donderdag 27 augustus 2015

Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter: The Long War

Hi again

Here with my review of the second part in The Long Earth series.
This novel has 501 pages.
I knew several people didn’t enjoy this one as much as the first and second parts and that’s why I decided I would read part two and three back to back. So you can expect my review of the third part tomorrow.

“A generation after the events of The Long Earth, mankind has spread across the new worlds opened up by Stepping. Where Joshua and Lobsang once pioneered, now fleets of airships link the stepwise Americas with trade and culture. Mankind is shaping the Long Earth - but in turn the Long Earth is shaping mankind... A new 'America', called Valhalla, is emerging more than a million steps from Datum Earth, with core American values restated in the plentiful environment of the Long Earth - and Valhalla is growing restless under the control of the Datum government...
Meanwhile the Long Earth is suffused by the song of the trolls, graceful hive-mind humanoids. But the trolls are beginning to react to humanity's thoughtless exploitation... Joshua, now a married man, is summoned by Lobsang to deal with a gathering multiple crisis that threatens to plunge the Long Earth into a war unlike any mankind has waged before.”

This novel lacked direction because several plotlines aren’t really going anywhere. And that’s very sad because this is such an interesting setup.
What happens after this huge discovery in the previous novel?

I loved the exploration of the different worlds and the discoveries and I would have loved to read more about life in these settlements or life on board a twain.
But there are too many plotlines and too many characters so the characterization isn’t great. Or this novel is too short to give us the depth it really needs to pull this off. I want it all but just more thorough. I want a bigger novel with all the plotlines and characters.
For example; the trek of the Chinese doesn’t do much for the novel. Be done with it, or work it out in more detail because it is an interesting point of view.

In one way there’s too much going on because of all the characters and plotlines. On the other hand there’s almost no action and I don’t care about that but some of you will. It’s hard to explain but there is a difference between action and ‘stuff happening’.

So don’t get your hopes up too high because of the title. Once you understand what this ‘war’ is about you’ll be disappointed. Not about the story, but they should have chosen a different title that doesn’t suggest something like, you know, a war.

I am curious to find out what this Black Corporation is all about. There’s clearly more going on there.

See you tomorrow!

On to the next part in the series!