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Way Station
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Previous BotM--DISCUSSIONS > Way Station--Finished Reading **SPOILERS LIKELY**

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message 1: by Kathi, Moderator & Book Lover (new)

Kathi | 3365 comments Mod
If you've finished reading Way Station by Clifford D. Simak, this is the place to share your thoughts with the group.

Caution: There will likely be **SPOILERS** in this thread.


message 2: by Chris, Moderator (new) - rated it 5 stars

Chris (heroncfr) | 613 comments Mod
Unlike some classic sci fi, this 1963 book has aged relatively well. Enoch is a principled man, choosing to withdraw from the world after experiencing the worst of humanity during the Civil War, yet still struggling with loneliness even though it is self-imposed. He strives to continue his education, learning from the aliens that pass through his home en route to final destinations, yet with an eye to using that knowledge to improve humanity. His grace under pressure makes him an admirable protagonist.


Many older sci fi novels either ignore women characters entirely, or treat them superficially. Both Lucy and Mary have a surprising depth, even as supporting characters. A very positive thumbs up from me!


Christine | 620 comments I really enjoyed this book; it ages well.
One word: stupidity


Joey Anderson | 43 comments Although the opening premise of a Civil War veteran who becomes the stationmaster is quite interesting, the novel did not appeal to me much after that. Simak’s work becomes more of a novel of abstractions about seeking peace and avoiding war as well as a reflection on human loneliness.

My problem is that Enoch and the narrative lack emotion. I never really felt his loneliness or his distress.

More of a long parable than a novel.


Phil J | 57 comments Joey wrote: "Although the opening premise of a Civil War veteran who becomes the stationmaster is quite interesting, the novel did not appeal to me much after that. Simak’s work becomes more of a novel of abstr..."

That's pretty much how I felt, Joey. I really liked the opening chapters that were mainly about what it would be like to run a way station for aliens. I don't think it started to lose me until the hologram people showed up. Right around there, Simak started to dump in a lot of soliloquies about the meaning of humanity. I could have done with a little more showing and a little less telling.

The ending was mostly worth it, though, even if it was a little too neat.

It's nice to read some optimistic sci fi now and then. A lot of what we get nowadays is pretty grim.


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