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Inherit the Earth
ISBN 0312864930 / 9780312864934 / 0-312-86493-0
Publisher Tor Books
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All Damon Hart wanted was to be his own man. Being the son of Conrad "Savior of Humanity" Helier didn't leave a lot of room for Hart's own life, so he abandoned his family, his heritage, and his money. But when the past starts catching up with him, and the people he loves start getting hurt, Hart has no alternative but to accept the responsibility of his ancestry. Was his father, the inventor of the artificial womb, a savior or an evil madman? And who is the self-appointed judge executing retribution on everyone related to Helier?
Inherit the Earth begins with a good solid mystery that gets more involved and more involving as the complexities of the story pile one atop the next. Unfortunately, Brian Stableford is reworking ground that Bruce Sterling handled better in Holy Fire. Moreover, the plot is often lost in lengthy explications of future history that seem derivative, either of Sterling's work, or Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age.
With the exception of Hart's pain-in-the-ass ex-girlfriend Diana (who is a pleasure from start to finish), the characters fail to evoke much interest. It is a testament to the strength of the plot that the book carries through to the end, which unfortunately fails to deliver on the strong buildup. For the most part it's a good gripping story, with gems of beautiful language and flashes of brilliance, but it's not the ultimate science fiction book on nanotechnology and longevity. --Blunt Jackson [via]