Heaven’s Shadow (Heaven’s Shadow #1) by David S. Goyer & Michael Cassutt
An immense object is approaching Earth. Two manned vehicles race through space to land first on its frozen, desolate surface: one launched by NASA, the other representing the Russian-Indian-Brazilian Coalition. Both crews have orders to do whatever it takes to claim it as their own.But the entity is not simply a rock hurtling through the blackness. It has been sent to Earth for a reason. A vastly more intelligent race is desperately attempting to communicate with our primitive species. And its intersteller courier carries a message that the very core of humanity has responded to since time began…Help us…
I thought this was a good science-fiction novel and found it very entertaining. There was a lot of NASA-type jargon, so it felt as though Goyer and Cassutt did a lot of research into this area and, as a result, caused me to feel like I was riding right along with NASA. It didn’t feel fake at all; it felt as though the events in this novel could actually happen one day. I found the story exciting — exploring this near-earth object with the characters was exciting because you don’t know what they’re going to find. The story is also filled with action. I find that a lot of science-fiction novels don’t have very much action, so I enjoyed the fact that this one did. It included alien encounters, people getting injured, and fight scenes.
All the characters were well-developed. They were all believable and easy to sympathize with. The main character, Zack, appears to be very cool-headed and mellow. He doesn’t let his temper get in the way and all his decisions seem like they are calculated. But, really, he mainly acts off his gut feelings on the situation at hand. I liked his character.
There were points of this novel that shared similarities with Solaris by Stanislaw Lem, but it’s also different. Where Solaris left the reader wondering and things unresolved, Heaven’s Shadow resolved the reasons and explained everything to the reader in the end.
Overall, I thought this novel was good. It wasn’t great, but I enjoyed it. I did want to read the second book, because I did enjoy this one, but I’ve heard it’s super boring, so now I’m unsure. I thought the premise was a really cool idea and the authors did a good job with the writing. I also heard that there is a movie adaptation coming out eventually, which I’m excited to see when it comes out.