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review 2017-07-04 01:56
Good start
Hyperion - Dan Simmons

Synopsis: On the eve of an interstellar apocalypse, 7 pilgrims journey to the planet Hyperion, to meet the Shrike; a creature that moves backward in time and kills the pilgrims who seek it. On their journey each one tells their story of what brought them to that point.

 

I have mixed feelings about this book. Its slow going, and most of the stories take awhile to get going. There's very little action of any sort, and the deeper concepts may fly over some heads. It has some good twists, however, and the characters are filled out well. My main gripe with it has been that it ends without resolving the major plot points. I'm assuming this will be fixed in the sequel (The Fall of Hyperion), but I still found it rather annoying.

 

Rating *** 1/2

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review 2017-05-28 09:31
Hyperion
Hyperion (SF Masterworks) - Dan Simmons

It´s been about a week since I finished Hyperion and since I cannot stop thinking about this book I´m changing my initial star rating from 4 stars to 4,5 stars. Because who am I kidding, I absolutely loved this book and it might become a five star read upon a reread (which will happen at some point).

 

Hyperion tells the story of seven people, who are on a pilgrimage to the planet Hyperion in order to seek out the mysterious time tombs, where the mystical called the Shrike resides. Every pigrim has a wish that he is asking of the Shrike to get fulfilled. But only one wish gets fulfilled, while the other six pilgrims have to die. In order to prepare for the encounter with the Shrike, each pilgrim tell the stories of their lives, not knowing that the fate of humanity might lie in their hands.

 

The reader basically gets seven different stories wrapped up in one book, six of the pilgrims story and the overall story arc of the pilgrimage and the impending intergalatic war, which is looming on the horizon and probably is the main premise of the second book in the series. And everyone of these stories were really good, some of them were even breathtakingly beautiful, haunting or sad and some of them will stick with me for a very long time. There were only two stories that fell a little bit short for me, but they were by no means bad, they weren´t just as good as the other ones. My personal ranking of the pilgrims stories is:

 

1. The Priest´s tale

2. The Scholar´s Tale

3. The Detective´s tale

4. The Consul´s tale

5. The Poet´s tale

6. The Soldier´s tale

(spoiler show)

 

The thing that strucks me most is how Dan Simmons manages to give every story it´s distinctive style and how he uses the stories to slowly reveal the worldbuildung to the reader. At the beginning you don´t know exactly what going on, but as the story progresses you slowly realise what is happening in the universe of the Hegemony and that there is so much more at stake than the personal grievances of the characters. 

 

It´s my second book by Dan Simmons (I read The Terror years ago) and there is something about his beautiful, haunting and engaging writing style that makes his books compulsively readable.

I cannot wait to read the second book in the series, simply because I want to spend more time with these characters and the fascinating world Simmons has created.

 

I´ve read this book for the Tomorrowland 33 space and it is tagged as science fiction on GR.

 

Page count: 473 pages

Money earned: $5.00

 

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text 2017-05-17 19:44
Reading progress update: I've read 251 out of 473 pages.
Hyperion (SF Masterworks) - Dan Simmons

 I´m really enjoying this book so far.

 

I have finished the first three pilgrim stories. The first story has been wonderfully creepy, the second one is definitely not my favorite and the third one has been utterly weird (and kind of fun). I like that every story is totally different in style and content from one another.

 

 

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text 2017-05-14 11:16
Reading progress update: I've read 8%.
Hyperion (SF Masterworks) - Dan Simmons

On Hyperion there is a flame forest, which comprises of tesla trees. I don´t know anything more specific about the forest yet, but this sounds so awesome.

 

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review 2017-03-23 15:01
Hyperion / Dan Simmons
Hyperion - Dan Simmons

On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all. On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope—and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands.

 

Canterbury Tales in space. With the plotting of Agatha Christie.

Earth is just a memory, destroyed long ago, but it looms large in the galactic consciousness. Hyperion is a world on the edge of things—not really part of the Hegemony of Man, not really part of the opposition either. Ruled or haunted by a being known as The Shrike.

As a birder, I am familiar with shrikes. They are songbirds that think they are raptors. When you find one of their larders, you feel like you’ve discovered a serial killer’s lair—they use thorn bushes or barbed wire to impale their prey until needed to feed chicks or themselves. Simmons borrows this behaviour for his creation and it feels ominous.

As for the Canterbury Tales aspect, seven pilgrims are traveling to Hyperion on the eve of galactic war. As they make their way to the Time Tombs on Hyperion, they agree to tell their tales of what has prompted their participation in the expedition. As their stories unfold, we acquire the background that we need to learn more about Simmons’ universe and enough to tantalize us about what may be happening.

As to the Christie angle, I realized as I enjoyed each character’s story that Simmons had skillfully crafted all of the tales to fit together in interesting and intricate ways. Events in each person’s life, reaching back many years in every case, have drawn them to be where they currently are. Have they been manipulated by the Shrike? Or is this a case of massive synchronicity?

I loved the ending of this book and if it was a stand-alone, I could live with that. However, I am pleased that there are three more books to explore this intriguing universe.

Book 251 of my Science Fiction and Fantasy Reading Project.

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