"The Ninth of Av" takes us into the post-human society of 3001, a vastly altered world in which an ancient, dark imperative continues to flourish. Itbah al-Yahud.

"On K2 with Kanakaredes" tells the story of three veteran climbers - and a visiting alien from Aldebaran - who attempt to scale the deadliest mountain peak on earth, an act which has unexpected consequences for the entire planet.

"The End of Gravity," a story in the form of a film treatment, is a moving meditation on memory and mortality, and on the enduring, almost primal, appeal of space travel.

As always, Simmons addresses the largest, most profound questions - questions concerning personal salvation, mass destruction, the power of empathy, and the search for transcendence - in direct, compulsively readable fashion. No one writing today is as consistently ambitious, versatile, and entertaining as Simmons. No one else has done as much to expand the possibilities of popular fiction. Worlds Enough and Time is a major work by an indispensable writer: one more touchstone in a constantly surprising career.