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Evolution – Stephen Baxter

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Evolution

Stretching from the distant past into the remote future, from primordial Earth to the stars, “Evolution” is a soaring symphony of struggle, extinction, and survival; a dazzling epic that combines a dozen scientific disciplines and a cast of unforgettable characters to convey the grand drama of evolution in all its awesome majesty and rigorous beauty. Sixty-five million years ago, when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, there lived a small mammal, a proto-primate of the species “Purgatorius.” From this humble beginning, Baxter traces the human lineage forward through time. The adventure that unfolds is a gripping odyssey governed by chance and competition, a perilous journey to an uncertain destination along a route beset by sudden and catastrophic upheavals. It is a route that ends, for most species, in stagnation or extinction. Why should humanity escape this fate?

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Ark (Flood #2) – Stephen Baxter

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Ark (Flood, #2)

Hundreds will live, six billion will die.Our world ended in 2052, the year the last great flood finally overwhelmed the lands.A desperate bid for survival began in America, in the years before the end. The project which could be our final act could also be an impossible dream: creating a starship to take a few hundred survivors on an epic journey to a new world.As the waters rise, as savage wars are fought over the remaining high ground, the work goes on. Those who will live, of the billions who will die, are chosen. Families are torn apart and the resources of our drowning world are marshalled for one last gamble.Ark is the story of three women, Grace, Venus and Holle, and their part in humanity’s struggle to reach a new home. For the few survivors, the day of the launch will be only the beginning of the nightmare.

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Ultima (Proxima #2) – Stephen Baxter

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Ultima (Proxima, #2)

Fresh from his latest collaboration with Terry Pratchett on the Long Earth sequence Stephen Baxter now returns to the mysteries and challanges first hinted at in his acclaimed novel PROXIMA.In PROXIMA we discovered ancient alien artifacts on the planet of Per Ardua – hatches that allowed us to step across light years of space as if we were stepping into another room. The universe opened up to us. Now in ULTIMA the consequences of this new freedom make themselves felt. And we discover that there are minds in the universe that are billions of years old and they have a plan for us. For some of us. But as we learn the true nature of the universe we also discover that we have countless pasts all meeting in this present and that our future is terrifyingly finite. It’s time for us to fight to take back control.This is grand scale, big idea SF of the best possible sort. It is set to build on the massive success of PROXIMA and define Stephen Baxter’s work going forward.

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Exultant (Destiny’s Children #2) – Stephen Baxter

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Exultant (Destiny's Children, #2)

When it comes to cutting-edge science fiction, Stephen Baxter is in a league of his own. His mastery of hard science, his fearlessly speculative imagination, and his ability to combine grand philosophical questions with tales of rousing adventure make him essential reading for anyone concerned with the future of humankind. Now, in Exultant, Baxter takes us to a distant future of dazzling promise and deadly threat, in which a far-flung humanity battles for survival against an implacable alien foe.Destiny’s ChildrenEXULTANTFor more than twenty thousand years, humans have been at war with the alien race of Xeelee. It is a war fought with armaments so advanced as to be godlike, a war in which time itself has become an ever-shifting battleground. At the cost of billions of lives, and with ruthless and relentless efficiency, the ruling Coalition has pushed the Xeelee back to the galactic core, where the supermassive black hole known as Chandra serves the Xeelee as both fortress and power source. There, along a front millions of light-years long, a grisly stalemate reigns,until a young pilot, Pirius, faced with certain death, disobeys orders and employs an innovative time-travel maneuver that, for the first time in the history of the war, results in the capture of a Xeelee fighter. But far from being hailed as a hero when he returns to base with his prize, Pirius is court-martialed, disgraced, and sentenced to penal servitude on a bleak asteroid.It is not only Pirius who pays the price. In flying into the future and back again, Pirius returned to a time before he’d left, a time inhabited by his younger self. And that younger self, by the pitiless logic of Coalition justice, shares the older Pirius guilt and must be punished. Not everyone in the Coalition agrees. Commissary Nilis believes that the elder Pirius, whom he dubs Pirius Blue, may have found a way to defeat the Xeelee. But Nilis can do nothing for Pirius Blue. Instead, he takes charge of the younger Pirius (Pirius Red), and brings him back to Earth, the capital of a vast empire seething with intrigue.There Pirius Red will discover truths that will shatter his preconceived notions of all that he is fighting for, even of what it means to be human. Pirius Blue, meanwhile, will learn truths harsher and more discomfiting still. Yet the most shocking revelation of all is still to come, waiting for them at a place called Chandra. . . .From the Hardcover edition.

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Life on Mars: Tales from the New Frontier – Jonathan StrahanKage BakerJohn BarnesStephen BaxterCory DoctorowEllen KlagesNancy KressIan McDonaldNnedi OkoraforAlastair ReynoldsChris RobersonKim Stanley RobinsonRachel Swirsky

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Life on Mars: Tales from the New Frontier

Mars! The Red Planet! For generations, people have wondered what it would be like to travel to and live there. That curiosity has inspired some of the most durable science fiction, including Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles and the work of Isaac Asimov. Now the award-winning anthologist Jonathan Strahan has brought together thirteen original stories to explore the possibilities. After reading Life on Mars, readers will never look at the fourth planet from the sun the same way again.

