The Word for the Blog is Scientifiction

sábado, 9 de diciembre de 2017

Noumenon, by Marina J. Lostetter

(I know there could be some mistakes in this review. I’m trying to improve my English, thanks)

(También puedes leer esta reseña en castellano aquí)

The humanity is expanding. Earth is sending giant generation starships crewed by clones to explore the galaxy. Noumenon (2017) tells about one of those travels: an expedition towards a distant object named LQ Pyxidis, a star with intriguing proprieties. The journey will last about one hundred years -one thousand from Earth's perspective-. Thus, the novel relates -among other speculative topics- a sort of experiment about human behaviour in a closed space, with a crew trapped between the hope of reaching its destination but also the (genetically determined) homesickness for the mother Earth.

Awesome book cover, isn't it?
Noumenon has very interesting questions and good sciencefictional ideas, but in my opinion its development needs to improve. Despite the fascinating topics I consider that some parts of the plot are a bit naive, or not entirely plausible. Perhaps the story needs more epic, maybe a bit less sentimental... I am not sure. I think also that the story would improve if it had been divided in two books, that would allow better and more complete treatment of some subplots. Those who have read the book will understand me.

However, the novel has also strong points. For instance, the story repeats the characters but they are also evolving: that is, they are clones in a generation starship. This is an approach as intelligent as bold but I think that the author must perfect the voice of each character (including the artificial intelligence): in my opinion it is difficult to distinguish each one.

Actually the book seems a fix-up of short stories chronologically ordered. I know Noumenon has an ambitious and risky approach, but I must review it as a whole: that is, as a novel. However, I must remember that this is the first full length story by the author. I think Marina J. Lostetter is a talented science fiction writer and I want to read novel novels from her.

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