Puppy: on
  Word of the day: aeon

One thing I forgot to mention about Parable of the Talents was how vast an improvement over The Handmaid’s Tale it was. Feminists are welcome to their nightmares, but if you want to share them with the rest of us, you’re obliged to try to make them somewhat plausible. Octavia Butler’s Christian America was a far more believable dystopic vision than the Taliban-like conditions in Margaret Atwood’s book.

I have the list of Hugo and Nebula Award-winning works from the Locus page, and it amazes me sometimes how many of them I disliked. The Mars trilogy has already been mentioned, but there’s also The Snow Queen and To Your Scattered Bodies Go.

I tried to read one of Catherine Asaro’s books, but I got only a few pages into it before I gave up and read Eon by Greg Bear instead. Now that was a good book–nice science, a light hand and a good pace. The characters were nothing special, and Greg Bear has a disturbing tendency to use young female protagonists whose actions are never properly motivated and whose lives are inevitably wasted in their formless flailing. (I’m generalizing from just two books here, the other being Moving Mars.)

Nevertheless, I liked the book–it made me want to sit down and write my own. That will do as a definition of a good book, since Hugo-award-winning is out.

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