Science fiction writer Greg Bear calls George Zebrowski “one of those rare speculators who bases his dreams on science as well as inspiration.” Zebrowski has published more than seventy works of short fiction and more than a hundred and forty articles and essays. His best known novel is Macrolife which Arthur C. Clarke described as “a worthy successor to Olaf Stapledon’s Star Maker.” Library Journal chose Macrolife as one of the one hundred best science fiction novels, and The Easton Press included it in its “Masterpieces of Science Fiction” series. Macrolife and a related novel, Cave of Stars, are available on E-Reads along with a number of other Zebrowski masterpieces.
Brute Orbits, an uncompromising novel about the future of the penal system, was praised by reviewers for its characters, originality, and thought. Paul Di Filippo, in Asimov’s Science Fiction, said that “Zebrowski never ceases to invest his individual characters with three-dimensional roundness…Startling, sobering, provocative”, while Publishers Weekly called this novel “boldly speculative.” The book was also honored with the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Novel of the Year in 1999.
It is the twenty-first century. Convicts are sentenced to asteroids that move in ever-widening solar orbits, timed to return when their terms run out. But a few ambitious administrators discover that small “errors” in velocity can rid them of selected groups altogether: the hardcore violent, the mentally defective, and especially the political dissidents. Enduring the black vise of interstellar space-time, these human rejects–men and women mixed together–create their own Darwinian societies, struggling to survive.
Back on Earth, a handful of sympathetic and curious scientists have not forgotten these lost citizens. When a technological breakthrough makes it possible to overtake these scattered asteroids, a courageous team sets out to go where none has willingly gone before. What they discover in these “brute orbits” is both provocative and moving–a startling vision of humanity you will never forget.
“A brilliant and dramatic philosophical reflection on the nature of society, technology . . . and humanity itself. Zebrowski is a deep thinker who writes about the big questions’ in the grand tradition of Wells, Stapledon, and Clarke.”
– Jack M. Dann, award-winning author of The Silent and The Memory Cathedral
See George Zebrowski’s author page for other great titles.