Journey Into Space

Toby Litt

Journey Into Space

A vast generation ship hurtles away from a violent, troubled Earth to settle on a distant planet orbiting an alien star. Those who set out on this journey are long-since dead. Those who will arrive at their destination have yet to be born. For those who must live and die in the cold emptiness between the stars, there is only the claustrophobic permanence of non-being. Life lived in unending stasis. Then the unthinkable happens: two souls - Auguste and Celeste - rebel. And from the fruit of their rebellion comes a new and powerful force which will take charge of the ship's destiny. Journey into Space is science fiction at its most classic and beguiling: timeless, vast in scope and daring in execution. 3.7 out of 5 based on 8 reviews
Journey Into Space

Omniscore:

Classification Fiction
Genre Science Fiction & Fantasy
Format Paperback
Pages 256
RRP £7.99
Date of Publication March 2009
ISBN 978-0141039718
Publisher Penguin
 

A vast generation ship hurtles away from a violent, troubled Earth to settle on a distant planet orbiting an alien star. Those who set out on this journey are long-since dead. Those who will arrive at their destination have yet to be born. For those who must live and die in the cold emptiness between the stars, there is only the claustrophobic permanence of non-being. Life lived in unending stasis. Then the unthinkable happens: two souls - Auguste and Celeste - rebel. And from the fruit of their rebellion comes a new and powerful force which will take charge of the ship's destiny. Journey into Space is science fiction at its most classic and beguiling: timeless, vast in scope and daring in execution.

Reviews

The Financial Times

James Lovegrove

[Litt] is to be commended for playing the whole thing absolutely straight and for using science fiction for what it does best: the examination of politics and society through futuristic and/or otherworldly metaphor... Journey Into Space is a rich, bold foray into the unknown from which this author comes back triumphant, his literary reputation intact and his SF credentials, if he wants them, securely established.

28/02/2009

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The Spectator

Andrew McKie

He has done nothing very new, but he has written a good novel. Journey into Space avoids cliché, the sentences never go clunk, the reader is always engaged — and it offers a thoroughly old-fashioned future... Litt knows how to do science fiction. Better, he knows how to tell a story.

11/03/2009

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The Daily Telegraph

Lorna Bradbury

It will no doubt have the purists up in arms with its cursory technological descriptions, inconsistencies and jokes at its own expense, but to the non-aficionado it is a more than satisfying diversion... Perhaps the least satisfying part of this novel is the last third... Despite these frustrations, Journey into Space is an absorbing read, occasionally elevated into something more substantial by moments of inspired writing.

30/03/2009

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The New Statesman

Simon Akam

Litt has a tendency to overindulge his conceptual imagination when a willingness to curb it earlier might have created a tighter result... Still, the reason Journey Into Space succeeds is that its author has such a plethora of good ideas to work with that he can get away with overextending a few... Litt’s imagination clearly has galactic dimensions, and by plundering these resources he keeps his book driving forward...

16/04/2009

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The Independent on Sunday

Brandon Robshaw

The large time sweep and detached authorial voice are reminiscent of Olaf Stapledon's 1930 sci-fi classic Last and First Men. But Stapledon's book neglected the personal, while Litt writes about living breathing characters with the human emotions of love and hope and despair and curiosity and ambition... Litt is an unfailingly inventive writer, and this is a welcome addition to his oeuvre.

15/03/2009

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The Times

Lisa Tuttle

...as a genre science fiction was born in the US and for years fans and critics have argued over whether there is something inherently American - outward-looking, positive, pioneering - that defines it against the more pessimistic, inward-looking works of European authors. Litt makes teasing reference to this argument at a key moment, and some details in the climax may have been designed to raise American hackles. But Journey into Space should provoke some interesting discussions.

07/03/2009

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The Literary Review

Tony Lichtig

Litt seems to rush through [the] latter stages as if having grown slightly tired of his story. Narrative begins to take precedence over character, loosening the grip upon the reader. Having set himself up so nicely, he seems to have squandered an opportunity. Perhaps the intimations were already there: the onboard patois is disappointingly prosaic, especially given the author’s skilful reflection on the power of language... Perhaps, unusually, the book is simply too short. It is not too harsh to accuse Toby Litt of imaginative dereliction, because Journey into Space could have been very good indeed.

01/03/2009

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The Guardian

Ursula K Le Guin

The theme of the ship of fools is old and tried, and has provided matter for many a good story; but this is a ship of blockheads. Perhaps it's a good thing to remind us of the dangerous stupidity of our species, but if there's no end and no contrast to the stupidity, the story itself sinks into the inane.

28/02/2009

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