Heaven's Shadow by David S.Goyer and Michael Cassutt is the thought-provoking and extremely entertaining novel that follows the exploits of astronauts who are exploring a NEO (Near Earth Object) that has been labelled Keanu. An intriguing contrast between competing space programs and their respective philosophies as reflected in the personnel that staff the respective spacecraft is juxtaposed with the thumbnail glimpses of the personal lives that are affected by the lofty ideals and venal considerations of space exploration. The startling discoveries and cascading chain of events stemming from a space race that results in two different crafts landing on Keanu within hours of each other will change the insular attitude of Earth's inhabitants forever. A disconcerting discovery about the philosophical opinion of life as well as a pointed reminder about the importance of approaching problem-solving with different paradigms and open-mindedness constantly ratchet up the tension as the intrepid explorers continue to find enigmas and paradoxes that may be beyond their grasp.
A fantastic read that is enthralling and mind-expanding without being didactic. The beautiful visual imagery conjured up enhances the awe and fascination that is engendered by the concept of dealing with proof that sentient life exists elsewhere. The intriguing and sometimes frightening glimpses of the motivations behind actions and ofttimes ill-advised decisions give the tale realism while the reminder that pragmatism and preparedness often trump fancy high-tech gadgets reflect truisms proved in the actual space race. A mesmerizing tale that is only the first salvo in an all-important quest.
The science fiction epic of our time has arrived.
Three years ago, an object one hundred miles across was spotted on a trajectory for Earth's sun. Now, its journey is almost over. As it approaches, two competing manned vehicles race through almost half a million kilometers of space to reach it first. But when they both arrive on the entity, they learn that it has been sent toward Earth for a reason. An intelligent race is desperately attempting to communicate with our primitive species. And the message is: Help us.