Moving Mars A Novel

Greg Bear

Orb Books



Trade Paperback

448 Pages



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A Hugo Award Nominee
Winner of the Nebula Award for Best Novel

She is a daughter of one of Mars's oldest, most conservative Binding Multiples—the extended family syndicates that colonized the red planet. But Casseia Majumdar has a dream of an independent Mars, a notion born in the student protests of 2171. During those brief days of idealism she had forged bonds of friendship and hatred that set the stage for an astonishing revolution on Mars.

Charles Franklin was also caught up in those days of passion and youth. A brilliant physicist, and Casseia's first love, Franklin is so dedicated to science that he seeks to link his mind to the most advanced artificial intelligence in the solar system. Doing so will cost him a lifetime with the lovely Casseia, but will teach him the secrets of space and time.


Praise for Moving Mars

"Bear's Mars is one of the most vividly realized of the recent body of areological novels . . . He has the gift of implying a whole background with high-resolution but subtly-signaled background details."—Locus

"No one spins out ideas like Greg Bear. He explores the very frontiers of possibility, weaving tapestries of wonder. And yet, all of Bear's ideas, all the adventure and action, don't half compare to his finest creation yet—that treasure of a Martian, Casseia Majumdar!"—David Brin

"Great characters, science, cultures, action. Moving Mars brings together all the things that make science fiction wonderful."—Vernor Vinge

"In 2171, Mars inhabitants are grouped in extended family businesses that sometimes compete, sometimes cooperate, and resist the imposition of a central authority. But Earth is forever trying to impose its will upon Mars; and so young politician-to-be Casseia of the old and powerful Majumdar family—following a brief and painful affair with ambitious, brilliant physicist Charles Franklin—will travel to Earth with her uncle Bithras to negotiate with the powers that be. Unexpectedly, the talks fizzle; worse, Casseia learns that Earth has infected Mars's artificial-intelligence 'thinkers' with virus-like 'evolvons.' With Earth now openly hostile, Mars must present a united front, and Casseia is elected Vice President. She realizes that what has alarmed Earth are the discoveries of Charles Franklin: his physics of 'descriptors' allow the alteration or 'tweaking' of matter and energy within the absolute-zero Bell Continuum. In practical terms: instantaneous communications, the ability to fry remote targets instantaneously, even the moving of entire planets! Earth attacks by activating the evolvons that sabotage Mars's thinkers, producing chaos. Charles Franklin's team retaliates, and the attack ceases. Clearly, though, this is just the first phase of a struggle that must result in Mars's subjugation—or its leaving the solar system altogether."—Kirkus Reviews

"Revolution is not a new concept as colonies grow more independent from their mother countries. Bear, author of The Wind from a Burning Woman, uses this scenario as the backdrop for Moving Mars with great success. Combining hard science with colonial naiveté, he weaves an epic story of Mars, the colony, against the technologically superior but culturally remote mother Earth. When a staggering scientific breakthrough occurs on Mars, the 'Terries' scurry to regain control of their Martian 'Rabbit.' The chaotic political conditions of the Martian republic do not enhance the colonists position, and their leaders find themselves up against more than they bargained for. Frantically trying to gain a base of support from their constituents, they are backed against the wall by the theft of their technology by Earth. Forced to make a monumental decision that changes the future of Mars forever, the colonial leaders embark upon the ride of their lives. This production is well narrated and effective."—Roxanna Herrick, Washington University Library, St. Louis, Library Journal

"Nebula Award winner Bear has long been known for novels of stunning scientific extrapolation and high literary quality from his early novel Blood Music to his more recent Queen of Angels. This new novel of Mars is his finest yet. Bear follows the unlikely career of Casseia Majumdar of the Majumdar Binding Multiple (a sort of cross between an extended family and a corporation) as she goes from lukewarm student activist to president of the fledgling Federal Republic of Mars. Beginning as a coming-of-age story, with Casseia encountering corruption as well as courage and determination in a student uprising, the narrative then becomes a fine, taut and realistic political novel, as Casseia travels to Earth as part of an ambassadorial retinue, and later serves as second in leader Ti Sandra's push for Martian unification. As conflict heats up between upstart Mars and Mother Earth, Bear introduces a wildly intriguing hard-science idea, and the novel spins into a tense science fiction thriller. Bear offers a fast-moving plot; realistic, appealing characters; a vividly imagined future Earth awash in 'tailored microbes,' nanotechnology and dirty dealing; and the most believable evocation of the workings of politics and science in any recent science fiction novel."—Publishers Weekly

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Part One

The young may not remember Mars of old, under the yellow Sun, its cloud-streaked skies dusted pink, its soil rusty and fine, its inhabitants living in pressurized burrows and venturing Up only as a rite- of passage or to...

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  • Greg Bear

  • Greg Bear sold his first short story, at the age of fifteen, to Robert Lowndes's Famous Science Fiction. Since then, he has written some twenty novels. A winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards, Bear is married to Astrid Anderson, and they, and their two children, live near Seattle, Washington.

  • Greg Bear
    Greg Bear