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Infinity's Shore by David Brin
Published by Bantam Books
Reviewed by Leigh Kimmel
Infinity's Shore by David Brin is the sequel to Brightness Reef. It is also in some ways a sequel to Startide Rising, the second Uplift book. It weaves together a large number of different storylines, from the dolphins of the spaceship Streaker and the kids whose homemade submarine discovered them to the Rothen who claim to be humanity's lost Patrons to the Jophur who come to finish their ancient war of extermination against the g'Keks. The Jophur are a further Uplifted version of the traeki, composite beings that look like piles of rings on a waxy core. Traeki are gentle, quiet creatures that create a harmony among their various rings, while Jophur have been given command rings which tie the other rings together into a unified being with a drive for purpose and greatness. The traeki of Jijo had fled because they believed that this development was a terrible mistake.
The Jophur use a mysterious golden substance that is made of congealed quantified time to seal the g'Kek city and the Rothen ship. For unprotected beings such as those in the g'Kek city this is apparently fatal (unless it turns out that their lives are just in abeyance, and it's bringing them out of it incorrectly that kills), but the people in the Rothen ship have an atmosphere inside and thus survive. However, getting them back out is not easy, since observer effects create weird interactions with the efforts to unravel the toporgic substance.
However, when we reach the end of the book, it is clear that this is actually just building up toward the third and final book of the new Uplift trilogy, Heaven's Reach.
Click here to buy Infinity's Shore in paperback.
Review posted July 20, 1999
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