Star Dragon
Hardback and Paperback
Tor - October 2003

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The SS Cygni probe sent back hours of video, captured by the Biolathe AI, but only a few minutes mattered--the four minutes that showed a creature made of fire, living , moving, dancing in the plasma fire of the double star's accretion disk. A dragon made of star stuff, so alien that only a human expedition to observe and perhaps capture it, could truly understand it. It's a perilous journey into the future, however, for SS Cygni is 245 light-years from Earth, and even though only two years subjective time will pass on board the Karamojo, the crew will return to an Earth where five hundred years have passed.

Captain Lena Fang doesn't care--she has made her life on her ship, where her best friend is the ship's AI. Samuel Fisher, the contract exobiologist, doesn't care, either. He is making the voyage of a lifetime and in the small world of the Karamojo he will have to live with the consequences of his obsessive quest for knowledge. The rest of the small crew--Axel Henderson, the biosystems engineer; Sylvia Devereaux, the beautiful physical sciences expert; and Phil Stearn, the ship's jack-of-all-trades--have their own reasons for saying good-bye to everyone they have ever known. As the Biolathe AI said, uncertain five hundred-year round trips don't attract the most stable personalities, but somehow they'll have to learn to get along with each other if they're to catch their dragon and come home again. For at the end of the journey is the star dragon--a creature of fire with a nuclear furnace for a heart. The crew of the Karamojo--human and AI alike--will risk everything to capture it, and it will take all their technology, all their skill and more courage than they knew they had, to come home alive.

Read some online reviews. Listen to a Nov. 2003 radio interview I did with the fine folks at The Dragon Page. Listen to an older MP3 NPR radio interview in which my wife Leah Cutter and I discuss our novels (about half way through the program). I also wrote two articles about writing and selling the novel; these were originally published in the newsletter of The Science Fiction and Fantasy Workshop. The cover is by the talented Stefan Martiniere, and you can order a print of the cover from him. I also have an excellent interior illustration of the SS Cygni system that will appear in the book created by Wolf Read.

Star Dragon Highlights

Additional Star Dragon Reviews -- from a christian perspective -- Bewildering Stories

"With a unique vision and an eye toward accessibility, Brotherton's "Star Dragon" is a good introduction to the field of hard SF."-- The Davis Enterprise Review

Future Novels

I've sold a second book to Tor with the working title of SPIDER STAR. I expect to finish that one in 2004 and it should hit the shelves in 2005.

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Praise for Star Dragon:

"Seldom does a storytelling talent come along as potent and fully mature as Mike Brotherton. His complex characters take you on a voyage that is both fiercely credible and astonishingly imaginative. This is Science Fiction."
-- David Brin

"Star Dragon is terrific fare, offering readers a fusion of hard science and grand adventure."
-- Locus Magazine

"Star Dragon is steeped in cosmology, the physics of interstellar travel, exobiology, artificial intelligence, bioscience. Brotherton, author of many scientific articles in refereed journals, has written a dramatic, provocative, utterly convincing hard science sf novel that includes an ironic twist that fans will love."
-- Booklist starred review

"Readers hungry for the thought-provoking extrapolation and rigorous technical detail of old-fashioned hard SF are sure to enjoy astronomer Brotherton's first novel."
-- Publishers Weekly

"Mike Brotherton, himself a trained astrophysicist, combines the technical acuity and ingenuity of Robert Forward with the ironic, postmodern stance and style of M. John Harrison. In this, his debut novel, those twin talents unite to produce a work that is involving on any number of levels. It's just about all you could ask for in a hardcore SF adventure."
-- Paul di Fillippo, SCI-FI.COM

"Star Dragon's strengths are rooted in its concept: the intriguing layers of its setting, its use of biotechnology and the suspenseful convolutions of the dragon hunt. Brotherton's first novel offers outstanding fare for any reader looking for hard science fiction combined with adventure on a truly grand scale."
-- A. M. Dellamonica, Strange Horizons

"Star a clever first novel by a University of Wyoming astronomer."
-- Fred Cleaver, Denver Post

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