Earth passes through comet, shape changing and psionic abilities
I read this book sometime in the late 80s but can't remember the name.
The book starts out in space on a large ship heading back to earth. Humans have been gone from earth for a very long time and want to see what remains of the planet.
The reason humans left earth was because the earth was going to pass through the tail of a great comet and scientist thought that all life would end. Unfortunately, not everyone could go and so only the scientists, the rich, and politicians got off planet before the comet came.
Once in space, human technology advances considerably. Humans have spread throughout the galaxy and encountered many other species. Several of which they have had wars with and won. The one exception is a species reminiscent of huge earthworms which are the only aliens that defeated the humans.
Eventually, one of the human ships is going to pass by. The humans decide to send just one man to the surface to begin exploring and learning what had happened to the humans that were left behind. Upon arriving back at earth, the explorer finds that there are life forms on the planet.
The explorer learns that the humans left behind did not all die. The earth was devastated by the comet and it changed the face of the planet with volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and other disasters but it did not end life. In fact, it transformed those humans that survived.
After the earth passed through the cometís tail and was transformed, humans on earth acquired the ability to shape change and acquired psionic powers with which they could create objects with their mind just by thinking them.
At first this new power seemed like a gift, however, overtime, the humans on earth realized that some were stronger than others and conflicts escalated until the strongest of all took control and rules were instituted. One such rule was that by the age of 18, all humans must take on one form of their choosing and never shape change again. If you were caught changing, you were exiled to a remote island with all the other shape changers.
Also, creating things with your mind was not without cost. There is only a finite amount of matter and energy on earth. Every time something is created with the mind, it drains a little bit of life and energy from the natural world. Therefore, creating things with the mind was also curtailed.
The explorer also learned that those left behind resented and hated those that left earth because they felt abandoned. This hatred has only grown over time. The humans on earth want to be left alone and the humans in space want to stay. This eventually leads to conflict and the earth humans and the space humans begin to fight, technology versus psionic power.
The explorer that came to visit earth sides with the earth humans to fight against the humans from space with technology. He creates a military force from the exiled shape shifters. He teaches them how to fight and encourages them to use their shape changing ability to overcome the advantages of technology.
We also learn a secret about the two most powerful earth humans. It seems that they obtained their great power by going to a forbidden place on earth that focuses the effects from the comet. The book describes the place as a bowl shaped place that sounds much like the Arecibo observatory and radio telescope.
The culmination of the book is when the wife of one of the main characters, who is hiding at the forbidden place, gives birth and the child is a mutated human that grows to adulthood in just a few days and has incredible psionic powers including telepathy. This new human takes over the planet and demands that all children be born at the forbidden place and the beginning of a new human race is spawned.
The super children then want to move into space and start to create space vehicles. When the leader asks the main character from the space humans where the best place to go in space is, the human tells him. However the super child reads the space humanís mind and thinks he is lying. The super child misreads the humanís mind and goes to the planet with the worm-like aliens by mistake. Hopefully that will be the end of the mutated humans.
Last edited by visionquestit; 09-02-2011 at 10:26 PM.
Reason: Add info
Images are not working
Did you actually have an answer to my post?
Visionquestit, no one seems to recognize it. Sorry about that. Someone may still come along who's read it and remembers it.
Thank you for replying.
I'm not sure if you removed the post prior to the one I made regarding images or the original poster did. Someone made a post that had only HREF links to three images but the links were broken, hence my question.
It does not surprise me that no one seems to remember my book.
I'd be willing to write it if TOR would be interested in publishing it. Maybe then I would get a cease and desist order and finaly figure out the author, title, and publisher.
It is so odd that I cannot find this book. I have been looking for almost 20 years. I have posts on every major SF site and publisher site. It's almost as if I dreamed this up.
I read alot, perhaps 50-60 books a year but in the 80's I really only read mainstream authors such as:
Marion Zimmer Bradley
Edgar Rice Burroughs
Orson Scott Card
Arthur C. Clarke
Philip K. Dick
Alan Dean Foster
Robert A. Heinlein
L. Ron Hubbard
I have looked at all of thier bibliographies and none of them wrote this book.
I remember the story so clearly so I must have read it more than once.
Anyway. Thank you again for replying.
Last edited by visionquestit; 09-24-2011 at 01:49 PM.
Anyone heard of this book?
Still drawing a blank. Might it have been an older work, perhaps in a reprint edition? By the 1980s, we'd known for decades that comets are basically big dirty snowballs, like the mixture of dirty slush and loose gravel you get on winter roads in the Northeast. The coma and tail are made of ionized volatiles burning off as the comet approaches the sun. They also emit some x-rays, but that's about all. Almost all of the modern writers -- okay, relatively modern writers; I'm showing my age -- on your reading list would have known that comet tails don't have the kind of mysterious powers needed to fuel a plot like that. Maybe L. Ron Hubbard wouldn't have known it, but he didn't write the book you're looking for.
Other possibility: are you sure it was a comet that did it? Poul Anderson knew more astronomy than that, but the idea of going back to Earth long after some cataclysm and finding that the remnant human population there has turned into something different sounds like some of his books and stories.
Thanks for the reply tnh.
I am pretty sure that the book had to be written in the late 70s early 80s. I have read litterally thousands of scifi books and have a good feeling of the pace, content, context, and language, (meaning vocabulary not dialect) that appear from decade to decade.
Most books from the late 50's and early 60's are written like one of my favorites of that time called Wasp:
This book was more along the lines of Alan Dean Foster.
Just really odd that I cannot find anyone that has heard of this plot line. I have posts here, on pinquin, Barns & Noble, and SciFi Chronicles as well as any Sci Fi pulisher site with a forum.
Someone is bound to come up with it.
Maybe I need to offer abounty.
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