Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Titan” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Titan (The Grand Tour #16)

3.70  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,245 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
Master storyteller Ben Bova continues his multi-volume "Grand Tour" saga chronicling humanity's exploration of near space with TITAN, a fast-paced thriller focused on the first manned mission to the Solar System's most intriguing world. Skillfully blending high drama, passionate characters and daring speculation with the latest discoveries from the current Cassini/Huygens ...more
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published February 21st 2006 by Macmillan Audio (first published 2006)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Titan, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Titan

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,005)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Clark Hallman
Jan 20, 2013 Clark Hallman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Titan is another excellent science fiction novel in Ben Bova’s Grand Tour series. Goddard, a permanent space habitat containing 10,000 people from Earth, is in orbit around Saturn in the years 2095-2096. The unethical Chief Administrator of Goddard is planning to extract the water from the rings of Saturn to sell it to other earth space colonies, which would make the population of the habitat very wealthy. However, the scientists in the habitat are concerned that the mining operations will harm ...more
Classic Bova. First, you got your space stuff, an asteroid hollowed to form a space habitat, and flown out to Saturn. Next, there's an angry antagonist, two in this book, who terrorize their subordinates and all the people around them. I think the main character is Titan Alpha, a rover with the mission of exploring the surface and sending back data. Only, it has a glitch and doesn't send any data back.

(view spoiler)
Jul 22, 2016 Mitch rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
I understand that this book won an award.

What I don't understand is why.

It is bad. The dialog is frequently jarringly awful, the plot drops through the floor of credibility repeatedly, the cardboard characters behave in obvious plot-manipulative ways, and it's repetitive repetitive repetitive...

Any novel this deeply flawed will naturally seem too long. Here, it succeeds.

I don't want to say Ben's a bad writer. He absolutely is with this effort, but maybe he got better down the line. I'm not going
Brian Carless
Titan is a nice addition to Ben Bova's Grand Tour of the Solar System series. It stands well on its own and its plot grows out of what came before it. Bova's prose is good but not great and his plot and characters are a bit flat. But as near-future sci-fi it is compelling, barely 90 years into the future. Our own solar system is envisioned as a very rich and fertile place and the science isn't too far our of reach making it beleivable and compelling. Also making it even more belivable and compel ...more
Santosh Bhat
Titan is a direct sequel to the novel "Saturn" in the author's Grand Tour saga. Like all his books, Titan belongs to the genre of hard sci-fi, where scientific accuracy is paramount, which means that lightsaber wielding space aliens are out, but a remote controlled AI probe is the main protagonist. Titan Alpha, lands on the surface of Saturn's moon Titan, starts mapping its alien geology and biology, but remains eerily silent, and does not send back any of the data to the anxious scientists at S ...more
I had high hopes for this novel. I enjoyed Ben Bova’s Mars a lot. Given the real life Cassini Space Probe is currently wowing NASA and the public with its scientific exploration of Saturn and its moons, I was primed to relish this book. Unfortunately, I found most of it dry, plodding, and almost wholly unconcerned with the moon Titan. Much of the novel takes place in Goddard, a space vehicle reminiscent of Arthur C. Clarke’s Rama, though this one is manmade. Mr. Bova stirs up a great deal of ...more
Mark Schomburg
Sep 26, 2012 Mark Schomburg rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, space
There might not really be anything less enjoyable about this book than others in Bova's planets series, but... the same characters again... It just wears thin for me, with some unbelievable drama going on in space too. I also found the AI situation of the robotic craft unbelievable. The most intriguing aspect of the book is only a teaser: the dark life forms which evidently live in Titan's oceans, yet which we never really find out about in this text. Had that part of the plot been developed the ...more
Patrick Gibson
I know this author has a “Grand Tour” of the solar system series. I have put off reading any of these for no reason other than some of Bova’s other books have been inconsistent in the quality of writing. I finally snatched ‘Titan’ cheap and thought I’d give it a go. Overall, I found the story itself rather boring and uninteresting. The underlying politics and personal interactions that should drive the story are woefully unimpressive. Bova displays a very simplistic and naive approach that resul ...more
Ian James
Sep 29, 2013 Ian James rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: my enemies
Recommended to Ian by: when I find out, I will kill them
Shelves: science-fiction
This was so incredibly tedious.
There was a serious lack of new ideas, there was a LOT of description of clothes the characters were wearing, and the characters themselves were two dimensional, almost as if they come straight from the 1950's. 98% of the plot was very routine and very unsophisticated. The technology had big gaps in it (they have a habitat for 1000's orbiting Saturn, but know virtually nothing about Titan, it's as if the autonomous lander they send down is the first one ever). Also
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brent Werness
This is the first book in Ben Bova's Grand Tour series that I've read. While this book did not particularly impress me, I will say that I enjoyed it enough to read more of his work.

