Cleverly-constructed sf novel about First Contact with an insectoid civilization on an ice planet. Sometimes verging into hard sf, it still manages to be an intriguing story of a truly alien evolutionary path that yet manages to be recognizable (eventually) to the human explorers.
Out on the far boundaries of the solar system, in the Oort Cloud, intelligent life has been discovered by humanity's space probes. Now the first humans to venture beyond the planetary system have been sent to make contact with this incredibly strange race and to tour the center of their civilization. what they discover is explosive beyond their wildest dreams.