Greg Egan Crystal Nights and Other Stories

ISBN 13: 9781596062405

Crystal Nights and Other Stories

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9781596062405: Crystal Nights and Other Stories

The nine stories in Greg Egan's new collection range from parables of contemporary human conflict and ambition to far-future tales of our immortal descendants.

In "Lost Continent", a time traveler seeking refuge from a war-torn land faces hostility and bureaucratic incompetence. "Crystal Nights" portrays a driven man s moral compromises as he chases an elusive technological breakthrough, while in "Steve Fever" the technology itself falls victim to its own hype.

"TAP" brings us a new kind of poetry, where a word is more powerful than a thousand images. "Singleton" shows us a new kind of child, born of human DNA modeled in a quantum computer who, in "Oracle", journeys to a parallel world to repay a debt to an intellectual ancestor.

"Induction" chronicles the methods and motives behind humanity s first steps to the stars. "Border Guards" reflects on the painful history of a tranquil utopia. And in the final story, "Hot Rock", two immortal citizens of the galaxy-spanning Amalgam find that an obscure, sunless world conceals mind-spinning technological marvels, bitter factional struggles, and a many-layered secret history.

Greg Egan is the author of seven novels and over fifty short stories. He is a winner of the Hugo Award and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award.

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From Publishers Weekly:

Subterranean offers readers a representative sampling of Hugo winner Egan's distinctive hard SF, drawing from previously uncollected stories. Two of the nine stories are from the 1990s, two from the early 2000s and five postdating Egan's hiatus from writing while he campaigned for refugee human rights in Australia. Steadfastly reductionist, Egan nevertheless makes room for the moral implications of the treatment of refugees in Lost Continent, while Crystal Nights offers a pointed critique of technologists enthused by the idea of enslaved creations. Unfortunately, Egan can be heavy-handed at times, as in Oracle, where the character Jack serves as a straw-man version of C.S. Lewis. More conventional SF puzzle stories like Hot Rock and Tap and a forcefully worded introduction on the ethics of artificial intelligence round out the volume. (Sept.)
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