Kars's Reviews > Pacific Edge

Pacific Edge by Kim Stanley Robinson
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really liked it
bookshelves: sci-fi, fiction

"One of the worst signs of our danger is we can’t imagine the route from here to utopia."

In a review for Tor.com, Jo Walton writes: "Pacific Edge is the only utopian novel that works, that shows you the world, that feels like a nice place to live, and that works as a story."

And that is all you really need to know. It was a pleasure dipping back into KSR after last reading something by him, which must have been the Mars trilogy. This shares some of the ideas later explored at a larger scale in that book, but it's about people making a home for themselves in Orange County.

KSR still stands apart as one of the few writers who convincingly explore leftist ideas on political economy in sci-fi. For example, here we get a future in which harsh laws have been enacted that limit the size of companies. But there's much more in here and it really is a treat to have it all vividly imagined.

If it was just a description of a near future where green politics have become dominant, the book would be pretty boring. It is propelled however by small scale relationship drama and political struggles. It's almost The Wire-esque in its preoccupation with the workings of local politics.

If you can stomach the extended softball sequences, this is quite the treat, elevated all the more by the interstitials which meditate on the apparent insurmountable challenges of getting to a sustainable future from our current day predicaments.

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Reading Progress

January 22, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
January 22, 2018 – Shelved
January 22, 2018 – Shelved as: sci-fi
January 22, 2018 – Shelved as: fiction
October 25, 2018 – Started Reading
October 25, 2018 –
October 30, 2018 –
November 4, 2018 –
November 9, 2018 – Finished Reading

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