Книга: Bear Greg «Halo. Silentium»

Halo. Silentium

Серия: "-"

In the last years of the Forerunner empire, chaos rules. The Flood - a horrifying shape-changing parasite - has arrived in force, aided by unexpected allies. Internal strife within the ecumene has desperately weakened Forerunner defences. Too little, too late, the legal rate of Juridicals is only now investigating possible crimes by the Master Builder and others. Evidence-gathering agents, known collectively as Catalog, have been dispatched to collect testimony from the Librarian and both Didacts: the Ur-Didact, treacherously abandoned in a Flood-infested system, and the Bornstellar Didact, who accompanies the Librarian as she preserves specimens against the dire possibility of Halo extermination. Facing the imminent collapse of their civilization, the Librarian and Ur-Didact reveal what they know about the relationship between the long-vanished Precursors and the Flood. The Precursors created many technological species, including humanity and the Forerunners. But the roots of the Flood may be found in an act of enormous barbarity, carried out beyond our galaxy ten million years before. Because of that barbarism, a greater evil looms. Only the Ur-Didact and the Librarian - husband and wife pushed into desperate conflict - hold the keys to a solution. Facing the consequences of a mythic tragedy, one of them must now commit the greatest atrocity of all time - to prevent an insane evil from dominating the entire universe.

Издательство: "Macmillan Publishers" (2014)

