The first two chapters of the next Halo novel, Halo: Cryptum, are now available to be read online.
Chapter 1 can be viewed on Tor's very site here (registration required), and Chapter 2 can be read on Halo Waypoint here.
Taken straight from Tor themselves:
HALO: Cryptum takes place 100,000 years before the events of the Halo games and serves as a great entry point into what has become one of the most successful science fiction franchises of all time. These two exclusive excerpts will be the first place to begin this deep exploration into the time of the Forerunners, the creators and builders of the Halos. Almost nothing has been revealed about this ancient race. This new series will delve deep into the reign of these enigmatic beings, and tell the epic story behind one of the great mysteries of the “Halo” universe: the complete disappearance of the Forerunners from existence, while also revealing an amazing tale of human origins.
An icon in the science fiction community, Greg Bear has penned such critically celebrated international bestsellers as Eon and The Forge of God. His recent novel Hull Zero Three was published in November by Orbit Books and met widespread acclaim. Bear’s talent for taut narratives, intellectually rigorous themes, and realistic, appealing characters make him the most qualified author writing today to begin a new chapter in this blockbuster franchise.
Greg Bear will also be appearing with special guests from 343 Industries at University Books in Seattle for an exclusive signing and launch event on January 4th, 2010 at 7 PM.
With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, I haven't had a chance to read either chapter yet, but now that things are quieting down I plan to in the next few days. The Halo franchise is such a rich science fiction universe and there's so much mystery revolving around the Forerunners, I'm anxious to find out as many details as I can about them!