(The Pyramid series, Book 1)
Eric Flint and David Freer
DESCRIPTION: When it hurtled through the atmosphere, crashing into the library on the University of Chicago campus, it seemed harmless enough. A five-sided black pyramid, little larger than Sputnik, only its extraterrestrial origins made it in any way worthy of attention. Then it started growing... and people started
As scientists race to study it and the military tries to destroy it, nobody suspects the alien probe's true power or purpose. Only those who have been "snatched" by its
violet beam, transported to a world seemingly cobbled together from ancient myths and legends, can hope to figure it out... but do they have a chance of stopping it, when the very gods Themselves are arrayed against them?
REVIEW: A serviceable tale, Pyramid Scheme introduces several vaguely distinctive characters, throws them into all sorts of trouble (within the pyramid's "Ur-universe" and without), saturates itself in pun-heavy efforts at humor, scrambles the mixture, then finally ends. The sense of wonder, of walking in a world that never existed on Earth amid marvels that defy modern science, never comes through, hazed by bad jokes and shallow characters. The logic of the plot never gels, either, but it's not really about the logic, or even the sense of wonder. It's about a mismatched collection of modern people blundering through classical myths, spreading the gospel of their superior age and culture while trumping even the gods with American know-how and mining the depths of inane punnery. Oh, yeah... there also happen to be just enough single modern men to hook up with lonely classical-world women, more because this kind of plot needs that sort of thing than out of any genuine chemistry. Overall, despite a vaguely intriguing idea, Pyramid Scheme is largely forgettable.