A New York Times Notable Book from the author of Reclamation: A young woman must face off against an alien force within her starship’s computer.
Katmer Al Shei has done well with the starship Pasadena, cutting corners where necessary to keep her crew paid and her journeys profitable. But there are two things she will never skimp on: her crew and her fool. For a long space journey, a certified Fool’s Guild clown is essential to amuse, excite, and otherwise distract the crew from the drudgeries of interstellar flight. Her newest fool, Evelyn Dobbs, is a talented jester. But does she have enough wit to save mankind?
In the computers of the Pasadena, something is emerging. The highly sophisticated software that makes interstellar travel practical is playing host to a new form of artificial intelligence, a living entity. And it will do whatever it takes to survive . . .
Displaying “the influence of Asimov’s robot stories and C. J. Cherryh’s elaborate, sophisticated spaceship adventures,” this is a science fiction masterpiece that asks the thought-provoking question, “What if the next great life-form with which we must contend isn’t from the stars but from our hard drives?” (Publishers Weekly)