ISBN is

978-0-8125-4558-6 / 9780812545586

Adiamante

by

Publisher:Tom Doherty Associates

Edition:Softcover

Language:English

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About the book:

Though L.E. Modesitt's greatest success is the ongoing Recluce fantasy series, his first novels were SF- -to which he returns in Adiamante. Far in the future, Earth is still scarred by old wars and pollutants, and infested with deadly new predators. Nevertheless it's a low-key, appropriate-technology Utopia, thanks to a genetically enforced social code known as the Construct which prohibits distrust, threats or pre-emptive violence. No such rules apply to the 12 giant invader ships from the computer-happy colony world Gates, sent to punish Earth for exiling their ancestors after a conflict so ancient that it's become folklore. Our planet's hastily appointed co-ordinator Ecktor has the job of steering through the crisis without violating the Construct, while the visitors hope to provoke some incident that'll give them the excuse to lose their terrible weapons. Earth's mind- linked elite have a secret defence of their own, but a painful and expensive one. Physically unable to lie to or threaten the grim visitors, Ecktor offers diplomatic hints and parables: for example, their ships are armoured in utterly unbreakable adiamante, the toughest substance known to science, shattered fragments of which are strewn through the world's topsoil ... It's a tense, thoughtful story, as pressure piles up and the situation escalates towards disaster. --David Langford

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