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on 10 January 2011
I bought this book because I'd run out of Pratchett and Holt books to read. Again.
What a result.
It's superbly written and the story is gripping right to the end.
Having no experience of Flint I approached this with an open mind and wasn't overly impressed with the first few pages of scene setting. But, and am I ever glad I did because I've literally been known to read 3 or 4 pages and then never pick up the book again, I persevered and by the end of the first chapter I was hooked.
The storyline is fairly simple in that it records the experiences of a Colony ship forced to crash land on an alien planet which leaves the survivors facing various trials and tribulations. However, where most authors would leave it at that and make a perfectly readable and entertaining tale out of it, Flint goes the extra mile and gets inside the aliens heads and tells the story from their point of view at the same time. Not only does this make the story far more interesting, it also makes the reader think about the impact the humans are having.
Of coursed he takes a few liberties, though I won't give anything away, but overall the whole thing works. And if a writer can't be allowed a certain freedom then who can?
Thoroughly recommended.
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on 6 June 1998
The situation (humans stranded on an alien planet) could be very stereotyped, but it isn't. The personalities of the individual aliens (within the parameters of their own biology) are developed as clearly as those of the humans. For a change, the humans act with reasonable intelligence.
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on 1 July 1998
This book is an excellent read. Good plot, well thought-out, interesting characters and a good writing style make this story better than the average humans-stranded-on-strange-planet fare. The conclusion left enough threads to allow a sequel without being frustrating or unsatisfying. Eric Flint is a writer to watch.
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on 24 September 1997
This book fired my imagination in a way no other book I have read. For those who have read Robert Asprins, "Bug Wars." and enjoyed it this book holds a similar but unique treat.
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on 2 October 1997
This book is very smart. The "hard sciences" are not the usual techno-type, but rather Mr. Flint applies such sciences as ethology, linguistics, sociology; even a little applied psycho-history! I kept thinking it would be nice if he writes 5 or 6 sequels. Great read!
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