Time's Eye: A Time Odyssey Book1 Hardcover – 17 Jun 2004
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A stunning new companion series to 2001 A SPACE ODYSSEY from the world's most important living SF writer and his acknowledged heir.
From the Inside Flap
Sir Arthur C. Clarke is a living legend, a writer whose name has been synonymous with science fiction for more than fifty years. An indomitable believer in human and scientific potential, Clarke is a genuine visionary. If Clarke has an heir among today's science fiction writers, it is award-winning author Stephen Baxter. In each of his acclaimed novels, Baxter has demonstrated dazzling gifts of imagination and intellect, along with a rare ability to bring the most cerebral science dramatically to life. Now these two champions of humanism and scientific speculation have combined their talents in a novel sure to be one of the most talked-about of the year, a "2001 for the new millennium. TIME'S EYEFor eons, Earth has been under observation by the Firstborn, beings almost as old as the universe itself. The Firstborn are unknown to humankind-- until they act. In an instant, Earth is carved up and reassembled like a huge jigsaw puzzle. Suddenly the planet and every living thing on it no longer exist in a single timeline. Instead, the world becomes a patchwork of eras, from prehistory to 2037, each with its own indigenous inhabitants.Scattered across the planet are floating silver orbs impervious to all weapons and impossible to communicate with. Are these technologically advanced devices responsible for creating and sustaining the rifts in time? Are they cameras through which inscrutable alien eyes are watching? Or are they something stranger and more terrifying still?The answer may lie in the ancient city of Babylon, where two groups of refugees from 2037--three cosmonauts returning to Earth from the International Space Station, and three United Nations peacekeepers on a mission inAfghanistan--have detected radio signals: the only such signals on the planet, apart from their own. The peacekeepers find allies in nineteenth-century British troops and in the armies of Alexander the Great. The astronauts, crash-landed in the steppes of Asia, join forces with the Mongol horde led by Genghis Khan. The two sides set out for Babylon, each determined to win the race for knowledge . . . and the power that lies within.Yet the real power is beyond human control, perhaps even human understanding. As two great armies face off before the gates of Babylon, it watches, waiting. . . .
"From the Hardcover edition. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Like 2001, the scope of this first book ranges from the dawn of man to a time when humans live on the moon. Yet Clarke's penchant for mysticism that was evident in 2001 or Childhood's End has given way to a more concrete treatment of peoples and practices. As a result, the book seems to have lost its heart. Without giving too much of the plot away, the use of some very famous historical characters seems painfully contrived. The writers seem to have recognised this, and characters within the novel speculate on the ludicrous coincidences involved. Maybe a reason for the contrivance wll become apparent in the following books, maybe not; talk about hedging your bets!
Despite the mysterious presence of the "Eyes" throughout the book, I found little or no sense of wonder in the world or events being described. There is a heavy concentration on military procedures, the impact of technology, and the geology of the planet - but this comes at the expense of the inner dialogue of the people affected by them. Considering that this isn't the first time Clarke and Baxter have written a book together (and I really enjoyed The Light of Other Days) I was surprised how little I was engaged by it.
Nevertheless, there are one or two references to the original work which fans should pick up, and the final chapter redeems things with an event worthy of Clarke's earlier work. Rather than disappointment, this left me hoping that, with the groundwork out of the way, book 2 in the series will be a much more exciting ride...
The authors cleverly integrate the various time 'differences'...which sees an immense battle we could have only dreamed about. The novel also opens up a nice explanation, where the authors use string theory as a means of supporting the possibility of the 'discontinuity'.
However, do not despair, Time's Eye seems to open up to a much wider audience due to its historical content. Even though the science fiction sounds feeble, Time's Eye has tremendous reference to the Macedonians and Mongols at their apex. It also refers to the 1885 and the NW frontier.
The novel has plenty of realism and is simply an alternative possibility to time- travel, nicely hangs on with 'space odyssey' and is a great novel.
Unimpressed by the Mongol army and Genghis Khan, I soldiered on and could see eventually that lots of resolutions were stacking up and the end of the book was nigh.
Here I am back on the Amazon website anxiously looking for the next in the series, hoping for answers to why there are eyes in Bisesa's 'home' world, and why the celebrities, their armies, the cosmonauts, the helicopter crew and the evolving man-apes were pitched into the Discontinuity. Was it random or were they chosen? And who are the mysterious First Born? Why are they interfering in Earth's business?
I like these two authors and I like time slip stories. So why did this book not quite reach my expectations?
Well, with both Stephen Baxter and Arthur C Clarke, you expect to get a bit more science in your science fiction – otherwise, it’s just fiction.
The basic outline is that the world is reassembled from pieces from across history. Into the fray are plunged three UN helicopter crew from 2037 patrolling the south west Afghanistan region, a fort full of British and Indian soldiers from the 19th Century at a point in the infamous NW frontier (next to Afghansitan, by coincidence and including no less than Rudyard Kipling), the crew of a Soyuz capsule orbiting over central Asia (by luck!), 13th Century Genghis Khan, the ancient army of Alexander the Great and a “missing link” type ape woman and her child. These are central the story line. Most other humans in that crop up along the way, don’t last long.
Our main characters find themselves suddenly in a disrupted world, surrounded by different time zones. Most have no idea, initially, that anything has happened, although most are bewildered by the sudden apparent movement of the sun in the sky. And then there are the mysterious silver spheres floating silently and immovably at various points across the land.
This reconstruction of Earth in effect makes the world a hotch potch of time where everything and everybody left is in an isolated pocket of their own time. The Earth itself is terribly disturbed with pockets of ice age glaciers in amongst temperate zones, volcanic activity etc. all trying to find a new equilibrium.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The blurb provides sufficient background to the content of the book, so not going to repeat or add any spoilers. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Halo Reader
Excellent read even if heavy on the 'history. Nevertheless a good read and at the end a real page turner.Published 8 months ago by Errol J. Heywood
At times it's difficult to believe that Arthur C. Clarke had a hand in writing this book, there are such glaring inconsistencies and implausibilities. Read morePublished 11 months ago by C. Hall
I didn't like it at all, it was so jumpy, and all over the place, pretty boring in parts and annoying in some, not a good book in my opinion.Published 16 months ago by stuart mcmillan
Clarke and Baxter doing some really good thinking.Well researched and hugely entertaining. This outside the box and the characters feel real.Published 23 months ago by Cllr Chris Burke
Fantastic. It manages to combine sci fi storyline, major historical events, politics and emotional relationships/ very human responses to unimaginable events. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Amazon Customer
In many ways the story mirrors that of 2001 and its sequels,as if told in a different form.It does not seem though to address the question of exactly what happened to the... Read morePublished on 23 Jun. 2014 by michael h.