The Precipice by Ben Bova

 

Science Fiction

The Precipice (The Grand Tour; also Asteroid Wars) The PrecipiceBen Bova; Tor Science Fiction 2002WorldCatDan Randolph owns Astro Manufacturing, a company that made him rich. But now it is close to having to shut down. The last ship is about to be produced. The market is no longer there. He is approached by Martin Humphries, the rich son of a multimillionaire, with a proposal to mine the asteroids in the belt. Dan knows that Martin is out for his business, but he sees this as a chance to help save Earth.

The greenhouse effect has become serious in Earth. Millions have died from weather changes. Dan believes the new propulsion system and the minerals from the asteroids can save the Earth. He is willing to do the work for cost if it proves successful. Martin looks for profit. His only interest in mining the asteroid belt is to make money and take over Astro Manufacturing.

In their joint venture with Selenis, the city on the Moon, they explore fusion propulsion and a new ship that will get to the asteroid belt in a few weeks rather than a few months. The overriding committee on Earth blocks them at every attempt. They turn to industries on the Moon to help them achieve their goal. But getting the ship launched is going to be yet another obstacle to get over.

This is a fun, action space opera novel. I understand there are some scientific anomalies, but I don’t look too closely for them. I wanted to relax and escape to the stars. I got to do just that as well as watch the business intrigue that continues into our future. Dan Randolph is our upright hero and Martin Humphries is the spoiled rich kid we love to hate. The book keeps moving. The other characters intertwine well.

More books by Ben Bova

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