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Aliens calling themselves Atoners appeared one day, built a base on the moon, and put an ad on the Internet. The ad said they had once wronged humanity. Now, to make such amends as they could, they were asking for human volunteers to visit other planets as capital-W Witnesses for the Atoners. Governments and people alike thought this was a stupid joke, but no. Kress presents three Witnesses, what they found on the planets they visited, and what they learned about the Atoners—and themselves. The story is set about 2020, and the Witnesses are randomly selected humans from an environment not much changed from today. None are scientists, journalists, or spies. They are people who are curious but have no training that would be useful for analyzing any kind of alien environment. There is plenty of interpersonal conflict in their story, backgrounded with the questions of what the aliens really want and how far they can be trusted. A curious and absorbing novel. --Frieda Murray
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ISBN-10:  0765319861
ISBN-13:  978-0765319869
Author:  Nancy Kress
Genre:  Science Fiction & Fantasy
Publisher:  Tor Books
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