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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Anathem, Reamde, and Cryptonomicon comes an exciting and thought-provoking science fiction epic; a grand story of annihilation and survival spanning five thousand years

What would happen if the world were ending?

A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.

But the complexities and unpredictability of human nature coupled with unforeseen challenges and dangers threaten the intrepid pioneers, until only a handful of survivors remains . . .; Five thousand years later, their progeny; seven distinct races now three billion strong; embark on yet another audacious journey into the unknown . . . to an alien world utterly transformed by cataclysm and time: Earth.

A writer of dazzling genius and imaginative vision, Neal Stephenson combines science, philosophy, technology, psychology, and literature in a magnificent work of speculative fiction that offers a portrait of a future that is both extraordinary and eerily recognizable. As he did in Anathem, Cryptonomicon, the Baroque Cycle, and Reamde, Stephenson explores some of our biggest ideas and perplexing challenges in a breathtaking saga that is daring, engrossing, and altogether brilliant.

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Booklist Review
Stephenson's new novel begins with the moon exploding. But if you're looking for B-movie-style sf schlock, that is where the pulp in this painstakingly realistic epic begins and ends. Once the seven new massive chunks of lunar material that were our moon settle around their center of gravity, textbook astrophysics takes over as humanity tries to figure out what happens next. But this is astrophysics explained and performed by one of the most realistic and relatable casts of characters in eschatological narrative history. Should you find yourself reading Stephenson's epic in public, absorbed in the deeply technical and emotional unfolding of Earth's fate, prepare yourself for your own surprise as you look up to find everyone in the cafe going about their lives as if everything is just as normal as it was the day before. This brilliant piecebook will crush you like a crumbling mountain for most of the hours you spend on its nearly 1,000 pages before it launches into strangely cathartic visions of the far future for its finale. Well-paced over three parts covering 5,000 years of humanity's future, Stephenson's monster of a book is likely to dominate your 2015 sf-reading experience. High-Demand Backstory: This author is huge news these days, and his latest opus will be eagerly sought in the public library.--Francis, Chris Copyright 2015 Booklist
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