When Earth is rocked by evidence that extraterrestrials may have seeded human DNA throughout the universe, a one-way expedition into deep space is mounted to uncover the truth. What linguist Meg Dupris and her crewmates aboard the Earth ship Damocles discover on Didet - a planet bathed in the near-eternal daylight of seven suns - is a humanoid race with a different language, a different look, and a surprisingly similar society. But here, it’s the "Earthers" who are the extraterrestrial invaders, and it’s up to Meg - a woman haunted by tragedy and obsessed with the power of communication - to find the key to establishing trust between the natives and the newcomers. In Loul Pell, a young Dideto male thrust into the forefront of the historic event, Meg finds an unexpected kindred spirit, and undertakes an extraordinary journey of discovery, friendship, and life-altering knowledge.Told from both sides of a monumental encounter, Damocles is a compelling novel about man’s first contact with an extraterrestrial race.
©2013 S. G. Redling (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
High Schoolish, 85% to 90% of the story was great, I enjoyed it and was enthralled, and then out of the blue it would turn in to a silly high schoollish event. Rolling around in the mud, throwing temper tantrum. At one minute they are highly trained professionals, handpicked for the mission then they are on. The next minute they are silly children acting out.
Overall the story was interesting and i enjoyed, but it could have been so much more.
I need more ears!
I've been reading a lot of contemporary sci fi lately, but few of the books are available on audio. So I was very excited to find Damocles, and it is amazing. The federation of Earth colonies get a message from The Set (the beings who seeded humanity through the cosmos), inviting a visit. The crew travels for seven years in statsis, until they happen upon an inhabited planet of humanoid beings. It's the first one they've found, so the crew decides to drop in for a visit.
Damocles centers around the linguists' officers attempts to build a vocabulary with one of the inhabitants so that the two species can communicate. If you enjoy this kind of book, this is a very good one. It's charming and funny, dramatic and sweet. I loved it.
The way the book ends, I'm hoping for sequels.
Great performance by Angela Dawe who brought the characters to life. Nicely done.
I also recommend 'The Gift' by Dave Donovan on Kindle. It was very good, as well.
Started a little slow but then became a can't put down kind of book. Good character development, even with the Aliens.
An avid reader, Busy business owner, audiobooks allow me to continue my passion for reading.
I love Sci-Fi and the premise of this book seemed and could have been great. When choosing this title I ignored some bad reviews and l listened to some of the positive ones. All I can say is what were they thinking. It started out good, though the reader is horrible ( Ive heard her before on one book and never want to hear her again). Its just gets plain boring, repetitive and drags on. Thumbs down for me.
Angela Dawe did a great job. Most of the books I have heard were narrated by men and she was a really good change of pace. She changed voices very well and captured the spirit of the characters and story.
A comparison might be The Mote In God's Eye by Niven. That isn't a great comparison because of obvious differences but I can't think of another. I chose it because the challenge of First Contact could go any number of ways and those stories are two plausible scenarios.
I have not heard Angela Dawe before.
The very first interaction between Loul, the Didet, and Meg, the Earther, was very engaging. The story was already interesting and that was the point where I became emotionally engaged with the characters. Also the author built the perfect amount of suspense in the confrontation.
I thought Redling did a great job of being thought provoking without trying to do too much with the story. It was a fun listen and one that many people should pick for a long drive or flight.
Aliens, Language, and Relationship
I love first-contact Sci-Fi and have since I read SM Stirling's book "The Sky People." This story puts you right in the middle of our first interactions, and relationships, with a race of aliens not unlike humans. The struggles and triumphs of linguistics, the nuances of a completely unknown, yet familiar, culture are sketched in the sands of an unknown world. Politics and science clash and meld in a great Sci-Fi book I am happy I spent my money on! Great entertaining read full of imagination.
Reding masterfully portrays the challenge of communication with someone very different. I haven't succeeded with my wife of 30 years as well as her stalwart heroine does with the residents from light years away.
former nuclear scientist
This book starts out really promisingly, with vivid characters that are well fleshed out - even the tangental ones. I also like that an Asian man is a sexy love interest. The crew of the Damocles is forced to make premature First Contact with the occupants of the planet Didet when something goes wrong with their ship. They make the most of it, developing relationships and sharing technologies while the setup enables the author to explore a culture strikingly similar to our own. The setup then becomes using aliens as a device to explore intercultural relations and the fragile balance inherent in such.
Then the last two chapters come, and they clash stunningly with the chapters before. Not really the main characters, but the side characters who are suddenly used to maneuver the book into a sequel. Basically, the end has an unnecessary confession of a personal tragedy (as stated in the blurb, this isn't a spoiler) to pull at our emotions, then a manufactured crisis whose ending makes no sense and is inconsistent with the facts as presented, but does serve to launch the crew into another book and another adventure. As a listener, I was insulted. It's hard to give details without spoiling it, but you know how some sci fi conveniently forgets inherent human logic and even its own back story when it wants to advance some drama? That's what happens. Brought the story down from four to three stars in my opinion. I'm still sort of mad, and it's been days since I listened.
I almost didn't listen to this book after the first 10 minutes because the narrator seemed so out of character with the characters…a sweet female voice using profanity…I didn't mind the profanity, it just grated because it was incongruous. The attempts to lower her voice to male timbres didn't work for me either. I had forgotten to download another book, so it's all I had and I slogged through. The story dragged, it seemed like there was a chapter missing in the end when we skipped from one character to another without any link. Wouldn't recommend it.
Avid audiobook addict!
The ideas in this first contact book are very interesting, and the story is generally good. Unfortunately it verges on the unlistenable sometimes, with constant, tedious, mind-numbing repetition of the dozen-word dialogue that the humans and aliens understand.
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