March 2018 - What SF books are you reading?


Journeyed there and back again
Finally finished The White Dragon ~Anne McCaffery

I don't know why it took me so long , it was a good book. (but the lesser of the three books

the first 2/3rds was a bit of a disappointment, and was less SCI FI than the previous two books. Really this was following a young annoying brat who just happens to be the absolute flawless hero.... ever. single. time. other than that I felt like I was reading the Pern version of Dawson's Creek, with everyone way to involved in everyone elses complicated sex life.
Its ok that the teenage Hero just took advantage of the other teenage peasant girl (TO WHOM HE IS HER LORD) and followed it up with all but forcing her the second time, because in the next scene he finds true love and becomes a vivid passionate romantic. really.
Why do I find it creepy when the 40 year olds are making fun of the teen girls because their dragon is going into heat.. and that are they.

The book did wrap up some things, and it should have been a good thing. but
they resolve the queen's egg in the most boring way possible and almost instantly. they then resolve the T'Kull vengeance thing in an equally boring climax.
but as soon as these 'supposed to major climaxes' were finished the book started getting interesting. it was fantastic with all the SCI FI finally being injected into the book, and it makes up for loss time by being nail bitingly interesting.

the whole last third of the book more than makes up for the other 2/3rds, however I think I'm done with McCaffery. I'm glad my wife made me read this trilogy



Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
Right now I'm reading Dark Eden by Chris Beckett, as recommended by Tom. Around 60 pages in. Liking it a lot so far. Nothing big has happened yet, but the setting/planet is very interesting. It's always fascinating seeing a take on a civilisation, if I can call it that, early in its development. The linguistic quirks are the best, though. Simple, but effective. Looking forward to reading more tonight.


Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
And I'm finished with Dark Eden. A lovely book, 5 stars. Based on the reviews, however, I'm not sure I'll be reading the sequels. I currently have my eye on the Ender series or Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy as my next foray into science fiction.
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And I'm finished with Dark Eden. A lovely book, 5 stars. Based on the reviews, however, I'm not sure I'll be reading the sequels. I currently have my eye on the Ender series or Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy as my next foray into science fiction.
Glad you enjoyed it.

The first book was the best in my opinion, but I was too intrigued to see how things turned out not to carry on.


Journeyed there and back again
finished I Robot~ Isaac Asimov

a brilliant early robot novel dealing mostly with the evolution of robotics as well as the transcendence of AI . the robot stories I read before this are all basic trivial things, or automatons of fancy gearworks, or essentially familiar to the golem Asimov sets up qualities that still persist his laws of robotics which form the basis of using paradoxes to destroy robots which also becomes the phrase "does not compute".

This is a series of short stories he published a decade ago, tied together with an overarching plot of an interview.

the first one Robbie is an early story in the history of robotics that sets up the laws of robotics for the reader, and the actual laws governing people with robots. it is a tender story that really coaxed the reader into the story in general rather than slapping them in.

the next few follow Donovon and Powell, I love these, as they are presented with problems regarding the three laws and try to circumvent the problems while field testing experimental robots

then we go into several regarding the narrator's experiences, which not only deal with three law problems but also deals with ignorant humans constantly trying to bend or break the three laws because they aren't smart enough to figure out a work around.

finally we get the wrap up which gives us insight of where it all was heading.

the Donovan Powell set establish the worship of logic by the robots to the extent of forming a religion they still do their job they still follow the laws, but their brain forms whole concepts to avoid bad logic or work around their own inabilities.

the next set often deal with robots that are more of a danger to humanity. they deal with establishing AIs and its conflicts against the three laws. this set is establishing whats next, really the robot politician was the the forbodding sign of the future we get too.'


not actually bad the movie includes elements from each section. like Robbie the name, the nester sequence, the fire, and even things that would be a SPOILER.



Journeyed there and back again
finished Caves of Steel ~ Isaac Asimov

much different from I robot, this is more a mystery, buddy cop with one detective a displaying a distaste and sometimes hatred for robots and the other... a robot. much of the mystery is based on the socioogical aspects of robots in society.

This seems to be where the bulk of the movie gets it's content. the characters are mostly all there like the same same commissioner, protagonist, and robot experts. even the original nature of the crime.

the major point
is that the spacers are trying to destabilize the earth government to force them to except their own way of life that they view as, also broken.



Journeyed there and back again
finished The Naked Sun~ Isaac Asimov

I warn you now, as a sequel that relies heavily on the former, I cannot talk about even a litttle
it without mentioning spoilers from caves of steel.

much like the first book this one follows a detective with a robot partner in a crime noir set in motion by a murder.

This one takes place on an unusual and unique colony but the first one an earthman has set foot on in centuries. (the detective) in this one you can see a contrived feeling of the protagonist being a Sherlock Holmes clone as three times he says quotes of Holmes in a manner that suggest he might be saying them, not quoting someone. (he also repeatedly acts like holmes).

Bailey is changed. whereas before he shared the irrational hatred and fear of robots and spacers. now he understands both enough to have a rational distrust knowing full well they are capable of being as weak as earthers. this gives him the advantage over spacers who are too trusting in their ways their methods, and that robots are as mundane as a table.

the relationship is also changed, to one of strained admiration and constantly working around eachother.

this book goes through various sequences tied together on the neurotic nature of earthers, and solarians. they just happen to be neurotic in desperate ways. Bailey is hindered outside closed in places without windows as well as with absence of humans. the solarians cant stand human presence to the point of mental breakdowns. they pride themselves in the ability to not interact so they train children to behave similarly. every personal action that requires privacy including nudity is considered just fine for anyone to view during conversation, but the mere act of being in the same house will cause a strange taboo of perversity that none of them can stand. personal space is their only sense of privacy, even whether someone had children is now a private matter.

these two neurosis must be rectified if Bailey is to solve the case.

the solution is a redo. but maybe not. from Sherlock Holmes the murder weapon wasn' t found because they were all trained not to notice it from social situations. here the object not noticed is a robot. unable to harm a human, and so mundane everyone did not notice it. this is repeated in Feet of clay by terry pratchett. i cannot help but wonder if this is original to asimov or if he took it from someone else?'

much like caves of steel the base theme is coupled by hints of info that will destabilize the future into different direction in a way similar to how foundation is set. whereas caves of steel reveals that the colonies are using their considerable power to keep earth not only in check but also in an inferior state of poverty in order to force earth to adopt colony philosophy and do what the colonies want. in this however
the theme is to reveal that the colonies no longer have any power over earth since their grip has grown complacent, old, and arthritic. this opens up the opportunity for earthers to break free from their planetary prison and form their own colonies in places where the spacers have no influence especially since the spacers have no desire or plans to continue colonies

there are hints that cause these events to head towards a future like that of Foundation series. considering one of the books on my shelf is "robots and empire" looks like I will be reading foundation as well

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