First I'll start out with the good. The pacing of the story worked fairly well for me. In particular, it quite deftly avoided one of the biggest issues plaguing hard scifi books: the massive info dump. This isn't to say that it doesn't try to give you some scientific background on what's going on, but that it is in g
Fred Hughes
Jan 08, 2012 Fred Hughes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book carries on where Saturn ends. The 11 mile long by 4 mile wide space habitat Goddard has reached Saturn and is in orbit around it’s moon Titan.

Science, politics, technology and human foibles all get put in a bender, shaken; not stirred, and what comes out is highly entertaining.

The main story revolves around Titan Alpha which is a semi autonomous rover type vehicle sent to the surface of Titan to explore the surface. The problem is once it lands it decides that collecting data about Tit
Nov 22, 2012 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ben Bova has written a vast number of books in the Grand Tour series this being the most recent to be released in paperback. Several of the books have planet or moon names as the titles, the Rock Rats series also is in the saga. I read the first three Rock Rats books and they were all pure Bova – fast paced, great characters, interesting locations and solid science.

Titan takes places a few years after the Asteroid wars are over, and Pancho Lane, the heroine of the Rock Rats books has retired as
Nov 27, 2014 Patrick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is only my second Ben Bova book, so the initial charm was still with me, plus I read them back to back (even in the correct order!). It was nice to see the characters introduced in Saturn mature and advance in Titan. The sudden change of heart of one of the characters was slightly off-putting, but I guess we all have those moments.
Nov 11, 2015 Sean rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pleasing page-turner by the end, too long to build up. Cool theory about the rings of Saturn...that isn't really developed until the every end of the novel. Still can't stomach "old-fashioned" sci-fi like this where writers use terms that sound straight out of a 50s Twilight Zone episode.
Luke McManamon
Typical Bova. Not bad, but not great either. A boring straightforward read that didnt get into the mission probe failures enough (something that was actually interesting and would of made this book more enjoyable).
Apr 05, 2011 Benjamin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
This book is about the trials and tribulations of people living on space habitat colony orbiting the moon Titan. The people who occupy the habitat are rebels, dissidents and in general those that the fundamentalist religious government do not approve of. Their actions, however, were quite bland and not very rebellious. The habitat is very peaceful and ordered with everything basically going perfectly smoothly. The only interesting things that happens to these people, and in the book, is the prob ...more
Peter Cowan
Not a bad little romp set in the near-future, few interesting characters but not groundbreaking. PLan to read the others in the series tho
Dec 29, 2014 George rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
The story of 10K humans exiled to a habitat around Jupiter. It's spiced with some scientific exploration and a crazy politician (aren't they all? ) a fairly complex novel with many story lines, it held my interest despite its length. Where is the next Bova sci-fi?
Rod Hyatt
Jun 18, 2014 Rod Hyatt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book that I read years ago
Feb 18, 2015 Jimagn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was huge SF fan for decades. This won the Nebula for 2006. Either I've changed a lot or it was a bad year for SF. Or both?
Dec 08, 2015 Ingrid rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book turned out to be very different than I expected. I thought it was about discovering life on Titan. Instead I get a political drama in the form of an upcoming election, a discussion of zero population growth and the ethics of mining the ice from the rings of Saturn. Then you have a stuntman who can't seem to retire and a guy contemplating killing everyone on board.
The characters were interesting enough to hold my attention but it just wasn't what I was expecting.
Christopher McKitterick
I had difficulty liking many of the characters, and the political machinations weren't the most interesting factors. However, I appreciated how this books resolves many of the issues Bova brought up earlier, and I loved the hard science and the adventures of the robot on Titan.

