Re: November SciFi Discussion
Oh, alright-I'm rereading it. This, for book I've had for less than a year, from someone who is known for quoting great turgid lumps of books from memory, already suggests that I didn't get very deeply into the story (or that senility is seriously advanced)
I loved his "mindstar" books- but, come to think of it, the "nights dawn" trilogy has left very little residue, considering the sheer mass of the verbiage.
So, to "pandora". The device on which the entire story hinges shatters all the basic rules of physics- since "number of the beast" I can't think of a gadget so obviously wish fulfilment, so "I need to do this, and it's my story, so this machine will do it, full stop" Oh, this is science fiction so absolute verisimilitude is not required, but if you're going to break physical laws it's generally considered polite to at least give an explanation if not an excuse.
The characters are extremes, caricatures. Not that society doesn't throw up people like that, and to a large extent a society is defined by its limit cases, but this is a bit Marvel Comix characterisation- only unbeleivable characters need apply. The story, while tenable, isn't big enough to fill the book, and the choppy style gives lots of points where you can lose interest, requiring effort to resuspend disbelief.
All in all, I wasn't knocked out by this book, I'm afraid. And the second volume- well, of course I'll buy it as soon as it comes out in paperback