This last week I’ve been reading some John Scalzi. Old Man’s War and The Ghost Brigades. Set in a future where humans have started sending out colonies and discovered that the universe has a lot of other species doing the same, and most of them aren’t friendly. Which means they need soldiers to protect the colonies and they recruit these from people reaching the age of 75. Hence Old Man’s War.
It’s an interesting premise. And it’s very well executed. (Yes, you’ll be wondering how useful a 75 year old soldier would be. Fairly obviously there must be a twist to make them useful again, but I won’t spoil that, as I think it’s a novel idea.) It’s been really good getting back into classic science fiction – something I really enjoy but don’t seem to get my hands on very often. Scalzi is a fan of the sort of stuff I read growing up – the first book does have quite a lot of echoes of both Heinlein and the Forever War (Haldemann). Not that that is necessarily a bad thing
The second book is a bit different. You’ve got cloning and genetic engineering going on in the series. And in the second that is central to the story. A traitor is cloned and his brain pattern dumped into the clone – will the new version be a traitor too? (I’m missing out some points, but I really don’t like spoilers in reviews. Sorry.) Jared is a fascinating character, and watching him grow and develop is really interesting. There are lots of interesting questions raised throughout, and when I’m not dealing with small children late at night, I might even blog about them.
So, who has had a good reading year? Who has hit their target? I have absolutely no idea whether I’ve read 52 books to be honest, I got out of the goodreads habit, and haven’t been keeping a close eye on it. I think I’m probably near though, given things like Gone series, Champion trilogy, and so on, and if I get bored I might try to go back through the blog and count up. Have you got a retrospective roundup? Stick it in the linky, and if we get 10 entries (hollow laugh) I might even rootle out a bookie present to draw for the entrants. (Given the average entry for this this year has been between 0 and 1, I think my books are safe :/
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