The Deluge Drivers (Icerigger #3) (Project Reread #11)

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This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Booklikes & Librarything by  Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

Title: The Deluge Drivers

Series: Icerigger #3

Author: Alan Dean Foster

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 320

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

Project Reread:

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either WordPress, Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis: Spoilers

Just as Ethan and Skua are getting ready to leave Tran-Ky-Ky, Ethan gets suckered into taking a job for his company as the Representative for the world, meaning that he has to stay on Tran-ky-ky.

At the same time, some egg heads on station find an anomaly in the weather, which upon investigation, shows that the whole of Tran-ky-ky is in danger. With the help of Ethan, Skua, Milliken, the Slanderscree and the eggheads, that danger is proven to be man made.
Mad scientists, renegade Tran, a melting world and the genocide of an entire species. Has Ethan stepped in it or what?
My Thoughts:
 The weakest of the trilogy, unfortunately.
My Review from ’05 pretty much nails the story line.
This just felt worn and old. While Icerigger excited me even upon my latest re-read, this didn’t excite me at all. I certainly have no desire to ever re-read this again. The shallowness of the characters really shows up here.
In fact, this is exactly like the Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold series by Brooks. First book is great, but since all the characters are cardboard, that flaw shows up in greater detail in each successive book. Problem is, to get deeper characters, you’d seriously up the page count and the plot couldn’t handle that.
Now, that doesn’t mean this was a bad book. It was just a generic SF book that was written for pure entertainment and absolutely nothing else. It fulfills that mission quite admirably. And back when it was written in the 80’s that was all we as readers were looking for. The tome-meisters hadn’t gotten on the scene yet and publishers wouldn’t have published them anyway.
Good to finish up the storyline and that was about it. Read it and forget it.
star35full-custom

Mission to Moulokin (Icerigger #2) (Project Reread #10)

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This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Booklikes & Librarything by  Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

Title: Mission to Moulokin

Series: Icerigger #2

Author: Alan Dean Foster

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 280

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

Project Reread:

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.

I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!

Links may link to either WordPress, Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis: Spoilers

Having survived Tran-ky-ky for a year, Ethan Fortune isn’t that keen on going right back to his planet to planet sales job. He does refuse Collette DuKane’s proposal of marriage but more because he realizes that he’ll resent her power and constant on-the-go lifestyle than because she is fat.

This book is about Ethan, September, Milliken, Hunnar and the Slanderscree trying to put together a Trannish coalition so that Tran-Ky-Ky can be given membership into the Commonwealth. Unfortunately for them, greedy humans, self-serving tran and one particularly insane tran, stand in their way.

On their journey, they discover information that makes it imperative that Tran-Ky-Ky joins the commonwealth, for the good of all Tran the world over.

 

My Thoughts:

Well, this held up to my previous reading

and stayed at 4 stars. I used the link to my review at Booklikes because my original review on blogspot, which has been transferred to wordpress, was a Year by Month list. I wasn’t keeping track online yet and was just using a paper notebook. Once I started online, I had to copy out everything since 2000 and it was easier to do a year at a time instead of each individual book. Just goes to show how my reviewing style has changed and grown over the years:

This was much weaker than Icerigger both in terms of adventure and interesting characters. The already existing characters are pretty static and the new characters who show up are there to either cause problems, be killed off or act as allies, nothing more, nothing less.

On the adventure side of things, it just didn’t grab me the same way. There is a battle at Moulokin that wasn’t nearly as good as the battle between the Horde and the Settlement in Icerigger and the Slanderscree’s overland journey didn’t nearly match up to the journey to Brassmonkey from the previous book. There is still a lot of action, it just wasn’t as good. I can’t pin it down any further than that, sadly.

Overall, while I enjoyed this read and am glad I made it part of my Project Reread, I don’t think I’ll be reading it again. It is time to let this sit and relax with all the other books I’ve read.

star40full-custom

Icerigger (Icerigger #1) (Project Reread #9)

This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: Icerigger
Series: Icerigger
Author: Alan Foster
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Genre: SFF
Pages: 313
Format: Kindle digital edition

 

 

Project Reread:

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

Ethan Fortune, traveling space salesman, interrupts a kidnapping and is taken along for the ride. The little kidnapping craft crashes and the kidnappee’s suddenly out number, out bulk and out gun their lone kidnapper. Sadly, they’ve crashed on Tran-Ky-Ky, the Hoth of the HumanX commonwealth, where metal is rare, the natives furry and the group is 1000 of kilometers from the only humanx outpost on the world.

