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ISBN 0312867077 / 9780312867072 / 0-312-86707-7
Publisher St Martins Pr
List price $23.95
› Find signed collectible books: 'Genesis'
Even after nearly 40 years in the biz, Poul Anderson still cranks out the imaginative sci fi like a champ, with the idea-packed Genesis--a billion-year-spanning tale involving immortal AIs and the future of Earth itself--being just another example. A decorated hard-SF veteran from the old school (think the Amazing, Analog and Omni crew from the '50s, '60s, and '70s), Anderson has got a mantle any other writer would kill for, boasting a Nebula Grand Master award, seven Hugos, and three "regular" Nebulas. (Heck, the guy's even got whippersnapper Greg Bear for a son-in-law.)
Taking on ideas that share space with Anderson's well-loved Fireball series (Harvest of Stars et al.), Genesis follows the peculiar existence of Christian Brannock and Laurinda Ashcroft, two humans who shared such affinity with machines in their mortal lives that they went on to become uploaded consciousnesses, immortal human-robot hybrids. Anderson mines even the mundanities of this situation thoroughly, but adds in enough twists in the far-future plot to start asking some really interesting questions too: when the vast supermind inhabiting posthuman Earth (mythically named Gaia) starts simulating endless replays of humanity's chaotic evolution, the time-hopping Brannock and Ashcroft--who have been tasked with investigating exactly what Gaia's been up to--find themselves struggling over the moral complexities of free will and the very nature of reality. --Paul Hughes [via]