The Rapture Effect
Copyright 1987 by
I first read this in 1990 and most recently on the 3rd August 2006.
Sage, Pila and Kyd work in the Art Division of the government Public Affairs
Department. It's year-end and they have a little grant money unspent, so
Pila decides to spend it on a pet project. She wants a giant kinetic sculpture
and it'll need artist Ramo Romano along with Sage and Kyd to make it a reality. Something
of this scale and uniqueness is going to need lots of computing power just to design
it, and that's where all the problems start.
Meanwhile the alien Haryddart is near death, floating in space in a distant
star system. He's the sole survivor of a fierce battle with the Earth's space
forces. He's hiding in the shade of an asteroid, waiting for his air to run
To their surprise and horror, Sage, Ramo, Kid and Pila are going to find
themselves trying to stop this space war while on the run from the authorities,
I have to admit that I quite enjoyed this novel. The premise is great fun -
you're planning to create an unusual abstract sculpture to soak up a some
leftover funding, and your computer tells you that there's already
something based on similar principles. You enquire more and it proceeds to
show you a Stargate and then goes on to explain that this is used by robot
spacecraft as part of promoting a space war against an alien civilisation.
I can't count the number of times that I've waited for something like that
to happen, instead I get a message about a security update requiring a reboot.
The dance stuff is weak (it was the early 90s) but it is not painful as,
for example, the dancing in Spider and Jeane Robinson's "Starmind".
All in all this is a good book.
What's it got: shy but brilliant computer programmers; crazy but talented
Brazilian dancers; aliens; stargates; spaceships and more aliens (these
ones being evil subterranean monsters).
Loaded on the 25th January 2007.