cover image Encounter with Tiber

Encounter with Tiber

Buzz Aldrin. Aspect, $21.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-446-51854-3

Astronaut Aldrin (Men from Earth, 1989), who was the second man to walk on the moon, and the Hugo- and Nebula-nominated Barnes (Mother of Storms, etc.) join forces in this enjoyable saga which combines two classic SF themes: the future of spaceflight and contact with intelligent alien life. The story oscillates between the careers of two human astronauts, Chris Terence and his son, Jason, on the moon and Mars, and the efforts of the Tiberians (from a planet of Alpha Centauri) to colonize Earth during prehistoric times. Chris meets his destiny while trying to retrieve a Tiberian relic from the moon. Meanwhile, the Tiberians' desperate efforts to colonize a habitable planet before their own is destroyed runs up against a host of well-depicted obstacles. Folly, prejudice, petty rivalries and bureaucratic befuddlement are shown to be common to both races, which are depicted with wit and empathy. Multiple subplots, a huge cast that deserves a glossary but doesn't get one and too many expository lumps impede narrative flow. Even so, the authors' lively storytelling will engage readers as it conveys the wonder and promise of space. Author tour. (July)