn't get worse he supposed. Or so he thought...
When he takes a job flying a strangely put-together antique ship called the 'Icarus' with a ragtag crew, little does he know that he has just landed himself in the middle of a huge conspiracy. Jordan is immediately thrust into events spiraling out of control: one of the crew is murdered, his employer seems to have disappeared, an unknown saboteur is on board, and the 'Icarus' is being wanted by the oppresive Patth who have monopolized all trade in the galaxy.
It's up to Jordan and his mechanic partner Ixil, a Kalixiri with his two ferret 'outhunters' Pix and Pax, to figure out what's going on while struggling to stay alive. The hunt for the 'Icarus' is on!
If you thought my summary was complicated, wait until you actually pick up the book! There are so many other subplots that are too numerous too count and besides, most of them are the twists and turns this book has to offer. But though seemingly 'complicated', Zahn's expertise is put to use as he deftly weaves a tale with numerous 'threads' yet makes up one intricately woven 'tapestry'. There is not one moment where the action and suspense slows down; instead, we are taken on a ride where you have no clue where it'll end!Read more ›
However this time he has married a cloak and dagger/who-dun-it to the science fiction genre. I read this book in 2 days and it was extremely hard to put down as it took you from one event to another in a light speed fashion. He left you at the edge of your seat wondering/trying to figure who had done it but to no avail. The ending was very unpredictable and there was closure! A truly good story told by no other than Zahn.
Furthermore, it is right up there with the best of the MacLean thrillers (Circus, Breakheart Pass, Where Eagles Dare, Guns Of Navaronne). The plot twists and hidden identities follow the MacLean patterns exactly, as does the intentionally ambiguous first-person narration, in which the main character tells you he is hiding something from you but does not tell you what it is.
Zahn's later novel Night Train To Rigel is similar, but the MacLean influence is toned down a bit and elements of Hitchcock, Noir, and horror films are woven in as well.
However, taken as a whole, The Icarus Hunt works somewhat better than Night Train To Rigel.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Icarus Hunt is a stand alone science fiction novel by Timothy Zahn. It has elements of interstellar intrigue, murder mystery, quick thinking, and strategic posturing. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Karlovich
A very good story, rather like Alistair McLean's thrillers but set in a futuristic space opera. I gave it 4 stars because it is not a 'deeply thoughtful' or profound experience,... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Jeffrey Duff
Very good. One of my favorite scifi books. It has a Han Solo like character and awesome aliens, and a clearly defined world, or should I say, worlds. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
My favorite Timothy Zahn outside of star wars. Great plot twists that I couldn't even see coming and I usually smell out the plot twists from miles away, metaphorically of course.Published 4 months ago by Banana
I dont normally read mystery but this was good. Compelling. I was just looking for a sequel matter of fact. Plenty of real SciFiPublished 6 months ago by james besaw
This is a great book. I highly recommend it. I have read it several times and decided to get the hardcover. I have not regretted it one bit.Published 7 months ago by Johanna huse