This threesome is of the genre ‘hard sci-fi’; one can expect to encounter abundant scientific jargon which becomes a bit perplexing (and informative) at times. The majority of science being grounded in present day science, I understood enough to appreciate the visionary speculation of these books. Stephen Baxter writes in the style of Larry Niven and Arthur C. Clark.
Here, Baxter takes the stance that there is no other intelligent life in the universe. Reid Malenfant realizes that mankind will burn itself out in around 200 years**. His college, Cornelius Taine, convinces Reid that the future is sending clues to the present on how to avoid our certain demise. To this end, Reid decides to send an intelligence enhanced squid (Sheena) to investigate a mysterious asteroid. Sounds ludicrous, but Baxter’s reasoning makes it seem even more practical than sending humans on long range space flight.
This scenario proposes that life is abundant in the Universe, we’ve just not seen it for ominous reasons.
A mysterious, self-replicating life form called Gaijin (Japanese for “foreigner”) is discovered mining our solar system. What transpires is what happens to the Human Race when it is confronted by an advanced civilization. What is fascinating here is the saga of Reid Malenfant’s evolution as he travels the cosmos using “lightspeed-restricted teleport gates” ˣ. Soon others follow whilst Mankind attempts to ascend the ‘Kardashev scale’ ˣˣ and conquer the galaxy.
The third novel involves a multiverse that combines the assertions of the first two: that both are correct. Reid Malenfant finds himself on a journey to rescue his wife who has been teleported to a red planet that has replaced our moon, which happens to be filled with humanoids from different evolutionary scales.
There is an additional book of short stories that involve this multiverse called Phase Space 2003
* (see ” https://en. Wikipedia.org/wiki/Fermi_paradox)
** (see “Carter catastrophe” https://en. Wikipedia.org/wiki/Doomsday_argument)
ˣˣ Method of measuring a civilization’s level of technological advancement