Seveneves by Neal Stephenson
Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: William Mrrow
Publication Date: 2015
Source: Copy provided by publisher
The Short Version:
Both an apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic story of a a dying earth and the remnants of the human population five thousand years later.
Why I Read It:
As soon as I read the publisher’s synopsis I was interested.
From the publisher:
What would happen if the world were ending?
A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.
But the complexities and unpredictability of human nature coupled with unforeseen challenges and dangers threaten the intrepid pioneers, until only a handful of survivors remain . . .
Five thousand years later, their progeny—seven distinct races now three billion strong—embark on yet another audacious journey into the unknown . . . to an alien world utterly transformed by cataclysm and time: Earth.
I had a hard time deciding on my overall thoughts about this book. I absolutely loved parts of it but there were parts of it I didn’t like nearly as much.
The overall story of an event triggering a relatively short term desperate effort by the entire world’s population to save a small percentage of as many forms of life on the planet as possible and the results of that effort thousands of years later is interesting and fascinating.
There are places where that story drags a bit and places where the author lost me in the science and attempts to describe the physical layout of a network of structures in space. I will admit to skimming some of that in places. Andy Weir did such a great job of making the science accessible in The Martian that the places where I got lost in the science in this one made it difficult to hold my attention and draw me back in after I set it down.
When the story got back to the people, however I never lost interest. It was a suspense thriller in space with a huge cast. There are good guys, bad guys and a lot of political gamesmanship.
I would have rated the book higher if it had been about 200 pages shorter.