Reading in June 2012

Discussion in 'Science Fiction' started by Hobbit, May 31, 2012.

  1. Hobbit

    Hobbit Administrator Staff Member

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    This is where you talk to us about your monthly SF Reads: whether good or bad, we want to discuss with you what you thought.


    Mark
     
  2. Mr. Aware Eagle

    Mr. Aware Eagle Registered User

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    I'll be finishing up Dune in the month of June (pardon the rhyme). After that, I'm not sure what I'll be reading. I might take a break from sci-fi and read a nice David Sedaris book.

    Oh! And I will of course be checking out Caliban's War upon its release.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2012
  3. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    As I am still in waiting mode for the big June sf books (Corey and G. Gibson) that come up next week, I continued 2312 and started the new Keith Brooke Harmony.

    2312 is actually quite interesting about 100 pages in, I just wish the author's style would me more on my taste; this way it is like reading a very dry proof but of a very interesting result so while I derive little emotional pleasure, it's intellectually satisfying; let's hope that continues as otherwise as fiction I would have no reason to continue with 2312 and i really wish to finish it.

    On the other hand Harmony is the opposite - very well written as fiction, flowing, emotional, exciting, but the content so far is ok'ish only and borders on the ludicrous; strange aliens oppressing humanity which is like rats in front of the gods; we'll see where it goes but I read this stuff done much better as concept goes, though again the writing and characters are more interesting by far than in 2312 where the characters so far seem to lack any humanity as I understand it.

    A combination of the two (writing + concept) is what I want and I am pretty sure the two books I am expecting (Caliban's War and Thousand Emperors) will provide this rather than the partly satisfying 2312 and Harmony; but who knows either can start becoming better in the area lacking, one in the literary part, the other in the concept part...
     
  4. Westsiyeed

    Westsiyeed The Fifth Dominion

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    Finished the first two parts of Hugh Howey's Wool, onto the third. Started off well with part one in setting the scene and providing a dramatic ending; part two delved into the characters a bit more. I'm finding the development of love interests a little cliched, but otherwise good reads so far.

    Not sure about all the 5-star reviews on Amazon though!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 1, 2012
  5. chitman13

    chitman13 Staff

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    I finished up Space Captain Smith the other day as a relaxing, comfort read. Enjoyed it once again.

    After a bit of a break I'm back to Jack Campbell's first Ethan Stark book. I like Campbell's style so I'm enjoying it, but it's not at the same level as his Lost Fleet books. However, I find Stark a more interesting character than Geary, at least at the moment.

    I put Prophets by S Andrew Swann down for a while, though I plan on getting to it again very soon.

    My main read is Great North Road, and I'm just shy of a quarter of the way through. Much like Suciul says, the police investigation is starting to drag a little now, especially as there is clearly much more interesting stuff on the way. The few deviations from the investigation so far have really got me interested in where it will go once it hits St Libra and the (hopefully) meat of the story. So far I'm enjoying it, but at this point in the book expected a little more.
     
  6. miahskeeper

    miahskeeper New Member

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    Just finished a book by an independently published author. Eternity by James S Townsend. I'm finding a lot of interesting and good reading by some independent authors. This story mixes sci-fi with a little paranormal and has great non-stop Military Sci-Fi action. A fun read.

    Also still slogging my way through "A Hymn Before Battle" by John Ringo. I'm about halfway and still trying to figure out what the story is really all about. I hope it gets a little better. I might jump back to Mutineer's Moon by David Weber but even that one seems to be dragging.
     
  7. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    I finished 2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson and overall I wouldn't call it disappointing as I did not expect that much from it, but I wish the author would write better prose as the book is full of interesting ideas; that however is not enough as the novel is utterly lifeless and it reads like a play on an empty stage where characters rush along and try to engage the spectators in an imagination game (see, now I am traveling to Earth, now I am on Mercury, now we are in a spaceship...) while a constant flow of information rolls in the background...

    In other words, the book has no "external reality" and the main characters read like paper constructs than actual living human beings
     
  8. Ropie

    Ropie Member of the Monthâ„¢

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    I'm on 2312 now also and 50 pages in or so, I'm really enjoying the world(s) KSR is creating. The writing style is dry but I like that.
     
  9. Westsiyeed

    Westsiyeed The Fifth Dominion

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    Now finished all 5 and really liked them. Still thought book 2 was a bit slow and to some degree unnecessary, but from book 3 onwards it was excellent. Very good writing too.

    Next will be Eric Brown's The Devil's Nebula.
     
