My favourite Science Fiction writer is Peter. F. Hamilton. There are several other close contenders in my eyes - to name a few: Alastair Reynolds, Ian. M . Banks and Stephen Baxter. But none of these others quite appeal to my particular taste as much as the work of Hamilton. I have read all of his books and thoroughly enjoyed them.
I should start by first explaining that I got into Hamilton’s work completely by accident, I purchased a book on New Zealand’s EBay-equivalent (TradeMe) and the seller had sent me the wrong book. The book that arrived was “Pandora’s Star” by none other than the author this blog entry is about. The seller had sent my book somewhere else and somebody else’s book to me.
I started to read Pandora's Star and one chapter in i was hooked! Unfortunately I had to return the book to the seller as they wanted to send it to its rightful owner, very reluctantly I packaged it back up and sent it on its way.
Over the next couple of weeks I went to the library to try and find the book, all the libraries had the second book in this saga “Judas Unchained”, but none seemed to have “Pandora’s Star” (this has actually happened quite a lot to me with other authors too – I think it’s a reflection on the state of the public library system in New Zealand – but that’s a story for another day).
After a lot of looking I finally found the book and continued to read it. Rather than sitting here and giving you a plot summary – like most bloggers about books seem to do - (I can’t for the life of me work out why! – Nobody can explain the books quite like the author wrote it - so why spoil it for a potential reader) - I’m going to simply give a brief background and leave the rest up to Hamilton.
Part of what makes this series of great interest to me is the “Immortality for Everyone” principle - everybody in this universe can live forever due to two technological concepts: Rejuvenation treatment (reversing aging) or with a memory crystal implanted in the brain (meaning that in the event of brain death memories can be extracted and placed into a new living brain).
Not only does Hamilton go into great depth explaining the mechanisms behind the technology used in the books, he takes it further and also explores the implications that such wonderful technology could have on society. Hamilton also explores very diverse and interesting themes such as: sexuality, war, religion and politics as well as several other concepts you would expect to find in any science fiction novel: Artificial Intelligence, space-travel, man-machine integration and aliens, all of which cleverly complement each other to make his work a real winner in my opinion.
Go out and find this author, you won’t regret it.
About half an hour ago I finished watching season 2 of the TV show Fringe. I started watching season 1 just over a week ago and got completely hooked – I’ve been watching them every night after work for the past week!
As we got deeper into the thick of Fringe and the parallel world situation arose, I was reminded of a series of science fiction books I read last year by Kay Kenyon titled “The Entire and the Rose”.
There is a lot of similarity between the two: only one world can exist, protecting the knowledge of how to move between, inter-worldly wars and characters learning to live in a foreign universe. (there are probably a lot more than this but these spring to mind immediately)
For those fans of Fringe, take a look into the Kay Kenyon books I mentioned, the first one is called “Bright of the Sky” – conversely, if you’re a fan of The Entire and the Rose and have not already seen Fringe, take a look at it.
Meanwhile I’m looking forward to season 3 of Fringe starting next month.