Blue Remembered Earth (Poseidon's Children #1)
One hundred and fifty years from now, in a world where Africa is the dominant technological and economic power, and where crime, war, disease...more
Read my share of technical papers, as part of the day job. Concise, spare expositions that have data, assumptions, analysis and conclusions, all within the 7 page length limit. And I'll admit, sometimes my mind has wandered, placing these in stories fleshed with human participants and human emotions. One way to find more meaning in the cool things that science makes.
I'm back in that place, listening to the audiobook version of Blue Remembered Earth. Lots of cool stuff --- golem personalities, ne...more
My initial thou...more
There are many cool ideas buried in here (A planet found bearing signs of artificial life, for example!), but 98% of the story revolves around the politics of a few family members. I didn't exactly find this riveting, or even particularly entertaining.
I don't want to give too much away, but I will say that Alastair Reynolds has managed to produce...more
Look at the basic synopsis: how interesting could this be, really? I was planning to read few chapters occasionally in preparation for the upcoming sequel. I failed.
Though the pretty silly plot wasn't as dull as I feared, the real attractions were the setting, how it shaped the characters' motivations and how both conspired to steer the plot's conflicts in unconventional...more
It would be unfortunate to expect this to be like other Reynolds works. It's more like a book from one of the established stars of 30 years ago. I've read a lot of those, and maybe that's why I liked this.
What Reynolds adds is a wonderful casualness about all the whizbang technology, and an offsetting realism in areas where there has NOT been...more
There are spoilers below, so if you'd prefer not to be spoiled, stop reading now.
I began to really enjoy the book, eventually, after Geoffrey Akinya makes the tr...more
They are, on the whole, inventive, well-plotted, and given their SF backdrop populated by rounded and utterly believable characters - no matter the number of limbs, wings or mechanical protheses.
Blue Remembered Earth is set partially in Africa and concerns a family of primarily African heritage. Given in the postface...more
This novel spans more than a lifetime...more
While not space-opera galaxy spanning scale, the book encompasses much, and much of it is novel, well written, and (for me endearingly) optimistic. Personally I'm fu**ed off (yes I swore) with the current crop of apocalyptica. If I want anxiety, and fear, I nee...more
One lovely element is the bright and colourful scenes in an Africa of the future. This is Africa that has emerged from famine and civil war in the 22nd century to become a major space faring federation of nations and a major space...more
Blue Remembered Earth follows members of the Akinya dynasty, specifically in this case Geoffrey and Sunday, as they go on what can best be described as a treasure-hunt throughout the solar...more
I've always seen him as slightly uneven though, and although a brilliant story-teller, not always the perfect craftsman, and his characterization leaves at times things to which for.
(Usual self-repeat: I won't cover the story in this review, plenty of others do).
So let's start with the major let down: characterization. The main character (Geoffrey) starts out a whining...more
In The History of Science Fiction Adam Roberts writes, after Heidegger, that “technology, from windmills to hydroelectric plants, “enframes” the world in a certain way, allowing or shaping the ways in which we “know” the world around us.” Consequently, the science in science fiction is not much different from a classic thought experiment, an exercise in imagining our possible worlds and their technologically-defined archi...more
I’ve never read anything by Alastair Reynolds before, despite owning a copy of Galactic North, one of his anthologies. However, with his latest release of Blue Remembered Earth, I thought that now would probably be the best time to start reading his work.
And I must say that I found Blue Remembered Earth to be fantastic. Original world-building, (A/N: Original from what I’ve seen) interesting plot and well-rounded characters, Reynolds’ latest...more
Reynolds develops a wonderful sense of the push & pull of life. Our protagonists, Geoffrey and Sunday, try to pull away from their family,...more
Now, the negative. This book is based in a future "Africa," with "African" protag...more
A potboiler with a humanity-spreads-its-wings theme, filled with hard sic-fi babble about nanotech and human/machine interfacing. The future societies and governments Reynolds describes are quite creepy, built around pervasive electronic surveillance of the population backed up by psycho-mechanical limits on individual human behavior: solar system-wide communitarianism gone mad. There is one small surveillance-free zone on the dark side of the Moon, and, frankly, I found...more
The plot starts out slow as the background of the universe and the characters themselves are introduced. Once it gets going, you cannot stop it. As the plot propels itself towards its mysteries, elements from Reynolds' other works such as Pushing Ice and Terminal world can be seen. The book sets up an expectation, not just for the con...more
1. Reynolds follows his usual, measured approach to technological advancement to some interesting ends.
2. There are a dearth of books that start with humanity puttering around the solar system that don't people warping or worm-holing across the galaxy by chapter 4.
3. Giving the nature of the trilogy the next book may be much better.
Now the bad:
I found the book to just be meh with lots of components that seem poorly planned or undeveloped. The characters are more cliched...more
The story mostly jumps between two protagonists, G...more
The Akinya business empire, started by the matriarch Eunice, is powerful based on industries started by her time in space, and now she has died. The heads of the business, Hector and Lucas, have discovered that she kept a box at a bank on the moon, and worried about possible skeletons ion the closet, they send their reluctant cou...more
Reynolds nicely balances the various elements of the book. The story is a mystery of sorts, as two siblings uncover their grandmother's amazing secrets. It's also an adventure, a conspiracy tale, and a gripping look at a future all too possible. Reynolds has a wonderful grasp of the scientifically possible and probable, but also conjures up a world that is cleverly imagined. I don't kn...more
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‘We had a different form of chinging,’ Eunice said. ‘An earlier type of virtual-reality technology, much more robust and completely unaffected by time lag. You may have heard of it. We called it “reading”.”