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The Integral Trees Paperback – 29 Jul 2003

4.6 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 459 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey Books; Reprint edition (29 July 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345460367
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345460363
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 2.5 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,953,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

"Niven's masterly use of SF strategies...hits every note, springing surprises and plot turns with dizzying pace. The bizarre but plausible setting is meticulously worked out and at times lyrically evoked."

From the Inside Flap

"Niven has come up with an idea about as far out as one can get. . . . This is certainly classic science fiction-the idea is truly the hero." -"Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine
When leaving Earth, the crew of the spaceship "Discipline was prepared for a routine assignment. Dispatched by the all-powerful State on a mission of interstellar exploration and colonization, "Discipline was aided (and secretly spied upon) by Sharls Davis Kendy, an emotionless computer intelligence programmed to monitor the loyalty and obedience of the crew. But what they weren't prepared for was the smoke ring-an immense gaseous envelope that had formed around a neutron star directly in their path. The Smoke Ring was home to a variety of plant and animal life-forms evolved to thrive in conditions of continual free-fall. When "Discipline encountered it, something went wrong. The crew abandoned ship and fled to the unlikely space oasis.
Five hundred years later, the descendants of the "Discipline crew living on the Smoke Ring no longer remember their origins. Earth is more myth than memory, and no recollection of the State remains. But Kendy remembers. And just outside the Smoke Ring, "Discipline waits patiently to make contact with its wayward children.
"

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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
These are two of the best Sci-Fi books, in or out of print. Who else but Niven could develop a society that develops in a free-fall gas torus? And then make the whole thing consistent with the laws of physics? This is not just brilliant writing, it is a work of genius.
If you like real science fiction, if you want to explore a strange 'world' and its odd yet human inhabitants, this is a book you must read.
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Format: Paperback
I was lucky enough to pick this gem up in a 2nd hand book shop. What a find! This is a great story that keeps you wanting to turn those pages until the end. There are some great ideas and, once you get past the start, a wonderful story to unravel and follow. I say get past the start as I found, like some other titles by this author, you have to let things come together as he wants you to...if you feel lost don't worry, it is all by design...it just makes you eager to read on and know more!
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Format: Kindle Edition
The Smoke Ring and The Integral Trees - by LARRY NIVEN .... just absolutely the best SiFi books I have ever read. I have read them now for the forth time and can still get new views and imagination from these books. I just wish that Larry could continue with this specific "adventure" If you are a SiFi fan then purchase these 2 books ... you will not be disappointed.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I recently re-read The Integral Trees recently having first read it in 1985. I remember enjoying it as a teenager, but now in my 40's the book has proved just as good if not better. Compared with most other Niven works it's quite different in that after the initial scene setting it rushes along providing a roller-coaster ride for the main characters. Is is minimalist in terms of the descriptive narritive but enough to keep pace and make you care about the core players, almost like a movie screenplay. It's an easy read and a good book even if you aren't a hard sci-fi fan.

Couple of down points, much of the action is a bit too coincidental with major events overlapping for no real reason. Some of the female characters seem to be copies of each other and some of the cultural concepts are re-visited too often. Not a major problem though.

It makes me cringe to say this but if you liked the story in Avatar, you'll love this book as it carries many similar elements about the arrogance of technological societies and how civilisation tends to corrupt.

All in all, in many respects better than Ringworld, more convincing that Dreampark but with better elements of both.
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