Posted on 03-Feb-17 16:21
In The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, author Robert A. Heinlein gives a complex look at revolutionary ideals, their cost, and the reality of conflict between societies. Political ideas on these topics are presented and discussed often throughout the novel, but they are done so in such a way to make it interesting reading, even for those who may disagree. Its well-developed characters and comprehensively detailed setting make it a smart science-fiction tale, with impressively realistic sensibilities.
Posted on 10-Dec-16 13:32
Even with its title, Redshirts references cliches of genre-fiction. In the titular case, it is the tendency for (red-clad) Star Trek security officers to die alarmingly often, a technique used by the writers to increase dramatic tension without killing any main characters. Interestingly, it is not with condemnation that John Scalzi writes about these conventions. Quite to the contrary, it is an examination dripping with the writer’s affection towards the source material.
Posted on 08-Nov-16 09:23
“It all came back and even as it came back I knew it would not be for long: all the things I remembered, sitting on the green bench beside the little pond that Lettie Hempstock had once convinced me was an ocean.” In The Ocean at the End of the Lane, author Neil Gaiman crafts a tale of weird fiction fit to stand with the classics of that genre. He expertly weaves a deeply personal story of childhood and memory within a sinister tale of evil not from our world. The decidedly stark prose gives it a pleasingly sincere quality, a stylistic choice that perfectly underlines the themes of the book. Though a relatively short read, it doesn’t feel stunted in the slightest, and its pacing is excellent. Particular praise should also be given to the characterization, as it has an unshakeably real quality, even amid the fantastical elements of the story.