Description For centuries, men and women have manned lighthouses to ensure the safe passage of ships. It's a lonely job, and a thankless one for the most part - until something goes wrong, until a ship is in distress.
In the 23rd century, this job has moved into outer space. A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at many times the speed of light. These beacons are built to be robust. They never break down. They never fail.
I remember reading this in episodic form when it first came out, so jumped at the chance to listen from start to finish in one sitting when I saw this. Although, I came very close to passing it up because as much as I remembered enjoying the story, the narration felt WAY too slow.
BUT! Rather than give in, I tried playback at a slightly higher speed and the narration came alive. Nothing against Ryan McCarthy, but I think if I listen to anything he reads in the future I'll need to speed it up a little.
Set in the future where mankind has explored and (trying to) conquer the known universe, our protagonist mans a "beacon"... a lighthouse for faster-than-light ships so they don't smash into asteroid fields at eleventy-billion miles per hour.
He's alone there, and is slowly going mad... or is he?
This was a cracker of a story, which even when sped up was dark and moody and intense by a master of the written word. Howey rarely disappoints. I'm knocking a star off the performance because it was too slow at normal speed. Otherwise, top-notch.