I'm giving 4 stars here not just for this book, but for the whole series that took us to this point. If you enjoy hard-SF space opera and are a fan of Bova's work, you'll love these books!
Aug 24, 2010 Marc rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ugh. What a bad book. Ben Bova always tricks me into buying his books. I love the idea of having a story evolve around the exploration of our solar system, and incorporating the latest data from NASA's unmanned probes. Unfortunately Bova always turns it into a shallow soap opera. He seems more concerned with the private lives of his flat characters, than the technology and adventure of space exploration.
This will be the last Ben Bova book for me. Very disappointing.
Pete Guion
While I think this was a better novel than it's predecessor 'Saturn', Bova has some stronger stories elsewhere. It was a decent book, and I did enjoy it, but some of the sub plots irked me. Most notably the one dealing with the population growth question, and the many references to that mostly women wanted to have children and the strong majority of men didn't.

All that said, it is worth a read and I look forward to reading more of Bova's stories.
Parsons Parsons
464 pages. Science fiction. Bova spins a good yarn as he explores on of the solar system's most interesting moons. Titan is one of the few moon that has its own atmosphere. Bova explores the question of wheter or not life is present. He continues his universe that contains a repressive religious goverment that exiles its malcontents to space stations. The story is used as a back drop that explores their lives.
John Sorensen
Sep 27, 2012 John Sorensen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
By far, Ben Bova's most complex book (he even says it in the afterword). Well written. There were multiple, engaging plots. At one point, 3 characters were doing something, suspenseful, and something dramatic happened, but you did not know who the dramatic event happened to for a full chapter. That was well-written, engaging and fun. If you like Ben Bova's other books, you will definitely want to read this one.
Lee Pfahler
This was by far the worst Bova novel in his Grand Tour series that I have read so far, but I will keep reading the series hoping that the others I have yet to read are not as bad. I am not reading this series for the characters but for the science and adventure but in this case even the science and adventure on Titan was BORING and the characters one dimensional and child-like.
Feb 07, 2013 Fortunr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Ben Bova has written some beautiful books (such as "Mars"), and this one is worth reading too, but it is not the best of this author. The plot is pretty good and the book is a nice enough read, but the overall story can be a bit dry at times, and the book does not convey the sense of tension, wonder and intellectual and physical adventure at the same level as other books.
Feb 27, 2013 Weasel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I remembered reading and liking a Ben Bova book once about 25 years ago. So when this was 2 bucks I figured why not?

Ugh. Plots that go no where. It's like he sat down and wrote a chapter. Slept on it. And instead of rewriting he just changed the story in the next chapter.

Even by my low standards the writing was moderately to severely craptastic.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 66 67 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • In War Times
  • Song of Time
  • Terraforming Earth
  • Genesis
  • The Years Of The City
  • Brother to Dragons
  • Beyond Apollo
  • Buddy Holly is Alive and Well on Ganymede
  • Pacific Edge (Three Californias Triptych, #3)
  • Fairyland
  • Omega (The Academy, #4)
  • Mindscan
  • Titan (NASA Trilogy, #2)
  • Coyote Frontier (Coyote Trilogy, #3)
  • On Wings of Song
  • The Dog From Hell (Star Risk, #4)
  • Picoverse
  • Probability Space (Probability, #3)
Ben Bova was born on November 8, 1932 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 1953, while attending Temple University, he married Rosa Cucinotta, they had a son and a daughter. He would later divorce Rosa in 1974. In that same year he married Barbara Berson Rose.

Bova is an avid fencer and organized Avco Everett's fencing club. He is an environmentalist, but rejects Luddism.

Bova was a technical writer fo
More about Ben Bova...

Other Books in the Series

The Grand Tour (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • Powersat
  • Privateers (Privateers, #1)
  • Empire Builders (Privateers, #2)
  • Mars
  • Moonrise (Moonbase Saga, #1)
  • Moonwar (Moonbase Saga, #2)
  • Return to Mars
  • The Precipice (Asteroid Wars, #1)
  • Farside
  • Jupiter

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »