One man must make a journey across a once colonised alien planet. Abandoned by man when it was discovered that the species there were actually sentient, the planet is now a place of mystery. A mystery that obsesses the lone traveller Gundersen and takes him on a long trek to attempt to share the religious rebirthing of the aliens. A journey that offers redemption from guilt and sin. This is one of Robert Silverberg’s most intense novels and draws heavily on Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. It puts the reader at the heart of the experience and forces them to ask what they would do in the circumstances. First published in 1970
The glowing ovoid plummeted downward, the whole sky screaming like a metallic banshee as the air boiled away from its sides. A supersonic bang broke over the forest, but the thing was already gliding down to Earth. As the ovoid settled in among the trees, the entire forest burst into flames. A thin black line appeared and etched a perfect circle on the side of the metal egg, then thickened into a door. The air was rent by a searing hiss. Slowly, the strange being – soon to be known to all mankind as VOR – began to emerge . . .