The best thing Simon has written yet: a 2001 for our times. The Aphrodite is the bestest and most modern spaceship ever, built and outfitted for the first crewed mission to Jupiter and its moons. It’s designed to withstand anything, including protecting the crew from the lethal and mind-shredding levels of radiation in the environment – so why is both the ship and its crew slowly breaking down, mechanically or psychologically, delete as applicable? A deliberately ambiguous ending will infuriate anyone who just wants a nice, simple read but only makes it even more 2001-like.
I did suggest to Simon that he write a follow-up about sexy lingerie in space, which he could call The Flighty Nightie of the Aphrodite, but I don’t think he will.