Copyright 2001 by
I first read this in November 2001.
A wormhole, a gate to another part of the universe, has opened near
Jupiter. After some investigation, humanity sends a manned craft,
the Lightbringer, through the wormhole in search of its builders.
It proves very hard to find the builders, but an alien race is found on
a nearby planet. The largely-military expedition wants to ignore these
in favour of searching for the builders. However, one outspoken and
obsessive scientist forces them into involvement with the planet's
These aliens are really alien, which is what one would expect but
rarely finds. Their senses, society and morality are very different
from the human equivalent. Although apparently civilised, sophisticated
and peaceful, they have a warrior caste and even our scientist
acknowledges that there must be a reason for this, especially when she
and her friends see them in action.
When things go wrong, as they always must, the military react with
military might and our scientist with careless enthusiasm.
This is rather good. I believed in the heroine, Taria, mixed-up and
obsessive though she is, and found myself rather rooting for her. I
liked the aliens, "Makes" and "Strikes", though for entirely different
reasons. The "watersingers" ere very impressive. I also appreciated
the odd dabs of Mandarin.
It was good, well written and pretty exciting. Almost no sex though.
Loaded on the 10th December 2001.