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  1. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Worf View Post
    I read the first half of Red Mars about three years ago. I remember liking it, but put it down to start something else, probably something else I was really looking forward to reading.

    I picked it up this year and read to almost the exact same point. I realized why I put it down. There comes a point in the novel, after they drop the algae or whatever onto the surface with the windmills, that I stop caring about the characters or what is going on. The time jumps become very odd and I'm not sure who's with who or who's working on what.
    EXACTLY what happened to me...

  2. #32
    \m/ BEER \m/ Moderator Rob B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Worf View Post
    I read the first half of Red Mars about three years ago. I remember liking it, but put it down to start something else, probably something else I was really looking forward to reading.

    I picked it up this year and read to almost the exact same point. I realized why I put it down. There comes a point in the novel, after they drop the algae or whatever onto the surface with the windmills, that I stop caring about the characters or what is going on. The time jumps become very odd and I'm not sure who's with who or who's working on what.
    EXACTLY what happened to me...
    Make that three of us, at the very least.

  3. #33
    :d

  4. #34
    trolling > dissertation nquixote's Avatar
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    Yeah, the Mars trilogy is super-boring. In addition to being relatively uninteresting.


  5. #35
    Ty chto mumu yebyosh? chaunur's Avatar
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    Sadly I don't think I have ever not finished a book, I always hope that maybe it will get better, As for the Mars series I almost felt like I had to finish it after all its one of the 'Greats' of SF...did I enjoy it?..No! Red was not too bad, Green was slow and boring and we won't even discuss Blue.

  6. #36
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nquixote View Post
    Yeah, the Mars trilogy is super-boring. In addition to being relatively uninteresting.

    There is no need to be redundant and repetitive.
    Quote Originally Posted by chaunur View Post
    Sadly I don't think I have ever not finished a book, I always hope that maybe it will get better, As for the Mars series I almost felt like I had to finish it after all its one of the 'Greats' of SF...did I enjoy it?..No! Red was not too bad, Green was slow and boring and we won't even discuss Blue.
    This is the the problem with rating science fiction. Different readers have different values. There are at least three different characteristics maybe four.

    The Story, the Characters, the Science and maybe the Writing.

    The characters and the writing made Hyperion good. The story ranged from OK to silly. The science totally sucked.

    The story and the science were great for Red Mars. The writing was adequate to tell the story and the characters were indifferent to bad.

    Arthur C. Clarke said Red Mars was great but Clarke's characters were never anything to write home about.

    The story and the science may be closely related in science fiction books But the characters and the writing are aspects comparable to other forms of fiction. However the science and technology characters may not think like most people so science fiction that does not have sci/tech characters does not show if the author doesn't know how to write them. That is partly the point. Arthur C. Clarke was a sci/tech person. Maybe he wasn't very good at creating non-sci/tech people. Bujold was a pharmacist and had an engineer for a father so seeing what she did with the Vagaan character in Barrayar is instructive.

    So what do sci/tech readers want from science fiction versus non-sci/tech readers of science fiction? This can lead to totally different evaluations of the same work. But there is no escaping the fact that we a living in a culture becoming more and more technical. In the 1930s who had anything more complicated than a car and a radio? Now an MP3 player is far more complicated than that. But how many people can't explain how a piston engine works.

    But most of the people in the most technologically advanced country can't deal with evolution and global warming. But Red Mars about modifying a planet is boring. If a book bores me in 50 pages I quit. That is what I did for Revelation Space until I promised someone I would read it. It was torture.

    psik
    Last edited by psikeyhackr; June 26th, 2011 at 02:59 PM.

  7. #37
    which books was it you like again?


  8. #38
    A chuffing heffalump Chuffalump's Avatar
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    As soon as I read the blurb on the back of The Dervish House I thought my OH would love it. I think 'Oooh, nano technology' but if it says 'and over period X, the stories of Y people entwine......' she's there. Still, any SF is better than none.

    MUCH LATER EDIT: Just in case this doesn't make sense..... it was a comment on how different people look for different things in their books.
    Last edited by Chuffalump; June 28th, 2011 at 08:44 AM.

  9. #39
    I am overall so glad we've had this conversation because I was going to try again at some point and now I'm not. I've had days added to my life by this.

  10. #40
    trolling > dissertation nquixote's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    There is no need to be redundant and repetitive
    But is there a need to be redundant and repetitive?

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    If a book bores me in 50 pages I quit. That is what I did for Revelation Space until I promised someone I would read it. It was torture.
    Pshhht. I am unsympathetic. You have no one to blame for that judgment error but yourself.

  12. #42
    Registered User Werthead's Avatar
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    Reading Kim Stanley Robinson's new novel, 2312, and surprisingly it seems to be set in the same timeline as The Mars Trilogy. There's talk about the Martian Revolution of a century earlier, the disintegration of the Antarctic ice sheets (which happened in Green Mars), discussion of the longevity treatments and updates on the terraforming of Venus and Titan (proposed in Blue Mars).

    No characters from the original trilogy have shown up and the references are light (and Mars doesn't actually appear in the book, with the emphasis being on the rest of the Solar system), so it may be just Easter eggs for long-term fans. Still, interesting.

  13. #43
    Green and Blue Mars are the only Hugo winning novels I have not read. I have tried twice to get into Red Mars unsuccessfully. There is discussion in General Fiction about Moby Dick and how hard it is to get into. It was a little hard but then it gets rolling. The three Mars books seem like too much of a haul. So far no one has said “It starts out slow but….”.

  14. #44
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cgw View Post
    Green and Blue Mars are the only Hugo winning novels I have not read. I have tried twice to get into Red Mars unsuccessfully. There is discussion in General Fiction about Moby Dick and how hard it is to get into. It was a little hard but then it gets rolling. The three Mars books seem like too much of a haul. So far no one has said “It starts out slow but….”.
    We need more detailed categories of science fiction.

    There are stories which are entertaining in a "interesting" kind of way and those which are entertaining in an "exciting" kind of way. The Mars Trilogy is mostly the former, but a lot of people regard that as "boring". So this comes to the mentality of the reader. Some authors can do a good job of mixing the two but they are somewhat rare. I think Bujold did a great job of that with Komarr. But most of the reviews don't even mention the scientific perspective in the story. Bujold even slips it in a little in The Vor Game where she talks about the tactical computer and the map not being the territory.

    Serious intelligent sci-fi does not sell big.

    How can the Mars books and a Harry Potter book get Hugos?

    psik

  15. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    Serious intelligent sci-fi does not sell big.

    How can the Mars books and a Harry Potter book get Hugos?

    psik
    Please tell me you are not suggesting serious intelligent sci-fi (or any genre) has to equal boring or unreadable.

    I would not suggest that either Green or Blue Mars did not deserve the Hugo. I have not read either or any of the other nominees.
    On the other hand I have read the Harry Potter book and at least one of the nominees which I think is much better.
    One of these years I will actually vote so I can legitimately complain.


    P.S. I am also not suggesting Green Mars and Blues Mars are boring and unreadable. I just can't get to them because Red Mars is boring and unreadable.

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