The ambitious sultan of Alpha Centauri can only claim the illustrious title of Caliph if he makes a ritual pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca. This journey completed, he will rule the entire population of the greater Islamic universe. But human knowledge has not yet been able to overcome the significant challenges presented by interplanetary travel. However, the sultan resourcefully enlists the help of Abdul Hamid-Jones, a clever fugitive with a price on his head and the law at his heels. Thrown into the bewildering world of the sultan’s schemes, Abdul receives a hasty introduction to complex physics and the even-more-complex political intrigues of the sultan’s court. Responsible for the successful execution of the sultan’s plan, Abdul slowly realizes with horror that the fate of the entire solar system could be resting on his shoulders.
Published: Open Road Media an imprint of Open Road Integrated Media on Apr 1, 2014
My reactions to reading this book in 1990. Spoilers follow.A wonder filled finish to the series. The first book concentrates on political intrigue, repression, and biological monstrosities on Mars. This one has a great idea: creating artifiical black holes to drag stars around and create a dense, complex solar system capable of being ruled by one ruler. It was an awespiring, very convincing idea though I must admit I did, at times, get bogged down in the astrophysical detail. Moffitt used a lot of plausible sounding (to me at least) cosmological theory combined with solid Newtonian mechanics. I liked many of the other wonders: wooden starships, the comet forests, and the fanatical Assassins. The old bit of a prince in disguise shows up to make the series a bit formulic. There is much derring-do, a romance, and a love lost. I liked the enlightened rule of the Sultan of Alpha Centauri. I did like the idea of creating a wandering solar system for all the non-Moslem's (and any Moslems that want to come along) including the barely Islamized North Americans. All in all an enjoyable series with a good combination of action, exotic locales and notion, finely drawn culture, and the great idea of moving around solar systems.read more