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Thread: What are you reading?

  1. #4411
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    Jul 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Outies by J.R. Pournelle. My biggest issue with it was that it was too obviously a fictionalized version of recent history Iraq as imagined as a colonized planet. I’m no expert on Iraq but they had, for instance, a green zone, and it felt a lot like I was reading the news. She introduced the moties into that environment.
    I think that falls into the "write what you know" category, since she actually is an expert on Iraq, in several different ways. For me, her evocation of life in a city in the middle of a warzone was one of the strengths of the story. I also enjoyed the tie-in with King David's Spaceship. But she wasn't at all true to the original characters of Renner and Blaine, and I think using Moties as POV characters was a mistake.

    Grant Hutchison

  2. #4412
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I should probably give that a try one of these days. I did read it before, but long ago. I quite enjoyed the naval aspects of it that were reminiscent of the naval historical novels I read.
    I think it was designed with that in mind; Niven and Pournelle set up the physics and technologies so there's places (Jump Points) to defend or blockade, no FTL radio, and shields that prevent a one-hit-kill by planet-glassing lasers but still allow some damage to "leak" in for dramatic flesh wounds.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  3. #4413
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    Jul 2005
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    I'm re-reading Jack Williamson's classic Seetee Ship and Seetee Shock, written in the 1940s. "Seetee" is CT, short for contra-terrene, an old name for antimatter. Williamson imagines that the asteroid belt is made up of a mix of matter and antimatter asteroids, and his "asterite" miners are attempting to develop technologies using antimatter (which they call "hell in chunks").
    I don't think I've ever read any other stories that involve people trying to manipulate antimatter in asteroid-sized lumps. I'm sure there must be some. Anyone?

    Grant Hutchison

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