Dan Schwent's Reviews > The Chrysalids

The Chrysalids by John Wyndham
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's review
Dec 12, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: early-sf
Read in December, 2008

The Chrysalids is my new favorite John Wyndham book. It's about conformity in a post-nuclear holocaust world. David and his friends live in an isolated community called Waknuk on the island of Labrador. After seeing one of his friends cast out into the Fringes for having a sixth toe, David begins mistrusting his upbringing. Once he discovers that he and a small group of his friends are telepathic, things only get worse.

Wyndham draws on the paranoia and distrust of the deviations from the norm that he uses in his other books, making David's plight seem all too plausible. I'd recommend this to all fans of John Wyndham and 50's sf in general, dystopian future fans, as well as people who dug The Giver and it's two companion books.
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Reading Progress

11/30 page 1
0.5% "This one has been a long time coming. Glad to finally have it in my hands."
11/30 page 85
42.5% "Wyndham is the man, as usual."
03/29 marked as: read
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Comments (showing 1-14 of 14) (14 new)

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Matt That sounds really familiar. Is there a little girl who contacts a distantly removed civilization?

message 2: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent That's the one. It was titled Rebirth for some US editions.

Matt Ok, I've read it. It's probably been 20 years though, and I'd completely forgotten I'd read it (much less its title or author) until you 'post-nuclear', 'sixth toe', and 'telepathy' jogged the memory.

stan Hi
I read the Chrysalids many years ago. He was a new wave SKI-FI Authors in Britain at the tine and we could not wait for another novel to arrive. Unfortunately he passed away far to quickly

message 5: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Wyndham's probably my favorite sf writer of the 50's and 60's. He does good work and a lot of his stuff is still used as inspiration today.

message 6: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Is this a good first Wyndham book to start with Dan? I saw u've read quite a few of his novels

message 7: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent I'd say so, although Day of the Triffids or The Midwich Cuckoos would also be good.

Robert Reading this one first is kinda using up one of the best straight away...

message 9: by Dan (last edited Mar 09, 2012 12:43PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Robert wrote: "Reading this one first is kinda using up one of the best straight away..."

It might be better to start with The Kraken Wakes/ Out of the Deeps then.

Robert That might be going to the opposite extreme, which is not to say I don't like it.

message 11: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent I liked it but it wasn't as good as the Wyndham Big Three of Triffids, Cuckoos, and Chrysalids.

Robert I would agree with that; also not as good as Trouble with Lichen or Chocky, in my view.

message 13: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Chocky wasn't bad. I never read Trouble with Lichen though.

Robert Definitely worthwhile!

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