Sixty years ago (in a future so distant that space travel is commonplace), the luxury yacht Polaris carried a group of curious, science-minded (and very wealthy) passengers to Delta Karpis, once a typical G class star but now unique and of extraordinary interest as it was about to collide with a dwarf star. Having witnessed this astonishing once in a lifetime stellar event, the Polaris announced its imminent departure for earth and then was never heard from again. Search parties eventually found the Polaris empty and adrift, its passengers clearly having left or vanished with considerable speed - a space-faring celestial Marie Celeste, as it were! When prominent antiquities dealer, Alex Benedict, and his assistant, Chase Kolpath, managed to acquire a number of artifacts from the salvaged Polaris, it became clear that Benedict and Kolpath were targeted for elimination. Someone was desperate to ensure that the truth behind the Polaris story was never revealed to an unsuspecting world.
A diverting, enjoyable, if somewhat predictable mystery, "Polaris" will provide any sci-fi fan with some enjoyable hours of reading ... lots of whiz bang high-tech gadgetry, a dash of celestial mechanics and the science of stellar evolution plus a very provocative series of philosophical divertimenti pondering the potential effects of science's ability to stop or reverse the aging process. "To age or not to age, this is the question", McDevitt puts forward some extremely interesting arguments on both sides as to how the world might react and evolve were it possible to stop aging and prolong life indefinitely. And how does that fit into the mystery plot? Ah ... for that, you're just going to have to pick it up and read it!
The dust jacket publicity blurb styles McDevitt as the heir apparent to Isaac Asimov and Arthur C Clarke. On the basis of my first reading of his work, I don't think I'm quite ready to accord him that lofty status, but I'm willing and eager to seek out more of his novels and read on.
Set in the far future, the spaceship Polaris takes a group of rich passengers thousands of light years away to watch the destruction of a sun by another star. The ship never returns. The nearest rescue ship reaches it six days later to find the ship undamaged, but drifting...and deserted. The destruction of the sun wiped out any planets or moons that could have sheltered the ship's passengers. Nearly sixty years later, the ship has become a legend. The fate of the crew has been the subject of books, … more
Polaris is a science fiction, mystery novel by Jack McDevitt and was a Nebula Award nominee for 2006. It is the second book of his Alex Benedict series. Alex Benedict, a dealer in antiquities, along with his employee, Chase Kolpath, become involved in a mystery involving the disappearance of the passengers and crew of an interstellar yacht some 60 years earlier.