Stephen Baxter



  • Title: Raft
  • Author: Stephen Baxter
  • ISBN: 9780586210918
  • Page: 231
  • Format: Paperback

Alternate cover edition can be found here Stephen Baxter s highly acclaimed first novel and the beginning of his stunning Xeelee Sequence A spaceship from Earth accidentally crossed through a hole in space time to a universe where the force of gravity is one billion times as strong as the gravity we know Somehow the crew survived, aided by the fact that they emerged intoAlternate cover edition can be found here Stephen Baxter s highly acclaimed first novel and the beginning of his stunning Xeelee Sequence A spaceship from Earth accidentally crossed through a hole in space time to a universe where the force of gravity is one billion times as strong as the gravity we know Somehow the crew survived, aided by the fact that they emerged into a cloud of gas surrounding a black hole, which provided a breathable atmosphere Five hundred years later, their descendants still struggle for existence, divided into two main groups The Miners live on the Belt, a ramshackle ring of dwellings orbiting the core of a dead star, which they excavate for raw materials These can be traded for food from the Raft, a structure built from the wreckage of the ship, on which a small group of scientists preserve the ancient knowledge which makes survival possible Rees is a Miner whose curiosity about his world makes him stow away on a flying tree just one of the many strange local lifeforms carrying trade between the Belt and the Raft.

Recent Comments "Raft"

This is another of those novels that really gives your imagination a workout. The universe Baxter envisions here is probably as weird as they come. What I really liked about Raft, was that the reading style was actually quite accessible, considering the science behind all of this. Hard science it is, too. Infused with wonder, the world of Raft is discovered little by little as the reader follows the revelations and discoveries of the protagonist, who starts the story with about as much knowledge [...]

What a nice surprise this was. A highly entertaining science fiction adventure story from an author I have been informed is synonymous with hard SF, huge ideas and complex explanations.I bought this one over a year ago and totally forgot about it. My recent exploration of new authors with the reading of The Mammoth Book of Future Cops encouraged me to try some Baxter, at which point I saw this book sitting on my overpopulated sci-fi shelf.It was a remarkably easy read; a traditional adventure st [...]

The first time I attempted to read Raft I gave up after may be 20 pages. I just could not make head or tail of it. It was my first Stephen Baxter book and I almost gave up on him. Still, he is one of the most highly regarded science fiction authors working today and I just have to keep up with the sci-fi Jones. Baxter’s best known work is probably the Xeelee Sequence of which Raft is said to be the first volume (in publication order). However, I do not recommend reading Raft first, especially [...]

It's easy to imagine that in his folder of notes for Raft, Baxter has reams and reams of sums and diagrams detailing how the unusual and varied gravitational set-up in this book hangs together. Maybe he even wrote a little program that shows animations of weird orbital mechanics. I'd like to see that. Sadly, I doubt he can have written more than half a page on the characters who populate the tale, in pretty much the same sense that NPCs populate a Dungeons & Dragons module. Really, no-one in [...]

5 Stars Raft by Stephen Baxter is an intelligent, creative, and thought provoking science fiction novel. It border lines being a hard science novel as much of the physics, chemistry, and astronomy are worked out by the characters of the novel.I should have reviewed this the moment that I finished it as I loved this book. The whole concept of the Raft like world, the nebula, and the caste system of the humans was remarkable. I loved the science involved and the way that this story unfolded around [...]

(See another version of this review on my blog: examinedworlds/20)If you like hard SF in general or Stephen Baxter in particular, you'll probably like this. It definitely has an old timey Arthur C. Clarke feel to it, right down to the fact that this universe apparently contains precisely two women (okay, that's slightly unfair, since there are other women mentioned in the background, but the reader only gets to know two of them). Nonetheless, there is an awful lot to like.The plot starts out as [...]

There is nothing in the world of literature that conveys such wonder and love of understanding and knowledge as good hard science fiction. It's really fantasy at its best. It's protagonists are not really main characters in the book, but world, universe itself; humans in it just provide human eyes and emotions through which we experience the beauty.This book is not an a exception - we find ourselves in the whole different universe, the one in which gravitational force in billions times stronger [...]

This is an alternate universe, lost-technology survival story. I enjoyed this one. A universe where gravity is exponentially stronger than on Earth is definitely a cool breeding ground for ideas. My one nagging comment is that I was more enamored with the universe and the back-story than what was actually happening on the page. I really wanted more about how the ship got there and what those first minutes would have been like. As with all Baxter books I've read, characters take a back seat to id [...]

What a way to start a series! Damn Good Creative & Vivid Imagination, This !! Waiting to start the next one in the series, soooon. :)

Reasonably entertaining novel, although some paper thin characterisations, especially of the bit-part actors such as the giant miner, the undeveloped love interest, and the “boneys”. It felt a bit dated and even a bit ludicrous in parts, especially when it comes to some of the scatological descriptions – relieving yourself out of the stomach of a living, rotating, “whale” whilst travelling through a nebula . Some of the technical explanations seemed unrealistic too, although I’m no s [...]

Ce roman part d'un postulat fascinant : et si la constante gravitationnelle était des milliers de fois inférieure à celle de notre univers ?Les planètes et les étoiles seraient infiniment plus petites, la gravité d'un simple être humain serait sensible, et la vie locale serait réellement très différente.Bon, par contre, projeter des humains dans cet univers est une tâche bien difficile, et je trouve que l'auteur y échoue un peu : envoyer ça par un vaisseau qui passe à travers un an [...]

