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Fallen Angels by Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle and Michael Flynn
Published by Baen Books
Reviewed by Leigh Kimmel
Tis a proud and lonely thing to be a fan.
And a dangerous thing, in the grim new future of scarcity and the ever-advancing Ice. The deep-ecologists have won and pinned the blame for the world's troubles on science, which is now anathema. Fantasy is grudgingly tolerated because it's about elves and dwarves and taking care of the earth, but science fiction is anathema. Even if the First Amendment officially protects the literature, there are other ways of destroying people who persist in reading of rocketships and other mechanical wonders.
But there are a few who keep the dream alive, who look up with pride instead of loathing at the space stations Peace and Freedom where the Angels dwell. And when two Angels on a desperate mission to scoop volatiles from the Earth's atmosphere are shot down and stranded on the Ice in what was once the fields of northern Minnesota, the fans are determined to rescue them before the technophobic government comes to "help" them."
But it isn't enough just to get them off the Ice and hide them from government agents. At the super-secret, shrunken Worldcon held in the mansion of a Minneapolis-St. Paul area fan, they decide that the only hope for Alex and Gordon is to return them to space. So off everyone goes in pursuit of a rocket that may or may not still exist, and the wherewithal to launch it into orbit.
Although this book can be read and enjoyed by anyone, people with strong ties to fandom will enjoy the wealth of in-jokes that have been planted throughout the story. A large number of the characters are based upon real prominent fans, either under their own names or humorous plays upon their names.
Click here to order Fallen Angels in hardcover.
Review posted November 18, 2002
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