Who stole Alastair Reynolds?

Coragem

Believer in flawed heroes
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Nov 4, 2010
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I started writing a door stopping wedge of a sci-f
Briefly, I want to report a crime of sorts.

It seems to me (my subjective opinion) that someone stole the Alastair Reynolds I know and love exactly one-third of the way into Blue Remembered Earth.

The novel begins with amazing promise. Strong characters, an extremely well developed near(ish) future setting, lots of suspense, superb writing (e.g., creative verb use, in a good way). One third in I was convinced I was reading something very special.

Then comes the second third. Swathes (pages) of description. Not bad a first, but more and more it could be from any character POV. Often repetitive (e.g., describing the buildings on the planet surface – they looked like the play bricks child had dropped or scattered).

Then the final third. Action described at length, I guess to convey realism (so not without a good intention). However, it left me shouting 'come on, hurry up', and made it harder than it ought to have been to care what happened. Occasionally when one character learns something the others magically seem to know, and (again, occasionally) the obvious is stated for the benefit of slow readers. Also, 50% of the plot comes to nothing.

Taking all of his books into account (a consistent high standard, flashes of brilliance with the likes of Chasm City) I have long considered Reynolds my favourite sci-fi author. And I have to say, having corresponded with him, he's an amazingly nice guy. I really hope the next book is back to form, and it's perhaps a good sign that (as explained on his blog) he chose to plan it scene by scene before beginning to write.

Coragem.
 
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gully_foyle

Here kitty kitty kitty!
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Feb 1, 2007
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Brisbane, Queensland
Briefly, I want to report a crime of sorts.

It seems to me (my subjective opinion) that someone stole the Alastair Reynolds I know and love exactly one-third of the way into Blue Remembered Earth.

The novel begins with amazing promise. Strong characters, an extremely well developed near(ish) future setting, lots of suspense, superb writing (e.g., creative verb use, in a good way). One third in I was convinced I was reading something very special.

Then comes the second third. Swathes (pages) of description. Not bad a first, but more and more it could be from any character POV. Often repetitive (e.g., describing the buildings on the planet surface – they looked like the play bricks child had dropped or scattered).

Then the final third. Action described at length, I guess to convey realism (so not without a good intention). However, it left me shouting 'come on, hurry up', and made it harder than it ought to have been to care what happened. Occasionally when one character learns something the others magically seem to know, and (again, occasionally) the obvious is stated for the benefit of slow readers. Also, 50% of the plot comes to nothing.

Taking all of his books into account (a consistent high standard, flashes of brilliance with the likes of Chasm City) I have long considered Reynolds my favourite sci-fi author. And I have to say, having corresponded with him, he's an amazingly nice guy. I really hope the next book is back to form, and it's perhaps a good sign that (as explained on his blog) he chose to plan it scene by scene before beginning to write.

Coragem.
Is this one meant to be first in a series? Perhaps that is why 50% of the plot leads nowhere.

I dislike books where the last third degenerates into over-labored descriptions of the action, it tends to confuse.

I'm a bit disappointed to here this feedback, I had it in the back of my mind to give it a go. Maybe there are some other opinions out there?
 
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