Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Brief book review

It's late and I'm tired, so I won't go in to much detail, but I must recommend two books by Mary Doria Russell: The Sparrow and Children of God.

The Sparrow, first in the series, is far more dark: it's a tale of first contact gone horribly awry, and the structure of the book is such that you know at the outset that things went south but you don't find out until late in the book why.

Children of God, the sequel, picks up the story where The Sparrow left off as a group of humans head back to Rakhat (the alien world) to find how deeply the screwups from book one have changed things. This one is more straight forward, with a single timeline, and while it has it's dark moments is also relatively uplifting.

Russell is an anthropologist, I think (or maybe an archaeologist...), and has really defined the alien society well. Very cool concept, and good execution.

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