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Arkfall - Nebula Nominee 2009 Paperback – 12 Mar 2010

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 7 reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Hope another one is in the works 27 Jun. 2010
By Dick Stanley - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Heck of a good story. My only complaint is that it ended too soon. Nobody said it was a novella. Well, that and a few formatting problems. But nothing seriously distracted from the engaging story of Osaji, a floater who thought she wanted to become a barnacle (or even a spacer) but turned out to have floating in her blood, after all.

I'd read Ms Gilman's short stories, so I knew to expect good plotting and believable characters. But the biotic membranes the floaters use to get about the sea of their ice-covered world (think Jupiter's Europa or Saturn's Enceladus) are brilliant conceptions. Even my old scuba diver's fear of deep water relaxed after a few dozen pages. Now we can look forward to the next installment of Osaji's adventures and discoveries, yes?
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A story about identity and inner struggle 12 Jun. 2012
By S. Emoto - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Arkfall, which comes in at 79 pages on my Kindle, explores the thoughts, feelings and actions of a young woman as she struggles toward individuality in a conformist culture.

Although humans living deep under the sea is an intriguing premise, I at first thought there wasn't enough story in this story. Osaji is thrown in with a stranger, gets lost, sees new sights and finds her way back home. But I was wrong. External action isn't the primary focus. The heart of the story is psychological.

While her grandmother's life comes to a close, Osaji changes from a grim, dutiful person seething with buried anger -- a person who feels suffocated and unappreciated -- to a gutsy, self-directed woman who knows what she really wants.

A number of poignant passages consider her grandmother's "exemplary" life: "More than anyone Osaji knew, Mota had forsaken her own wants in order to live for others. Selflessness. It was a virtue; everyone said so. And yet, it was as if her individuality had slowly withered away from neglect over the years. She had spent a lifetime making herself transparent..."

If you enjoy an ingenious story of a society shaped by environmental constraints -- one where the central character genuinely evolves -- I think you'll like Arkfall.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
So good it should have been longer. 3 Jun. 2012
By Kev - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Another book that I couldn't put down. I found it a bit slow to start with, but then it got good. So good that I wish it was longer.

Having read a lot of scifi books, this one had a storyline that is different. Civilisation under the sea. A long way under the sea and under the ice on a barely explored planet. I hope that maybe a sequel to this story will be written.

A great read.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Quick but memorable read 26 Jun. 2012
By Ledru Corlett - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A nicely crafted tale with intriguing worldbuilding - but it's the characters that shine. They're believable and accessible, and they grow in response to the events around them. The best sign this is good story was that I wanted to know what Osaji does after the conclusion of this story.

This novella was my introductions to the author, but I'll actively track down her other works based on the strength of this one. I'll also certainly keep this one around to re-read.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great story! 17 Jun. 2012
By david stowers - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was a really great read. Good plot, good characters, and it did a great job of creating an "alien" culture. Very believable. I'll definitley look for other novels by this author.
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