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The Long Mars – Terry Pratchett, Stephen Baxter

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2040-2045: In the years after the cataclysmic Yellowstone eruption there is massive economic dislocation as populations flee Datum Earth to myriad Long Earth worlds. Sally, Joshua, and Lobsang are all involved in this perilous rescue work when, out of the blue, Sally is contacted by her long-vanished father and inventor of the original Stepper device, Willis Linsay. He tells her he is planning a fantastic voyage across the Long Mars and wants her to accompany him. Butt Sally soon learns that Willis has an ulterior motive for his request…. Meanwhile U. S. Navy Commander Maggie Kauffman has embarked on an incredible journey of her own, leading an expedition to the outer limits of the far Long Earth. For Joshua, the crisis he faces is much closer to home. He becomes embroiled in the plight of the Next: the super-bright post-humans who are beginning to emerge from their “long childhood” in the community called Happy Landings, located deep in the Long Earth. Ignorance and fear have caused “normal” human society to turn against the Next. A dramatic showdown seems inevitable….
Unabridged.
Read by Michael Fenton Stevens.

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Time’s Eye (A Time Odyssey #1) – Arthur C. ClarkeStephen Baxter

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Time's Eye (A Time Odyssey, #1)

For eons, Earth has been under observation by the Firstborn, beings almost as old as the universe itself. The Firstborn are unknown to humankind – until they act. In an instant, Earth is carved up and reassembled like a huge jigsaw puzzle. Suddenly the planet and every living thing on it no longer exist in a single timeline. Instead, the world becomes a patchwork of eras, from prehistory to 2037, each with its own indigenous inhabitants. Scattered across the planet are floating silver orbs impervious to all weapons and impossible to communicate with. Are these technologically advanced devices responsible for creating and sustaining the rifts in time? Are they cameras through which inscrutable alien eyes are watching? Or are they something stranger and more terrifying still? The answer may lie in the ancient city of Babylon, where two groups of refugees from 2037 – three cosmonauts returning to Earth from the International Space Station, and three United Nations peacekeepers on a mission in Afghanistan – have detected radio signals: the only such signals on the planet, apart from their own. The peacekeepers find allies in nineteenth-century British troops and in the armies of Alexander the Great. The astronauts, crash-landed in the steppes of Asia, join forces with the Mongol horde led by Genghis Khan. The two sides set out for Babylon, each determined to win the race for knowledge…and the power that lies within. Yet the real power is beyond human control, perhaps even human understanding. As two great armies face off before the gates of Babylon, it watches, waiting.

Contains Books 1 – 3
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Coalescent (Destiny’s Children #1) – Stephen Baxter

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Coalescent (Destiny's Children, #1)

When his father dies suddenly, George Poole stumbles onto a family secret: He has a twin sister he never knew existed, who was raised by an enigmatic cult called the Order. The Order is a hive – a human hive with a dominant queen–that has prospered below the streets of Rome for almost two millennia. After Poole enters the Order’s vast underground city and meets the disturbing inhabitants, he uncovers evidence that they have embarked on a divergent evolutionary path. These genetically superior humans are equipped with the tools necessary to render modern Homo sapiens as extinct as the Neanderthals. And now they are preparing to leave their underground realm.

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Transcendent (Destiny’s Children #3) – Stephen Baxter

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Transcendent (Destiny's Children, #3)

It is the year 2047, and nuclear engineer Michael Poole is still in the throes of grief. His beloved wife, Morag, died seventeen years ago, along with their second child. Yet Michael is haunted by more than just the memory of Morag. On a beach in Miami, he sees his dead wife. But she vanishes as suddenly as she appears, leaving no clue as to her mysterious purpose.

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Flood (Flood #1) – Stephen Baxter

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Flood (Flood, #1)

Next year. Sea levels begin to rise. The change is far more rapid than any climate change predictions; metres a year. Within two years London, only 15 metres above the sea, is drowned. New York follows, the Pope gives his last adress from the Vatican, Mecca disappears beneaths the waves. Where is all the water coming from? Scientists estimate that the earth was formed with seas 30 times in volume their current levels. Most of that water was burnt off by the sun but some was locked in the earth’s mantle. For the tip of Everest to disappear beneath the waters would require the seas to triple their volume. That amount of water is still much less than 1% of the earth’s volume. And somehow it is being released. The world is drowning. The biblical flood has returned. And the rate of increase is building all the time. Mankind is on the run, heading for high ground. Nuclear submarines prowl through clouds of corpses rising from drowned cities, populations are decimated and finally the dreadful truth is known. Before 50 years have passed there will be nowhere left to run. FLOOD tells the story of mankind’s final years on earth. The stories of a small group of people caught up in the struggle to survive are woven into a tale of unimaginable global disaster. And the hope offered for a unlucky few by a second great ark . . .

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