Shaman: A Novel of the Ice Age by Kim Stanley Robinson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I should make a disclaimer here. I hesitate to call this SF except in a single case: Kim Stanley Robinson has created a world, built it out of the kind of science we know, featuring old humans during the ice age and extrapolating from there.
It's not really SF or F, but it shares a lot of the features. Most interestingly, it feels like a lot of the low-magic fantasy novels that have come out recently. Modern feel. And of course, it reminds us of Clan of the Cave Bear. But it's much more fascinating to see a more modern take on the subject from one of the most science-devoted writers in the field.
Primarily, I loved the psychology of it. Shamanism, nature worship, personality typing, and just how freaking difficult it was to survive during the age. Anyone who says that these people weren't intelligent has got to have a few screws loose. Survival takes a lot of effort.
This should all be pretty self-descriptive. But I should point out that Robinson's tale of life during this time IS a fascinating and interesting one. The story itself never lost me, and even if I have to let the novel take liberties with certain language bits and let the translation of certain ideas take its course, I'm not going to complain about it here.
It still produced a good novel for us. Even if I might want to complain about certain aspects of how they might have thought about things, the grand majority was spot on for my understanding. (Right or Wrong, it was a good novel.)
I do recommend it. Especially if you were annoyed with Clan of the Cave Bear and wanted something with a bit more substance and less violent sex.
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