Two science fiction masters—Jack McDevitt and Mike Resnick—team up to deliver a classic thriller in which one man uncovers the secret history of the US space program…
Early in his career, Jerry Culpepper could never have been accused of being idealistic. Doing public relations—even for politicians—was strictly business...until he was hired as NASA’s public affairs director and discovered a client he could believe in. Proud of the agency’s history and sure of its destiny, he was thrilled to be a part of its future—a bright era of far-reaching space exploration.
But public disinterest and budget cuts changed that future. Now, a half century after the first moon landing, Jerry feels like the only one with stars—and unexplored planets and solar systems—in his eyes. Still, Jerry does his job, trying to drum up interest in the legacy of the agency. Then a 50-year-old secret about the Apollo XI mission is revealed, and he finds himself embroiled in the biggest controversy of the twenty-first century, one that will test his ability—and his willingness—to spin the truth about a conspiracy of reality-altering proportions...
©2012 Cryptic, Inc., and Mike Resnick (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
I love mysteries in the style of P.D. James, Rex Stout, Elizabeth Peters, Dave Duncan, etc. I love sci fi written by Issac Asimov (the robot books), Douglas Adams, Jack McDevitt (Alex Benedict series) and Susan Collins. I love fantasy written by Terry Pratchett, and Kim Harrison. I love Kate Morton. I don't like graphic descriptions of violence.
Don't think one is superior to the other unless you want to drive and read.
Jack McDevitt's Alex Benedict Series is one of my favorites. Reading an Alex Benedict book is like boarding a speeding train with no way and no wish to get off until it’s over. The characters are good friends and the world is exciting. You live in it rather than just hearing about it. So, of course, I had to give this book a try. I liked it and recognized McDevitt's hand in it -- all the way to the end (I felt a bit let down by the ending -- wish I could tell you why without spoiling it for you). Not as good as the Benedict Series, but worth a credit. If I could give the story two ratings, I would rate the book 4 and ending 3.
McDevitt & Resnick have crafted what is billed as sci-fi, but in truth, the story is one of a massive governmental coverup coming to light after 50 years. The tale is set in 2019, 50 years after the first moon landing. As part of the commemoration, NASA releases a deluge of archived material which leads to hints that Apollo 11 may not have been the first. No one in any position of authority seems to know the real story that could explain the apparent confusion.
The pursuit of the truth occurs simultaneously by three individuals, the NASA spokesman, a billionaire planning a return visit to the moon, and the sitting president. Each has different motives and each uncovers independent clues that continue to add to the evolving quandary. In fact, it is revealed that the Soviets must have been in on the deception. Sadly, at no time, does any participant utter the possibility that every listener will jump to from the beginning. The denouement is less than satisfying, although understandable by 1969 standards, but not today. The reframing of Watergate through its involvement in the coverup is a nice touch as well.
Sadly, there is no sci-fi at all (sci-fi becomes a macguffin). The story could theoretically take place today. This is a classic political mystery where the truth behind a 50 year old coverup is almost completely lost as the former participants die off.
The narration is well done. The pace of the writing and the narration is slow and plodding. The characters are straight out of central casting with few endearing qualities.
Not reading to many reviews and knowing as little as possible makes for a great listening experience!
Just give it a go! I loved it!
The concept was good but it seemed to drag on at times. The lead character is a little unbelievable to have such a wise cracking billionaire.
I have never listened to an audio book a second time, but this one would enter the list if I needed to. This is a fascinating listen, with sharp twists, a great plot and excellent narration. I enjoyed "Echo" a great deal, and this continues that broad thread.
Conspiracy theory, space history, political intrigue...you name it,it is in here. It's wirth your while.
The unveiling. Done.
He is authentic, almost casual,and genuinely unforced. I have not heard him as much as I know want, and will do so. He brings this book to life, and is so good on this one, that I will likely look for audio books just read by him. Excellent!
Definitely. I was addicted.
More from this team are worthwhile, as is your time to this book. Get it, and enjoy it!
Both McDevitt and Resnick are capable of really good writing, and this book contains some good examples of their craft. The characters are well developed and convincing. The plot however is contrived and gimmicky and makes mistakes that some would overlook and others would call fatal as they weave some genuine historical events in with the fictional events of the story. The narrative was interesting enough to keep one going, but the climax of the story ends up being a disappointing, timeworn cliche. They could have ended with a bang, but instead ended with a fizzle.
Both authors are capable of better work. Perhaps their next collaboration will be more successful.
Brian Holsopple's narration was quite good, better than the book he was reading.
I wouldn't go see this as a movie, but I might watch it on television if nothing else were on.
The premise of the book was interesting. The thing I like least was the execution. The ending was very underwhelming.
I read a lot of older Jack McDevitt but this is my first audio book of his. I've never read any of Resnick's work (or listened). I would consider this one not McDevitt's best work. It had an interesting story but there were several times during the story where I was wishing they would just spit it out. It dragged on for what seemed like forever, just to get to a lackluster conclusion.
James Marsters. He's probably my favorite narrator.
I'd have to say no. I might end up returning this one. I'd added it to my wish list a long time ago and kept passing it over in favor of other things until I recently made the commitment to clear out all the stuff that's accumulated there. Now I wish I'd kept passing it over. It's an entirely forgettable read and the authors took the easy way out.
This could have been a much more interesting book but instead you're left with a very long build-up and very little satisfaction at the end. And the narrator, Brian Holsopple, made everyone sound like a grandfather or grandmother. Everyone in the book sounded 65 or above. I thought the book was filled with octogenarians. Granted, there were a decent amount of old people that had small roles in the story, but old should not be the default for everyone.
Very entertaining plus it makes your mind think different ways. The space program is wonderful and wish other countries could contbibute the exploying space and the solar system. We could do this if we people of earth could learn to get along with each other. Us on earth can be so greater than it is already. Spend the resorces where they will make the best gain.
Ripped from 1970, the characters and the writing have not aged well. The only positive I can offer is that the premise is intriguing and will keep your interest. But that is too generous. The characters are poorly developed and anachronistic in their dialogue.
The Performer also did a great job. It was easy to stay awake and listen even at 2 am in the morning as the story had me gripped in to the end.
"A let down"
I have read almost all Jack McDevitt books and despite the similarity of their plots, there have been enough differences to make each unique. I have enjoyed them from 5 stars to 3.5 stars. They are usually set in the far future - that is not so different from today - but this was set in America now, although not much else changed. I feel that the 'humour' in the book was probably down to Mike Resnick as it didn't seem familiar. The clues built up, gradually revealing more, but I felt the finale was a let down and - in part - preposterous. I was left as flat as I was by The daVinci Code.I thought the narrator did well and can't be blamed for my disappointment.
"Great Narrator, Lousy Story"
I read the short story version of the Cassandra Project a couple of years back and quite enjoyed it. When I heard Mc Devitt was doing a full length version I thought, hmmm he will need to expand the story a fair bit to make it work. Well the sad reality was that he didn't. He simply kept the same basic story and then padded it with a lot of lame conversations between people who don't know anything or can't remember what happened back at NASA more than 50 years ago, funny about that. We end up with wooden characters, lame dialogue and an ending that was hardly worth the effort of getting there. Lame, very lame.
PS. The narrator was excellent and certainly gave it his best shot.
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