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BEAR, Greg

   Working name of US writer Gregory Dale Bear (1951-), son-in-law of Poul ANDERSON. He began publishing sf with "Destroyers" for Famous Science Fiction in 1967, and began to write full-time in 1975. His first stories and novels were auspicious but not remarkably so, and he gave no immediate signs of becoming one of the dominant writers of the 1980s. Between 1985 and 1990, however, he published six novels whose importance to the realm of HARD SF-and to the world of sf in general - it would be hard to overrate; he also served as President of the SCIENCE FICTION WRITERS OF AMERICA 1988-90. Other new writers in that period, like Lucius SHEPARD, had perhaps a greater grasp of the aesthetic trials and challenges of the art of fiction; still others, like Kim Stanley ROBINSON, might conceive a richer world; some, like David BRIN, might be handier with galaxies; and William GIBSON, by giving CYBERPUNK a habitation, gave Bruce STERLING a home. But only Orson Scott CARD could legitimately and centrally stand with GB and manifest the voice of US GENRE SF.It would be a long trek from Hegira (1979; rev 1987 UK), GB's first novel, a PLANETARY-ROMANCE quest tale whose venue, a huge artificial hollow world comically called Hegira, turns out itself to be questing through space at the end of time, accompanied by a vast conglomeration of similar planets which constitute en masse a singularity capable of surviving the end of the Universe, and whose task it is to carry the burden of life into the subsequent reality. Even in the extensively revised version of 1987, the narrative is top-heavy with explanations pumped for SENSE OF WONDER. Though the variegations of cast and scenery are typical of later GB creations - and though the biological imperatives (BIOLOGY), and the transcendental COSMOLOGY at novel's close, would be reiterated time and again in his work - Hegira seemed to show ambition far beyond the reach of talent. It was an impression only slowly to be modified by the far-reaching (but frequently lame) books which followed, like Psychlone (1979; vt Lost Souls 1982), though Beyond Heaven's River (1980) - a tale which carries a Japanese fighter pilot from WWII into a morally complex galactic venue 400 years hence - manages both to create a plausible protagonist and to match his understanding of the larger picture with ours. Set in a universe which shares some features with the one in that book are Strength of Stones (fixup 1981; rev 1988 UK) and some of the stories assembled in The Wind from a Burning Woman (coll 1983; with 2 stories added, rev vt The Venging 1992 UK) and Tangents (coll 1989) - whose title story won both HUGO and NEBULA awards. These tales depict with some confidence venues created by a human civilization faced with the need to balance its nearly infinite capacity to transform the Universe against ancient moral imperatives. The title story of the first collection, for instance, evokes a conflict between environmentalist Naderites and technophilic Geshels which would echo down the aisles of EON (1985); and "Sisters", in the second collection, brilliantly affirms a broad-church definition of the human family.It was not, however, until the publication of BLOOD MUSIC (1985) that GB began to show his true strength, which might be defined as the capacity to incorporate the hardest and most cognitively demanding of hard-sf premises and plot-logics into tales whose protagonists display far greater complexity than anything unliving. It can be argued that the singular failure of almost all hard-sf writers to create noteworthy literature lies in their assumption that it is more difficult to understand - say - plasma physics than to understand human beings. The significance of GB's later 1980s novels lies in the fact that his human beings are more difficult to describe than his physics. (It might be added that his political views - like most hard-sf writers he constantly expresses them - are also graced by a lack of dreadful simplicity.) In BLOOD MUSIC - the 1983 novella version won both Hugo and Nebula - the hard science is GENETIC ENGINEERING, and the character who ignites the plot is a humanly ineffectual scientist who illicitly uses biochip technology to tranform RNA molecules into living computers; these join together into Gestalts which themselves combine into a single transcendental higher consciousness incorporating all of life upon the planet into one externally homogeneous biosphere. The close of the book, as the new consciousness enters into rapport with the true Universe, has been appropriately likened to the climax of Arthur C. CLARKE's CHILDHOOD'S END (1953).GB's other 1985 novel EON, along with its sequel Eternity (1988), is both more conventional and more enthralling. The conventionality lies in a partial return to the large-scale enterprises of cosmological SPACE OPERA, accompanied by a marked retreat from the nearly religious transcendentalism evoked in GB by any application of information theory. The grip of the sequence lies in the remarkable fertility of the concepts presented: the hollowed-out asteroid, from an alternate timeline, whose final chamber is literally endless; the extraordinary architectonics of GB's demonstration of the nature of this phenomenon; the enormously complex COMPUTER-run culture partway up the infinite corridor; the relentless expansion of perspective, in a series of CONCEPTUAL BREAKTHROUGHS, as the ordering and end of the entire Universe come into question in the second volume. In the final analysis, this relentlessness works perhaps best in the earlier portions of the tale - EON itself is perhaps the best-constructed epic of cosmology yet written in the field - but the two volumes together amply demonstrate GB's control over scale and cognition.In something like the same spirit, The Forge of God (1987) tackles the END OF THE WORLD by confronting NEAR FUTURE humanity with a sequence of ALIEN intrusions, one of which proves utterly and implacably fatal to the existence of the planet. The bulldog inexorability with which GB presents this scenario is darkly exhilarating, and seemed at the time a welcome prophylactic to the assumption embedded in most hard-sf novels that catastrophes, no matter how grave, will be sidestepped by the fit: a sequel, however, Anvil of Stars (1992 UK), somewhat softens the blow of the first volume by carrying a few human survivors in an alien ship on a revenge mission directed against the apparent makers of the autonomous weapons which destroyed Earth. Ultimately more interesting, though told with a complexity that some readers have found congested, was Queen of Angels (1990), which embodies a wide range of speculations about the effects of recent theories about NANOTECHNOLOGY. Set mainly in a Los Angeles transformed into a kind of beehive of human and para-human activity, the book tells several kinds of story, in several venues: a formal tale of detection (told from the complex viewpoint of a biotransformed female cop); a prose-poem leading into voodoo; a tale of VIRTUAL REALITY entrapments, and a narrative of the coming to consciousness of an AI. Throughout, sustaining these strands of story, is a boding sense of transcendental transformation, a sense that Queen of Angels is perhaps a snapshot of one moment in an epic which will end in the total victory of information that GB described in BLOOD MUSIC. A short novel, Heads (1990 UK), set in something like the same Universe, concisely conflates a Moon-based search for the Absolute Zero of temperature and the threat that a cryogenically preserved head might turn out to be that of a 20th-century guru whose manipulative sect generations earlier proved particularly attractive in some sf circles.Moving Mars (1993), which is connected to the world depicted in Queen of Angels, and which won the 1995 Nebula Award, is a broader and more traditional tale. Its depiction of MARS may lack some of the resolute arguments that accompany every speculative suggestion in Kim Stanley ROBINSON's Mars sequence, but GB's novel gains a commensurate freedom of sweep in its story - which intermixes politics and an array of scientific discoveries - of the emancipation of Mars from the hegemony of a paranoia-driven Earth. The title, it may be fair to add, is meant literally.It is not easy to say what might come next; it can be expected that whatever GB writes will continue to bring sf and the world together, relentlessly.
   Other works: The Speculative Poetry Review \#1 (anth 1977 chap), an anthology in magazine form; a STAR TREK tie, Corona * (1984); the Michael Perrin fantasy sequence comprising The Infinity Concerto (1984) and The Serpent Mage (1986), both assembled as Songs of Earth \& Power (omni 1992 UK; rev 1994 US), the UK edition incorrectly implying revised status - GB's modifications were not incorporated because of production difficulties, and appear for the first time in the US edition; Sleepside Story (1988 chap); Early Harvest (coll 1988), containing also some nonfiction; Hardfought (1983 IASFM; 1988 chap dos), reprinting the Nebula-winning story; Bear's Fantasies (coll 1992).

Источник: BEAR, Greg

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Bear GregHalo. SilentiumIn the last years of the Forerunner empire, chaos rules. The Flood - a horrifying shape-changing parasite - has arrived in force, aided by unexpected allies. Internal strife within the ecumene has… — Macmillan Publishers, - Подробнее...2014
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