After being rescued by a group of friendly natives, you’d think the groups’ problems were over. Nope. It appears that they have arrived just as the locals are rising up against the Horde, a nasty group that sails around taking tribute and causing mayhem.
Lots of adventures happen and the book ends with the Slanderskee, an ice rigger [hence the name of the book and trilogy], skating into Brass Monkey, the humanx outpost.

 

My Thoughts:

If was I reading this for the first time, I’d be hesitating between 3.5 and 4 Stars. There are several things that you could nitpick about. My main one was where was the security detail for the Du Kanes? Heads of businesses that are multi-bajillionaires don’t wander around by themselves.

However, since this is my 5th or 6th time reading this, I’ve obviously gotten past that. This is another book that I read multiple times in highschool, at least once or twice in bibleschool and then again since 2000. And now.  When I read this back in ’06, I started looking for a hardcover edition. I managed to buy one recently [ie, in the last couple of years] for under $100, but before that, the price had ranged from $150 to $450. OUCH.

This was fun. Ethan is a good face for the group. Being a salesman he’s used to dealing with disparate groups of beings and is mentally flexible enough that a little thing like being stranded on an ice planet doesn’t make him panic and freeze [ha, wordplay totally intended there]. Skua September is the mature, wise, warrior elder. Ok, maybe not quite so wise or mature but he definitely provides that “experience” vibe that Ethan certainly doesn’t have. Then the “scientist’y” teacher who fills in all those science’y parts necessary in an SF book. Finally, there are the Du Kanes. The sometimes senile, sometimes not, father and then Collette, the smart as a whip, really running the business but a dutiful and loving daughter. Who can only be described as fat.

Foster pulls no punches whatsoever in regards to Collette. In some ways it is rather shocking to see how she is treated so bluntly, but I never felt like it was used as a comedic “hey lets make fun of the fat girl” kind of thing. She is not a princess but is expected to fill a princess’s role and that conflict brings a bit of gravity to this otherwise pretty light novel.

The fighting was great. There were several battles and each one was great to read about. Made me want to go outside, skate around and cut people’s heads off 🙂
Once again, this was a smashing success for my Project Reread.

Dune (Dune Chronicles #1) (Project Reread #8)

0d8a070a6491b4c17d77fb9e786b6858This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.anobii.com by  Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

Title: Dune

Series: Dune Chronicles

Author: Frank Herbert

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 894

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

Project Reread

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

Paul Atreides, born of rebellion and love, has the potential to be the next step in Humanity. A man who can look into the past and into the future. But becoming a superman is not easy, nor is it guaranteed.

With a space operatic House feud, the Bene Gesserit bent on creating and controlling him, a Galactic King bent upon his House’s destruction and a prophecy that was seeded by the Bene Gesserit hundreds, if not thousands, of years ago, Paul will succeed or die.

 

My Thoughts:

What do I say? This is just as good as ever.

Having read more of Herbert’s works since my last read of Dune back in ’11, it is very apparent that Dune was an aberration in Herbert’s style. It is easy to understand, light on the psychosexual tones that Herbert seems to revel in and keeps the monologuing on philosophical themes to a minimum. None of those things are gone, but they aren’t in the foreground.

While the Dune Chronicles continue for another 5 books and then has its final sequence penned by the execrable Kevin Anderson & Brian Herbert, Dune can stand on its own and in many respects, it should. It tells a complete story arc. If you LOVE Dune, then I recommend reading the rest of the Chronicles. If you aren’t sure, then read another book by Herbert, perhaps The White Plague, and see if you like THAT style. If you can enjoy that one, then you’ll probably enjoy the rest of the Chronicles.

