In the year 2204, tragedy and terror forced a scientific team to prematurely evacuate Maleiva III. Nineteen years later, a rogue moon hurtling through space is about to obliterate the last opportunity to study this rare, life-supporting planet. With less than three weeks left before the disaster, superluminal pilot Priscilla "Hutch" Hutchins -- the only even remotely qualified professional within lightyears of the ill-fated planet -- must lead a small scientific team to the surface to glean whatever they can about its lifeforms and lost civilizations before time runs out. But catastrophe awaits when they are stranded on this strange and complex world of puzzles and impossibilities. And now Hutch and her people must somehow survive on a hostile world going rapidly mad -- as the clock ticks toward apocalypse for a doomed enigma now called...
Those who like their science hard and their alien adventures bloody will enjoy this latest from Philip K. Dick Award runner-up McDevitt (The Hercules Text). In the 23rd century Deepsix is a planet in deep trouble. In about three weeks a Jovian-sized world will collide with it. Although Deepsix is a treasure trove of life, it has been left unexplored for the last 20 years because hostile animals slaughtered most of the first human landing party. Now, with the discovery of traces of an advanced civilization on the planet, a new expedition hastily sets out to rescue bits and pieces of the culture before they are lost forever. To find the lander that was abandoned two decades earlier, the disgraced commander of the original expedition must make a deadly trek across Deepsix with (among others) two feisty women and a misogynistic celebrity writer who once pilloried the team leader in the press. Goaded by their off-planet superiors, they also have to solve the mystery inherent in the disappearance of Deepsix's civilization. McDevitt puts his characters into predictable jeopardies while methodically solving the conundrum of the missing aliens. Though the rigorous scientific explanations of the techniques used in the rescue are absorbing, the huge, mostly two-dimensional cast slows down the action. Sadly, McDevitt's world building is frequently sketchy and his otherworldly animals too terrestrial, although the sexual Venus's-flytrap segment does have its creative and amusing moments. 3-city author tour. FYI:In the last year McDevitt has been nominated for both Nebula and Hugo awards.
Entertaining science fiction and a fun ride. As usual, McDevitt shows a real talent for pacing and an engaging story. If you are looking for the depth and elegance of Tolkien or Herbert, this isn't your book. If you are looking for a fun book to immerse yourself in for a while, McDevitt is your man. I agree with the previous reviewer, the typos are annoying and really inexcusable. E-publishing doesn't mean the end of editors and whoever checked this book should have his/her pay cut.
This e-book had extensive errors throughout. While the book was well written all the spelling errors (scanning issues that were not caught?)
definitely detracted from the enjoyment of the read.
Although I think ancient shores is Jack's best work, but Deepsix is almost just as good. A total page turner.