The Songs of Distant Earth by Arthur C. Clarke [FIRST EDITION / FIRST PRINTING] 1986
The Songs of Distant Earth by Arthur C. Clarke
FIRST EDITION / FIRST PRINTING  DEL-REY • BALLANTINE
Hardcover w/ dust jacket in pristine condition. Minor trace wear.
The lifting of the last snowflake should have been a joyful occasion; now it was merely one of somber satisfaction. Thirty thousand kilometers above Thalassa, the final hexagon of ice was jockeyed into position, and the shield was complete.
The Quantum Drive was activated, and Magellan broke away from its orbit, accelerating to test the balance and the integrity of the artificial iceberg it was to carry out to the stars.
The day had begun with a video retrospective, showing the lifting of the first snowflake. Then there had been a fascinating speeded-up space ballet, showing the great blocks of ice being maneuvered into place and keyed into the steadily growing shield.
Then the view had switched to a live camera, hovering in space a kilometer ahead of Magellan as it orbited in the shadow of the planet. The huge, greenish-white disk gleamed coldly beneath the floodlights; soon, it would be far colder, as it moved out into the few-degrees-above-absolute-zero of the galactic night.
"People of Thalassa," Ambassador Kaldor said, "we thank you for your gift. Behind this shield of ice, we hope to travel safely to the world that is waiting for us, seventy-five light-years away, three hundred years hence...