Wrecked somewhere in another universe, a group of humans survive badly around a dead or undeveloped star, mining its iron to feed their machines, breathing oxygen from a pink nebula that surrounds it, and getting their food and water manufactured by robots at the ship that by accident brought them here. And they are close to a black hole, that too.It is hard to believe that all that is possible in combination, but Baxter is a practitioner of hard science fiction, himself a respected scientist. S [...]

Bingo! I found a new "favorite author." This book combines the various elements I enjoy - a hard technology perspective set in a fantastical environment with understandable/believable characters. The scenario and situation Baxter weaves is so fantastic, yet peppered with enough "real science" to make it an engaging and fascinating read - one of the more enjoyable reads I've come across in the past few months.This is the first of many books in Baxter's 'Xeelee Sequence' and I'm now looking forwar [...]

Weird, but infantile. The hero goes from impossible problem to impossible-er problem and you can't feel for him because, obviously, he'd come out triumphant. The worlds depicted are marvellous, really, but very improbable. This is not hard sci-fi, despite posing a such. This is more fantasy than science. "The Fountain" comic and movie were based on Raft. I think. I couldn't stop thinking and relating the trees flying across the nebula from this book and The Fountain.

The book deals with a small civilization of human beings that are the descendants of a crew that by some unexplained fluke ended up in another universe where the power of gravity is a whopping factor of a billion stronger than in this one.That has fun consequences, like stars being correspondingly smaller and the nebula as a whole having a breathable atmosphere.It's tagged as "hard" science fiction, but frankly the science of this is pretty squishy. Among the more notable errors are: (view spoil [...]

The book does a good job of 'show not tell' in the beginning as you learn about the universe along with the main character. Fairly shallow character development, some plot points are glossed over and time jumps. I'm assuming this book is merely a framework for the later installments in the series. Easy reading.

Some fun ideas and a setting in the style of Larry Niven at his more imaginative, dreadful cardboard characters though and very little tension - our hero is too capable no matter the odds. Definitely reads like a first novel. Niven's Integral Trees and the Smoke Ring explore a similar setting with a lot more style.

All the human interaction and events are so implausible and forced. It's a cool science concept with a mediocre story tacked on.

4 stars - Metaphorosis ReviewsAn Earth ship somehow crossed to a universe where gravity is much more powerful. Centuries later, the survivors have broken into three loosely connected groups - the Raft, the Belt, and the Boneys. Now, their world is dying, and the groups must come together to survive. Raft is Stephen Baxter's first book, and the first of his that I encountered. I also think it's his best book. While Baxter normally focuses on solid science, this book does a considerable amount of [...]

Простенькая, но очень симпатичная НФ про попаданцев во вселенную с другими физическими константами. Герои киркой добывают железо из ядра выгоревшей звезды, катаются на межпланетных китах, строят планетоиды из костей умерших. Немного физики, немного социального мессаджа, [...]

Hard science pulp survival piece, centered around the remnants of a human starship crew who stumbled through some sort of gate into a universe with physical laws differing from their native space. Namely, gravity is the dominant force, affecting the composition of everything from stars to life. Many generations later, the small civilization must find a way to survive revolution, revolt, and eventual escape from their surroundings in order to preserve what remains of the human race in the alien u [...]

Maybe 3.5 stars. While there's some good SF in this universe, the book belongs to the humans-losing-their-science-and-tech subgenre. And that's not my preference. Also, I read it as the first Xeelee book and was disappointed that the Xeelee weren't there. It also falls into the interesting-setting-but-too-much-about-humans-squabbling type as far as my tastes go.

Sorry book club

Didn't love it, didn't hate it.I don't really recommend this to anybody.

I did not plan on reading this at all - it caught my eye in a used-book sale and I took a chance.It's not a difficult read but it's heavy (if a little inconsistent) on the physics which is always appreciated. It's certainly the most scientific non-textbook I've read in a while, though my metric soul spent a lot of time flinching at the yard-heavy measurements.The world (universe?) is very odd but it works - the ideas are outlandish and I loved them. With equal measures ick and awe, the book real [...]

Clearly reminiscent of Niven’s The Integral Trees and Smoke Ring, with the added twist of taking place in a universe with different laws of physics - it’s certainly an interesting concept, and it’s handled well as far as that goes.Unfortunately I found the tone to be too grim and dystopian for my taste. Yes, the characters find themselves in excruciating circumstances, and I can sympathize and be impressed with Rees for acting in the best way he can under those circumstances. But the squal [...]

This was the most electrifying sci-fi writing I've read in awhile! Baxter's writing resonated with me in a way no other sci-fi writer has yet – the characters and their respective development (especially Rees' transformation from a curious and sheltered miner into a determined and inquisitive scientist), the seamless integration of established science concepts and extrapolated exotic ones (like gravitic science), his imaginative hypothesizing within a many universes paradigm, and the air of my [...]

Humans in a race against time to escape a dying world, followed by the race to survive to a new one good premise I hear you say? Well it is, the trouble is that it’s also been done in Flood and Ark by the same author, which I’ve already read. The themes and structure between the two are very similar, which spoiled Raft for me a little. That, combined with the fairly weak clichéd characters (who often feel like they’re taken from a cheap 1960s pulp sci-fi novel) made me feel as if the book [...]

This is Stephen Baxter's debut novel, and it was the first of his that I tried, and I have to say: oh boy, I was not ready for this kind of extreme science fiction.All there is to it is an idea - its setting. The author does not bother with character development, or any decent plot. The exploration of the very original setting takes up the bulk of this novel.

This is a space opera at it's core. With a Hard Sci-Fi flavor. Don't be discouraged by the "Hard Sci-Fi" label that this book gets though. If you ever took a physics class you'll be fine. It's mostly about the adventure anyways.

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    Posted by:Stephen Baxter
    Published :2019-02-20T18:00:32+00:00