Thursday, July 16, 2009


Hominids, a science fiction novel by Robert J. Sawyer, is the first book in the Neanderthal Parallax trilogy. This book won the Hugo Award in 2003. Religion is a prominent theme. There's also a Star Trek connection -a mention of Kira Nerys.

from the back cover:
Hominids examines two unique species of people. We are one of those species; the other is the Neanderthals of a parallel world where they became the dominant intelligence. The Neanderthal civilization has reached heights of culture and science comparable to our own, but with radically different history, society and philosophy.

Ponter Boddit, a Neanderthal physicist, accidentally pierces the barrier between worlds and is transferred to our universe. Almost immediately recognized as a Neanderthal, but only much later as a scientist, he is quarantined and studied, alone and bewildered, a stranger in a strange land. But Ponter is also befriended—by a doctor and a physicist who share his questing intelligence, and especially by Canadian geneticist Mary Vaughan, a woman with whom he develops a special rapport.

Ponter’s partner, Adikor Huld, finds himself with a messy lab, a missing body, suspicious people all around and an explosive murder trial. How can he possibly prove his innocence when he has no idea what actually happened to Ponter?

SFSite says the book "snatches up the reader with a sharp hook of a first sentence and just keeps gaining speed." SFRevu calls it "a fun read". has lost all structural integrity since its strange name change, but its review of this book is cached here.

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