This is excellent science fiction, but it didn’t resonate with me entirely. I don’t often fail to gel with a book, and very rarely do I manage to read the entirety of a book I don’t gel with, but this is Greg Bear and he’s damn good at what he does, so I was able to continue to the end despite my disconnection.
It has a beginning much like the film Pandorum (to the extent I wondered in the first few pages if the movie was based on this book) – a man wakes alone in a dark, dangerous space ship that seems to be deserted, he has no idea why he’s awake or why everyone is gone, and especially not why the ship is so badly damaged. However, the story here quickly mutates to something far different and really more interesting than Pandorum.
It’s similar in the sense of it being a last ditch rescue mission for humanity gone desperately wrong, and that’s where the similarities end. This story goes in many peculiar and marvellous directions, all of which are beautifully realised, as is the stifling tension and mistrust between the few survivors. The reveal is also interesting and satisfying and I could not even begin to explain why I felt aggravated with this book, but I did.
Sometimes you can appreciate a thing and still not quite like it. Strange things and stranger yet.
You can buy this book in the UK here
And in the US here