August 4, 2015

Glory by Alfred Coppel

Title:  Glory
Author:  Alfred Coppel
Pages:  373
Genre:  Science Fiction
Publisher:  Tor, 1993

Synopsis:  The Goldenwing spaceship Gloria Coelis approaches the colony planet Voerster with an essential supply shipment ordered centuries before.  Settled by South Africans determined to preserve apartheid, Voerster is now threatened by revolution and war....while its conservative ruler and his wife vie with one another over their daughter whose heart condition will kill her without the spacefarers' more advanced medicine....

Review:  Glory is a large, semi-sentient, beautiful spaceship.  Her crew are diverse but are dedicated to the life they've chosen.  They are not immortal, but due to space time dilation, they live on while people on planetside grow old and die.  They never return home because the people they loved are long gone.

The ship's cat, Mari, is a great character.  As is Duncan, the captain.  The rest are equally interesting, but I am not sure if I will like the newest edition to the crew, Broni, or not.  She is the daughter of the ruler of Voerster and she seems just a little spoiled for my tastes, not to mention that she's been brought up to believe that the races are not equal.  Since I've already started the next book, I suppose I'm about to find out if she fits in well or not.

Speaking of the beliefs of the planet Voerster, I surely hope when the day comes that we reach for the stars, we can manage to leave the worst parts of our society behind.  Somehow, I think it's unlikely though.  We are who we are.

This book had some of the standard fare expected in this genre:  plenty of sex, beautiful women, handsome men, and a sharp spotlight on the obvious dark side to human behavior.  It didn't matter.  This was classic science fiction, told by a master, and I enjoyed it very much.

Rating:  7 / 10

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