This is the kind of book where a character will say to another, “So, you are the one who ransacked my room,” leading to a three or four page expositional monologue wherein “mysteries” that the reader had already forgotten about are explained in excruciating detail by the ransacking character. Then a new civilization will appear and every detail about it, from its economic system to its racial tensions, will have to be encyclopedically cataloged, again, by expositional characters expositing. Then another character will appear and say, “No, I’M the one who ransacked your room,” and so on.


In other words, it’s a literary novelist’s idea of what a contemporary SF novel must be like. It doesn’t reek of parody or condescension. It reeks of missing-the-point-but-earnestly-trying-to-cash-in-anyway, which is a word. Now.

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