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Heaven's Shadow (Heaven's Shadow, #1)
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Heaven's Shadow (Heaven's Shadow #1)

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  1,079 Ratings  ·  190 Reviews
The science fiction epic of our time has arrived.

Three years ago, an object one hundred miles across was spotted on a trajectory for Earth's sun. Now, its journey is almost over. As it approaches, two competing manned vehicles race through almost half a million kilometers of space to reach it first. But when they both arrive on the entity, they learn that it has been sent
Hardcover, 398 pages
Published July 5th 2011 by Ace
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Bob Milne
Dec 12, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: alien-ufo
In my mind, there are generally 3 ways to approach the good ol' first contact story:

1. Make it about the mystery, embrace the unknown, and keep the aliens under wraps and off the page. Tease us, but save the aliens for the big reveal (or don't show them at all).
2. Go all-out with the monster angle, use the readers' fears against them, and exploit the very nature of being alien. Tease the readers for a bit, then allow the monsters to explode from the page.
3. Make it about the integration of two d
Christina White
After the first few pages and reading things like "trajectory, plasma curtain, cylindrical, and neo (near-earth-object)" I thought maybe this book was going to be a little too..... nerdy for me to get into haha. After the second chapter I crossed a line into a whole new level of nerdiness and LOVED it! This book was so cool, it has edge on your seat suspense. The characters were easy to develop feelings for. This book made me anxious, had me in tears and had me so mad I wanted to tear it into ti ...more
Nov 11, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Heaven's Shadow has a lot going for it: an interesting lead character, a couple of ongoing mysteries, a representation of the near future which feels real, cool spaceflight and technology, an international rivalry, tense action sequences, aliens, a nifty cover, and a cute central pun (the Near Earth Object, or NEO, gets nicknamed Keanu.) What it doesn't have: other fleshed-out characters, explanations, or satisfing resolutions. There were parts of this book where I couldn't put it down, and othe ...more
Dec 28, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little over a year ago I read and reviewed the classic science fiction novel Rendezvous with Rama. David S. Goyer and Michael Cassutt’s Heaven’s Shadow is in many ways a modern update to that story and tries to blaze a new path employing tropes and scientific concepts that weren’t as familiar or at all extent during Arthur C. Clarke’s time. Heaven’s Shadow opens as two competing spacecrafts, one from America and one an alliance of Europe/India/Russia, race to intercept a Near Earth Object (NEO ...more
May 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of the most enjoyable reads I've had in a long time. The feeling that this could all happen, the fear, desperation and wonderment from the characters really capture my attention and awe.

It harkens back to a time when Sci/Fi was more than just laser guns and space battle akin to 1945 dogfights. Not that those are bad but they really don't take advantage of the audience's need for more. It paints the idea of strange events as something we should applause and seek. It gives big ideas a
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
This turned out to be a page-turner and pretty good. I am looking forward to the next book.

Reviewed for Bitten by Books.
Aug 07, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Discovery plays an important part in any story telling medium. Whether it's discovering who really dunnit, why the love interest is acting so strange all of a sudden, or how the bad guy became the person they are. Without those elements of mystery or new things for us to learn, stories become stale and uninteresting. Discovery is one of the many essential aspects of storytelling. That being the case, Heaven's Shadow is a great/disappointing book because it gets this important aspect so right/wro ...more
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
OUTSTANDING!! If I could recommend just one sci-fi book that I would want everyone to read--even those for whom sci-fi would not be their first genre of choice--this would be the book. There is enough real science to keep the Hard SF community engaged, yet at the same time a riveting, compelling storyline and some really good characterization to satisfy those readers who aren't really into Hard (scientific) SF. It wasn't until after I read Heaven's Shadow that I learned that the both of the writ ...more
Aug 27, 2011 rated it liked it
Heaven's Shadow was an interesting read, and I have mixed feelings about it. To keep it short, it was a throwback to those BDO books that, for me anyway, are the cornerstone of sci fi.

