Then it came close enough for visual inspection.
"Goliath here", Chandler radioed Earthwards, his voice tinged with pride as well as solemnity. "We're bringing aboard a 1000-year-old astronaut. And I can guess who it is. "
Thus after drifting to an icy death in 2001: A Space Odyssey, the body of astronaut Frank Poole is recovered in the outer reaches of the Solar System. Preserved at near absolute zero, it is a simple task for medical science a millennium hence to restore Poole to life--though strangely for a novel which pits religion against science, the metaphysical implications of technological resurrection are unexamined --and the first half is devoted to Poole's integration into the society of the future. If anything he adjusts with far too little grief or culture shock: apart from mourning his dog, and learning how the new technology works, he faces no major difficulties. Still, the world of the future is drawn with broad, imaginative strokes and apart from a persistent continuity error which makes Poole 6 years old in 2001, this is fascinating stuff. The plot kicks into gear with the revelation that the famous black monoliths may ultimately not have humanity's interests at heart, leading to a perfunctorily presented struggle for survival. Clarke himself notes that the ending is functionally identical to that of Independence Day, though novel and film were created simultaneously. Not the hoped-for late classic, 3001: the Final Odyssey does provide the satisfaction of closure to Clarke's epic Odyssey Quartet.--Gary S. Dalkin
--This text refers to an alternate
From the Back Cover
Out beyond the orbit of Saturn, the space tug Goliath nudges the ice core of a comet onto its fifty-year journey sunward. Ice enough to cover the hell fires of Mercury and Venus with oceans kilometres deep, and thus to make those planets habitable. It is the beginning of the work of centuries but is interrupted when the Goliath is ordered to bring in the perfectly preserved body of Frank Poole, the first victim of the rogue computer HAL a thousand years before.
But this is only the beginning of the Final Odyssey, an Odyssey that leads one man to defy the limitless power of an alien technology. An Odyssey that leads to the moons of Jupiter, to Europa, where a Monolith reaching ten kilometres skyward guards a village of ice on the shores of an ocean.
Europa, a frozen world where a new life is being born and the future of Man is weighed in the balance…
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.