I was also reminded of Red Rising by Pierce Brown, in that the main character was young [Paul is 15 at the start of the book and it covers no more than 5 years] but this is in  no way Young Adult. I think part of that is because Herbert has his main character becoming an adult at an accelerated pace due to circumstances. In fact, the more I think of it, Darrow from Red Rising reminds me more and more of Paul. Young, but having gone through a crucible, emerges from the other side with all adolescence burned out of him and maturity, responsibility and ability coating him like an armored suit. An adult with a purpose and the will to accomplish that purpose.

This Project Reread was a complete success and I got to read a 5star book that STAYED a 5star book. It just doesn’t get much better than that.

Talion: Revenant (Project Reread #7)

05d88aa1559d40939b14fc4380904412This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes. blogspot.wordpress.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

Title: Talion: Revenant

Series: —–

Author: Michael Stackpole

Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 467

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

Project Reread:

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

Young Nolan survives an attack that kills off the rest of his family. He proceeds, on foot and alone, to Talianna, the city of the Talions to join. Talions are the impartial Law Enforcers of the nations of the Shattered Empire.

Years later Nolan, now a Talion Justice, with mystical abilities, is called upon to protect the King of Hamis, who was the king that ordered the attacks on Nolan’s family all those years ago.

Now Nolan must protect a man he hates, from a magical creature that can’t be killed, all the while aware that there is a traitor among the Talions.

 

My Thoughts:

This book was originally published in 1997. I read it then, then again before 2000, then in 2001 and again in 2006. Each time I enjoyed it. My start this time was a little rough and I was worried.

The writing started off clunky with a lot of “he did X, she said X, they ate X” kind of declaration statements. Had me thinking I was going to have to downgrade this to a 3 star. Thankfully, things took off. The writing smoothed out and the story, once again, enveloped me. I think that if I was reading this for the first time now, I’d probably give it a “meh” rating. However, my enjoyment is still as much as the previous times and that is why the rating is staying up high.

Stackpole excels at writing standalone stories and this is a great example. He has an idea, he has just enough “oomph” to get it out and then that is it. While there are lots of threads left open that “could” make for more stories, I wouldn’t want a sequel to this. Sadly, Stackpole seems to have gotten out of the writing game in recent years and those projects that he has undertaken seem to have been abandoned. His Crown Colonies books are the prime example. His skill had grown in those books but that “oomph” wasn’t there and the series was abandoned after the second book, on a cliffhanger.

This review has been more about Stackpole than Talion, but Talion has been the vehicle by which I’ve traveled Stackpole’s career.

Icarus Hunt (Project Reread #6)

88ce7948c5dfaf8e57f80ceac2aa4a41This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.leafmarks.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

 

 

Title: The Icarus Hunt

Series: —–

Author: Timothy Zahn

Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 465

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

Project Reread:

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

My 2007 Review does a pretty good job of summing things up. Outlaw space captain, secret cargo, saboteurs, aliens on the hunt, shadowy Criminal Organization, mysterious crew members, The Fate of Humanity in fact.

 

My Thoughts:

When I read this back in 2000 & 2007, I was pretty impressed. I likened it to an Alistair McLean book. This time around though, I think I got more of a pulp noir vibe. It felt like the space captain, Jordan McKell, was a hard on his luck detective narrating his latest make it or break case.

It was interesting but really, it lacked some of the “goodness” that a first read has. Some of the punch was gone. It is inevitable with some books and it certainly was here. Which is why I knocked off half a star.

I think that this is my last time reading this. It felt like the kind of story where each time it would be less and less interesting. I liked this book and I like Zahn and I have no desire to read this into the ground. Determining this type of thing is why I am doing Project Reread.

The Spoils of War (The Damned #3) (Project Reread #5)

aaeebad22767f77ba299aca8dee1dbe3This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.leafmarks.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

 

 

Title: The Spoils of War

Series: The Damned

Author: Alan Dean Foster

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 273

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

 

 

Project Reread:

 

I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

 

The Amplitur surrender in hopes of winning the war by subverting humanity in the ensuing peace.

One of the Wais has made humanity her specialty of study. In the course of things, she comes into contact with the Core, the humans who can influence others like the Amplitur. She also discovers that the Lepar aren’t the slow stupid beings that everyone thinks they are.

