Hi Readers! How was your weekend? Mine was insanely busy...but what else is new :-) I did however manage to blaze through a book, which I will now ramble about. The book The Rowan by my favorite Anne McCaffrey is an old school sci fi book that is always a perfect go to book. We have been watching The X-Files here at my house and it made me nostalgic for some of my old school reading so The Rowan was grabbed and read. As always SPOILERS AHEAD!
Story - The story was fairly cohesive, following the main character through several stages of her life. While the Rowan, Jeff and the aliens provided a thread to follow, the story was more episodic then flowing, more a series of short glimpses to make a whole then a beginning to end story. This worked for this book, setting up a universe and characters more then any over all story. It kept me engaged from beginning to end and lived up to it's premise.
Characters - I found in this book, that along with the world building, characters were a very strong point in this book. The characters where varied. well written and well fleshed out. They interacted with each other in meaningful ways and every character introduced had a purpose. My favorites were Jeff's mother Isthia of the ear, Elizara the insanely talented medic and both Ackerman and Gerolaman the stationmasters all of whom had great senses of humor. I did feel that the Rowan had a bit of the special snowflake syndrome, being the bestest ever at being a Prime, but felt it was tempered by the hardships and personal issues she had to endure.
Editing - The book was divided into four parts, and at times it felt like four separate stories strung together. There was a bit of choppiness and disparities between the parts as well that sometimes took me out of the world to say to myself "um that is not what was said/happened in the last part". Part of this is the fact that the middle part of the book started as a completed short story and that the rest of the book was built around that. Overall though the pacing and flow of the book was very good.
Talents - I love love love the concept and execution of the talents in this future universe. The author introduced the concept and followed through with it in a very scientific, yet understandable way. She then continued to be consistant and varied with the various types, strengths and combinations a person could have. She also made sure to have a structured environment where a talent can and would thrive, be useful and be accepted as a valuable member of society. It would be very easy for the author to make a book about the "normal" people vs. the "talented" people, but instead she integrated them into a economic society. I just really love the concept and execution of the concept.
The Love Story - Sooo... not really a fan of how Jeff just happened to appear and be a perfect match for the Rowan right when she was feeling the most lonely. I guess I understand that if you merged your whole mind with somebody you would know pretty quickly if you loved them or not...but it still seemed pretty convenient. I also was not a fan of the proprietary bossing around of the Rowan, especially when she was pregnant by Jeff, and also a few other's, but mostly Jeff. It felt like since he loved her, he felt he could control her when he felt it was in her best interest. On the plus side, the Rowan usually fought back against the imposed restrictions and overall Jeff loved and appreciated the Rowan for exactly who she was.
Personal Interactions - One of my favorite parts about this book, and the author in general is how the characters interact with each other. The book has many characters and they all play a role with their own personalities, likes and dislikes. Not one character is perfect, they all have their positives and negatives and they all deal with each other on different levels. Watching these interactions gives an authenticity to the book that is phenomenal and really elevates it above a lot of other books. It is nice to see an author have a grasp on true human interactions and work them so well into the book.
Complete Randomness - I just want to say I love the original cover of this book (the first pic on the post) the colors themselves just make me happy. Also I have an old school paperback version of the book and it smells incredible!!! So yeah...
Overall Impression - I love this book. It definitely has it's flaws, but I go back to this story over and over again. It is one of those that get's in my brain and stays there. I feel this is mostly due to the amazing universe the author has created. This is a great start to a great series and I will continually go back to it as both a nostalgia piece and just a good book. I recommend it to anybody who wants to read incredible world building, sci fi with a more domestic bent or just really loves Anne McCaffrey.
Score - I give this book 8 out of 10 pukah's
That is today's rambling...not to bad considering I've taken care of and transported close to a ton of human flesh this week. Happy Reading Everybody!!!!