Fractal Noise by Christopher Paolini
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
After loving To Sleep in a Sea of Stars, it was really something of a no-brainer to want to head toward a prequel.
Ah, but this is where I'm forced to warn you that you must manage your expectations a bit. If you wanted another To Sleep in a Sea of Stars, you might be slightly disappointed.
If, on the other hand, you wanted the tragic expedition, with all the feel of a number of classic novels that deal with danger, perseverance, and the desire to DISCOVER something truly great, then this is a very fine SF novel. This is a first contact novel without true resolution, a lot of mishaps and a long trudge within an unknowable alien find, and wonderful characterizations.
Again, it isn't TSiaSoS, but IF you were of a mind to simply trust the author, reading this one first and then moving onto the primary novel WOULD give a lot of depth and slow-build to both.
I definitely recommend. The primary novel transitions perfectly. Or rather, read both together for the sense of a VERY long, excellent story.
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