Can humanity become a race that can live in peace or will they become the next Amplitur?

 

My Thoughts:

 

Reading this was practically like reading a new to me book. I just didn’t remember any of the details. My previous review of Spoils of War was spot on in its assessment but with no details…

I enjoyed getting a viewpoint from the Wais.  However, just like the previous books, no resolution to the questions raised is ever brought about. It is more of a shrug of the literary shoulders and a “who knows?” Still found the overall series very enjoyable if not quite as compelling as before.

The False Mirror (The Damned #2) (Project Reread #4)

ba8dbf1db92d12b79c0f55f21fb7084aThis review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.leafmarks.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

 

 

Title: The False Mirror

Series: The Damned

Author: Alan Dean Foster

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 343

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

 

Project Reread:
I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

The fight continues.

The Amplitur are on the defensive and so make a choice to create a new set of beings masquerading as one of their own allies, a hybridized human without the mental defenses against the Amplitur that normal humans have.

We follow one of these super soldiers through his training, to his capture, to the revelation that he is human. Now he is on a crusade to free the other super soldiers.

And he is hiding a secret, one so big that it could tear apart the Weave and cast humanity into a role that is even more hated than the Amplitur.

 

My Thoughts:

This was different than I remember. I remembered a lot of conspiracy by the newly created humans to keep their existence a secret. I think I was confusing this with the next book.

Just like in the first book, aliens get as much face time as humans. I think that Foster does an excellent job of creating different species and cultures without resorting to rooting through human history and stealing forgotten cultures for ideas.

The training maze chapter near the beginning was probably the best one and sadly, the rest of the book doesn’t live up to its awesomeness. You get a lot of introspection from the main human character who is dealing with the fact that he’s a human and not an alien. It felt very “whah, whah, poor me”.

The ideas put forth in this book though are what carry it.  Humans are already on the fringe of the Weave alliance. Our ability to commit, and love for, violence makes us attack dogs, not really allies and definitely NOT equals. For the most part, we don’t care. But there are people, and aliens, who wonder what humanity’s role will be once/if the Amplitur and their Purpose, is defeated. Then you add in the fact that there are now humans who have Amplitur mental powers. The humans realize what a danger they pose and hence the secrecy.

For a SFF book that is pretty shallow overall, Foster really takes a hard look at possible consequences of such a situation. I think that is why I like this trilogy so much. Gives me a little brain food with my candy.

A Call to Arms (The Damned #1) (Project Reread #3)

651ebbb366d3f52ce328e329de1b5adfThis review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.leafmarks.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

 

 

Title: A Call to Arms

Series: The Damned

Author: Alan Dean Foster

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Genre: SFF

Pages: 343

Format: Kindle digital edition

 

 

 

Project Reread:
I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis: (Copied wholesale)

For eons, the Amplitur had searched space for intelligent species, each of which was joyously welcomed to take part in the fulfillment of the Amplitur Purpose. Whether it wanted to or not. When the Amplitur and their allies stumbled upon the races called the Weave, the Purpose seemed poised for a great leap forward. But the Weave’s surprising unity also gave it the ability to fight the Amplitur and their cause. And fight it did; for thousands of years.

Will Dulac was a New Orleans composer who thought the tiny reef off Belize would be the perfect spot to drop anchor and finish his latest symphony in solitude. What he found instead was a group of alien visitors; a scouting party for the Weave, looking. for allies among what they believed to be a uniquely warlike race: Humans.

Will tried to convince the aliens that Man was fundamentally peaceful, for he understood that Human involvement would destroy the race. But all too soon, it didn’t matter. The Amplitur had discovered Earth…

 

My Thoughts:

Originally read this back in 2005. Enjoyed it enough that I went out and bought the whole trilogy in hardcover. It has since sat on my bookshelves for over a decade. So it was a prime candidate for Project Reread.

Thankfully, I liked this just as much this time around as I did last time.  Which means I had awesome taste back in ’05 and still have it today 😀

The biggest surprise to me, this time around, was how much time was spent dealing with the Amplitur and the Weave before ever coming to Earth. I had remembered the Weave/Human interaction as the starting point, and it wasn’t.

