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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Post-it Review
If you're looking for a snapshot of civilisation three centuries hence, in an (almost) dramatic setting, this book might be for you. If you're expecting the Mars Trilogy, or Gallileo's Dream, or something of that standard, however, you might want to give this one a miss. I enjoyed it though.
Published 11 months ago by Mick Clarkefan

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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I was a big fan of the Mars trilogy and not having revisited any of his subsequent books I started 2312 with high expectations and great enthusiasm. Quarter of the way in to the book I was beginning to hope that it would just be a late starter, but by 3/4s of the way through I knew that this would not be the case. Yes the writing is good, yes the science and universe is...
Published 20 months ago by TheManAlive


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 19 Dec 2012
This review is from: 2312 (Hardcover)
I was a big fan of the Mars trilogy and not having revisited any of his subsequent books I started 2312 with high expectations and great enthusiasm. Quarter of the way in to the book I was beginning to hope that it would just be a late starter, but by 3/4s of the way through I knew that this would not be the case. Yes the writing is good, yes the science and universe is good, but there is simply no plot. Well, not completely, there is a semblance of a plot that could be summarised in just a paragraph or two. He doesn't really sell what plot there is, there is no tension, excitement or any emotion other than just following a couple of characters through some very bland adventures. Its as if he had a number of scenarios about terraforming or future society and needed something lose to link them together.

Would I read it again? No. Would I recommend it? No. Did I have to make myself finish it? Afraid I did, though I very nearly gave up on a few occasions and that is not something I ever do lightly. Overall, a real shame. It gets 2 stars because the future premise was good but that is it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lots to appreciate but not easy to get into, 18 Sep 2013
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This review is from: 2312 (Paperback)
I am an occasional hard-core Sci-Fi reader so maybe I don't have the right "wiring" to fully appreciate such works. 2312 is full of well-realised technology, concepts and ideas with a stronger and more recognisable socio-politico-philosophical slant than other recent sci-fi works I have come across. However, I found the central plot a little random at times and without clear purpose for the first third of the book although there are a couple of segments that concentrate more on a plotline and allows the characters to develop and interact more constructively. I also found the sudden interspersion of the main text with lists and supposed extracts of documents to be disruptive and annoying - a literary device that feels artificially quirky and contrived. For me, this book was rather too much hard work and wasn't all that satisfying, although I appreciated the imagination and scope of the book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Post-it Review, 7 Sep 2013
This review is from: 2312 (Paperback)
If you're looking for a snapshot of civilisation three centuries hence, in an (almost) dramatic setting, this book might be for you. If you're expecting the Mars Trilogy, or Gallileo's Dream, or something of that standard, however, you might want to give this one a miss. I enjoyed it though.
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49 of 57 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An optimistic SF novel, let down a little by the thriller elements., 25 May 2012
By 
A. Whitehead "Werthead" (Colchester, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 2312 (Hardcover)
Swan Er Hong, a notable performance artist native to Mercury, has her life abruptly changed by the death of her grandmother, Alex. As Swan is asked to investigate the project her grandmother was working on, her home city is subjected to a brutal terrorist attack. This sparks a series of journeys back and forth across the Solar system, from Mercury to terraformed Venus to drowned Earth and out as far as Io and Titan, as Swan and her allies attempt to discover the threat nature of the threat to humanity.

2312 is Kim Stanley Robinson's first widescreen, big-budget, blockbuster SF novel in some considerable time. His recent novels (such as the recent Galileo's Dream or his near-future Science in the Capital trilogy) have been modest in their ambitions, but 2312 trots out the same Robinson who charted the colonisation of Mars in such fascinating, exacting and sometimes-frustrating detail over the course of three books in the 1990s.

The novel works on several levels. On one, it paints a portrait of life in the early 24th Century where the bulk of humanity lives on Earth (and, increasingly, Mars) but the 'spacers' who have settled the rest of the Solar system hold increasing amounts of power, despite their small numbers. This portrait is vivid, rich and compelling. It shows Robinson's imagination at its most fertile, as he depicts Terminator, a city which rolls over Mercury's surface, permanently trying to stay on the nightside of the planet out of the fierce rays of the nearby Sun. Elsewhere he shows the terraforming of Venus as its thick atmosphere is stripped away and politicians debate on slamming giant asteroids into it to increase its rotation. Another section takes us to Greenland, where a huge damming project is underway stop one of the Earth's last few glaciers from melting into the sea. On Io people have to live in settlements which act as gigantic Faraday cages (to hold the immense radiation of Jupiter at bay), whilst in orbit around Saturn people go surfing on plumes of ice pulled out of the rings by the passage of the shepherding moonlets. As a grand tour of the Solar system, 2312 is constantly inventive and fascinating.

