11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Egan's best to date,
By A Customer
This review is from: Schild's Ladder (GOLLANCZ S.F.) (Paperback)
This is an excellent book. Egan manages to sustain a gripping and surprising plot without a single identifiable villain; instead we have sympathetic characters with opposing views on how to deal with the threat of the novo-vacuum. Yes, there ARE characters - they're just different to the standard SF stand-ins. Egan's prose is as efficient and polished as ever, and there are some lovely images. The science is at times formidable - this particular full-time scientist struggled with the "big idea" behing the quantum nature of the novo-vacuum, despite reading countless books on QM and Theories of Everything. But it doesn't really matter; the basic flow of the story carries the reader on anyway. In short, this has the mind-blowing ideas of Diaspora, but they're harnessed to a proper plot, and the characters are as engaging as those in Teranesia. Jolly good!