The Rock Rats

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Original title: The Rock Rats: Book II of the Asteroid Wars.

Title of this edition: The Rocks Rats.

Author: Ben Bova

Gender: Science Fiction.

Saga: Asteroid Wars.

Editorial: Tor Books

Edition year: 1, 2003.

Prizes: …

Synopsis [Warning: Spoiler]: Basically there is 2 big corporations, Humphries Space Systems and Astro. Who are fighting for the control of the space business. That business is now entered on the asteroid belt. The belt is still a frontier area and the people there don’t have government and they don’t belong to any corporation or nation. Among these people are Lars Fuch and Amanda (Humprie is in love with Amanda, but Amanda is married with Fuch). Fuch and Amanda fight to stablish a government among the belt, but Humpries starts to send pirates to create chaos and get control of the belt. Eventually, Fuch becomes an outlaw trying to fight back Humpries… And Humpries marries Amanda… and take control of the belt.

Personal Review: I like quite a lot reeding space themed books when I have to take a flight, so I brought this a few months ago and waited until last month when I had to flight. At that moment I didn’t know it was part of a saga, but it can be read without knowing about the other books, which is good. Honestly, after reading it, I want to read the later books of the saga (but not the first one). What I like the most is that it isn’t a space opera, it’s hard science fiction. The flights take time, the spaceships don’t have artificial gravity, and the amount of combustible is finite.

There is also some interesting incidents that can only happen in space. Like losing pressure, or zero g fire. And there is some speculation about what can be the future of mining (nanobots). The cloning topic is a classic, but if we go back to when the book was written, it was a hot topic. I think the author manages them correctly, with a little bit speculation but not too much to get into problems and loosing credibility.

There is one thing that was crap, the resistance spaceship receives the name Nautilus. I’m a Jules Verne fan, and 20,000 leagues under the sea is my favourite book, so I don’t want any random spaceship to be called the same way, specially if it is not important enough. That was a very bad move done by the author.

Speaking about the author… Ben Bova. He is one of the big ones (I didn’t know it). If you take a look at his profile on wikipedia… he won 6 Hugo Awards while being editor of Analog Science Fiction. Amazing I think that says quite a lot about his stories. Why he is not more famous? Well, the story is good, but you know, is not the kind of story you will turn into a classic. The main reason… time breaks where nothing happens. The author only tells what happens in specific moments, sometimes separated months, sometimes separated years.

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