So I started reading this thinking it was going to be Clarke's "big one", one in which his genius would really blow me away, but I ended up with a general feeling of being slightly underwhelmed.
Throughout the book it was mildly enjoyable, mysterious and engaging but at no point did I ever feel the extreme sense of wonder and excitement that I suspect was intended for the reader. Maybe that's my fault as much as anything else? Perhaps I'm just not into hard SF as much as other themes?
It was an entertaining enough story. Not much reason to fault it, unless you want to be excessively persnickety and criticise the thin characters which were really only a backdrop for the story events. That's not my problem with it, this is very much about the concepts and ideas. It's just that I didn't find them sufficiently spell binding to elevate this novel to the level of greatness.