Saturday, June 18, 2011

Strange Horizons Reviews, June 13-17

As well as my own review of Surface Detail by Iain M. Banks, this week's Strange Horizons sees Niall Harrison discussing The Colony by Jillian Weise, one of the novels selected for this year's Tiptree honor list.  Though Niall is impressed by Weise's treatment of the subject of sexuality, he's dubious about her approach to science.  Rounding out the week is Alexandra Pierce, making her Strange Horizons debut by reviewing a debut, Douglas Hulick's Among Thieves, which Alexandra finds lackluster.


Anonymous said...

Dear Abigail,

Been reading your blog, and although I don't read anywhere near as much SF as you or most of your readers probably do, I am pleased to see that I agree with 65-70% of your literature and film reviews. Your thoughts are sagacious and conscientious.

I haven't read ALL of your archives, so I don't know if you've written about him or not, but I thought I'd ask your opinion of Orson Scott Card's work. Just curious.

Thanks, and keep up the good work.

All the best,


Abigail Nussbaum said...

Hi greyfoot,

I read Card as a teenager like a lot of SF fans. I liked some of his books - Ender's Game, Pastwatch, the early volumes of the Alvin Maker series - and disliked others, mainly the later Ender books. I lost patience with him at some point, and these days I'm not sure what I'd make of his early writing. I'm not likely to revisit those books, however, as Card's politics have made him so objectionable that I doubt I could read anything by him without the experience being colored by my disgust at his opinions.

Shoteh said...

Can I wish for a blog post with 5 recommendations for someone who wants to get back into reading SF but don't know where to begin?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for responding, Abigail.

I feel exactly the same way. I appreciate your integrity in attempting objectivity when reviewing fiction, as an author's outside views can unfairly color one's critical judgment. It's not even for me so much his positions themselves, but the dismissive way he justifies them. Blind ideologues are inexcusable, and conscientious conservatives would do well to distance themselves from that kind of thing.

As for his work, which I read long before I knew his politics, I thought his first book, Ender's Game, was next to brilliant. But the following three books seemed as if they were written by a different author. None of the pathos, believable plot, or even momentum. I couldn't even finish Children of the Mind. I felt the same way about the Memory of Earth series (also couldn't finish it). Tried The Worthing Saga, same result. Very disappointing. I'm not sure what happened with his fiction, but I can't go back either. Life's too short.

Anyway, thanks again. Looking forward to more posts!


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