|Full title||A Fall of Moondust [permalink]|
|Author||Arthur C. Clarke (author)|
|Publisher||Victor Gollancz Ltd|
|Categories||Novel and science fiction|
|Original publication year||1961|
|ISBN||978-0-575-07317-3 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]|
It's the near future, and the Moon is a place for tourism. The novel opens with Pat Harris, skipper of the boat Selene, enjoying a cruise with his two-dozen-or-so passengers across the (fictional) Sea of Thirst. At the time of the novel's writing in 1960 it was reasonably assumed that the so-called "seas" of the Moon consisted of very fine dust. Selene, therefore, was imagined as a ship capable of crossing these seas. However, like an ant falling into an antlion's trap (the analogy is one of the character's), Selene sinks into the Sea of Thirst, and the rest of the novel is concerned with, alternately, the people aboard, the search party above, and the various other interested parties (TV crews, overseers, and what have you).
An immensely gripping novel! To call it science fiction is technically correct, but the SF serves merely as the backdrop for the human drama. And what a drama it is! Go pick this up!