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Sunday, May 26th, 2013

Pushing Ice

Translation: [ Google | Babelfish ]

Categories: [ Books ]

ISBN: 9780441015023

© Amazon.fr

When Janus, a small moon of Saturn suddenly leaves its orbit and dashes towards the Spica star 260 lightyears away from the sun, the Rockhopper and its crew of comet-ice miners is sent by its mother company to intercept it and gather as much information as possible before it leaves the solar system. The crew splits into two factions when Svetlana, chief engineer, discovers that the company has been lying to them regarding their chances of making it back to Earth. Bella, the captain is not convinced, and the mission continues. Near Janus, the Rockhopper is caught in the slipstream of Janus' engine and all hope of escaping is gone. After a succesful mutiny lead by Svelana agains Bella, the crew settles on the surface of Janus. They travel at almost the speed of light for thirteen years, during which they are forced to learn how to use Janus as a source of energy and discover a strange black cube with a simplified version of Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man engraved on one face. Janus then reaches Spica and enters one chamber of a gigantic structure, several light-minutes across. Unknowingly, they travel faster than light for another subjective year, before arriving to their final destination, another similar chamber. There they meet a new species they nickname Fountainheads, who give them technology such as artificial gravity and rejuvenation. For nearly eighty years, they live inside the chamber, until one day they meet another species nicknamed Musk Dogs, who seem willing to trade technology for the right to tap into Janus' energy. Despite the Fountainheads' warning, Svetlana, who had been replaced by Bella as a leader of the settlement, decides to accept the Musk Dogs' offer. The latter's plan however was to explode Janus and break a hole in the chamber to escape the structure and see what is outside. Thanks to the black cube (a message sent to Bella by a human civilization, in the form of a very large amout of cubes containing an artificial intelligence, dispersed all over the galaxy; the civilization is 18,000 years older than Rockhopper's Earth, but still long extinct) and the help of the Fountainheads, they manage to escape the chamber before Janus' explosion. Svetlana and some of her followers then decide to leave through the hole and explore the outside. On their way out, they send back pictures of the structure, which is a torus composed of myriad of needle-shaped chambers, thought to be a kind of zoo collecting specied from all over the galaxy/universe.

[ Posted on May 26th, 2013 at 16:40 | no comment | ]

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