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Robert J. Sawyer
Adult Fiction SAWYER

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Canadian author Sawyer (Mindscan) once again presents likable characters facing big ethical dilemmas in this smoothly readable near-future SF novel. Astronomer Sarah Halifax, who translated the first message from aliens and helped prepare humanity's response, is 87 when the second, encrypted message arrives 38 years later. To aid the decoding, a tycoon buys rejuvenation treatment for Sarah and Don, her husband of 60 years; however, only Don becomes young again. While coping with the physical indignities of old age, Sarah tries to figure out the puzzle of the second message. The bond between Don and Sarah continues, even while Don is joyfully and guiltily discovering the pleasures of living in a young body again. They want to do what's right for each other and the rest of humanity-for the aliens, too-if they can figure out what "right" could be. By its nature, a story about moral choices tends to get talky, but the talk is intelligent and performed by sympathetic and believable people. Sawyer, who has won Hugo and Nebula awards, may well win another major SF award with this superior effort. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Nearly 40 years have passed since Dr. Sarah Halifax cracked an encoded message from an alien intelligence. A second encoded message presages the start of a human-alien dialog, and Sarah, now in her eighties, is offered a rare rejuvenation procedure to enable her to live long enough to usher in a new era. When the process succeeds for her husband but fails for her, she must continue her efforts at breaking the new code while coping with a husband with whom she can no longer grow old. Sawyer (Calculating God), winner of the Hugo and Nebula awards, is no stranger to controversial issues. This tale raises many questions about the ethics of life extension. Above all, the author's characters bear their human strengths and weaknesses with dignity and poise. An elegantly told story for all libraries; highly recommended. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Sarah Halifax
Female
Age: 87
Married
Translated the first message from aliens 38 years ago, recently received a second message; undergoes a rejuvenation treatment which fails.
Astronomer

Don Halifax
Male
Married
Sarah's husband; undergoes a rejuvenation treatment which makes him 25 years younger, but which fails on his wife.



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