I couldn't decide on whether or not to give this book 3 stars or 4. I'm still not sure, I may feel differently a few weeks from now, but as of this writing I decided it gets 3, mostly because while I liked it, I'm not sure it impacted me emotionally the way I'd hoped it would.

I probably judge these type stories mor
Liam Proven
Feb 21, 2015 rated it did not like it
Awful tedious crap.

Biggest pile of it I've read in years, in fact. Stale, derivative (worse, /knowingly/ so), with poorly-thought-out error-ridden tech (such as dial-up internet access from Antarctica) mixed with indifferently-executed Sufficiently Advanced™ alien tech: a big dumb object that they /call/ a BDO in the most crashingly-awkward move since Avatar's "unobtainium" which, it emerges, isn't dumb & which resurrects the dead as a (very poor) communications medium.

There's a mix of myst
Alex Shrugged
Jul 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
"Heaven's Shadow" is the first book in the series by David S. Goyer and Michael Cassutt. It's a Scifi space novel and I didn't think I was going to like it but it was pretty good.

The story: A comet is approaching Earth (no collision course but real close) so two space organizations re-purpose their moonshot programs to make a landing on the comet but what they discover is that the comet is not a comet.

Any problems with the book? Well... it delves into religious ideas in an ecumenical way simila
Jan 18, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This was a pretty good first contact story. An object moves into the solar system and will pass close to earth, giving two separate teams of American and international astronauts a chance to land on it during its closest approach. The near earth object turns out to be an interstellar ship, and the astronauts encounter some strange developments. The story is told from several points of view, bouncing between astronauts on the surface of the NEO, astronauts inside the NEO in contact with aliens, a ...more
Ann Wilkes
Jul 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Full review at Science Fiction and Other ODDysseys: http://sciencefictionmusings.blogspot...

Interview with authors here: http://sciencefictionmusings.blogspot...
Oct 05, 2011 rated it liked it
Fascinating look at NASA, astronauts, encounters with aliens, etc. Mostly though, I really enjoyed the technical aspects of the story. Will definitely be checking out the sequel!
Apr 05, 2014 rated it liked it
So when I decided to read David S. Goyer and Michael Cassutt's "Heaven's Shadow", the first in a trilogy (which seems to be a theme with me of late - trilogies, that is), I'll admit that the pedigree is what attracted me at first. I mean, for all my complaints about his movies, Goyer is a talented screenwriter (for the most part) and the prospect of reading an original work by him was intriguing. So how did the book stand up? Well, the book was... actually, not bad.

The story revolves around two
Jamie Collins
Feb 15, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: science-fiction
This begins in the year 2019 with a cowboyish NASA mission to land astronauts on a newly discovered Near-Earth Object. The NEO turns out to be an alien spaceship, and the story goes all Rendezvous with Rama for a while as the crew explores tunnels and finds artifacts and whatnot.

The writing is clunky and shallow, but serviceable for a cowboyish space adventure.

But then the story dips into Dean Koontz territory when the spaceship spits out (view spoiler)
Douglas Owen
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
The books concept was really well thought out, and I actually enjoyed the read (to an extent), so why only two stars? Let me explain:

1 - The story is written in 3rd person, but the author slips many times into omnipotent. This causes a little confusion in the narrative which removes one of the stars.
2 - Throughout the book there are repeated words. I'm not saying words used multiple times, I'm talking about words used twice, one right after the other, in the narrative. EG: Bob took the the time
Kate Rauner
Nov 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Heaven's Shadow by David S. Goyer and Michael Cassutt, is strongly flavored with NASA-speak and reminiscent of other "first contact" stories involving a "Big Dumb Object." Of the 37 reviews on Amazon, well over half (22) rated the book 4 or 5 stars, which is all any author could hope for. Some readers disliked the characters, thought other "Big Dumb Object" books did a better job, or complained the story set you up for the next book in the series without its own satisfying ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads, sci-fi
When I realized I'd won this book through Goodreads Firstreads, and I saw how sci-fi it was, I was a little unsure. Normally, I'm not into the science fiction, but in this case, I really really liked this book. It felt very thriller-ish, which would make sense considering who the authors are. There are two authors, both screenwriters, and one of them wrote the screenplays for Batman Begins and the Dark Knight. (Which are both fantastic movies.) I started reading it, and I'll be honest, it took m ...more
Sep 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Set in the very near future, 'Heaven's Shadow' is a first contact story that never quite lives up to it's billing. As a novel, I'd have to say that it falls a bit closer to space opera than it does hard science fiction.

