Steal Across the SkyAugust 7, 2013
This is the best sci-fi that I have read for this year, so far. It’s at the pinnacle of the sci-fi world in asking the “what-if” question.
I am not going to give in any detail on the story, it will be a major spoiler. DO NOT READ any review with spoiler in it, because it will destroy the pleasure of reading and finding out.
In first few pages, it does not look like any different compared to common sci-fi. Several human astronaut, selected by ET that just visited the Earth, on mission to “witness” several planet. The alien itself, called Atoner because they want to atone their previous sin against humanity. The entire “witness” program is in accordance with their atonement program. The big question is, WHAT TO WITNESS? The answer will change humanity beyond the wildest dream.
And Nancy Kress dropped the bomb exactly on the spot. I cannot really imagine what will really happened if this story is a true story. The upheaval, the outrage, the chaos! Everything that we believe in, everything that is dear to us! This is indeed one of the best sci-fi that boldly go where no man has gone before.
Why I give it only 4 stars, not 5 stars. The bomb is drop in the middle of the book. After the bomb, everything is just the aftermath. Even though there are many events that unravel unpredictably, but still, the biggest bomb is dropped already. The journey has gone downhill afterwards.
I personally applauds the author for elaborating the effect of such profound question, on religion, culture, science, and even crime and mystery novel! Good job, Nancy Kress. You are one of my favorite now.