This month's selection is The Mote In God's Eye (1974) by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle.
Plot summary (from Amazon): In the year 3016, the Second Empire of Man spans hundreds of star systems, thanks to the faster-than-light Alderson Drive. No other intelligent beings have ever been encountered, not until a light sail probe enters a human system carrying a dead alien. The probe is traced to the Mote, an isolated star in a thick dust cloud, and an expedition is dispatched.
In the Mote the humans find an ancient civilization--at least one million years old--that has always been bottled up in their cloistered solar system for lack of a star drive. The Moties are welcoming and kind, yet rather evasive about certain aspects of their society. It seems the Moties have a dark problem, one they've been unable to solve in over a million years.
Our location: We meet at Mad River Grille & Pub, a place that serves food and drink. We will try to get the super big table which is directly across from the front door. Mad River is near the Wellington Brown Line stop. Street parking is do-able, but may be a bit difficult.
Future book selection: ideas are welcome. Criteria for books: has a science fiction theme, is 20+ years old, and under 500 pages (for us busy, slower readers).
Please be respectful of the group and your humble organizer by keeping RSVPs up-to-date. No-shows are no fun, so please don't be one, if you can help it. If you have two no-shows, you will be removed from the group.