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Titan (NASA, Bk 2)
Titan - NASA, Bk 2
Author: Stephen Baxter
Humankind's greatest -- and last -- adventure! — Possible signs of organic life have been found on Titan, Saturn's largest moon. A group of visionaries led by NASA's Paula Benacerraf plan a daring one-way mission that will cost them everything. Taking nearly a decade, the billion-mile voyage includes a "slingshot" tra...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780061057137
ISBN-10: 0061057134
Publication Date: 11/1/1998
Pages: 688
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 30 ratings
Publisher: Eos
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
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Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Titan (NASA, Bk 2) on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Hard SF from a solid writer.
reviewed Titan (NASA, Bk 2) on + 48 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Baxter is such a versatile SF writer that even his "hard" science fiction can vary widely from book to book. It's hard to imagine such a mind that can envision personalities, situations and universes with the scope of his prose.

Titan falls within a category of Sci Fi that is near and dear to my heart: that which is almost, but not quite, possible in our present time. The book focuses upon a small group of people who do not wish to abandon the manned space exploration dream even when popular opinion and bureaucratic judgment make such an act mandatory.

Using abandoned technology and materiel, this group dedicates the rest of their lives to fulfill what they see as an ultimate dream and potentially the spark which can fan the flame of public opinion back to the drive to explore the universe.

The book Titan explores this journey to Titan itself - Saturn's moon which has, in real life, been photographed and briefly touched by man's exploratory machines. One of Baxter's strengths is the ability to envision the way human beings interact with each other and their environment. We are able to deeply identify with the characters are they go through the difficulties of a long journey in a small space, with the usual daily minutae which, in space, can become life-threatening dangers. Once arrived at their destination, they must survive landing and prepare their limited habitat for an extended stay.

Baxter forms characters which are full fleshed enough to make random accidents and temper flare ups quite believeable. Only toward the end does he slip into more esoteric, far-future fantasy - yet what I call "fantasy" has nothing to do with elves and telepathy: this is the strangely dreamy universe created by scientifically genuine chemistry, physics and space.
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