Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Deepness in the Sky

Vinge is one of those writers that rewards readers who pay attention to small details. He gives enough subtle clues to make you think that something could be a possibility before he springs it on you. The effect does not make the novel seem predictable though. It makes you feel rewarded for your attention. Deepness centers around two spacing groups emerging simultaneously on a strange spider planet in orbit around a star with a dormancy cycle. One of the groups ambushes the other which leads to both fleets being almost totally destroyed. Meanwhile on the planet, the spiders are going through an information age. There are two superpowers on the planet and they are played against each other in a U.S./Russia cold war type scenario. The book is long but fairly quick once you get into it. It is well written and the characterizations are well done. The alien spider species first person lulls the reader into a comfortable acceptance of the species, and the humanoid view, presented later in the story, revulses the reader. This revulsion is also seen in the humanoid character as well that mirrors the readers. If you enjoy space operas, you will enjoy this book. You will also enjoy this book if you just like a great story told exceptionally well. This book does contain some violence and some sexuality, but neither is graphic.

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