Monday, October 10, 2011

My reading project

For personal reasons, I anticipate being absent from my regular gaming activities for at least the next few months. It's unfortunate, but it does afford me the opportunity to do some recreational reading, something I haven't been able to do for several years (unless one considers reading Dr. Seuss stories to pre-schoolers recreational). At just the right time, out comes the NPR Top 100 Science-fiction and Fantasy Books list. I've read about one-third of the books/series on the list, so I figure it's about time I jumped into the rest, especially the SF books. First on my list, #51 - The Hyperion Cantos. I completed the first book, Hyperion in about a week and I'm now roughly a third of the way through the conclusion, The Fall of Hyperion. Endymion and The Rise of Endymion are in the pipeline and ready to go. At the rate I'm going, I figure to be through the complete series by mid-November. I will have a more complete report of my thoughts at that time. My initial impressions, the books are, not surprisingly, extremely well-written. The main characters are deep and the trials they face elicit genuine emotion in the reader. As a parent, the odyssey of Sol Weintraub and his daughter, Rachel, is particularly poignant (and, at times, gut-wrenching) for me. My only criticism, on the other hand, relates to the "illness" that befalls Rachel. I won't go into details, but suffice to say, I felt it was a bit contrived and strayed far beyond my concept of science-fiction and deeply into the realm of fantasy. Still, as a plot device, it was powerful and I find myself deeply invested in that particular subplot.

What's next after The Hyperion Cantos? Well, I just picked up a copy of A Canticle for Leibowitz, a classic that's older than I am. I always meant to read it, but never got around to it. Now's my chance.


1 comment:

Obiri said...

Yes, Hyperion is pretty awesome. All the different genres the first book covers is impressive. I found the bit about Sol's daughter at the end of book 2 a bit of a head scratcher but otherwise I really liked the ending.

The second two books are full of awesome. I'm sure you'll love them as much as I did.