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As he did in his New York Times bestselling novel Earth, David Brin takes on the rapidly accelerating rate of change in technology in a very human way.
Telepresence. The neural link world wide web, where a flash crowd can gather in an instant if something interesting is happening. We see it today - one man in Pakistan live-tweets the assault on Osama bin Laden, and the whole world turns to watch. A revolution in Egypt is coordinated online.
Into the maelstrom of world-wide shared experience drops a game-changer. An alien artifact is plucked from Earth's orbit; an artifact that wants to communicate. News leaks out fast, and the world reacts as it always does: with fear and hope and selfishness and love and violence.
Existence is packed with tension, with characters we care about in danger that seems unstoppable. It is a novel brimming with ideas about the future, and how humanity will - must - adapt to it. This is a big book from David Brin, and everyone is going to be talking about it.