Beyond the Blue Event Horizon
|Beyond the Blue Event Horizon|
|Series||The Heechee Saga|
|Genre||Science fiction novel|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover & Paperback)|
|Followed by||Heechee Rendezvous|
Beyond the Blue Event Horizon is a science fiction novel by Frederik Pohl. It is the sequel to his 1977 novel Gateway and is the second book in the Heechee saga. It was a finalist for the 1981 Hugo Award for Best Novel, as well as the 1980 Nebula Award.
A space exploration unit sent off by Robin Broadhead finds a food factory space ship in the Oort cloud. As the crew examines the ship the youngest crew member, Janine, finds a young boy named Wan who was forgotten on the ship for the past fifteen years.
In discussion over what to do Wan shows Janine around the ship. Here he shows her the dream chamber; a place where Wan has gone every 18X days. As he enters the chambers humanity has gone into a fervor based on the dream Wan was having. Janine does the same and humanity goes into a chaotic fever as it is not prepared for the dream.
This injures Robin Broadhead's wife, Essie Broadhead. He takes off time to care for his wife who is kept alive due to his full medical insurance. All this time he is learning about the party and what they've learned about the ship.
What they've learned is the ship can travel faster than light to go to a place called Heechee Heaven. This is a place filled with Australopithecus who Wan calls the Old ones. Wan leads out an expedition of Heechee heaven in order for the crew to find out more about the Heechee and perhaps what Wan is doing when he causes the universal dream.
As they are doing that Robin Broadhead's wife goes through a dangerous surgery as so he will go out and find the party he lost. She recovers and Robin goes off to Heechee heaven right behind them.
Whilst Robin is working on getting to Heechee heaven Janine, Lurvey, and Wan were all captured by the old ones. The old ones proceed to force Janine live multiple lives until she finally lives the life of an Australopithecus, which is her last dream.
When she is recovering from that dream Robin Broadhead shows up and rescues the Girls, Paul and Wan (crew). He does so by learning how to operate the Artifacts by tricking one the "dead men" (Henrietta, using a AI to impersonate her dead husband) into revealing how it works. When the Oldest One realises, he moves the food factory towards the centre of the universe, the central black hole (which is later analyzed by Einstein - the AI program, to be the possible location of all the Australopithecus) along with trying to make a grand stand at the control room. However, Robin uses his new knowledge to save the crew from the "Oldest One". Robin then takes the crew back to earth along with re-diverting the food factory to the Solar System.
The book ends with the viewpoint of a Heechee "captain" who reveals that what the experiments (Old men and to a certain extent, the Humans as well) are to the Heechee (in terms of technological standing), the Heechee are to an "Unknown element" who have set into motion, resetting the universe to make it more habitable to life.. which would first require the existing universe to be destroyed. The Heechee have retreated to the central core, after seeding the universe with 15-17 experiments (apart from the Old Men), which they hope will act as a buffer against the "Unknown element".
- "Revisiting the Hugos. Hugo Nominees: 1981"Tor.com
- "1980 Nebula Awards" http://www.locusmag.com/SFAwards/Db/Nebula1980.html