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3.9 out of 5 stars62
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 12 November 2012
I enjoyed this book: the author seemingly put effort into not only fleshing out the characters and their various relationships but also in getting the science right.

I felt it came across as a political thriller based around a sci-fi plot: it's essentially a book about how the world reacts to an advanced alien species visiting the Earth. There more to it than that though, and the discussions it presents around humanity and our footprint are interesting.

All in all I enjoyed it, and it's new ending is a welcome improvement.
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on 15 July 2015
I really enjoyed this book. I bought it on the off chance, normally being a fan of longer, character filled space opera.

This book only has a handful of characters who you really follow as they attempt to decipher the meaning of the anomaly which has appeared in New York. This takes place under the glare of the media spotlight. While political battles rage outside the team, they are rarely felt by the scientists and others who are trying to unravel why a patch of New York is no longer obeying our laws of physics and slowly rotating in the air.

The way the story reflects the tensions which the appearance of such an anomaly would cause is well portrayed, the ideas around communicating are interesting. The conclusion is satisfying, leaving you wanting more.

I would recommend this to both seasoned sci-fi fans and someone looking to dabble in the genre. The book has great ideas reminiscent of classic authors such as Haldeman, Sagan or Asimov, while being modern. For me this was a pleasing break from the heavier Banks, Hamilton or Anderson space opera I normally devour. Definitely worth buying.
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on 6 July 2014
The first thing we look for in good science fiction is originality. Anomaly by Peter Cawdron achieves that and much, much more. It eloquently describes one possible scenario for first contact with an alien civilization. Another great concept of good science fiction (or good fiction in any genre) is to see the average person become the hero. In Anomaly, the hero is just your average science teacher; someone who has a passion for science and that helps him to solve one of the great mysteries of mankind. This is the stuff that classic science fiction cinema is made of. But alas, Hollywood has lost their way and will probably never stumble upon this sleeping blockbuster.

I don’t think an alien civilization would have any frame of reference for the basic concept of the alien-to-human communication in this wonderful story. However, the science in the book shouldn’t be over-analyzed. That’s why we call it science FICTION. It should be just plain fun and it is. Have fun, get this book and enjoy.
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on 12 December 2014
What would first contact really be like? There are many scenarios offered in a wide range of Sci-Fi novels but for me this one stands out as different.

There is very little violence - just enough to give parts of the story an edge and to demonstrate how far humanity still has to develop in order to achieve any kind of maturity.

What there is however is carefully developed plot about a first contact that turns other fictional representations upside down just as the anomaly turned around the world into which it arrived.

I enjoyed having as the two main characters, ordinary people rather than out and out scientists but yet also ordinary people who happened to have useful skills and insights.

There is also I suspect another aspect to the story, that is not only about extraterrestrial life. I think it could be seen as posing the question as to how do we understand that which is different and outside our experience.
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on 19 July 2015
For an independent writer the book is very fun and easy to read.

It is not overly technical like an Ian M. Banks book (who I highly recommend) nor is it moronic man verses aliens action adventure like so many Sci-fi books and movies seem to be these days. The science in the book is sound and explained well for all ages of readers but may seem patronising for anyone with an education in science. There is little to no subtext among the characters which leaves the relationships between them feeling forced but none of them are unlikable or annoying.

Usually if I enjoy a book like this I would give it 5 stars but unlike the classic Sci-fi's I like, such as those by Philip K. Dick, it doesn't ask any hard questions or make you think outside the box to an issue which I believe is the core purposes of any Sci-fi. Hence only 4 stars.

Fun book for all ages. Good to read on long train journeys.
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on 31 July 2013
A novel idea and the characters come across as real people.
If you are into hero fighting aliens then it's not for you.
The concept is quite good and even though you don't get detailed info of the aliens
it does not detract from the story.
Well worth reading.
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on 4 December 2011
I enjoyed this short, independently written novella. Good writing, a good premise, and characters I wanted to know more about. I found I didn't like the ending as much as the rest of the book (I shan't spoil it for reader, though).
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on 17 March 2015
This book was quite enjoyable. An invisible sphere pretty much lands on the doorstep of the UN. In a slightly ridiculous plot twist, a primary school teacher is brought in by NASA to consult and help them crack the mystery. There are a few moments of complete disbelief - the PhD in Aeronautics from MIT who doesn't understand the concept of relativity - but if you can suspend the disbelief and go with it, it's quite enjoyable. Certainly tickled an itch that many other of the self-published Sci Fi books on here didn't, and more importantly, doesn't show any signs of cascading into a 40 book long series (very important!)

Overall, a clear recommend.
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on 4 September 2015
I have read, and greatly enjoyed, several of Mr.Cawdron's other books which have always had great story lines and a forward thrusting pulse of excitement combined with good characterisations and dialogue. But in this one I was sadly disappointed. The basic premise, the appearance on earth of an unexplainable anomaly, is a fine one and would have made a good, perhaps brilliant, short story. But it is so padded with lengthy science primer and drawn out morality discussion that it loses impact becoming, instead, more of a polemic in a poor imitation of The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist.
So three stars for the idea but I can't recommend the book.
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on 21 July 2015
Oh dear. Not for me at all. Fairly interesting concept but so many problems. It's not terribly well written. (Present tense is tough to carry off.) The characters are very dull and one-dimensional. And the tendency to launch into pages of political or religious rant is really off-putting. But two things really made me give up. The supposed response to the crisis by the people of New York is utterly implausible to anyone who remembers 9/11. And then there's the fact that all the male characters are referred to by their surnames while the women are all patronizingly referred to by their first names. Even the token woman scientist. Seriously? Still?
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