Justus's Reviews > The Quantum Thief

The Quantum Thief by Hannu Rajaniemi
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's review
Nov 04, 2010

liked it
Read in November, 2010

I found the beginning offputting -- felt like too much gratuitous high-techese. Of course, if you're trying to craft an immersive, realistic future how does one get around it? Hard to say. Guess that's what makes the truly brilliant novel stand out.

Once they get to Mars things settle down a bit and I found myself liking it quite a bit more. Unfortunately, the central hook is that hoary old trope -- lost memory. Fucking amnesia? In my high concept science fiction? I don't care how much public-key crypto-babble you wrap it in that is pure gothic schlock.

It also doesn't help that the entire genesis of the action (i.e. the jailbreak) has absolutely no relevance to anything else that happens in the course of the book. This looks like it is going to be set up as some kind of trilogy or series. At the moment, it looks like you could excise The Quantum Thief from the timeline entirely except for the first and last chapter and maintain continuity.

Still, some interesting ideas but I'm not convinced the author has really done much but replace "magic" with "science fiction babbling". The zokus win because they have better magic. Where's the threat, the tension, the drama?

I am afraid that this is going to turn into another Crystal Rain -- a book I thought was decent but not spectacular...but the rest of the series was a major let down. But I'll still give the sequel a chance when it comes out.
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