This was the first book I read by this author, so I will admit I wasn’t sure what to expect. Despite the initial slow pace of the book, the book manages to use that pace to build an intricate world and complicated world. As the plot progresses and deepens,using a nice balance of science fiction technologies, philosophy and slight hints of Darwinism. Honestly I must admit, there were times when the story had slightly strange, if not slightly humorous moments.
While the name definitely hides a lot, it reveals the fundamental question, “Are we alone in the universe?” Of course in the plot in this book we are not, despite the subtle,rational and quiet means the alien races choose for travel. Their chosen crystal vessels, are much more dangerous then they appear. Of course despite the danger, humanities natural curiosity is strong as they explore these crystals. As the story progress, with a much more brisk pace the dangerous nature of the crystals begins to unfold. With almost accidental luck, an older crystal is found. This one is much less malignant.
In contrast to this, adding a more human element to the story. Humans use technological, economic and political means to do both harm and good. Some more wealthy humans are hiding crystals in their lavish estates. Others with journalistic approaches, seek knowledge and truth about the some of the stranger incidents that occur.
OF course in the end, humanity adapts and modifies this crystal technology to explore the universe itself. Giving both warning and cure about the malignant crystal entities.