After reading "Old Man's war" I turned to the other books of the trilogy to find again that sense of wonder and novelty that the first book was able to awaken in me. I am greatly disappointed to notice that the books seems less and less about sci-fi and more of a all-too-familiar action-political story set in a sci-fi enviroenment.
Take the witty characthers, the "brilliant" dialogues and the whole "isolated colony" thing out of contest and set the story in 18th century frontier of the US. Change the aliens into indians, the conclave into some foreign power, the UC into the US gov...and the story works as well.
What I mean to say is that there is a major flaw in this story, which is: everybody thinks the same way - and it feels damn too familiar...general Gau and the usurper (need to mention how stupid and senseless the last battle is?), the dialogues with the SF general and the political committee... everything feels so dull and homogeneous.
It is a sad feeling when you pick up a book, and a hundred or so pages into it you already have a clear idea of how the story is gonna unfold, what kind of "happy ending" there is gonna be, and you don't expect any surprise out of it.
The only part that gave me the thrills was those few paragraphs describing the attacks on human colonies. Had Mr Scalzi decided to erase them in a Genocide, that would have at least meant something new on the menu.
And the whole political powerplay thing...The equation gov=bad, ppl=good is just too damn simple...
It seems just right that the book stops exactly on the verge of something really NEW... I don't want to spoiler but let's just say that when it would have been great to imagine NEW THINGS.
I don't contend with Scalzi's ability to write in a captivating style. But this book feels like one of those hollywood movies where everybody always keep their cool, and everything falls back into safe paths. Definitely not my kind of book.
Had I been 16-17yr old I may have utterly enjoyed it. Nowadays I am looking for something more....Continua
This books leaves the path of pure action and enters in politics. For me, the interest decreases a lot since the political plot is hardy credible, not to mention the ending. Just the witty dialogs and the charisma of the characters sustains the final episode of this trilogy....Continua
I am realising that reading a John Scalzi novel takes me less time than reading any other author's books. Not because his writing is particularly simple or dull and "skippable", but because it is so captivating.
The story is really good, although there is a (minor) flaw: the side characters are not very developed. Anyone except for Joe Perry and Jane Sagan seems pretty "flat", they don't change much, they seem to be somehow background features rather than (relatively) minor characters. And this happens not only for characters that only appear for a few scenes (see the anyway lovely Hiram Yoder or Maria Black) but also for more relevant individuals (Manfred Trujillo, Szilard...).
Still a fully enjoyable read.
Last of three books from this wonderfull writer. This trilogy is well above the mass of books I've read so far. While reading this, I strugled to take and read again the previous Old man's war.
... and is very likely I'll do it quite soon.