When you think about it, Hamilton writes novels the way they were commonly written, oh, years or so ago. Multi-volume epics were the norm in Dickens' day. A story spanned an entire hero's life. Hamilton has simply hit upon how to do a novel this size correctly and I wish many of his colleagues in the fantasy genre would take note. Never allow complexity to overwhelm clarity. No matter how many multiple plotlines you have running, don't get them tangled up and confused.
Make your characters distinctive. And though it's probably impossible to write a page doorstopper that doesn't have at least a few draggy bits — and there are several here — keep everything moving briskly enough that your readers don't get just plain fatigued. Gee, I make it sound so easy.
Maybe not a personal best, but better than most. It's the late 24th century. Wormhole technology — invented, with delicious Hamiltonian snarkiness, by a couple of wiseass pranksters — has opened up the galaxy to human expansion, and expand we have. The Commonwealth is the governing body over all human spacefaring endeavors, and colonization plans are drawn up in carefully determined phases, with new sectors of habitable space opening up gradually as wormholes are opened, planets are surveyed, and development needs assessed.
But out just beyond the current furthest human reaches, a binary star called the Dyson Pair is experiencing an unprecedented anomaly.
The Pandora Chronicles: Book 1
Both the system's stars have disappeared, literally in the blink of an eye. It's not as if there's any sign of a big double supernova. Someone, or something, seems to have turned the stars off as if by a light switch. The only conclusion to be reached is that the stars have been shielded, blockaded somehow, possibly by a force field of unimaginable technology. Who, or what, has that kind of tech? And more importantly, should we be scared to death, and of what? Whatever created the shield, or whatever has been contained inside it? Or both? The book's title provides a fairly clear hint.
As no wormholes have yet been opened up to the Dyson Pair, a vessel, the Second Chance , with its own wormhole generator, is built to deliver a crew of explorers to the system to ascertain whatever they can. What the shield is made of; whether there are any traces of its builders; anything that may appear to be an obvious threat. However, the Commonwealth has its own internal threat to deal with, primarily in the form of a terrorist organization called the Guardians of Selfhood.
Either one provides SF writers with plenty of scope to use in stories. However, the evolution of an AI into something new is a singularity event, a change which is impossible to predict or explain.
DR:On the far edges of human-colonized space, a mysterious ruined ship is discovered. No trace of life is found inside, but a clan of fanatic doomsayers called the Guardians of Selfhood is convinced that an alien intelligence has invaded human space. Without giving anything away, what can you tell us about the mysterious Starflyer? PH:According to the Guardians who are opposing it, the Starflyer is a uniquely malevolent alien secretly manipulating the human race for its own purpose. Of course, everyone else in the Commonwealth thinks the Guardians are a bunch of conspiracy theorist nutters run along cult lines to support their founder.
Yet you keep each one well under control—and as the pages fly by, the dovetailing of story lines becomes more and more apparent. How do you plan out a novel of this magnitude?
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Is there a giant grid on the wall of your office? PH: No grid, but certainly a bulky folder of notes.
Can you see society in general turning to more and more specific forms of genetic manipulation in order to have the children of their dreams? PH:At the moment the field is alive with controversy. For the near future I can see the rich using this technology to modify their children. In which case a new and very artificial divide will certainly exist.
We may even see humanity branching off into sub-species. DR:Your wormhole technology allows for almost infinite human expansion into the stars. Which colony in the story is your favorite, and will we see more of it? PH:It has to be Far Away, a planet whose biosphere was ruined by a massive solar flare and which was virtually dead when discovered. A situation which allows humans to reseed it however they want, creating a whole patchwork of different and exotic life forms rubbing up against each other.
It will be featured quite heavily in volume two.
Having fun? PH: Oh yes.
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We tossed around the idea that it had to be within access to helicopters — children from the School come from overseas but then we also debated whether or not they had come on helicopters or was that another implanted memory. Generally we thought this would be popular in the younger grades of high school. At times character development suffers from the sheer pace of the novel but we are hoping to get know the characters better in future instalments.
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- Get A Copy.
- Pandora's Star by Peter F. Hamilton | gyjipimyco.tk: Books.
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You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. June Discussion — Pandora Jones: Admission by Barry Jonsberg Many of the most intellectually challenging and stimulating YA books that we have read in Bookclub have been books that also contain violence, swearing, sexual references and dark themes and often this has made it difficult to know where to place them in our school libraries.
As Pandora states, Everyone Pandora Jones knew is dead — she remembers it vividly — but sometimes you cannot trust your own memories.