Reviews and Comments

Kian Ryan

Joined 1 year, 4 months ago

TLDR; I sport, code, make stuff, and play adventure games.

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Treacle Walker (2021, HarperCollins Publishers Limited) 4 stars

A fusion of myth and folklore, and an exploration of the fluidity of time, vivid …

Short, Dense, Full of Ideas

4 stars

Coo, this one is difficult to review. This my my first Alan Garner novel, and may not have been the best jumping off point. It's been universally praised by critics - usually familiar with his work. It's very short and very dense. Chapters are only a few pages each, and are heavy in a combination of local dialect and allegory. The over-arching approach is mythological, and I found it helpful to let go thinking of this as a traditional narrative novel, and start leaning in to the ideas and the mysteries. Don't rush, take a chapter - look up names, terms, words. I had no idea what a donkey stone was, despite living in a mill-town in Lancashire. I'll be revisiting this one, but not for a while - it needs time to sink in more.

The Three-Body Problem (Hardcover, 2014, Tor Books) 4 stars

Within the context of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, a military project sends messages to alien …

Good, but watch out - sets up trilogy

5 stars

The first few chapters had me darting to and from Wikipedia to help add some context to a story that is deeply set in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. It',s a triviality to call the story complex, a mystery than unfolds through the book. Be warned this is the first in a trilogy and a very much sets itself up this way, which was a little frustrating in the last few chapters.

Project Hail Mary (Paperback) 3 stars

A lone astronaut must save the earth from disaster in this incredible new science-based thriller …

Problem - Solution

3 stars

Andy Weir writes pretty good one note hero stories that are heavy on the science and engineering and feel screen ready. This was enjoyable, but not particularly deep. Like The Martian, the protagonist suffers from a series of obstacles and overcomes them one at at time, with the application of dark humour and science and significantly less potatoes.