This is a well written book that’s not very well researched, nor does it go in any particular direction that I found to be interesting at all. There’s some significant issues with the story events, all of which could have been avoided if the author had just seen Apollo 13. First and foremost, the people being selected to go to this far off planet? They had no clue who was being selected and were in fact at home learning about who was going by watching TV with the rest of Humanity. It was announced at a press conference that didn’t include the actual astronauts, which I find baffling, surely even the author could come up with a better way for that to happen! IRL selection for even relatively minor space missions gets a fair bit of press, and more importantly, the participants all know they’re going to space before the presser even starts.
Following the announcement there’s a couple incidents with the kids that are going to space because, I kid you not, they were permitted to wander around tree memorials and the city that was down the road, leading to some incredible confusing plot developments.
Then, when they’re off in space, one of the beta team members says: “I’m on the beta team so I didn’t train as much as the alpha team did”.
Gary Sinise played Ken Mattingly in Apollo 13, and I’m not sure which one of them would have been more offended by that idea. The backup team trains just as hard and is just as qualified to go to space as the primary mission team and would be ready to step in at even a moment’s notice. It’s insulting to think that the space program would train anyone less than they possibly could if they were expecting to possibly send them on the mission.
The book is paradoxically good in the middle/end, the beginning and it’s assorted bad science is completely unfortunate, and the last page of the book made me absolutely rage. How can a book be so well written but be so terrible?
Skip this book if anyone recommends it to you.
For the entire story several characters are dreaming of this planet, knowing things about it before the science catches up with them, there’s a huge thing being made about how there’s possibly a psychic connection to the planet, but instead of following up on that idea, and before they even leave the Sol system, the main character just goes back to Earth and moves in with her dad. The story of the ship going to this fantastic planet of Terra-Two? Dropped completely and forgotten about in the span of just 3 or 4 pages with no pay off at all. This was one of the worst cases of unrealized potential that I’ve ever read and it made me feel that my time had been wasted.