Revelation Space

Hey loyal Tftb readers – remember last April when I asked y’all to help make me a reading challenge? Hopefully you forgot because it’s kind of embarrassing that I’ve let it slide so long. But I didn’t forget, it’s always nagging at me, usually in a really snarky tone with something like, “geez, you can’t even follow thru with ONE challenge you set for yourself that involves something you genuinely enjoy, WHATSAMATTERWIDYOU?!” (My nagging is really annoying, sometimes I feel bad for the husband.)

On May 9 (2016) I posted these seven reading challenge tasks:

  1. Read a book written by a friend.
  2. Read a book written under a pseudonym or where the author uses initials to obscure their gender.
  3. Read a book which an image of a bird on the cover.
  4. Read The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power.
  5. Read Revelation Space by Alastair Reynolds
  6. Read an inspiration. Choose something you’ve always wanted to do and then read a book about someone who does it.
  7. Read a novel by Pat Conroy.

On June 17, I completed task 2 by reading Silas Marner by George Eliot.

On September 7, I completed task 3 by reading H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald.

On November 13, I completed task 6 by reading Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer.

And on May 24 2017, while sitting on the couch and accomplishing nothing else, I completed task 5.

The task came from the s-i-l who is an avid reader and all-around science fiction geek. Revelation Space is described as an epic, space opera. I agree. It’s like a soap opera set in space with multiple storylines and characters and it goes on and on and on, for 585 pages. I applaud his task for stretching me out of my reading comfort zone, BUT… it’s a bit like challenging someone who rarely reads international authors by giving them War and Peace.

I tend to steer away from Science Fiction because it just doesn’t really interest me. This book was filled with descriptions and details that didn’t add to the plot and also weren’t able to suck me into the places or the characters. Maybe if I was more comfortable with immersing myself into sci-fi scenarios they would have added something. Often the plot twists/advancements consisted of a character saying, “Oh, I get this connection, I understand this now,” and then going on and explaining it to the reader. It just felt like cheating by the author, but heavens knows, he did need to find ways to get to the end of this damn thing.

In the last TWO months, while slogging thru Revelation Space, the to-read pile has continued to grow. But be assured, I have not forgotten about my crowd-sourced reading challenging and I WILL complete it…someday.


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