The Goliath Stone

Mash up high-tech science fiction with social commentary and what do you get? A novel like The Goliath Stone, the latest collaboration between Larry Niven and Matthew Joseph Harrington (who also contributed to Niven's Man-Kzin Wars XI).

In the year 2052, Dr. Toby Glyer is using illegal nanotechnology of his own to cure those who can afford to pay him. May Wyndham, heiress to the Wyndham aerospace corporation--and a darn good rocket scientist--approaches Glyer for his help in deploying a space vehicle to stop an asteroid hurtling towards the Earth.

Out of direct human control, the nanos in the spaceship evolve quickly, and the resulting artificial intelligence begins to interpret the initial instructions according to its own agenda, putting Earth back into peril. Meanwhile, Glyer also discovers that a former employee, science fiction writer and all-around genius William Connors, has used the same nanotechnology to remake all of humanity--eradicating illness and old age, making it impossible for women to become pregnant unless they reach orgasm and rewiring the human brain for optimal function. Is the looming asteroid or the complete change of life as we know it the more terrifying development?

This rollicking, near-future tale of intrigue, social commentary and high-tech space travel maintains a burning pace from start to finish. The Goliath Stone is a seamless read from a master of the genre and an exceedingly promising newcomer. --Rob LeFebvre, freelance writer and editor

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