The Far Call Author:Gordon R. Dickson Mankind has taken its first small step outward from Earth, leaving its footprints on the moon. The next step, perhaps in the closing years of the century, will be many times longer and more perilous--the leap to Mars. The far call is a master novelist's evocation of that epic step, of the men and women who unite to make it, of the tangled web ... more »of rivalry, stubbornness, greed and indifference that threatens to prevent it, of the driving need for humanity to complete it.
For the multinational crew of "marsnauts," the problem is straightforward--facing the dangers of space they have been trained to cope with, enduring the nearly impossible working conditions dictated by national jealousies and political expediency... in the end, a simple matter of duty and survival.
For those left behind on Earth, things are more complex. Wendy Hansard, wife of the expedition's commander, must finally acknowledge the gulf between her own feelings and her husband's, and must live with the dread of what his dedication may drive him to do.
The cagey diplomatic observers from the countries participating in the expedition see no reason to give up their politics-as-usual stratagems...or a little bit of discrete espionage, heedless of the explosive consequences of discovery.
The people at Cape Canaveral area go about their business, profiting from the space effort or resenting it, and unwittingly playing parts in the hidden intrigues that shape it.
Undersecretary-for-space Jens Wylie must watch the slow, sure growth of disaster--and decide, at last, whether he has enough in him to risk what must be risked to avert it and save space for the human race.
Grand in scope, yet sharply focused in its depiction of character, The Far Call reaches beyond the bounds of conventional science fiction to achieve the status of a major novel about a future that will grow out of our own times« less