Gary's Reviews > Arabella of Mars

Arabella of Mars by David D. Levine
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Arabella of Mars is a steampunk adventure set in Regency England. It is a well written and largely enjoyable tale that finds the titular heroine racing from London to her family plantation on Mars to save her beloved brother from a murderous fate.
The novel unfortunately falls into the nostalgia trap, wherein the author attempts to idealize the imagined past while acknowledging its social and cultural evils - in this case colonialism, slavery and oppression. This kind of balancing act is always unsustainable (and the results generally uneven), as the most unpleasant aspects of such a world are sidestepped so as not to contaminate the reader's enjoyment of the tale. That is sadly the case here, as the third act of the novel withers under the heat of its best misguided intentions.
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Reading Progress

February 12, 2016 – Shelved
February 12, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
July 14, 2016 – Started Reading
July 17, 2016 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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Philip You make a really good point about the idealization of unpleasantness in history here. Like you said, good intentions, but misguided. Great review, Gary.


Gary Philip wrote: "You make a really good point about the idealization of unpleasantness in history here. Like you said, good intentions, but misguided. Great review, Gary."

Thanks Philip. I always like Levine's writing, but this novel left a bit of a sour aftertaste.


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