'"Cosmonaut Keep" is a portal to a deeply imagined future history that parlays X-Files paranoia about Area 51 and alien Greys into a vast interstellar community watched over by microcosmic gods.' - Paul McAuley, INTERZONE
'Science fiction's freshest new writer' - Salon
After the Ural Caspian Oil War, nobody really trusted the EU government. So why should their extraordinary announcement of first contact with alien intelligence be believed?
Matt Cairns thinks he can discover the truth. It is out there, but much, much further away than he could have imagined. Thousands of light-years from Earth, a human colony is struggling for survival. The world on which they have settled, however, has already been inhabited by humans - and other intelligent species from Earth - for millennia. In that ancient division of labour, humans do have a place. But where is it?
Twenty-first-century political intrigue becomes space opera on an epic scale in Ken MacLeod's first book in a dazzling new series. His most ambitious novel to date, it will take one of Britain's most exciting new science fiction authors to even greater heights of success and critical acclaim.
Books by Ken MacLeod:
The Star Fraction
The Stone Canal
The Cassini Division
The Sky Road
Engines of Light
Corporation Wars Trilogy
The Human Front
Learning the World
The Execution Channel
The Restoration Game
Scottish author MacLeod (Cassini Division) crafts an intricate tale, with two thematically linked plots that focus, in different ways, on human travel between the stars and the aliens who help them. Circa 2040 computer guru Matt Cairns flees from Scotland to the United States, then to a space station; he possesses crucial information supplied by aliens that may provide the means for humans to travel the stars. His adventures happen at a critical moment in history: soon after aliens contact a space station, the political situation on Earth rapidly destabilizes. Two hundred years later, biologist Gregor Cairns, a descendant of the cosmonauts who colonized the planet Mingulay, realizes that navigating the stars may be within the grasp of humans, and he sets out to find some of the long-lived crew of the Bright Star, the original starship to reach the planet. Gregor's investigation of the aliens who pilot interplanetary craft the friendly but uncommunicative saurs and the huge kraken eventually leads to a surprising link between past and present. MacLeod handles the strands of the plot deftly, weaving one beautifully realized world with the other and highlighting the parallels between the two. Rarely does a book demand so much of the reader and then deliver. Densely written with a remarkable depth of cultural texture, though occasionally confusing in its politics (which includes socialists, "Webblies" and libertarian capitalists), MacLeod's story is spoiled only by the false notes of two parallel love interests. FYI:McLeod'sThe Cassini Division was a finalist for both the Nebula and the Arthur C. Clarke awards.