Linda's Reviews > The Left Hand of Darkness

The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
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's review
Nov 21, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: book-club, science-fiction
Read from October 16 to November 19, 2011

Overall, I enjoyed The Left Hand of Darkness. It started out really slow, though. In the first half there's lots of politics and some unexplained made up words. Maybe this is nit-picky of me, but the names of many people and places were hard to pronounce; I find sentences with unpronounceable words can sometimes be hard to follow. I had also heard so much about this book, especially from a literary perspective, but I had a hard time determining what the point or theme was just from the first half. Not much happens. I might have given up if I didn't have to lead a discussion for my book club.

But the second half was great. The pace really picked up, and the number of characters I was trying to keep straight went way down. There was action, excitement, character development, and some interesting philosophizing. Not only was the second half much more interesting and entertaining, I really got what the "point" of the book was.

It's worth wading through the first half of the book to get to the second half, and I can see why this book is held in such high regard.

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