Three years after the so-so Ares Express, but it's been worth the wait. This is a big steam-roller of a book --you don't so much read it as experience it; it's a shock to the system in almost every way. There's so much going on it it's almost impossible to adequately describe --Mysterious Artefacts in space, artificial intelligences, a completely computer generated soap opera (it's only a question of time really)weater wars, political intrigue, third-sex 'nutes', genetically engineered 'Brahmins': this is wide-screen SF. More than that, it has the feel of John Brunner's classics: Stand on Zanzibar, The Sheep Look Up, --it's a lived in future, not just a wam-bam story. And it's India! This is a world as alien as any you'll read in a wide-angle space-opera... Great characters, who generate the story, rather than get pushed around by it, and a cosmic-scale denoument that is perfectly set up, but I for one didn't see coming. Not the easiest book I ever read, but you come out of it with your head reeling and our world seems dull and pale by comparison. Oh, and there's cricket too!
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