The Forge of God is a novel
by Greg Bear
, about alien visitors. What motivation would an extraterrestrial
intelligence have to contact us? The joy of communicating
with a new species, new cultures
, new paradigms
? Possibly. Trade? Unlikely, unless we possessed technology they didn't, which is unlikely in the case of present day Earth being visitted by aliens. Destroy a potential threat?
It's the present day. Scientists begin to notice strange geological formations on Earth's surface. Small mountains, or large hills, where nothing formerly exists. Researchers discover something, or someone, a short distance from one of these new cinder cones. It's barely alive, and they take it to the US government.
From this alien being, we discover that Earth is the target of an alien species who has destroyed countless worlds before. This messenger came to attempt to warn us in time, but wasn't soon enough, apparently. If you knew the end of the world was coming, what would you do?
This book is an amazing view into several different people's experiences as they discover the truth, and how they respond to it. The people all feel very real to the reader, in their responses, emotions, and how they choose to spend the rest of their lives. Two alien factions are introduced, and it all feels very realistic... No dog-fighting spaceships. Warfare from space is based on stealth and chain reactions.
This book is set in the same universe as Anvil Of Stars, and there is an unnamed third book in the planning stages. Warner Brothers has optioned the book as well as its two sequels, and there are rumors that Ron Howard may be attached to direct the first film. Ken Nolan has written a "scripment" and Warner is commisioning multiple screenplays. As info becomes available, I'll update. Regardless, The Forge of God is one of my favorite hardcore science fiction books, easily on par with Asimov and Clarke.