Saturday, August 7, 2010
Tau Zero by Poul Anderson
Basically 50 men and women are chosen for a mission to find a new home around a star in Virgo, and to do so they must travel at as close to c as possible-they gradually get faster and faster but then the ship Leonora Christine, develops a fault meaning they will be unable to decelerate should they reach their destination. They build up a huge velocity and see the universe around them evolving at a staggering rate-months pass on the ship while millenia pass by outside. When the fault is discovered they face a decision, keep speeding ahead in the hope they find a new home eventually or give up and commit mass suicide-it is essentuially a story of survival against the odds.
It is huge conceptually and yet it makes for compelling reading. Definitely a keeper and the kind of book to get you back into SF if you've been away from it!