Tau Zero

By Poul Anderson

Rating: 5 stars

I loved this book. The starship ‘Leonara Christine’, crewed by fifty of Earth’s finest, sets of at near the speed of light for a star about thirty light years away in the hope of colonisation. Less than half-way there, an accident disables its deceleration system forcing it to continue to accelerate in order to survive. This is the story of the crew as they accelerate their way out of the galaxy and into the distant future.

This was a real hard SF book, to the point of having equations (well, one equation). I don’t know if the notion of ‘tau’ in terms of close to lightspeed travel exists in relativity but if it doesn’t, Anderson certainly made me believe it :-). The story was tightly told and the characters all sympathetic. And the conclusion took my breath away somewhat. An excellent read.

Book details

ISBN: 9780575070998
Publisher: Gollancz
Year of publication: 1970

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