- Oct 23, 2008
If that's the set that's supposed to be extra-hard SF in a Clarkean mode, then I was. Still am, I suppose, but less so.Any excitement for his next trilogy of books? Apparently it charts mankinds next eleven thousand years in space. (Then it's back to the Revelation Space universe. Yay!!!)
Related: his switching of past and present scenes in CC right when one might possibly getting interesting is a big part of the general wobbling around of this book.I found his habit of having characters explain the plot off screen and then never mentioning it again very annoying.
Exactly. He especially seems to be a bit heavy with the similes and, regardless of frequency and visible strain, can sometimes miss badly. It can happen to even the best authors, but this, for instance, is worthy of Thog's Masterclass (Dept. of No Thanks I'm Full): "The man was curled up in a foetal position, naked, as if he had just been placed there and allowed to wake. His skin was pallid and was covered in a sheen of sweat, like sugar glazing."I couldnt finish RS and with respect to Chasm City and his writing ability i dont think he could ever write a novel that is among the best SF ever imho.
I mean... wow. Urf.
And one thing that really bugs me (though I suspect there's an invalid but plausible argument for it if one wanted to defend it) is his constant references to Earth things. There's one page where a spaceship looks like a manta ray and there are two other Earth references in the same page or two. The usual density is lower, but there are still a lot. It wouldn't surprise me if Earth references persisted but not to this degree. And one that especially bugs me is wrong in many ways - I wish I could find it again to quote the whole thing in context but I can't - something about maybe somebody doing something with a weapon or other machinery that "snick"ed like "crochet hooks" or some such. I'm supposed to accept that a guy who's at least supposed to be a far future mercenary warrior dude from another planet has crochet hooks in his normal arsenal of simile material?
Yep - I still have the second and third books of the core RS trilogy and I'll read at least the second some day, but that day won't be for a long time.I might read him again but no hurry at all....
That's what I've been worried about for hundreds of pages. Maybe it's not what I'm expecting after all or will be handled in a way that makes it still interesting.I too enjoyed Chasm City. It's got a very interesting ending. Admittedly, you do see it coming, but it's still enjoyable.
For me, it reads kind of like BladeRunner's LA after a few terms of Escher and Giger as town planner. It'd actually be more effective for me in small doses.It's one of the few books that make you want to dwell on the descriptive scenes, rather than rushing on to the dialogue and action. The context is so well realised.
Well, that's the problem with most all of Reynolds' stuff, which is less problematic in the short work because you don't have to spend so much time with them: I don't really like the vast majority of his characters. The lead character of RS struck me as extremely unlikeable. But our agonist in CC is not much fun either. The funky characters, like the funky cities, are more effective in small doses.Revelation Space doesn't have an action hero, and the lead character isn't exactly likeable
It's kind of funny: it's a convention that heroes never go to the bathroom or whatever. But we've spent hundreds of pages on what, IIRC, is about three or four days of present-time action, describing every ache and pain and increasing odor of the main character over every second of the day and night which actually makes that omission seem noticeable. That and eliding the one sex scene. The usual graphic details of violence like "his guts splattered against the wall like a Jackson Pollack painting" (Earth simile!) combined with vague impressionist work of sex like "and then the girl's robe dropped to the floor. And the next morning..." You'd think Reynolds was American or something.
(To be clear, I made those last two up, though it's closer to paraphrase than invention.)