2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 29 January 1999
John Varley's "Eight Worlds" story series has been popular for almost two decades. This novel expands on the previous and subsequent, short stories and provides some of the answers to the more perplexing questions raised in them.Essentially, it is a book of throw -away ideas,Varley provides more hard science concepts per chapter than most other writers present in a whole novel.Here, he examines some of the moral and philosophical issues surrounding, among others, cloning,genetic transformation and what, exactly, does "being human" mean? Underlying this, there is an array of dazzling invented technologies, some spins on previous ideas and some inspired novelties. The multi-stranded plot-lines are initially confusing, particularly the fact that at least three (or is it four) of the main characters are, actually the same person! However, soon the reader is happily jumping from planet to planet, character to character and time-line to time-line. If you want to understand the "Eight Worlds" series, then this is a must read. Jump on board and enjoy the ride!