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A Wreath of Stars (Gollancz S.F.) [Paperback]

Bob Shaw
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

4 Dec 2000 Gollancz S.F.
Ironically, for Gilbert Snook - who considered himself the human equivalent of a neutrino, a particle able to travel through the Earth without disturbing any other particle - it all started with the panic that followed the sighting of the anti-neutrino planet as it approached Earth. Earth was unaffected but Snook ended up in a small African Republic teaching English to diamond miners. Then the miners started seeing ghosts and Snook found himself at the centre of a bizarre and far-reaching scientific discovery - and in the middle of some very dirty political infighting.

Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; New edition edition (4 Dec 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575071478
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575071476
  • Product Dimensions: 21.2 x 13.6 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,053,157 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Bob Shaw was born in Northern Ireland in 1931. After working in structural engineering, industrial public relations and journalism he became a full-time writer in 1975. Among his novels are Other Days, Other Eyes, The Ragged Astronauts, The Wooden Spaceships and The Fugitive Worlds. He died in 1996.

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Gilbert Snook sometimes thought of himself as being the exact social equivalent of a neutrino. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute spellbinder! 8 Jan 2007
By Ifty
The story opens with the discovery of a large planet-like mass of anti-neutrinos that narrowly misses the Earth in a spiralling orbit around the sun. A scientific curiosity, spectacular even, but otherwise irrelevant to the everyday lives of people on Earth. But when miners in an equatorial African country start seeing ghosts in the deepest mine shafts a chain of events is set in motion that will have an impact on the lives of everyone on Earth.

Bob Shaw brilliantly blends conceptual hard sf ideas with his usual exceptional characterisation. His depiction of the political machinations in a post-colonial African nation is both humane and prophetic and the personal struggles of the main characters in the story are as gripping as the overall narrative. The book itself is short, the prose sleek and stylish, reminding us once again just how enjoyable it is to read the works of the 70s SF 'new wave' masters. This one is very highly recommended.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute spellbinder 23 Mar 2001
By A Customer
Bob Shaw's <i>A Wreath of Stars<\i> is a must for SF fans, and would quite likely be enjoyed by those who have no interest in SF. The only SF ghost story that I'm aware of, the book starts with a mysterious planet making a close approach to earth. Although this causes panic, scientists are puzzled, because the planet appears not to be made of solid matter, but rather, neutrinos. A few months later, the rogue planet is billions of miles away, and virtually forgotten by the human race. However, the fun has only just started, and when weird scenes start occurring in a diamond mine in central Africa, Gil Snook, whose only ambition is to go from birth to death without achieving anything, must become humankind's ultimate ambassador to the beings from...well, I won't spoil it for you!
Marks out of 10:
Enjoyability - 11 (eleven)
Originality - 10

Plausibility - 0 (nil, but don't let that put you off!)

A haunting, beautiful and brilliant book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Climactic Perfection 15 July 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The late and very much lamented genius that was Bob Shaw at his absolute finest. A very human story culminating in a breath taking tear jerking ending that almost defies imagination. Characters that are straight out of '50s cinema blend together somewhat awkwardly at times but who collectively achieve a tremendous finalisation to this unforgettable story. Good versus evil in base and elevated forms serves to produce immense reader satisfaction. Totally different to Shaw's other works of sheer mind blowing entertainment such as the Ragged Astronauts trilogy, this book will provide pleasure to everyone of his devotees, one of which I have become since reading some years ago what I personally consider THE finest SF story ever written:" The Palace of Eternity" I defy any serious aficionado of the genre to dismiss this latter as anything less than pure inspiration. If I haven't already convinced you, buy every BS book you can get your hands on, the world lost a creative giant in 1996.
RIP Bob Shaw you will never be forgotten and never eclipsed.
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