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Take Back Plenty (Tabitha Jute Book 1) by [Greenland, Colin]
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Take Back Plenty (Tabitha Jute Book 1) Kindle Edition

3.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product Description

Review

A masterpiece. If you ever wondered why you began reading science fiction this book answers that question. (Interzone)

Book Description

A BSFA and ARTHUR C. CLARKE AWARD winning novel, available for the first time in 15 years!

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2381 KB
  • Print Length: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Gateway (10 Jan. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AVUMI9A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #319,144 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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3.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
...me, for example. I'm that rare thing, the SF fan what don't much care for space opera, but this novel generated such a huge buzz (double award-winner, much praise from the great and the good, and a credit, along with Banks, for rebooting the whole space-opera sub-genre in the UK) it seemed well worth investigating.

I'm glad I did. It's an exuberant, colourful and exhilarating yarn and a brisk, enjoyable read. There's no big new idea here (hence four, rather than five, stars), but Greenland takes all the best toys in the box and does good things with them. Looking at it in another way, the plot gets going when heroine Tabitha Jute throws an excessively irritating meerkat into a canal and not long after that an alien parrot turns up squawking filthy innuendoes. What's not to like?

The plot is essentially a chase across the solar system, with various reversals en route and an inevitable twist in the tail, followed by the REAL twist to wrap things up. Key genre tropes encountered on our trip from Mars to Charon (with a detour to Venus, and why not?) include a whole slew of vividly realised alien races, spaceships with AI personalities, charming ne'er-do-wells, a nice riff on hyperspace travel (essentially, it's really, really boring) and some cranky robots. Greenland even manages to take one of the oldest cliches in SF - space pirates - and make them seem not only plausible but genuinely scary. The gentlest of allusions to other SF throughout the book make it clear that Greenland knows his sources only too well, and is paying tribute to them, without ever becoming irritatingly clever-clever or getting all meta on yo' ass.

It works for three key reasons. First of all, Greenland writes well.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this on the grounds of its being one of the SF Classics series. First the good points: it is very readable, with vivid characters, lots of imagination, and an exciting story which twists without ever being implausible. The bad point, though, is that Greenland has oddly chosen, from the early 90s, to write about a solar system that had been disproved by the late 60s. Mars has a breathable atmosphere and canals; Venus is a land of jungles and monsters. It feels slightly odd, as if someone insisted on writing an article on electromagnetism referring everything to the luminiferous ether. This has put me off getting any others in the series. Nonetheless, it is worth getting to know Tabitha Jute: not a superhuman being, like so many characters in Ian M Banks' Culture series, but someone who is trying to make a living and spends most of her time desperately trying to improvise solutions for the outrageous problems the author drops on top of her.
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Format: Paperback
I loved this book when it first came out. Greenland has created an amazing, strong, focused and real protagonist in Tabitha Jute, with quirky flaws and a ready resolve that pulls you steadily in. His word building is great, as well as the odd and interesting supporting characters, and a wonderfully feisty starship in the form of Alice Liddell.

What lets it down is the new cover. Why put a European woman with curly hair on it, when the original series showing a beautiful, strong Afro-Caribbean/American woman exuded such grace and inner strength (see: Mother of Plenty (Voyager))? I have nothing against the huge number of white protagonists in sci-fi, but surely a strong black protagonist is not so offensive? Just look at the amazing Olivia Pope in Scandal (ABC TV series), the amazing character of Luther in the BBC crime series, and oh, a hell of a lot more in current culture. Obama is the US President for pete's sake (!), and the lovely Michelle Obama is an amazing role model to women everywhere. Black nowadays does not mean a decline in sales. Do we really need to go back to the "white fits all" model to promote a book?

Why take out such a cool and knock-out feature of a key character in a ploy to increase sales to the masses? Tabitha Jute surely demands more respect. Her marketing department seem to have let her down at this stage.
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Format: Paperback
Loved it.
One of those books where I didn't even need the story, just happy to be in it's space.
Why have I only found Greenland now ?
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this long winded and slow only read 60 pages and gave up.
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