Down The Bright Way Paperback – 2 Oct 2003
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An awe-inspiring vision of humanity's destiny and a heart-stopping thriller, DOWN THE BRIGHT WAY is SF at its best.
About the Author
Robert Reed is the acclaimed author of numerous SF novels. He has been nominated for the prestigious Hugo, Nebula and World Fantasy Awards.
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Top Customer Reviews
Maybe it's just me, but this book was dull. I found it hard to find any of the characters sympathetic and the plot really dragged. It's not until the final 50 pages that the book actually gets going and it was then I actually stared to enjoy it.
A friend lent me Marrow which I did enjoy. It's almost as if this (Bright Way) book was written by someone else.
I wouldn't recommend this.
It's a large-scale production contrasted - as in 'An Exaltation of Larks' with a neatly detailed portrait of small town America.
For a million years, an alternate species of human with large crania and furry faces, have been travelling the Bright - as the chain of portals is called - in both directions from their homeworld, uniting and civilising each Earth.
Jy, the million year old leader of one of the two Founder missions, has now reached our earth.
It's not one of Reed's best, but even here the characterisation is excellent. The people are real; they have flaws. Kyle (an Earth teenager) is a fantasist and is pretending he is one of the aliens' envoys, a Wanderer, in order to impress and seduce women. Confused adolescent males turn up a lot in Reed's work and are generally portrayed with a blunt honesty. With some writers this may have made them seem heartless and cold. However, as with characters in other Reed books, Kyle emerges as a sad victim of himself. Reed makes us see his flaws - perhaps Reed's own early flaws - through more understanding eyes.
Reed is also fascinated by the concept of near-immortal beings who bear comparison with similar characters in the work of Van Vogt who also painted his highly colourful tales against absurdly vast backdrops.
The immortality issue is addressed, but does not satisfactorily convince that the central characters are over a million years old.Read more ›
It sounds strange to say that SF can be criticised for not being believable, but for some reason there are reviewers that criticise this work on the basis of the concepts being "too far out there". That is Reed's greatest strength. More than any other SF author I've read, his books take you somewhere that I guarantee you will have never been before and if you're like me, you'll be eager to go there again. This is exactly how I felt reading this one.
Doesn't deliver. Too long, a bit of a let down towards the end.
Better start with Reed's The Great Ship