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Robert Charles Wilson is an accomplished and acclaimed writer with an impressive body of work. The Chronoliths is his best novel yet, an intelligent, fascinating, and frightening account of a unique incarnation of time travel.
American software developer Scott Warden is living a careless expatriate life on the beaches of 21st century Thailand when a monolithic pillar, sheathed in ice and composed of an unknown, indestructible material, appears in the jungle. The artifact is a chronolith, a memorial commemorating the conquest of Thailand--20 years in the future. As Warden follows his estranged wife and badly injured daughter back to the U.S., more chronoliths celebrating future victories appear, to devastating effect. Bangkok and Jerusalem are destroyed, and societies worldwide dissolve in chaos or teeter on the brink of collapse. As the chronoliths close in on America, Scott joins with biker and undercover agent Hitch Paley and experimental physicist Sue Chopra in a literal race against time to find a way to change the future--which has already happened. --Cynthia Ward
A talented SF writer who has never gained the name recognition he deserves, Wilson (Darwinia) is a master of character development, comparable to the late Theodore Sturgeon in his believable portrayals of emotionally scarred loners. Scott Warden, an abuse survivor, first drags his family off to Thailand for a short-lived programming job and then refuses to leave the country when his job ends, forcing his wife and daughter into poverty. One fateful day, Scott takes off for the backcountry to witness the advent of the first Chronolith, an enormous high-tech monument sent from 20 years in the future to commemorate the military victory of an Asian tyrant named Kuin. By the time Scott returns home he discovers that his family has fled to the U.S. and that his marriage is effectively over. Soon after, another Chronolith appears, destroying Bangkok, and it's followed by many more, each one proclaiming the victories of the mysterious Kuin. Scott is contacted by a former teacher, the physicist Sue Chopra, who believes that Scott's proximity to the original Chronolith has connected him to the ongoing disaster in some strange fashion. As Sue and Scott attempt to figure out what's going on, society gradually collapses around them. People begin to worship Kuin as a virtual god and, as the years pass, the date on which the first Chronolith was launched draws near. This superb novel, combining Wilson's trademark well-developed characters and fine prose with stunning high-tech physics, should strongly appeal to connoisseurs of quality science fiction. (Aug. 20)
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Having thoroughly enjoyed `Spin', I was keen to read more of Wilson's work. However, perhaps my expectations were too high. Read morePublished 27 days ago by Willy Eckerslike
Absolutely fascinating read beginning to end. So many twists and turns and interesting plays on time and space and evolving relations.Published 9 months ago by Jonathon Lynn Graham
This novel was amazingly well written, the best I've read this summer. The story is intriguing and keeps you coming back. I'm partial to first person novels. Read morePublished 16 months ago by JF
..., I mean: please - The Chronoliths? The vague, futurey/fantasy-inspired cover art?
Despite appearances, however, this is a mature, heartbreaking, but ultimately... Read more
I picked up one of his earlier works -- I want to say 'by accident', but it's tough to 'accidentally read a novel' -- by chance a half-decade ago, and it was one of those few books... Read morePublished on Feb. 6 2007 by B. Salomons
A science fiction story with a great premise: giant monuments, commemorating a conqueror's future victories, start appearing in cities all over Earth, creating social and political... Read morePublished on May 13 2004
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The concept of a future conqueror sending back victory monuments to influence public opinion and smooth his way for conquest is just brilliant. Read morePublished on March 18 2004 by V. A McCoy
If you like nice tight simple stories with everything laid out for you to follow then this book is not for you. Read morePublished on Feb. 24 2004 by Mathew A. Shember