Sci-Fi, Fantasy & Horror Reviews
Book Review: The Quiet War
By Sandy Amazeen Nov 23, 2009, 2:01 GMT
Twenty-third century Earth, ravaged by climate change, looks backwards to the holy ideal of a pre-industrial Eden. Political power has been grabbed by a few powerful families and their green saints. Millions of people are imprisoned in teeming cities; millions more labour on Pharaonic projects to rebuild ruined ecosystems. On the moons of Jupiter and Saturn, the Outers, descendants of refugees from Earth\'s repressive regimes, have constructed a wild variety ...more
Nominated for the Arthur C. Clark Award, The Quiet War is a fine space opera as it portraits the inhabitants of 23rd century Earth struggling with the aftermath of a planetary environmental collapse. Humanity has divided between those who remained on Earth and the Outers, loosely organized colonists who moved to moons of the outer planets. More concerned with their own affairs then kowtowing to Earth’s interests, the Outers become subject to devious espionage, spying and chest pounding.
Those who remained on Earth continue efforts to rebuild the shattered economy and ecosystem with the real power belonging only to the few wealthy families. The prolonged separation has altered Outers at the genetic level to such an extent that they are almost a separate species. Lengthened life spans leave those in control far longer then their forbearers, a hardship on the young people who want to continue the push out to other moons.
Genetic engineering, politics and trust all play a vital role in this believable sage that shows one possible result of unchecked global warming. The frequently conflicted feelings and responses of the fully developed characters ring absolutely true. There are obvious parallels between current events and the story’s warmongering media manipulation. There is much to like about this space opera that is sure to become a sci-fi classic and leave readers anxiously awaiting the sequel.