Dragon's Egg by Robert L. Forward
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Classic Hardcore Hard-SF. :)
Really hardcore, even, written by an astrophysicist and wild with the worldbuilding. :) It's the concept that shines. Think about the extended growth of a people from hunters and gatherers all the way to a massively accomplished civilization in the space of a single novel and add a little wrinkle: this happens in the space of how long it takes us for apes to notice a neutron star passing through our Solar System, to put together an expedition, and then to throw scientists at it.
This alien civilization is on the surface of the neutron star. :) They live fast, think fast, and pass through generations really fast. They had time to ponder and build religions and wage wars and learn, looking at our science expedition. It's pretty awesome. :)
I'm reminded of several novels that came out after this one, of course, such as Baxter's Flux, which might be a bit wilder and far-future, but has humans living on a neutron star, too, but I'm also thinking about Children of Time and Crucible of Time from other authors. :) Long-span civilizations and alien cultures. Great stuff. :)
I'm so glad to have caught this classic! :)
View all my reviews