My second novella this year after Connie Willis's [b:Fire Watch|10301442|Fire Watch (Oxford Time Travel, #0.5)|Connie Willis|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1347988641s/10301442.jpg|16295500] (which was just above average kind of a read).
This novella served as an introduction to Charles Stross's works to me and I think it was not a bad place to start. The amount of detail Stross crammed into this less than 100 pages novella was really amazing. With characters like Yuri Gagarin and Carl Sagan, Stross successfully managed to held my attention throughout. And the illustrations were funny too.
The staggering dimensions of the flat-earth and intelligent alien insects in this alternative historical setting made me wish that this was a full length novel rather than just a novella.