[London]: HarperCollins Publishers, [1992]. Octavo, boards. First edition. Signed by the Baxter. The author's second novel and the second book in Baxter's "Xeelee" sequence. "Nastly alien's enslave the human race, but there may be a way for humans to avoid this fate via time travel. An incredibly complex time-and-space opera, bumptious, merry, scientifically well informed, and all-round fun to read (though, as is usual with this kind of fiction, the characterization leaves something to be desired)." - Pringle, The Ultimate Guide to Science Fiction, second edition (1995), p. 378. "Neat aliens, good plot-reversals, much hand-waving with physics and a pretty damn cosmic ending. I didn't think they were writing them like this any more." - Mary Gentle, Interzone. The sequels are FLUX (1993) and RING (1994). "The sequence –- as centrally narrated here and in RING -– follows humanity into the fraught arena of interstellar space, already dominated by the complex and enigmatic Alien Xeelee, who soon prove to be highly inimical to the fragile expansionist hopes of humanity. The long epic ends darkly, aeons hence, giving with strong hints that the universe, and the Intelligences capable of comprehending it, may become coterminous. Though the incessant fertility of Baxter's imagination makes it appropriate to think of his larger-scale effects in terms of space opera, the Xeelee sequence, like most of his later fiction, is dense with thought experiments; along with Greg Bear and Gregory Benford, he is perhaps the most successful of all modern SF writers in marrying space opera and hard SF. Fine in a fine dust jacket. (8295). Item #8295

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