If we can send a man to the moon, why can't we send a man to the moon?
The Firestar Series
is a set of four Science Fiction
novels by Michael F. Flynn
, consisting of Firestar
, Rogue Star
, and Falling Stars
In 1972, Mariesa van Huyten, heir apparent to her grandfather's corporate empire, witnesses a shooting star in the daylight over the Grand Tetons. The slightest change in the trajectory, she knows, could have been catastrophic. It marks her for life.
Twenty-seven years later, the secret space program she has been developing with select members of scion companies prepares to begin test flight, as Mariesa selects students from her latest acquisition, Mentor Academies, to ensure the future of the space program - her only hope to fight asteroids, and the highest dreams of her inner circle.
But the road is beset with enemies: political opposition, competitors, saboteurs, and not least, their own vaunting ambition.
Humanity, though, for all its flaws, is a race built to vaunt.
This book series provides examples of:
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: "Believe everything, and you had to hold Bullock responsible for the slave trade, the Spanish Inquisition, and the birth of disco."
- Black and Nerdy: Hobie ends up as the frontrunner for the Nobel Prize. He's actually a jock in high school; his former classmates never quite get over this.
- Broken Pedestal: Roberta does not appreciate being manipulated.
- Canon Welding: Lodestar suddenly includes several characters from Flynn's psychohistoric conspiracy thriller In the Country of the Blind. The implication is that the societal trends in the series have been encouraged by the most decent secret society and their longtime rival society is still fighting them.
- It actually begins in Firestar. Mariesa has hired the Detweiler group and repeatedly mentions their economic forecasts. Later she has a meeting with Gloria Bennett and Jimmy Caldero who present themselves as potential investors. Then later Jimmy Poole considers using the code from "the old Beaumont Worm" for a project.
- Chaste Hero: Jacinta Rosario is part of an inner-city female-empowerment sort of chastity movement.
- Class Reunion: This is where Roberta closes her revenge deal with Jimmy Poole.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Klondike-American is fond of these, though only Cyrus Attwood is hard-core evil.
- Covers Always Lie: The cover of Lodestar depicts a two-page dream sequence, and not a mining operation on an asteroid as the observer would assume.
- Everyone Went to School Together: The Witherspoon Class of 2001 seems like it's doing all the work at times.
- Go-Getter Girl: Jenny Ribbon, thanks to her stage mom.
- Goth: Styx - Mariesa wonders if she defies stereotypes or if it's simply a stereotype she's not familiar with.
- Inner City School: Witherspoon, before Belinda Karr gets to it.
- Insufferable Genius: Jimmy Poole. As such, he's rather low on scruples - and given his computer skills, things get interesting.
- Interclass Romance: Barry and Mariesa. Justified because he's a schoolteacher and she's practically on the Fiction500.
- Iron Lady: Mariesa. Less so after she resigns the chairship, but her dialogue is still formal to the point of iciness, especially when she gets defensive.
- The Chessmaster: Mariesa.
- Nerds Are Virgins: Jimmy Poole goes to astounding lengths in Rogue Star to get laid.
- Save Our Students: You can scarcely turn around in this universe without hitting some ambitious program to educate the disadvantaged - Witherspoon not least. "Mother Smythe" with her chaste sisterhoods is probably the most drastic example.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: A very practical sort of idealistic.
- Smug Snake: Cyrus Attwood.
- Strawman Political: Surprisingly thin on the ground - all political sides from paleocons to progressives are shown to have their points - but Dottie in the People's Crusades is a Straw Feminist if ever there was one.
- Time Skip: There's a pretty significant time skip between Rogue Star and Lodestar, with a couple significant events that happened in the interim mentioned only in passing at the start of the book.
- Twenty Minutes into the Future: The first book was written in 1997 and set in 1999. It still feels like near-future.
- The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask: Mariesa has her moments.