Copyright 2000 by
I first read this on the 16th February 2002.
Benjamin Knowlton is an astronomer.at the High Energy Astrophysics
Center in Hawaii. His wife, Channing, is dying of cancer. It's a tough
time for both of them.
Amy Major is a post-doctoral research assistant at the center. She's
spotted something rather odd up in the skies. It looks a little like a
gamma-ray burster, but there are some strange differences. Benjamin seizes
this chance to do a little real science and perhaps take his mind off his
problems. His long-time rival Kingsley Dart, sensing something
interesting, also involves himself.
So now the stage is set for the entrance of the Eater, an
anomalous black-hole that devours worlds. It's coming to the Solar
system. It may be coming to the Earth, and if it does, humanity will be
I read Benford's books with some reluctance. They're interesting, and
the ideas and the science are imaginative. Normally I find them
a little slow and, well, boring. However this book is different. I enjoyed
it more the more I read (perhaps simply my prejudice fading). T
he characters are rounded and human. The ending is exciting. I particularly liked the way that Kingsley is seen differently by different people. Of course,
Channing herself is rather superb, but then I have a soft spot for
tragic, beautiful, female astronauts.
Loaded on the 10th April 2002.