What was this book with a pink alien spaceship?
November 15, 2008 3:04 PM   Subscribe

SciFiBookFilter: What was this science fiction book?

I've already tried livejournal's what was that book community and they couldn't find it, either. But I have faith that you'll be able to help me identify this long-lost sci-fi novel.

I read it sometime in my early teens (I'd say between '94 and '99), though the book itself--a mass market paperback from the library--seemed a bit older. As far as I can recall, the cover featured a large, pink, jelly-fish like spaceship.

The ship, which was a sentient alien a la Farscape or Lexx, was one of the primary characters. It was definitely female, and she may have appeared at the end of the novel in a bipedal form, perhaps in a vision of the main character.

The main character, a male, was her pilot. He may- or may not have been telepathically/psychically bonded to the ship. In this novel, those who piloted these kinds of ships would enter some sort of cryosleep during travel. They were very long lived--I think the main character was in his seventies, but (perhaps due to drugs they took to prolong their lives?) had the stunted height of children. However, they were unable to stop aging completely, so their noses and ears would continue growing. I remember the pilot (and, I think another female pilot?) being described as pretty grotesque looking.

. . . aaand, that's about all I remember. I know that it was not Anne McCaffrey's Ship Who . . . series. This living ship was definitely alien, and the ship itself was definitely her body. Oh, and I've checked the wikipedia entry on bioships and tvtropes entry on living ships, and, as far as I can tell, it's not listed there.

If you have any idea, let me know!
posted by PhoBWanKenobi to Media & Arts (13 answers total)
I have no idea what it is but if askme doesn't work out, you can try rec.arts.sf.written on usenet.
posted by nooneyouknow at 5:25 PM on November 15, 2008

Vague as hell, but I'm betting this was a 70's era book; it sounds like the era. Seconding the recommendation of rasfw, also.
posted by sonic meat machine at 5:48 PM on November 15, 2008

Vague as hell, but I'm betting this was a 70's era book; it sounds like the era. Seconding the recommendation of rasfw, also.

I wouldn't be surprised! It did feel like it, and I think there were kind of sexy undertones to it, appropriate to sci-fi of that era. I'll definitely try usenet if I don't get any answers here.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 5:50 PM on November 15, 2008

I can post it to RASFW if you want. The place is kinda a swamp these days.
posted by Justinian at 6:35 PM on November 15, 2008

I can post it to RASFW if you want. The place is kinda a swamp these days.

Sure, can't hurt! I'd appreciate it.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:46 PM on November 15, 2008

I know the itch of old sci-fi books from teens, I once spent a week or two tracking down an obscure book about a girl who survives a viral apocalypse. Anyway:

Wikipedia has a list of fiction space ships, which may or may not be helpful.

That said the book may still be in the library catalog. Many library catalogs are now computerized and web accessible.

Where did the ship travel? was it within the solar system or interstellar?
posted by gryftir at 2:39 AM on November 16, 2008

A Fire Upon the Deep?

I seem to recall this having a sort of sentient ship with the pilot hooked in (and who is sort of freed at the end), and the ship on the cover is sea-creature-like and part of it is pink. With that being said, the plotline of the story covering the sentient ship and its pilot is only one of several major plotlines in the book.
posted by poppo at 4:43 AM on November 16, 2008

Justinian, I checked out the post on RASFW and the first poster totally nailed it with Alien Earth. Thank you so much, as I never would have thought to ask usenet. I was seriously starting to think I dreamed this up myself!
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:29 AM on November 16, 2008

Perhaps you're thinking of The Ship Who Sang by Anne McCaffrey?

Core of the ship is an intelligent human who was born horribly disabled, connected to the ship so the ship is her body. Her "brawn" is the pilot; she falls in love with him, or they fall in love, or some such.

I loved those books when I was young.
posted by not that girl at 8:46 AM on November 16, 2008

Crap, I'm an idiot. Please forgive.

I'll put my subconscious to work on this...I remember the ear and nose thing....
posted by not that girl at 8:48 AM on November 16, 2008

William December Starr on RASFW suggests Megan Lindholm's ALIEN EARTH from like 1993. Says the description isn't exact but there is enough in common to check it out.

The cover certainly looks promising, what with a red-pink jellyfish like spaceship on it. The ship's name is Evangeline, if that rings any bells.
posted by Justinian at 10:34 AM on November 16, 2008

oh man, was so happy that I came back to post the results without checking if you had already seen it on RASFW. Sorry for the redundancy.
posted by Justinian at 10:35 AM on November 16, 2008

I posted to tell William he got it right. GOLD STAR for him.

Ask much as I love AskMefi it's nice to see RASFW still punching way above its weight in terms of science fictional knowledge.
posted by Justinian at 10:39 AM on November 16, 2008

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