I remember that there was a stranded spacecraft and several splinter groups made up from its survivors/desendants set up camps nearby, one of which was a "Planet" built up by using deceased crewmembers. It was a short novel, 180-200 pages. I read it in the 80's. The opposing factions of the living had to work together to repair the main spacecraft to escape whereever it was they had been stranded. Edit- IIRC, Gravity played a major factor in the tale.

  • would you say it was short enough to be a 'novelette'?
    – Solemnity
    Commented Mar 9, 2013 at 23:10
  • I had some of the details wrong, but @Frock is correct. Commented Mar 25, 2013 at 7:14
  • It still baffles me as to why you guys mark older questions as duplicates of newer questions. "Because I liked the newer questions answers better" is lame. The question you closed this one to is a duplicate... of a 2011 question, the 2011 question should be open and both mine and January's questions should be closed as duplicates of it. That would be logical and not hand wavy. Are you making things up as you go along? Saying it doesn't make any difference is true in a way, but if it doesn't really matter anyway, why not use math instead of your general opinion? Commented Oct 15, 2016 at 17:21
  • That being said, it's still a great site, but sometimes it's a little subjective in it's reasoning. Commented Oct 15, 2016 at 17:23

1 Answer 1


This is "Raft" by Stephen Baxter.

The novel is an elaborated version of his 1989 short story of the same title, Raft. The story follows a group of humans who have accidentally entered an alternate universe where the gravitational force is far stronger than our own, a "billion" times as strong. Planets do not exist, as they would immediately collapse under their own gravity; stars are only a mile across and have extremely brief life-spans, becoming cooled kernels a hundred yards wide with a surface gravity of five g. Human bodies possess a "respectable" gravity field in and of themselves. "Gravitic chemistry" also exists, where gravity is the dominant force on an atomic scale.

  • Thank you. I was wracking my brain, thinking it was a Niven tale. Commented Mar 25, 2013 at 7:05
  • You're welcome. This book left me with mental scars (the food and drink)
    – Frock
    Commented Mar 25, 2013 at 7:16

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.