"Space exploration teamed with mining rights make a gripping thriller"
Reviewed by Clare O'Beara
Posted March 25, 2015
Science Fiction Suspense/Thriller
Europa is one of Jupiter's largest moons, and this science
fiction tale boldly posits that oil needs and profits
drive companies to exploit any source, even if it was as
far and dangerous as this satellite. EUROPA: A THOUSAND
YEARS OF OIL is a great premise and I could not wait to
In 2041 a professor is lured from a hotel room before he
presents his findings on the toxic nature of the shale
found on Europa, which a giant firm Global Oil is about to
exploit. Predictably the unsuspecting scientist is
his research is then stolen.
Jamie Caldicott knows nothing of this as he arranges to
meet a firm, to keep orders for Texan Fasteners, his
family's business. He started out working with the space
program, which has now been discontinued. An agent of a
billionaire entrepreneur, not unlike Richard Branson,
offers Caldicott the chance to pilot the first space
shuttle to Europa. The worry is that a Chinese and French
team will get there first, and claim all the resources. By
this time oil and coal are scarce and expensive to
so the entrepreneur wants to claim the Jovian moon for
America. Caldicott has a wife, kids, workers. Would this
money and risky venture be a wise idea?
I found gloomy scenes as the sea levels rise and coastal
cities are designated as disposable, malaria and wildfires
spread. Global Oil downplays its role in carbon production
and prevents development of clean tech which would cut
its control and profits. Caldicott is told about this by a
professor at UC Berkely. This lady knew the scientist who
was killed; he had claimed to have found bacteria and
marine life on the icy moon. Meanwhile an investigative
reporter is fired; she had got close to the truth about
Europa. The plot had deepened very fast and we hadn't got
off the ground yet.
We do get into space, going further than humans have
travelled before, and the tensions mount. I felt some
aspects are well portrayed even as I questioned bringing
handguns on board a space shuttle. I enjoyed mechanical
dogs and seeing Jupiter close-up, and particularly I loved
exploring Europa, a new world. As to the writing, I found
tense use often confused: Texas Fasteners would need more
business before it does reduce reliance on a single firm.
This may indicate that English is not the author's first
language. The whole world is connected in JJ Co's book,
he believably shows that the future of humanity may
using the solar system for resources. If you enjoy space
opera, futuristic thrillers, warnings on environmental
issues or giant corporations, you will find EUROPA: A
THOUSAND YEARS OF OIL a riveting read.
It's finally happening: the world is running out of oil.
As major nations jockey and feud for the last carbon
resources on the planet, one oil company sets its sights
on the vast energy reserves of Europa, one of the largest
of Jupiter's moons.
Thought to have twice as much water as Earth, Europa
offers humanity the best chance of finding microorganic
life within the solar system—life that would prohibit
harvesting the moon’s resources under international space
laws. To confirm the presence or absence of life, Earth’s
leaders plan a manned mission to Europa.
Jamie Caldicott, husband, father, and hero of a botched
Mars mission, grudgingly accepts a position on the crew.
His main concern is providing for his family. The presence
or absence of Europan life doesn't much interest him.
As the mission progresses, however, it becomes evident
that powerful interests plan to harvest Europa whether or
not life exists. As they journey farther from Earth than
any manned craft before them, Caldicott discovers that
some of his crewmates aren’t who they claim to be.
The fates of two worlds depend on Jamie Caldicott. If he
makes the wrong choice, he'll never return from Europa's
A thrilling mix of Jules Verne and An Inconvenient Truth,
Europa offers a glimpse of the upcoming energy crisis and
the steps humanity must take to survive its addiction to
What do you think about this review?
No comments posted.
Registered users may leave comments.
Log in or register now!