Eon Paperback – 23 Jul 1998
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Praise for Greg Bear:
Hard science and human interest intersect ingeniously in the prequel to Bea's "Eon" and "Eternity."...This is a stunning SF novel that extrapolates a scientifically complex future from the basic stuff of human nature. "Publishers Weekly, starred review, on Legacy"
Each new novel only serves to illustrate how masterful Bear has become. "Houston Post on Greg Bear"
Whether he's tinkering with human genetic material or prying apart planets, Bear goes about the task with intelligence and a powerful imagination. "Locus on Greg Bear"
A cohesive and original vision of the future. Bear has combined a lively set of characters, colorful writing and gripping psychological-technological fabrications into a very seductive read. "People Magazine on Queen of Angels"
The ambitiousness of Greg Bear's "Eon" lies more in the mainstream of science fiction... its uniqueness arises from Bear's bold imagination. Bear is a writer of passionate vision. "Eon" is his grandest work yet. "Locus on Greg Bear"
Bear is one of our very best. "New York Daily News on Greg Bear"
If anyone is the complete master of the grand scale SF novel, it's Bear. "Booklist on Greg Bear"" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
One of the great SF epics of the last thirty years. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
It's Hard SF/Big Science at its hardest, and in one sense can be seen as a 'Rendezvous with Rama' for the Nineteen Eighties.
Bear should also be applauded for his portrayal of female characters as in this and subsequent novels he places strong female characters centre-stage, in this case, Patricia Luis Vasquez, a young gifted physics student who is drafted in to solve the mysteries of the Stone and becomes important to the plans of all the factions involved.
The plot involves some complex physics and the concept of parallel universes.
It is always interesting to look at authors' views of the future once that future is past and gone. Written in 1985, Bear's future world has become a kind of 'alternate future' since perhaps no-one could have predicted that the abrupt fall of the USSR and the smashing down of the Berlin wall. Here, the USSR is still a superpower, and the Cold War very much alive.
Bear cleverly sets up the East/West ideological divides while Nuclear War destroys the Earth in the background, before bringing in the people of Earth's future. They live in Axis City, a vast mobile habitat which roams 'The Way' (the corridor which stretches along the infinity of parallel Universes) and which is itself divided along ideological lines between radical Geshels and orthodox Naderites.
It's a compelling and scientifically convincing novel, and one of Bear's best.
The basic plot concerns a large hollow asteroid that appears in Earth's orbit at a time of rising tension between the Soviets and the US. Exploration of the hollowed asteroid reveals a series of chamber with flora, weather systems and cities, and th politics of the exploration only serves to heighten US/Soviet tensions. The seventh chamber is apparently endless and contains the mysterious 'Way' which distorts space-time and acts as a portal with gates to access parallel universes. Interesting concepts thoughout but many have been done before in previous works, so for me not as groundbreaking as some suggest.
The weaknesses of the novel and the reason I didn't really warm to it for me are many. Firstly the novel is obviously a product of the cold-war age and now seems quite dated. This in itself is something the reader should take as a product of its time, first published in 1985, but in places reads like a cold war thriller set in space. The characterisation is rather poor with too many one and two dimensional characters throughout the novel and some very banal dialogue in places. The descriptions of the asteroid are quite difficult to follow and visualise with some completely incomprehensible psuedo-technological explanations. As the main characters journey down 'The Way' they encounter a future human civilisation which has evolved and developed technology beyond easy description, numerous alien beings, neomorphs, homomorphs and all sorts of other crazy incarnations. There is some difficult to follow political machinations relating to various factions such as the Naderites and Geshels. All round, too many ideas with too many incomprehensible explanations, and far too long.Read more ›
And by and large, this is what you get. The book is full of interesting and largely sympathetic characters, with a supporting cast probably in the hundreds. The story is fascinating and I plan to read the two sequels soon.
However, sometimes Bear's descriptive passages become so technical that I actually found it hard to visualise what he was describing (eg: the first visit to the singularity). Also, some of the scientific theory is very complex, but thrown at you and then left for you to try and decipher. I admire authors who use serious science, but I am not ashamed to admit that sometimes I need a helping hand understanding it!
But - this (and the somewhat rushed ending) did not stop me enjoying the breathtaking scope of the mysterious Stone and the adventures of those exploring it. Good fun, but be ready to work at it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As the number of dimensions in the space bending story open up, the book itself also seems to elongate, like one of those infinitely looped mirrors. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Steve
Set in the near future, Earth is recovering from a limited nuclear war. But as a second, full-blown, war looms, an asteroid appears orbiting Earth. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Dervid
Written in 1985, this novel is set in 2005, so readers today will have to make a few mental adjustments and add 20 to every date indicated, or it just falls apart. Read morePublished on 1 July 2014 by F. M. Havicon
For the first half of the book I was enjoying the fascinating ideas (spoilers): cities built within an asteroid, and the mystery of the endless tunnel. Read morePublished on 25 Nov. 2013 by Kublai
A good read, but I missed the weirdness and alieness of Clarke's Rama here.
If you like a 'Hard' sci fi story along with an interesting Cold War apocalypse ( written early... Read more