On the second level, the book is striving for literary credibility. Robinson has always been one of the finest writers of prose in hard SF (not, it has to be said, a densely-populated field), and that continues here. He may be fascinated by science, by technology and by visions of the future, but he's much more fascinated by people, as individuals and as collective societies, and how they operate. As such the characters are richly-defined and textured, showing surprising depths as the novel develops. The prose is also finely-weaved but Robinson's long-standing tendency to interrupt it with infodumps remains an issue, although much less so than in his Mars Trilogy. Most notably, Robinson's writing keeps two potentially dull sections (one featuring characters having to hike along a thousand mile-long tunnel, the other featuring a character adrift in space) from flatlining and in fact elevates them to two of the strongest sections in the book.

The third level, the actual plot, is where the novel hits the most bumps. In the Mars Trilogy Robinson portrayed a vision of the future where the characters had to deal with scientific hazards and the simple realities of day-to-day life in a hostile environment. Whilst there were antagonists, these were shown to be part of the naturally-arising problems of colonisation and the eventual need for independence. In 2312, however, Robinson has a much more overt and traditional thriller storyline in which mysteries need to be investigated and explored and a resolution reached. To put it mildly, this plot feels half-arsed at best and the novel improves dramatically when Robinson completely drops it for much of its middle third, instead focusing on his grand vision of humanity's possible future.

2312 (****) is a credible and somewhat optimistic vision of our future, highly detailed and constantly inventive. Coupled with some rich characters and enjoyable prose, this makes for his finest novel in many years. However, some contrived plot twists and a dull thriller element weaken the narrative a little. The novel will be published in the UK and USA on 24 May.

NOTE: The first half or so of the novel strongly indicates that 2312 is set in the same continuity as the Mars Trilogy. However, a detailed timeline given later in the book reveals this is not the case and the two works are separate, although 2312 does borrow a few names and terms from the older work.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring beyand belief, 13 April 2014
This review is from: 2312 (Paperback)
Hey! I got to page 153 before crumbling and crying with frustration and terminal boredom. Avoid THIS BOOK AT ALL COSTS!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Solar System as hero..., 6 Sep 2013
By 
A. J. Poulter "AP" (Edinburgh) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 2312 (Paperback)
This novel is a glorious vision of the Solar System a few centuries hence. Mars has been terraformed. A sunshield is being built for Venus as a precursor to terraformiing it. On Mercury, a moving city keeps its inhabitants out of direct sunlight. The gas giants and associated moons etc are inhabited. 'Terraria', self-contained ark environments, spun to maintain gravity, provide homes for a massive living archive of plants and animals, as well as people. Humans come in all shapes and sizes, live much longer and change gender and other physical attributes at will. At Pluto, special terraria are being fitted out to journey to nearby stars.

The big blot is Earth. Sea level has risen there drastically,and coastlines have shrunk. Only a few ice sheets remain. Despite harnessing the resources of the Solar system, Earth is even more overcrowded than ever and its people as hungry as ever. There is tension between Earth and the rest and national rivalries still smoulder on.

There is a problem here as the background scenery is much more interesting than the miniscule plot, which involves quantum computers. Things are not helped by the cryptic notes/lists that interrupt chapters. These are sometimes obscure, contribute little and give the (probably wrong) impression that the author got bored and decided to leave as notes ideas for more narrative/background development etc. There is a love story here of sorts between the main character, Swan, a headstrong Mercurian and Wahrum, an easy-going music lover from Saturn. But the main character here is our Solar System itself, which is what really makes this novel special.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars More of a political lecture than a story, 18 Aug 2013
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This review is from: 2312 (Paperback)
This is my first KSR novel, and might be my last, although I am aware that many of the people wrtiing reviews here say his Mars series is better. It's not that it's bad,in a way it's brilliant, but it's brilliantly dull. The guy is obviously clever, and very knowledable, if all the future science is as credible as it sounds. The problem is the story is thin to the point of near nonexistence, and the whole thing feels like a lecture on the perils of climate change. Plus, as with a lot of scifi unfortunately, it suffers from the protagonist seemingly having lots of relationships and ties to others, but there's nothing really substantial there. I know this goes with the territory, but all the same I kept feeling like I wanted to tell her not to be such a self indulgent little minx.

Anyway, two stars, five for the size of the guys intellect - obvious, significant, and zero for the story - back to basics please
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars escape to the future, 5 Aug 2013
By 
Kristian Beyer (Copenhagen, Denmark) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 2312 (Hardcover)
Fantastic book mixing plausible sounding science and an interesting plot. A worthy followup to the Mars trillogy. My best buy for a long long time
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 2312, 24 April 2014
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This review is from: 2312 (Kindle Edition)
I never reached the end. I found the book had no central storyline. I found it boring and confusing. Not worth the time or cost
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the Mars Trilogy..., 23 Sep 2013
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This review is from: 2312 (Kindle Edition)
I enjoyed the book, and it is an interesting quasi sequel to the Mars books, but I found some of the techniques used, such as interspersing the narrative with short chapters consisting of nothing but lists, as adding little, if not occasionally an annoying distraction. I had hoped for more.
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2312
2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson (Paperback - 25 Jun 2013)
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