Utterly tedious and a bore to get through. I did not care at all for the narrator's meandering and pointless thoughts or his pompous self-importance.Utterly tedious and a bore to get through. I did not care at all for the narrator's meandering and pointless thoughts or his pompous self-importance. There were some glimmers of "insight" there but only barely. ...more
There's something about Yamamoto's stories that dampen your emotions and play with them. While reading the seven one-shot stories, it became obvious tThere's something about Yamamoto's stories that dampen your emotions and play with them. While reading the seven one-shot stories, it became obvious that all of the narrators had distinct voices that you couldn't help but feel fondness for. I loved all of the characters as if I knew them--it was as if they put their all into the storytelling. I still don't understand it, but whatever it is, it worked.
About the sci-fi aspect of the story, the book revolved around the interactions between a robot with TAI (Truly Artificial Intelligence) and a human storyteller. We don't know the year, but we know it's after 2080. That's almost a century away in the future, but it's not as extremely different as dystopian books go. It's only that humans' population decreased to twenty millions and they've been living in colonies for decades and robots are the bad guys.
It would be a little hard to get into this book if you're not accustomed to sci-fi though I guess this isn't exactly sci-fi hardcore. There were times when I thought the writer was trying to explain to us something, show us what humans are doing wrong in his opinion through the only thing he knows: technology. He seemed to softly be chiding the readers, making them see what they don't want to see. We're creatures of contradiction, of missing logic and reason sometimes. It became glaringly apparent when compared to AI's straightforward kind of thinking.
I loved this book, and I'll see about reading another sci-fi book in the future. Maybe not Star Wars (my cousin would be disappointed, because I don't understand half of the things he says) for now but something a little less hard-core. --
Lines that touched me:
A man who has spent his whole life fighting and thrived on emerging victorius now found himself up against an enemy he stood no chance of ever defeating. It must have shattered his worldview.
From story 6, "The Day Shion Came".
"It may not be able to understand everything, but we're going to give it everything we have...our joys and sorrows, surprises and fears, friendship and trust, courage and love--everything we've experienced during our four-year voyage."
From story 1, "The Universe on my Hands".
I do not write poetry. It's beyond me, as it demands a certain emotional sensitivity I lack. Sometimes I pretend to be human just for fun. I activate a humanoid reception unit, go outside of myself, and gaze upon the visible spectrum with the unit's two camera eyes.