  10. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    I guess that's the difference - you like the writing, you probably will like the book, but for me the lack of enjoyment of the writing was too much and the book felt empty - I could go on and on why the characters and settings seemed totally unreal; this is the last KSR I will ever open since if not even the interesting topic of 2312 made the book more than meh for me, there is no point in trying the writing style of the author again

    Back on topic, I finished Harmony (alt.human in the UK) by Keith Brooke and I was a little mixed again, though i definitely liked it more than 2312 and I really enjoyed the frantic first person narration and the final twist, the book had an adolescent feel to it for large parts and it was pretty minor as sf goes since I've seen its themes treated in an adult way much better

    It's a Fermi paradox book, though in this case instead of "where are they", they (ie the aliens) are everywhere and the humans are sort of serfs/pets restricted to IPP (Indigene populations preserves) ghettos where they live at the will of the powerful aliens who may - and do - kill them at their whim

    Dodge, a pid runner (every human has personal id device nanos in his/her blood stream, who define where the human can go, and the local gangs into which the humans are generally divided found how to fake it) is involved with the saving of 4 human refugees from a destroyed city and later with the mysterious girl Hope whom he saves in the process, try to find the rumored last refuge of humanity called Harmony...

    Very engaging style but minor sf
     
  11. JustaStaffer

    JustaStaffer Registered User

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    Reading Osiris by EJ Swift. It definitely appears to be in the Wind-Up Girl/Seed mold that Night Shade's made a niche out of.
     
  12. chitman13

    chitman13 Staff

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    I finished up Stark's War by Jack Campbell (John G Hemry) last night. I enjoyed it as much as I thought, but I do think Campbell's writing style suits me very well, and I did enjoy the Lost Fleet books. While it's not as good as the Lost Fleet novels, I think I prefer Stark as a character compared to Geary, and the novel has a decent story and ends well, enough that I'll be looking at reading the next book fairly soon.

    I'll continue with Great North Road by Peter F Hamilton and Prophets by S Andrew Swann for now, hopefully finishing them up within the next week or two. After that, who knows...
     
  13. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    While I started reading a little from Jo Anderton's second novel Suited and I plan to continue it later, two highly awaited novels have just been published and I got myself a copy of The Thousand Emperors by Gary Gibson and plan to read it asap with a quick refresher from Final Days to which it is loosely connected.
     
  14. beniowa

    beniowa Registered User

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    I recently finished The Exile Kiss by George Alec Effinger. This book rounded off the Audran Sequence and frankly I was somewhat disappointed with the whole series. Everything that happened just felt so convenient for the sake of the plot that the series felt self-indulgent on part the author.

    Now reading Redshirts.
     
  15. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    I read some 50 pages from Thousand Emperors by Gary Gibson and so far it just rocks, though of course it's early; finally got my UK copy of Caliban's War and it starts great too, but I think I will go with Thousand Emperors for now.

    For a change a pace I got a steampunk romance (?) indie I've been watching for a while called Clockwork Giant by Brooke Johnson - loved the sample but at 5$ it seemed a little pricey for a short indie novel, first in a series from an author who may or may not write more, but I managed to get it at half price and 2.50 is definitely worth a try - I could have asked for a review copy but with indies I prefer buying them unless they are second or later books from authors I've enjoyed before, as I do not want to feel bound to read or review them. This will go either 3rd after Gibson and Corey or in-between if I need a break from serious sf
     
  16. PeterWilliam

    PeterWilliam Omnibus Prime

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    The folks at Tor were kind enough to forward a copy of Brin's Existence. While I'm not as versed in sci-fi as fantasy fiction, I was very intrigued by the blurb in the email and so I requested it. Actually, taking it with me on vacation with the family.
     
  17. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    Finished The Thousand Emperors by Gary Gibson and opened a thread about it HERE.
    Next something quieter as after such a powerful novel, I cannot go directly into another highly expected one like Caliban's War
     
  18. Westsiyeed

    Westsiyeed The Fifth Dominion

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    Finished Eric Brown's The Devil's Nebula and it was an entertaining read. There was a nice array of weird extra terrestrial creatures, and as an adventure story set in space it kept the pace up. Quite short and left some areas unexplored (eg the alien race knows as Vetch), but I guess that may come with future books.

    As usual with Brown - he's reliable for a good (soft) SF story that's character focused (but if you're wanting epic mind-blowing hard SF look elsewhere).
     
  19. Danogzilla

    Danogzilla Couch Commander

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    After a delightful vacation in Discworld I'm jumping back into the Culture and reading Iain M Banks' Look to Windward. He's a hell of a writer.
     
  20. suciul

    suciul Read interesting books

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    Based on the words above from a few posters, got myself The Devil's Nebula too (if you want an e, Kobo which sells it as drm-free epub for 6$ accepts coupons of up to 50% off - current codes are easy to find with Google - so you can get it for 3$ there) and while my experience with Eric Brown is mixed (liked some of his books, did not like others), this one starts well and I expect I will enjoy it; however I opened Caliban's war and that is a book not to put down once you get into it seriously...