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Titan (The Grand Tour #16)

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  1,038 ratings  ·  51 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)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,607)
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Clark Hallman
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)
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
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
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 1 of 5 stars  ·  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
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
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
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.
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
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
Great book that I read years ago
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!
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.
JParsons1974 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
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.
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.
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.
Titan made me feel like I was really there either in orbit around Saturn or on the famous moon of the ringed planet. The book really asks: what if? What if life was found on Titan, or in the rings of Saturn? What if we were able to set up a colony of 10000 people or so in a large habitat in orbit around Saturn? It was a lot of fun to think about.
First lines: "It was nearly dawn on Titan. The thick listless wind slithered like an oily beast slowly awakening from a troubled sleep, moaning, lumbering across the frozen land."

I love goofy science fiction. This one fell flat though - cardboard-cutout characters and lame dialogue made me return it to the library.
Mike Chrisman
This is another book in the Grand Tour series. I highly recommend reading Saturn before reading this book as this picks up where it left off. This book not only has the inter personal battles between people as well as between ideologies but now includes an AI in the mix. This is very entertaining series.
The heartbreaking thing is that you can tell that Bova wants to be a better writer. There are literary references, attempts at depth of character, attempts at insight... But it's all so clunky, so poorly done. It's a little sad, but in the end I just can't recommend him to anyone interested in good writing.
Good read. The story reminded me of a somewhat realistic twist to B5. The maligned look at faith and morals was disagreeable but I understand the narrow field of vision that most scientist hold. Claiming to regard only the facts they often choose which of those facts to believe and which to dismiss.
A really great book
the follow up to Saturn, a little bit slow in comparison to some of his other books, such as Jupiter but altogether very entertaining, i enjoyed it, another piece of the world of the conquest and settling of the solar system
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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
Mars The Science Fiction Hall of Fame: Volume 2A Jupiter Venus Return to Mars

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