The Sword and Laser discussion

The Sparrow (The Sparrow, #1)
This topic is about The Sparrow
Book reading orders affecting biases (may contain spoilers, or not)

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message 1: by Laurențiu (last edited Jan 22, 2015 01:15PM) (new)

Laurențiu Roman | 15 comments This topic is not about series reading order lists or any such nonsense.

The main point of this topic is to ask you if or how big of a bias towards a book was influenced by a previous book.

I'm asking you because, when the July 2014 book was picked, Octavia E. Butler's Dawn, i was unable, as i sometimes am, to read it that month, but i had it on the list. Meanwhile, late last year, i read, along with my girlfriend the first book in the Outlander series, because we watched the second episode of the show and we really liked it and wanted to know the whole story behind it.

Anyway, as it pertains to this topic, I ended up reading Outlander last year, The Sparrow and Children of God in the begining of this month and now, i'm exactly in the middle of the Xenogenesys trilogy (5hrs into Adulthood Rites).

I can't help but think that the ooloi (from the Xenogenesys series) are a bunch of conniving, manipulative, abusive, neutral bastards. And i think the other two sexes suffer from some kind of Stockholm syndrome. That is most likely due to the abuses (mental and physical) characters from the previous books suffered. Sure they may have good intentions, but i mostly glance over them, and only in a few instances did i think the human's behaviour was unjustified.

Now, would reading Xenogenesys before The Sparrow would have given me a bias towards the behaviour of the Jana'ata as stewards of the aparent fragile Rakhat ecology? I really don't know. I mean i still think they were lazy, complacent, criminal bastards, but maybe i would have forgone at least some off those epithets.

Does reading a particluar book affect your views while reading a different one, in a significant way? It probably depends how long ago you read the book and/or how powerful of a mark it left on you, right?

What do you think?

message 2: by Art (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 190 comments It's funny you should bring this up because I read The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursual Le Guin right before I read The Sparrow and so I couldn't help comparing the two as anthropological based approaches to constructing an alien civilization. They are different stories with different themes however, they are both first contact stories with a very alien culture. As I was reading I couldn't help breaking down the structure of the two books in my head and comparing how they had approached the way that these societies were presented to the reader.

I found myself feeling that TLHoD was a better experience of full submersion in a culture, as the story doesn't cover any of the journey to the planet or what happens after the events of the book, and because of this found it hard to really connect with the Alien part of The Sparrow. It felt too much like two books (earth and space) rather than one cohesive story. And I think this was because I had just read TLHoD. I wonder if it would have been such an issue for me if I hadn't.

That being said it was an interesting experience to read them both so close together

Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments I totally have stuff like this happen all the time. I read a nonfiction memoir about a fellow who was raised Muslim not long before we read Alif the Unseen and I think it helped me understand more, because I had never really looked at Islam before.

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