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July 21, 2010

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Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
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Take 2 - I'm geeky enough to try leaving this comment a second time (after it didn't take the first) even a week later when fewer folks are reading. Ah well! Must Discuss Mars book!

I appreciate this whole review. (and it reminds me a little of this similar surprised-liking review at bibliophile collective at vulpes libris: http://vulpeslibris.wordpress.com/2009/11/02/red-mars-by-kim-stanley-robinson/) This book feels like it should be a well-known "cross-over" title that's not left to the sci fi ghetto, even as it deservedly gets honors there.

However, this review still doesn't capture two of the things that endear this book to me most:

1) I love these characters. They are a group of my friends, and I wonder how they're doing. Compared to most sci fi books, his character development goes far beyond the ken, but that's still a low bar. I appreciate the rashomon-esque depth that we get from the multiple perspectives, and the sense of accuracy we have from being in each character's head.

2) The social issues being debated, enacted, exploded and explored provide an excellent window on the problems we face today. Anyone on the left will recognize these tensions and threads and find resonance with the beauty and pain of their unfolding.

But then, I'm clearly a fanboy on this one.

Thanks for sharing!

I read the first two books of this series in high school, for some reason I never got around to the third, but I did love the first two, so happy reading!

There is SCIENCE fiction and there is science FICTION. Apparently you prefer the latter. Science fiction that is really worth paying attention to and not just entertainment goes beyond literature.

How much has the world changed since C.P. Snow gave his Two Cultures lecture. It is not because of the literary people that we use lasers to rip CDs and compress the music to MP3s. But it looks like the future will be screwed up because so many people don't get the science.

Borderlands of Science by Charles Sheffield
http://www.baen.com/chapters/borders_i.htm
Copyright © 1999

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