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Footfall by Larry Niven


by Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,601313,604 (3.7)58
The earth faces a terrible challenge from alien invaders from space in this novel by the authors of Mote in God's Eye (1975). They first appear as a series of dots on astronomical plates, heading from Saturn directly toward Earth. Since the ringed planet carries no life, scientists deduce the mysterious ship to be a visitor from another star. The world's frantic efforts to signal the aliens go unanswered. The first contact is hostile: the invaders blast a Soviet space station, seize the survivors, and then destroy every dam and installation on Earth with a hail of asteriods. Now the conquerors are descending on the American heartland, demanding servile surrender--or death for all humans.… (more)

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English (29)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (31)
Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
Too many unlikeable characters (all of them), too dated (especially when it comes to the female characters), lots of uninteresting subplots (pretty much anything involving the Soviets), I just could not do it. ( )
  Aug3Zimm | Nov 12, 2019 |
Fantastisch boek. Echt een aanrader voor alle SF-liefhebbers.

De Aarde wordt bedreigd door een buitenaards ras 'baby-olifanten'.

Op een foto van de sterrenhemel is een stip te zien. Deze stip bevindt zich bij de planeet Saturnus. Deze stip blijkt te bewegen en zet koers naar de Aarde. Komen de aliens in vrede of ...

Snel worden een aantal mensen naar het Russische ruimtestation 'Kosmograd' gestuurd om de aliens te verwelkomen. Deze ruimtestation wordt door de Aliens vernietigd, mar een aantal opvarenden worden gevangen genomen.

Zo begint een strijd vol onbeschrijflijk geweld en onvoorstelbare verwoesting, waarvan de uitkomst tot het laatst onzeker blijft. In dit wanhopige gevecht komen een aantal hoofdfiguren naar voren die de lezer niet gauw zal vergeten.

Zoals Harry, die een verwoest continent oversteekt om de man van een andere vrouw te redden. Of Harpanet, de alien die zich loyaal opstelt ten opzichte van de mens. Jenny, die als eerste het ruimteschip ontdekt en adviseur wordt van de president. En congreslid Wes Dawson die, als gevangene van de aliens, met beide partijen probeert te onderhandelen. ( )
  EdwinKort | Oct 18, 2019 |
I have mixed emotions about this book. I am a fan of Larry Niven because of his use of hard science with outlandish characters and situations. I have never read a book strictly by Pournelle so I don't know who provide which influences in this story.

First it is an ode to all the old hippies who have seen better days. Lots of wasted pages that only lengthened an already long book. (editor anyone?)

It's also a tribute to SF writers and their ability to imagine what is possible because they have tried it on paper for decades.

The story is good and worth getting to the end. The development of the alien culture is also good. It just takes to long to tell the story. It would have been better to break it into two good books.

I expected a better book and got average one. I will read more books by these two as I enjoyed "The Mote in God's Eye" by these authors. ( )
  ikeman100 | Jan 10, 2018 |
A classic of alien invasion involving elephant-like, herd-oriented creatures who want Earth as their new home with humans as their slaves. The alien star-crossing technology is pitted against present-day human skills in a story that provides both strengths and weaknesses to each side. Niven and Pournelle together and separately have an admirable science fiction record...and this book was amongst those at the base of that reputation. War, bravery, courage, sacrifice, it's all here.
  NickHowes | Apr 11, 2017 |
A big sprawling alien invasion novel that can't help but be fun to read. There are logic gaps big enough to drive a "herd" through, but if you can get past those, it's worth the read just for the sheer fun of something of this size. I found myself reading the last 100 pages with anticipation and throughly enjoyed it but a warning, I am a sucker for these kind of novels. ( )
  bhuesers | Mar 29, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Larry Nivenprimary authorall editionscalculated
Pournelle, Jerrymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Harris, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thijssen, FelixTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Whelan, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Robert Gleason
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Within its broad array of nested rings, the planet was a seething storm.
Shuttle three, Challenger, was already lost to sight. Roy caught sight of a gunship's yellow flame just before it disappeared into a missile explosion. "Maneuvering. Stand by." Roy's sense of balance protested as Jay turned the Shuttle. "What have we got?" "Missiles. We've got five miles per second on those snout ships. The missiles only get one pass. They can't hit us if we keep veering. " "You hope." "Semper fi, mac. Let me know when you think you have a shot at something." "Yeah, sure." The missiles were in the main compartment, and the big bay doors weren't open. The ring of green lights dropped away aft. "Go, baby, go." Roy prayed. Talking to the ship. Why not? What else can I do? "Maybe we should open the bay." "No point." The dreadful green lights were fading. "Our missiles can't reach them either. Save 'em for Mommy Dearest. How long before we're in range?" "Maybe an hour, if we don't get hurt, and they don't get more acceleration." Roy poked numbers into Atlantis's computer. "Looks to me like they're pouring on all they have." "So are we. Roy - " "Yeah?" "General Gillespie said Michael might not make it." "Yeah, I heard." "That leaves it up to us." " Well, there's Challenger." "Heard from Big Jim lately?" "No." Big Jim Farr. Six four, only he managed to lose two inches in the official records. Laurie Culzer and Jane Farr and five kids were sharing a house in Port Angles. "Think he's had it, Joe." "I think we act like he's out." "Which leaves us." "Which leaves us. Maneuvering. Stand by."
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The book depicts the arrival of members of an alien species called the Fithp that have traveled to our solar system from Alpha Centauri in a large spacecraft driven by a Bussard ramjet. The aliens are intent on taking over the Earth.
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