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3.44  ·  Rating details ·  54 ratings  ·  5 reviews
She will never be one of them. When the immortality treatments failed, she knew her destiny would not be as glorious and carefree as the immortals. The immortals rebuilt the Earth after the great floods, but she is not one of them, and she doesn't seem fit to live anywhere amongst them. When she finds refuge aboard the ship Ilium and begins ocean floor navigation, an adven ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 222 pages
Published December 31st 1980 by Not Avail (first published 1975)
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3.44  · 
Rating details
 ·  54 ratings  ·  5 reviews

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Nate D
Sep 25, 2013 rated it liked it
An unexpectedly eloquent blind-buy from the back sci-fi stacks of my local purveyor of esoteric books. In the far future, we've overcome mortality, leading to stagnated progress, and a general terror of any danger that might cause some scar or injury for the rest of eternity (ideas like "you only live once" and "I'm gonna die someday anyway" being well out of use). Oh, and the fetishization of death, present even in death's face now, comes up again in equally pathological variation.

Our protagon
Parts of this book have aged poorly; the basic theme of immortality leading to stagnation is at this point overdone and trite, and the focus on ecstatic drug use and psychic transcendence (and drug use _leading_ to psychic transcendence) is . . . well, it's very, very 70s. But I'm willing to forgive a lot of that for the writing, which is lovely, and the complex characterization of an older female protagonist. I picked this and a couple other Marta Randalls up from the Open Road Media book-give ...more
Kaethe Douglas
Wow, Marta's good. I'm enjoying the two different timelines, the world-after global warming, the classic 70s scifi.

This would make fascinating reading paired with The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty Are Used Against Women. Highly recommended.


Continues fine. I'm enjoying the dynamics of the crew and the resonance of the past, both Tia's past and the long past. The dive is begun. I can't wait to see, and can't guess, what's coming next.


Strong, strong finish. I was right, I didn't see that
Jean Triceratops
Nov 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned, forfemfan
There are two types of sci-fi books: those where the technology is a center-piece, and those where the technology exists to enable conversations about humanity. Islands by Marta Randall is the latter.

I was a little afraid of Islands. The back copy mentions that in a future world where mortality has been defeated, Tia Hamley is an anomaly. The [immortality] Treatments didn’t work. She alone will grow old and die.

I don’t normally dig on such heavy topics—I read for fun. And yet I read it anyway, b
Jul 03, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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