Earth Smugly Thought It Had No Need to Explore Space
—but the Universe Had a Nasty Surprise Up Its Sleeve!
Landen Keene could be forgiven for thinking that he was born into the wrong time. A nuclear propulsion engineer, he had battled for years against government bureaucracies and CEOs obsessed with the bottom line, both stifling innovation by forcing scientific research into tried and proven channels with a sure payoff. The days of heroic scientific discovery and financial risk-taking were long over. Not surprisingly, Landen's dream of colonizing and exploiting space is too much of a long shot for either government or industry to take the risk. Of course, he could always emigrate to Saturn...
Among the Saturnian moons, farsighted individuals, working without help or permission from any government, had established a colony and called themselves the Kronians, after the Greek name for Saturn. Operating without the hidebound restrictions of bureaucratic Earth, the colony is a magnet, attracting the best and brightest of the home world, and has been making important new discoveries. But one of their claims—that they have found proof that the Solar System has undergone repeated cataclysms, and as recently as a few thousand years ago—flies in the face of the reigning dogma, and is under attack by the scientific establishment.
The fact that the planet Jupiter has recently emitted a white-hot proto-planet as large as the Earth which is hurtling sunwards like a gigantic comet does not faze establishment scientists, who contend that this is a unique occurrence. But when it is learned that the new planet will come close enough to Earth to obliterate civilization, and may even collide, panic and chaos reign. And with the world that we know ending around him, Keene has to choose between escaping with the Kronians on their ship, or making a desperate journey across a continent, trying to find a woman he didn't even realize he cared about—if she is still alive....
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James P. Hogan is a science fiction writer in the grand tradition, combining informed and accurate speculation from the cutting edge of science and technology with suspenseful storytelling and living, breathing characters. Born in London in 1941, he worked as an aeronautical engineer specializing in electronics and digital systems, and for several major computer firms including DEC, before turning to writing full-time in 1979. His first novel was greeted by Isaac Asimov with the rave, "Pure science fiction . . . Arthur Clarke, move over!" and his subsequent work quickly consolidated his reputation as a major SF author. He has written over a dozen novels including Paths to Otherwhere and Bug Park (both Baen), the New York Times bestsellers The Proteus Operation and Endgame Enigma (both available from Baen), the "Giants" series (Del Rey), and the Prometheus Award Winner The Multiplex Man (coming soon in a new Baen edition). Hogan currently splits his time between residences in Ireland and Florida.