1. Wish I would’ve read this 343 pages ago. I’m wading through D51 and it is a force of will for me to slog through the remaining 13x pages.

    1. Ah well… different books for different readers. I hope the next novel you read will be more interesting!

  2. I’m just about done with part 2 of the book. Also a long time reader of Barnes’s science fiction.

    This book is not too far from the mainstream of what he’s written before, politically or thematically – or future-historically. The style is different, and it’s not as engagingly characterized as usual, but the relationships and politics fit very well.

    I get the feeling that this story could perfectly well be about the beginning of a not too different set of meme wars. The way Ysabel keeps blacking out when she tries to say certain things, and the part about Daybreakers playing tapes that keep them calm and focused, sounds very meme-like (in the Barnes sense).

    And the disdain for people who don’t think, and who play up ideological divides and prejudices, is only slightly hidden by being applied to real world political parties instead of the fictional ones from World Made of Glass.

    I suppose the seeming lack of characterization will pay off in the long run as it may be due to the female protagonist. I can’t remember a particularly well characterized viewpoint woman character from one of his books, so he may be trying to broaden his range here.

    I am enjoying it, but it’s not as good as the Giraut series. I may be in the minority in actually liking the relationship between Heather and Lenny though. Barnes finally found a way to write the kind of relationship he likes without making it off-putting to people who don’t share his turn ons.

    1. Thank you Dana; I look forward to commenting once I’m done reading the second book in the series. (It’s still in my pile of things to do in my ever-decreasing free time, and I don’t want to hurry.)

  3. Enjoyed your review and it refreshed my memory. Useful as I’m just about to start on Daybreak Zero. I was a bit uneasy at the way the barbarians got sympathetic treatment in the novel. But overall I found it immensely enjoyable.

    Still say Kaleidoscope Century was his best novel and Empty Sky his best short work. IMHO.

    1. Thanks for the kind words! John Barnes may not be among the best-known or best-selling authors, but wow does he have an interesting bibliography.

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