* The aliens are well, truly alien, including their motivations.
* None of the characters are infallible.
* Political machinations are kept to a minimum.

* I found the profanity to be a distraction. The NASA personnel were portrayed as quite unprofessional at t
Jun 28, 2011 rated it liked it
Good book, had some semblance of greatness through out but ultimately fell short. What I was looking forward to was the sense of mystery, a "neo" (near earth object) from another galaxy being shot toward sol's sun but making a stop and settling in earth's gravity. It had the workings to be a fabulous read but at some points I was yawning through all the filler. It's not until really the last 30 or so pages you get "some" answers.. emphasize on some because nothing about the vessel and it's purpo ...more
Nov 24, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
Never judge a book by the occupation of its author. When I read that screenwriter David S. Goyer had 'penned' a novel, with Michael Cassutt, about a dual-nation First Contact space mission to a BDO heading towards Earth, I immediately wondered if it would be the literary equivalent of Armageddon - that is, implausible and melodramatic.

Much to my surprise, Heaven's Shadow is a ripping good read with a lot of thought and detail to the speculation and science -- unlike most Hollywood SF. (It will b
May 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I won this through the Goodreads first reads giveaway. So, a big "Thank You" to Goodreads and the publisher for this book.

This is instantly one of my favorites and I absolutely can't wait for book 2 in the series to come out. Imagine taking the best parts from The Abyss, 2001: A Space Odyssey and the Apollo 13 story. The result may be something like Heaven's Shadow. This was a very fast paced, action filled book that always keeps you wondering "What's going to happen next?" right up until the v

53/552 The Right Stuff + Rendezvous with Rama? Arthur C. Clarke with better characters? Maybe. It has some really impressive blurbs by Sawyer, Benford, McDevitt, and Brin. Seems very NASA-authentic. One thing...I am not a big fan of flashbacks, of which there are many. ETR = 11.5 hrs. Paperback is in that tall format with the bigger font.
James Kelly
May 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Loved this one. I was expecting a space procedural and got so much more than I bargained for. Great characters, cool ideas. This one plants its flag in Arthur C. Clarke territory and does the old gent one better.
Melinda Snodgrass
Sep 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
Loved this book. It had all the real world NASA feel of a Cassutt book, and they spun my head with what happens. They also make a really hard choice that I never expected.

Can't wait for the sequel.
Drew Baker
Jun 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Hmmm.... How to describe this book? It's okay. The story is kinda interesting. The characters are kinda interesting. The premise is kinda interesting. But that's just it. Kinda.

Going off the the blurb on the inner flap I expected one kind of story and got a different one, and I'm not sure it is better. The story is, all in all, a little slow, a little confusing, and stretches the suspense of disbelief more than a few times, even for a science fiction novel. There are a lot of cool concepts pres
Paul Downs
Jan 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Grabbed this book to tide me over the holiday break. It's OK. First of three in the series.
Jerry Jr.
Aug 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Heaven's Shadow is tightly plotted, filled with the sort of plot twists that good storytellers pull off but only superb storytellers conceal. It's populated with realistic characters and manages to individuate their voices well. And it's meticulously researched, filled with the sort of authenticating detail about NASA specifically and international manned space exploration generally that could only come from firsthand investigations and in-person interviews.

These things considered, it's odd that
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Undead & UnRead B...: Heaven's Shadow 4 9 Jul 02, 2014 05:13PM  
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