Lucifer's Hammer Mass Market Paperback – May 12 1985
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From the Publisher
I think this is one of the most exciting, inspiring books I've ever read. Humankind, faced with overwhelming cataclysm, regroups to fight its way back to civilization. All the way back; no settling for another uncomfortable, time-wasting Dark Age. It is a story with brain and heart--and a lot of both--and I can't figure how it missed that list of the hundred best books of the century.
--Veronica Chapman, Senior Editor --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Inside Flap
The gigantic comet had slammed into Earth, forging earthquakes a thousand times too powerful to measure on the Richter scale, tidal waves thousands of feet high. Cities were turned into oceans; oceans turned into steam. It was the beginning of a new Ice Age and the end of civilization. But for the terrified men and women chance had saved, it was also the dawn of a new struggle for survival--a struggle more dangerous and challenging than any they had ever known....
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Top Customer Reviews
Panic begins to tighten its grip on the world as a zealous fundamentalist preacher whips the US into a religious frenzy suggesting that the comet is a punishment from God visited upon a wicked humanity. Hoarding begins and roads clog as the population begins a mass exodus from coastal cities in anticipation of the possible tsunami that would result if the comet landed in the ocean. Even a joint Apollo-Soyuz mission sent into space to study the comet, now dubbed "The Hammer" by popular media, is unable to confirm or refute its potential collision with earth.
The final result is perhaps the worst of all possible outcomes. The Hammer does fall, having broken up into several smaller comets that land around the world with devastating results, striking parts of Europe, Africa, the Gulf of Mexico, and both the Pacific and Atlantic. Volcanoes and earthquakes are endemic around the entire Pacific basin as fault lines shift in California and everywhere else along the fabled Ring of Fire.Read more ›
That being said. I do think that this book was one of the best end of the world stories I have read yet. It is riveting and you won't be able to put it down after the Hammer actually falls.Read more ›
All this is found in "Lucifer's Hammer." But while the formula is trite and hackneyed in other works, Niven and Pournelle make it work. They breathe life into their characters that's sadly lacking elsewhere. One feels the tension and anguish surely experienced by the characters -- and indeed by the rest of the world -- as the comet draws nearer and nearer, subjecting humanity to sure doom.
The authors even manage to inject some humor into a deadly serious topic -- for instance, letting some stoned California surfers ride their last wave, the biggest one in history, formed by the collision of part of the comet with the Pacific Ocean.
This book's sheer scope, and the magnitude of the disaster imparted, can be overwhelming at times. I first read it at the beach one summer; I still recall lying on the sand, watching the tide come in and washing the sand from my feet, thinking "it just doesn't matter ... we humans don't matter; we're so insignificantly powerless against something like that."
This, perhaps, is the most important part of "Lucifer's Hammer" -- gaining an understanding about how vulnerable humanity is to a mass disaster. As Robert Heinlein wrote, "The Earth is just too small and fragile a basket for the human race to keep all its eggs in.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
classic; read it when it came out, read it again years later and here I am for who knows which time to get the book again :) .Published 5 months ago by gamer742
This book is not a typical hero book in that the heros all have their faults. It does paint an end of the world scenario -- not as dark as Neville Schute -- but getting pretty... Read morePublished 8 months ago by JEK
Excellent book. Read it many years ago and had to read it again. Its a keeper.Published on July 20 2014 by IRENE NERODA
It was OK. Could have been much short and still been good.Published on July 16 2014 by David Redding
I wouldn't buy them if I didn't want them. Always good. Especially this author. I need to add more words so. There.Published on May 25 2014 by Paul Mayall