Now, as for filling in all those beautiful squares ...
I think my brain will be going full tilt tonight!
I was afraid to start this, truth be told, because I read many reviews that said it was very mind-bending, confusing, and scientific. I was really afraid it would break my brain. I am happy to report that now that I’ve finished my brain is no more broken than it was before I began Dark Matter. So if you’ve been hesitant to read this based on those on rumors, have no worries. It is not in any way shape or form a horror novel however so if you’re expecting that you will be disappointed. It’s more of a character based thriller and a pretty awesome one at that.
I will not go so far as to say that I understood the mechanics behind everything, especially at the turn of mind-boggling events in the last act, but I can say that it never slowed down the book for me or left me hopelessly lost in a sea of scientific jibber-jabber. I wanted to keep going because it was exciting and captivating and all of those delicious things and mostly because I grew to care about the characters so much.
I’m not saying anything about the plot because everyone else has done that already but also because I am lazy and you will enjoy this most going in cold, if you still can. Just read it. It’s good stuff!
I enjoyed this enormously: I liked the juxtaposition of multiple different cultures and societies. The premise was intriguing, the kids are resourceful, the parents believable, the robots were funny. Good set up and good payoff. I would thing this would be insanely popular since it's like to appeal to fans of fantasy and science fiction, to horse people and
Western people, everyone really, except aliens.
My only problem with the book is a technical detail: I had tremendous trouble reading the speech sometimes. Yes, I'm old and the eyes go and dim lighting isn't sufficient anymore et cetera, et cetera, but none of that troubles me when reading anything else. I'm not confident I know what the difficulty was: whether the book pages were too small (for me), or the font size too small (for me), or the contrast not sharp enough (for me). I can't say with any certainty. But it made for an uncomfortable experience. I'm a motivated reader, so I stuck with it, but I can imagine that not everyone would. YMMV
So, I have way too many books sitting around half-read or less. My various TBR stacks and Currently Reading stacks come to a hundred or so, which is just way too many. So I decided I'm not going to check out any more books from the library or buy any more until I have gone through all of these and either finish them, or admit they're abandoned and put them in the donate box.
Except, I did go ahead and place a request for the 5th book in the Expanse series. Another one of these incredible 900 page jobbies. Because that's how much I love them.
I am just a skin sack full of contradictions.
Each one of these suckers is equal to about three regular-length books, and every one of these bajillion pages is good. I particularly like the way the authors made a future full of people of various colors, but the prejudice isn't racial, it's place of origin (Earth, Mars, Asteroid Belt). Way to represent and make it all future-y. Also an array of relationships that span a quite large gamut, and are all equally valid. And a good thing with age wherein no one's specific age is given, only their relative appearance to others. Keeps it universal by being unspecific about numbers but very specific about interaction.
But diversity isn't everything: they've got really interesting ideas about possible weird universal truths, and a firm grip on how people mostly behave and how they can behave, if they choose. Lots of alien stuff for the humans to react to. Just entertaining as all get-out.