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Singularity Hardcover – Sep 2005

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Per Aspera Press (September 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0974573442
  • ISBN-13: 978-0974573441
  • Product Dimensions: 23.3 x 16.2 x 4.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 712 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,413,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

DeSmedt's debut SF thriller, a brisk Michael Crichton clone, vividly depicts the Tunguska event that leveled a big patch of Siberia in 1908, then shifts to the near-future, where warrior woman Marianna Bonaventure is working for CROM (Critical Resources Oversight Mandate), the U.S. Department of Energy's branch for dealing with loose WMD talent. Meanwhile, in Siberia, scientist Jack Adler discovers that Tunguska was actually hit by a microscopic black hole, not a meteorite. Marianna and an intuitive analyst, Jonathan Knox, are assigned to infiltrate the gigantic yacht Rusalka, owned by the Russian billionaire Arkady Grishin, who is on the trail of something odd. It turns out that Grishin is not who he seems and his motives for finding the Tunguska object are a great deal more sinister than anyone had supposed. The book bounces along, from well-developed scenes to lesser ones and back again, with a good deal of deft if not particularly original characterization. The sexual chemistry between Marianna and Jonathan adds spice. Exotic hardware, lifestyles of the rich and notorious, double- and triple-crosses and a slightly rushed and facile conclusion all make a respectable if not outstanding first effort.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Bill DeSmedt has worked as a computer programmer, a consultant to Fortune 500 companies, and a Soviet area expert. He lives in Milford, Pennsylvania.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
With good reviews from some of my favorite authors I really looked forward to this read. Unfortunately, I was disappointed because I expected Greg Bear or Stephen Baxter grade work. Too soppy with the mandatory sex...and too little speculation on what could happen with a trapped mini-BH. I found it mildly interesting. (...)
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Format: Hardcover
The science in this fiction made for a good story, and that's a good thing. It was necessary to make up for some awkward character moments. All in all, it was a fun sci-fi, even though it read like an action movie.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa6c5ce70) out of 5 stars 58 reviews
26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6ca7b70) out of 5 stars What a great ride! Dec 5 2004
By N. D. Cernadas - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I had no idea what to expect from Singularity written by new author Bill DeSmedt. After reading the blurbs from the likes of Kevin Anderson (Dune: Battle of Corrin) and Greg Bear (Darwin's Radio), I had to give it a try. What a great ride!

The novel is gripping from the very beginning. It has spies, killers, not-so-altruistic scientists, and consultants ... yes, consultants - but these are not the same ones that read your watch and tell you what the time is. The characters are smart, witty and engaging. I found myself wishing my plane ride was longer so I could continue reading!

There are various storylines cleverly weaved together. I kept wishing I could read faster so I could find out what is happening to protagonists Jonathan Knox and Marianna Bonaventure. The unexpected twists and suspense reminds you of The DaVinci Code - but Singularity is so much better. The story is just so solid, witty and smart.

As for the writing, Singularity is beautifully written - similar to CRYPTONOMICON or even My Life as a Geisha or The Grapes of Wrath - you are transported into the characters lives and into exotic locations. The writing is witty and delicious. It is also a smart read - the author weaves the story around a mysterious microscopic black whole. You unwittingly learn more physics than you expect. He brings in science more artfully than Michael Crichton.

In addition to the great story and writing, the characters are clever and interesting. There is a strong female protagonist that is smart, can take care of herself (a la Alias) and knows how to wear Gucci. The male character - now there is a real man!

The one negative is that the book had to end. I can't wait until the sequel comes out.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6cb0f60) out of 5 stars Bill DeSmedt, hot new writer Nov. 27 2004
By M. K. Melloy - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Bill DeSemdt is an "Information Engineer," an amateur physicist, a student of Sovietology, and now a first-time novelist who reads like he's been doing this for decades. With his debut book, "Singularity," DeSmedt demonstrates a knack for pace and plotting that make the "international thriller" aspect of his book a hair-raising adventure. But there is a science fiction angle at work here, too, and it's just close enough to plausible science fact that you'll wonder, even as you devour the pages, just how scared you should be.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6cb0510) out of 5 stars Singularly excellent Dec 1 2005
By James Tepper - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A very impressive first novel. Solid, hard SF of the Gregory Benford/Stephen Baxter/Greg Bear variety. The plot intensfies as it moves along and the hard SF aspects become more and more important as integral parts of the storyline. DesMedt has clearly been thinking about this for a while, as he says in the very informative Further Reading section at the end of the book.

Why 5 stars? In addition to an (very) interesting plot, the writing is very good, the physics is excellent and (gasp!) several of the characters are very, very well done. There is a believable heroine (and a sort of hero), an excellent "baddy" (actually a couple of them) and a couple of guys to round out the cast. All of them are fleshed out well enough so that one can tell who is speaking even if you skip ahead a few lines. And DesMedt makes us care about all of them.

This book literally has something for everyone. Black holes, quantum mechanics and more (don't want to spoil anything for anyone), Russian history and politics, action, romance (well, sort of) computers and technobabble. What a great combo.

The dust jacket says he is working on a sequel. I can't wait.
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6cb5168) out of 5 stars Best book I've read in quite some time! Dec 4 2004
By S. Kocan - Published on
Format: Hardcover
No doubt about it, Singularity is a great read. The book has it all: lightning-fast pace, believable characters, easy-to-read style, mystery, intrigue, clever plot twists and adventure.

The basic plot of the book revolves around a black hole that crashes into the earth. While this may make the book sound like science fiction, it actually reads more like the Da Vinci Code (though I think the writing in Singularity is better). It's one of those books I just didn't want to put down because I wanted to see what would happen next.

The characters in the book were quite believable and quite diverse. From the consultant (when was the last time you saw a consultant as the hero?) to the Russian billionaire, their words and actions made sense and had a purpose besides just moving the story along.

I also appreciated that I didn't see any distracting errors in the facts in the book. I even learned a few things about black holes (painlessly I might add).

My summary: well written, engaging, thought provoking, enjoyable. Glad I read it.
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6cb5300) out of 5 stars A Brilliant Debut! Jan. 9 2005
By Jeff Edwards - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Start with a cataclysmic planetary collision, add one part hard science, one part espionage, a dash of shamanism, and shake mixture vigorously until it explodes. Bill DeSmedt's `Singularity' moves at the speed of light, careening from science to adventure and back again without ever quite losing control. His characters are interesting and three-dimensional, his writing is crisp, and his storytelling is captivating. This man was born to write cutting-edge Science Fiction. Now all I have to do is wait for his next book.

Jeff Edwards, author of `Torpedo: A Surface Warfare Thriller'