Mind Over Ship by David Marusek
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I'm impressed! This novel reads much more regularly than the previous one, sacrificing opportunities to World-Build in favor of character exploration and cool plot, so in the end it reads like a fascinating adventure of clones and the beginning stages of interstellar space exploration.
Of course, this wouldn't have been possible without all the stage-setting of the population-theme-based novel that preceded it, so I'm very happy to have read both very close together. It might even have been better to bill both these novels together as one long one, possibly, although the whole sequence of Sam would have just seemed like a long sidenote to the mother's and the daughter's stories.
As it is, I should say that the great idea-pace of the novel didn't really quit or stall in this one, either, but just continued along the kinds of paths and cool sidebars that a bit of creative thought could take it.
Memory and clones and the implications were extremely interesting, of course, building functional immortality quite separate from the kinds already found in this future earth, and perfectly in line with House of Suns from the PoV of very early days. :) I don't want to give away too much, but it really puts mother and daughter in a whole new category of interesting. And longevity. With fish. :)
As for space colonization, this novel is just as interesting, the driving forces to get our eggs out of one basket butting heads with politics, economics, and pure spite. Lots of intrigue and manipulations going on here, too, and this novel goes well beyond the kinds of social considerations and themes of the previous, and firmly into strong plot territory.
I really can't say anything bad about it at all. Parts were reminiscent of Cyteen, parts of House of Suns, some was propelling the spirit of Asimov's robot novels, and parts were almost PKD in the paranoia. :)
Very fun stuff. :)
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