Bret James Stewart's Reviews > Dissolution Of Thought: A long overdue visit from distant neighbours

Dissolution Of Thought by Kees Bijker
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it was amazing

Notice: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Kees Bijker has actually managed to make me like a science-fiction novel. He’ll make you like it, too.

Dissolution of Thought: Book 1 of The Unification Trilogy Dissolution of Thought is foremost and continually a thoughtful book. The title itself is mysterious and engaging. The front and back covers have beautiful space imagery. The interior text is well done with few errors, contains quotes by various historic personages that add to the flavour of the chapter and the book as a whole. Bijker has laid out the entire book in a series of proems followed by chapters, which is both aesthetically pleasing and carries the story along via viewpoints and descriptions that are sometimes complementary and other times opposing. The distinction between art and science is mild to non-existent in this book, and I think this is how it should be.

The thoughtfulness doesn’t end with the front matter—Bijker has written a novel with a plot interesting enough to keep the reader going even if sci-fi isn’t his preferred genre. The protagonist and other important characters are developed enough to seem both real and individual; this is often hard to do, with characters being flat and remote. Not so here. The descriptions of the landscape and space are contemplative, and the first portion of the book, especially, is poetic enough to be a creation epic. He provides translations of the few bits of foreign/difficult language in footnotes, and has a brief description of the people responsible for the quotes associated with all the chapters. I won’t give away the plot here, but this is a stand-alone book in the best sense. Many books that are part of a series are not written well enough to stand on their own, but this one is. There is a clear plot arc that ends thoughtfully (of course!) and possibly ambivalently, you’ll have to read it and decide for yourself. You could just stop with this novel, but I think Bijker has performed his magic well enough that you won’t want to read just one.

Are there things I didn’t like? Sure, odds and ends, but only two worth mentioning. First, I found the aqua on purple text on the back cover difficult to read. Second, despite providing notes for our fellow earthlings, there are no aids for pronouncing the alien names, although these are not nearly as hard as the multi-consonantal names some sci-fi authors scatter through their books. I would rank this book 4.5 stars, but, since there are no partial stars allowed, I gladly award it 5 stars. Bijker’s work is definitely something worth the time investment. In the end matter, he mentions the second part of the trilogy: The Extirpation of Lies (the man can come up with a title, can he not?), which I, for one, am eagerly anticipating.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
October 12, 2015 – Shelved

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