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Mirabile
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BOTM LIMITED > Feb 2020 LIMITED: Mirabile by Kagan

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message 1: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
The February 2020 Limited Pick is Mirabile by Janet Kagan Mirabile by Janet Kagan. Please use this thread to post questions, comments, and reviews, at any time.

Official description (one of them anyway):
On the distant planet of Mirabile, a settlement of human colonists from Earth is jeopardized by the genetic mutants of Earth plants and animals like the Loch Moose Monster, the Frankenswine, and the dreaded carnivorous Kangaroo Rex—and it’s up to ecological troubleshooter Mama Jason to destroy the menacing mutants.

“Janet Kagan explores the interfaces of culture, language, intelligence, and what it means to be human.”—Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, coauthors of the best-selling Liaden Universe® series

“An absolute delight.”—Mike Resnick

At the publisher's request, this title is sold without DRM (Digital Rights Management).


message 2: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
This is one of my favorite books, that I enjoy rereading about every year. In print as ebook from multiple vendors, but out of print in hardback and paperback. There are used copies floating around if you prefer paper. The old paperback I had originally has some additional pages in between the chapters that appear in the ebook, but the meat of the book is there in the ebook.

It’s more planetary romance than true space opera. The settlers arrived on the planet via generation ships, and there is still at least one of those ships around. The ship library plays a key role, as does its store of generic materials.

I’m looking forward to rereading it yet again and discussing it here.


Audrey | 279 comments I finished the first story "The Loch Moose Monster" and liked it. Interesting idea to have the genetic code of a variety of Earth plants and animals packed into the DNA of one plant/animal and then have them start unpacking themselves under the right (or wrong) environmental conditions. Cockroaches born from daffodils gone wrong - LOL!


message 4: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
I’m starting my reread now. I feel I should mention that the book was written as a connected set of short stories. It feels a bit more episodic than novels that are written as novels, but the storyline hangs together.


message 5: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
I really like the bits about ship’s formal manners, particularly the courting rituals.

It’s also nice how the author mentions the balancing act that has to be made between native ecology and Earth imports. Invasive species can ruin a local ecology after all, but if we worry too much about that humans wouldn’t be able to colonize a planet at all - we need to be able to raise food outdoors if we are going to support a population of reasonable size. Pure indoor agriculture and vat grown meat and tank grown fish can’t do it unless humans can eat a mostly native plant diet and that would still mean humans being an invasive species.


Audrey | 279 comments Colonists: "There is a species we don't like - let's kill it!"
Mama Jason: "I know you don't like it. But you need to keep it alive for a whole host of important reasons." (explains reasons)

Yeah, we need a few more Mama Jason's here on planet Earth.


Audrey | 279 comments I am up to the story about them needing insectivores but when someone suggests breeding bats the idea is shot down because bats are deemed frivolous. Waiting to see how this one turns out.


message 8: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
The chapter about bats is great! I haven’t gotten that far this reread yet. I’m in the Flowering Inferno. Here’s a non spoiler quote:

They may be volunteers, but they are professionals. We've had to reinvent almost every skill locally. Ships' records contained detailed instructions for doing just about anything they knew how to do back on Earth, but that doesn't give the first generation any practical experience at the matter. You don't get practice fighting forest fires aboard a generation ship.


message 9: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
I love MaBob. What a character!


Audrey | 279 comments I am at the part where Mabob is chasing down rats for dinner. Good hunter with lots of personality. Whistle, GRONK!


message 11: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
GRONK!

And finished. Yes I still love this book.


Audrey | 279 comments Teresa wrote: "GRONK!

And finished. Yes I still love this book."


Thanks for the suggestion. This was a fun book that I really did enjoy reading.


message 13: by Teresa, Plan B is in Effect (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Carrigan | 2319 comments Mod
I’m glad to hear someone else enjoyed it!


Betsy | 880 comments Mod
I figured I should read this book, since Hellspark by the same author is my very favorite. I was somewhat disappointed in this one. It was an enjoyable read, but I don't like short stories and I would have preferred more of a plot. I doubt that I'll ever reread it. Here is my review.


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