Rama Like First Contact
This starts out as a space-race between NASA and Braziln-Russia-India to a Near Earth Object and turns into a first contact situation that somewhat parallels Rendezvous With Rama. As in Rama the characters are important. The preparation for the mission and the back-story of the astronauts makes them real so you can root for them as they explore the mysterious vessel. Zack Stewart is the main protagonist and leader of the NASA expedition. The story involves his teenage daughter on Earth, his dead wife and his new girlfriend the former leader of this expedition.
This is space porn as it best with a lot of technical details on the crafts and the spacesuits to enjoy for a fanboy like me.
There are many surprises inside not least the method of contact (it has been done before but not quite like this). The aliens are alien and I still don’t understand them fully but that is okay since this is the first book in a series.
Heaven’s Shadow was a good read even if it didn’t blow my mind. I definitely want to read the sequel to find out how it goes.
Heaven’s Shadow begins with the discovery of an object of unknown origin headed toward Earth. Speculation as to what it might be runs high, and leads to an international competition to be the first to land on it, to claim both the prestige and whatever other benefits there might be. Thus, two rival teams of astronauts begin a thrilling and dangerous race – but what they find when they reach their goal will turn out to be unlike anything they could have imagined . . .
What they have landed on is no asteroid but a spacecraft from a civilization that has travelled tens of thousands of years to reach earth. While the team try to work out what it is they are needed for, more sinister occurrences cause them to wonder if their involvement with this alien race will ead to anything but harm for humanity.