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Footfall Mass Market Paperback – Apr 12 1986

3.8 out of 5 stars 70 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey; Reissue edition (April 12 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345323440
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345323446
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 3 x 17.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 318 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars 70 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #187,718 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Inside Flap

"NOBODY DOES IT BETTER THAN NIVEN AND POURNELLE. --Tom Clancy
They first appear as a series of dots on astronomical plates, heading from Saturn directly toward Earth. Since the ringed planet carries no life, scientists deduce the mysterious ship to be a visitor from another star.
The world's frantic efforts to signal the aliens go unanswered. The first contact is hostile: the invaders blast a Soviet space station, seize the survivors, and then destroy every dam and installation on Earth with a hail of asteriods.
Now the conquerors are descending on the American heartland, demanding servile surrender--or death for all humans.
"ROUSING . . . THE BEST OF THE GENRE."
--The New York Times Book Review

About the Author

Larry Niven is the award-winning author of the Ringworld series, along with many other science fiction masterpieces and fantasy including the Magic Goes Away series. His "Beowulf's Children", co-authored with Jerry Pournelle and Steven Barnes, was a New York Times bestseller. He has received the Nebula Award, five Hugos, four Locus Awards, two Ditmars, the Prometheus, and the Robert A. Heinlein Award, among other honors. He lives in Chatsworth, California.

JERRY POURNELLE is an essayist, journalist, and science fiction author. He has advanced degrees in psychology, statistics, engineering, and political science.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
_____________________________________
I still think this is the best alien-invasion story I've ever
read. Granted, it's hard to write a sensible invasion story, given that
a) it's hard to think of a reason for rational aliens to invade, and
b) if they did, they should win overwhelmingly. See rifles vs. spears.
But it makes a great *story*, and N&P have given probably as
reasonable a backstory as anyone could. As an example of high-level
page-turner storytelling, Footfall still rings my chimes. I've read it
three times, plus the last time I picked it up a couple of years ago, to
jog my memory to reply to a post, I got sucked in again and spent the
afternoon rereading the good parts. "Orion will Rise" -- all right!
Footfall is dragged down a bit by dated political background: the
USSR is alive and well here, and is portrayed as considerably
stronger and healthier than it actually was in 1985. I'd skim over the
Russian scenes; in fact the book is pretty slow-moving until the
aliens arrive, so a quick skim of most of this early scene-setting
material is all you need.
And make no mistake, once the action starts, you'll have no futher
complaints. Good stuff, guys.
Happy reading!
Pete Tillman
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
First, let's get it out of the way - I loved this book, and was absolutely riveted by the ending. I always enjoy an ambiguous ending - although a well-done one (like this) leaves me desparate for more. Perhaps these two will write sequels one day. They will inevitably prove disappointing, but dammit, it'll be satisfying.
Anyway, the point of my review is to refute those who dismiss the concept of the SF writer team in the book. What, exactly, do you suppose is the difference between this and the "think-tanks" that exist as unofficial (or official, in some cases)advisors to our government officials in real life? Nothing. In real life, there are groups of people who spend their time thinking and planning, and that's no different in the book. The fact that this think-tank dwells on an unusual subject shouldn't be considered outlandish, given the premise of the book.
The only difference between the Pentagon planning teams (I'd be absolutely astonished if there aren't existing plans for catastrophic meteor impact or even alien invasion) and this fictional sci-fi think-tank is that the Pentagon boys have shinier shoes and nice uniforms. But when you get down to it, both groups were doing nothing but guessing, so who's to say which is going to come up with better solutions? Remember, in the book, the SF writers provided the imagination and the military worked on making it practical. Seems perfectly reasonable to me.
(Although if it happened today, it seems equally likely that the team would be made up of priests rather than SF writers, given the political climate. It would have been interesting to have a General Boykin type in this book.)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Yes-you might be thinking "Another alien invasion book?". However this is a good revisit to that classic idea. Niven and Pournelle create a solid work with some suprises and it is well worth the read. Too bad the movie industry didn't choose to film this book instead of doing the intelligence insulting ID4.
Two minor dings on the book...I thought there would be an explanation for the elephant-like appearance of the invaders, like maybe a plot element of them actually decending from the elephants of Earth, this was never done. The other thing was I thought it was about 100 pages too long.
A good book and recommended.
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Format: Paperback
Sorry, after 250 pages, I finally gave up and skimmed the rest of this book. (The ending was actually very good!) I found the alien dialogues hard to understand, and with SO MANY human characters, none of which you ever get to really know or understand or care about, (Explaining why there's a character list at the front of the book!), I just couldn't get into this book at all! And I really wanted to! Hey, I gave it 250 pages! The pacing is unbearably slow. I've heard about "Lucifer's Hammer" for years, but now, I am really not sure that I'll read it if it's anything at all like this book!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book could never be made into a movie as the audience would break out laughing when they saw the aliens(little elephants). In the book it works as these 3 trunked aliens come off as being very sinister and threatening indeed. The science is facinating and is not only believable but most of it is within our grasp right now. Read this book at the beach or while relaxing in your favorite lawn chair. Next thing you know you will wonder how you got that sunburn and where all the people went and why is the sun going down, isn't it 10am in the morning!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is an excellent read. The aliens are realistic and their culture well-thought out. A major plus is that we get an insight into the motivations of both human and alien.
I'm not sure I would argue that it suffers from the too many characters know each other syndrome. The story is plausible as to how the known characters keep popping into each other.
One thing to note - this book is not an alternate history of what would have happened if the Soviet Union hadn't collapsed. Originally, the book was published in the early/mid 1980s, I believe before Gorbachev came to power. I.e. back in the heyday of the evil empire years.
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