As an idea-driven book: 5 stars. As a novel: 3 stars.
I enjoyed this book very much. It was different than what I am used to reading, and it took me a little while to get into. But once it happened I was hooked, and it was an amazing story that expanded its horizon -- going beyond Earth's limits and reaching for the vistas of the universe. In a way that I dare say it even had some Lovecraftian elements.
That's a compliment, in case you were wondering;-)
Now -- why only 3 stars?
Because there were chapters -- long chapters -- that did not seem to lead anywhere, they were not related to what happened later in the story. (view spoiler)[For instance I fail to see the point with following Lacey's son underwater all that time. What was the point, really? (hide spoiler)]
It also annoyed me that the emotional impact wasn't there. In a way it was a "show, don't tell" situation for me: Brin wrote the right words (telling it) but it didn't really leave an emotional print on me (he didn't really show
it). (view spoiler)[When her son is missing -- and it is a possibility that he is actually dead, after falling from space into the sea -- we're told she is scared and distressed; it's her son, after all, but it never rang true to me. It never shows. And by the end, when Lacey is now out in space on a unique journey there is not a word about the son anymore. Really? (hide spoiler)]
These and other, related, things were better off cut from the story, in my opinion. Either that or more should have been added, to flesh it out more.
That said, it is still a good book. And wonderful food for thought.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>