15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Light (GOLLANCZ S.F.) (Paperback)
Interesting how this book polarises opinion. I loved it. I fail to see how some reviewers view it as "infantile" or "puerile", referencing the few sex scenes and the character name Billy Anker. Playful and honest, but not puerile. And I can see how the opening is a bit disorientating: it does take a fair while before you can tell what's going on, and even longer before the threads start weaving together. But that's part of the manic pleasure it provides as you're carried along through one atmospheric environment after another. I thought the writing was absolutely extraordinary in places, tight, precise, evocative. Yes, it is a bit overwrought in places, overwritten, too stylish for its own good. But overall, it's stunning. The characters aren't particularly sympathetic, but one of the strands (Seria Mau) concerning a human in a symbiotic relationship with a starship, is superbly imagined and moving; as another reviewer noted, it captures actual sensation of N-dimensional space fantastically (comparable in quality to Christopher Priest's capturing of the perception of infinite width in Inverted World). Read it, unless you only like thick books which come in series and have swords on the front.