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2003. The Line of Polity
About the Author:
Neal Asher was born in Billericay, Essex and still lives nearby. He started writing SF and fantasy at the age of sixteen. Some years later, he began seriously to write short stories, and has had many published by British small-press SF and fantasy magazines. Also published have been his novellas Mindgames: Fool's Mate
; The Parasite and The Engineer; as well as short-story collections Runcible Tales and Mason's Rats. His first full-length novels were Gridlinked and The Skinner.
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- The Line of Polity [top]
First published in 2003 by Tor (Pan Macmillan)
Paperback edition published 2004.
Story: Outlink station Miranda has been destroyed by a nanomycelium, and the very nature of this sabotage suggests that the alien bioconstruct Dragon - a creature as untrustworthy as it is gigantic - is somehow involved.
Sent out on a titanic Polity dreadnought, the Occam Razor, agent Cormac must investigate the disaster, and also resolve the question of Masada, a world about to be subsumed as the Line of Polity is drawn across it.
But the rogue biophysicist, Skellor has not yet been captured, and he now controls something so potent that Polity Als will hunt him down for ever to prevent him using it.
Meanwhile, on the remote planet Masada, the long-term rebellion can never rise above-ground, as the slave population is subjugated by orbital laser arrays controlled by the Theocracy in their cylinder worlds, and by the fact that they cannot safely leave their labour compounds. For the wilderness of Masada lacks breathable air ...and out there roam monstrous predators called hooders and siluroynes, not to mention the weird and terrible gabbleducks