The other main thing I noticed was Foster’s idea that killing non-humans, for humans, was something that they could deal with without guilt or side effects. It forms the whole philosophical basis of this book, ie, Humans are killing machines but hadn’t found the proper outlet yet. I think that he is wrong this time around. I concur that humans can fight [not just killing, but the conflict] and in many cases enjoy it. However, seeing how war [Gulf II, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc] has affected our soldiers [even the ones who keep it together], I am not so blithely sure that humanity can engage in conflict without consequences. Most of the difference, I know, stems from the fact that I am a Christian and I’m pretty sure Foster is an atheist.

In ’05 I noted that I stayed up until midnight to finish this. This time around I stayed up until 3am. And did I pay for that the next day! 3hrs of sleep is nowhere near enough for me these days. I find it interesting to note my physical changes in my book reading habits. Ha.

Finally, the cover of this Gateway edition is butt ugly. I liked the hardcover edition covers that were all colorful and showed aliens and weapons. I would WANT to read those. This one, not so much based on the cover alone.

Way-farer (Kensho #1) (Project Reread #2)

d09b087566d956b33f1ce97a5271db39This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot. wordpress.leafmarks.com & Bookstooge’s Reviews on the Road Facebook Group by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

 

 

 

 

Title: Way-farer

Series: Kensho

Author: Dennis Schmidt

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

Genre: SF

Pages: 277

Format: scan

 

Project Reread:
I am attempting to reread 10+ books in 2016 that I have rated highly in the past. I am not attempting to second guess or denigrate my younger self in any way but am wanting to compare how my tastes have changed and possibly matured. I am certainly much more widely read now [both in the good and bad quality sadly] than then.
I will hopefully be going into the reasons for any differences of opinions between then and now. If there is no difference of opinion, then it was a hellfire’d fine book!
Links may link to either Booklikes or Blogspot, depending on when the original review was.

 

Synopsis:

A group of colonists from Earth, led by Cpt. Nakamura, have found the planet Kensho. A veritable paradise according to all and every scan that they perform.

Only Paradise holds a nasty secret, the Mushin. Ravagers of the mind, who destroy 80% of the colonists.

Now, 400 years later, one young man seeks the answer to Nakamura’s koan, which promises freedom from the Mushin.

 

My Thoughts:

Since this is the second book in my Project Reread, I read it not only to see if I enjoyed it today as well as I did 10 years ago but also with the thought of contrasting my own changed viewpoints from back then.

This is my 5th or 6th time reading this book. I’ve recorded it in 2003 and 2006, I believe, but I read it at least once in college and 2 to 3 times between jr high and highschool. I probably first read this in ’91 or ’92.

5 Stars again. Now that is because I have such fond memories and it is a fun story. It is a great story about a young man learning to become a sword master and freeing humanity from the mind killers, the Mushin. I think my favorite part still remains the training by the Old Master [and yes, it is the type of book where the old master’s name IS Old Master] and how he beat the living daylight out of Jerome. It was enjoyable to see Jerome grow, but not without making many mistakes along the way. He’s no Gary Stu. Getting a facefull of a pot cover definitely keeps him humble 🙂 Or getting hit with a wooden sword in the balls. The Old Master was not gentle.

On the philosophy side, while my views haven’t changed, I have a much deeper understanding and so the primer on Zen thought was childish and annoying. Not only do I disagree with it, but now I know why I disagree with it. I suspect if I read this again I’ll be taking a star off next time for it.

How it compares to years past. It still holds up very well. As I was reading along, I could understand exactly why this appealed to me as a teen and later on in life. There is something necessary in taking action and Jerome would have been me and I would have been Jerome. It was uncanny how earnest, naive and single minded we both were.

Not that I have completely changed, my personality shape is still the same, but I am mellower and I have a longer view now. So the appeal isn’t quite the same.

This book ends on a complete note. It was a standalone as far as I knew for many, many years. It wasn’t until 2000 that I found the sequels. I found each successive book to be less enjoyable. However, this book is good enough that I am tempted to go read the rest of the series, just because.

Well, only if I can’t find enough other books I want to re-read.