An Alien Light

Nancy Kress, Author
Nancy Kress, Author Arbor House Publishing $18.95 (370p) ISBN 978-0-87795-940-3
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
A perennial chestnut on old SF television shows involved the handful of humans who, when locked up by aliens puzzling over our aggressiveness, followed their instincts and fought among themselves. That's the kernel of this first SF novel from fantasy writer Kress, who recently won a Nebula Award for one of her SF stories. The Ged are an old, advanced, rational race shocked by the human violence and unpredictability that is erupting in their peaceful galaxy. To better understand their adversary, they choose the isolated, technologically regressed human colony on Qom, where they offer scientific knowledge to two warring nationsbut only if their representatives get along. This becomes the story, then, of the few people whose minds are opened despite the social, political and cultural barriers they inherited. Although the characters and their actions tend to the melodramatic, the background is well drawn and the conceptual breakthroughs are nicely handled. (January 18)
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