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Children of Time av Adrian Tchaikovsky
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Children of Time (utgåvan 2015)

av Adrian Tchaikovsky (Författare)

Serier: Children of Time (1)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,700837,569 (4.08)71
Who will inherit this new earth? The last remnants of the human race left a dying Earth, desperate to find a new home among the stars. Following in the footsteps of their ancestors they discover the greatest treasure of the past age--a world terraformed and prepared for human life. But all is not right in this new Eden. In the long years since the planet was abandoned, the work of its architects has born disastrous fruit. The planet is not waiting for them, pristine and unoccupied. New masters have turned it from a refuge into mankind's worst nightmare. Now two civilizations are on a collision course, both testing the boundaries of what they will do to survive. As the fate of humanity hangs in the balance, who are the true heirs of this new Earth?… (mer)
Medlem:Sven-Erik.Andersen
Titel:Children of Time
Författare:Adrian Tchaikovsky (Författare)
Info:Tor (2015), Edition: Main Market Ed., 608 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:****
Taggar:Ingen/inga

Verkdetaljer

Children of Time av Adrian Tchaikovsky

  1. 41
    A Deepness in the Sky av Vernor Vinge (sawyl)
  2. 20
    The City in the Middle of the Night av Charlie Jane Anders (Jayeless)
    Jayeless: Both are thoughtful tales of far-future humanity colonising distant worlds, dealing with crumbling technology, and running into conflict with well-developed non-human civilisations.
  3. 10
    Drivhuset av Brian Wilson Aldiss (Rynooo)
  4. 00
    Code of the Lifemaker av James P. Hogan (espertus)
    espertus: The books have similar themes (evolution of intelligent life and the development of religious belief) and styles (human and alien societies approaching each other in the first part of the book and meeting in the second).
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» Se även 71 omnämnanden

Visa 1-5 av 83 (nästa | visa alla)
This book is proof that it’s possible to write original sci-fi even in the late 2010s, half a century after Asimov’s Foundation. The human-focused chapters are not that great - there isn’t a single relatable character in there, so you end up not caring about the future of the human race. But the spider-focused chapters... jfc. There are more original ideas in those chapters than in 90% of the sci-fi I’ve read this year. *And* the spider characters are relatable. Tchaikovsy males you care about the fate of each individual spider - Portia, Bianca, Fabian. And he makes you care about the macro picture as well: societal developments, gender relations, etc. Damn. I feel like I need a break from reading so that I can digest all the ideas in those chapters. ( )
  marzagao | Jun 1, 2021 |
One of the best books I've ever read. When it comes to science fiction, there's a lot of the same out there. Tchaikovsky writes an entirely original story with amazing characters - not all human.

The premise is this: Earth is in the process of terraforming a new planet to make it habitable. The plan is to contaminate this new world with a genetic virus that will cause the monkies there to become more sentient in the far future. Something goes wrong (we're still in chapter 1 here) and instead a planet of insects are grown.

The most impressive part of this entire story is the focus on insect chemistry and what it would look like for a planet of intelligent spiders to rise. They face many of the same issues we do in our society today - gender rights (although the main issue is to allow males to NOT be eaten after mating), societal structures, trust, communication and math. The approach to solving these issues is entirely insect based, and some of them blew my mind. ( )
  adamfortuna | May 28, 2021 |
This is the sort of book that was periodically a chore to read, but really fun to think about when I wasn't reading it.

I loved the premise of this story, and enjoyed the overall plot, but I really struggled with a lot of the individual chapters. The way that the story jumps around in time, and especially the author's decision to recycle the same names over and over, made it difficult for me to invest in the shorter narrative arcs.

The moments of the story usually focused on uncertainty, pessimism, struggle, and trauma, but the overarching direction was one of progress and hope.

At the end, I was happy that I stuck it out.

I don't know if I'll read the next book in this series anytime soon, but I do think I'll get to it eventually. ( )
1 rösta wishanem | May 27, 2021 |
More than a few steps outside of my reading comfort zone, Adrian Tchaikovsky's Children of Time was an oddly-weighted mix of convention and ingenuity that provoked a response I am still trying to figure out.

For the majority of the story, I did not like it as I was reading it. The space-opera realm of hard sci-fi is not one I often stray towards, and that is where Children of Time resides. After the death of the Earth, an ark of hibernating colonists come across a planet terraformed by their ancestors generations earlier. However, in the interim, a species of giant spiders has gained sentience and built a formidable civilization to oppose them. As Tchaikovsky writes, "the blind watchmaker has been busy" (pg. 107).

However, such lines are few and far between and the prose of Children of Time often falls flat. Tchaikovsky is an excellent worldbuilder – his spider civilization in particular is well-developed, when it could have easily been a narmy failure – but he is, on this evidence, not an especially compelling dramatist or creator of characters. Often I would be halfway through an action scene before I realised an action scene was actually happening. The human characters are dull: none of Holsten, Lain, Guyen or Karst appeal beyond the superficial, and this has a negative effect on the reader's willingness to invest in their quest, which is supposed to be the last-ditch attempt of a dying remnant of humanity to preserve their species. In this high-stakes battle, it says a lot that many readers seem to have found greater affinity with the race of monstrous alien spiders.

However, there was also plenty in Children of Time that I found fascinating, particularly after I pushed through the earlier, denser parts of the novel. Tchaikovsky is, as I have said, an excellent worldbuilder, and the novel is in effect "a whole planet's evolutionary history" (pg. 515) as we follow the spiders from artificial incubation to natural, sentient opposition to the returning humans. There is a particularly thought-provoking aspect in the later parts of the story, where the spiders begin to advance as a sentient species and identify Kern's spaceship orbiting in the sky as the curator of their 'experiment'. The 'God' parallels are overt but always intriguing and, like all great sci-fi, by developing this theme Children of Time sheds light on something beyond the story - in this case, our own species' developing relationship with a 'God' figure. Tchaikovsky cleverly extends this to the crew of the long-journeying human spacecraft: the original hardass captain, Guyen, becomes, to later generations of the crew born on the ship, a sort of "demon figure in their myth cycles" (pg. 436). It's all very intellectually satisfying stuff.

But it's because it's often so intellectually satisfying that I became disappointed with some aspects of the story. The drama and the characters don't match the ideas, as I have already suggested, but Tchaikovsky also overdoes some of the evolutionary worldbuilding stuff. For example, a long passage on page 205 about alien spider physiology, talking about scent markers and mandibles and molecular chemicals and "representational mental languages" and "the use of exothermic catalysts", saw my eyes glaze over – and not for the first time. And at that point there are still 400 pages to go.

Indeed, Tchaikovsky is so keen on his worldbuilding that it unbalances the novel – not fatally, but enough to frustrate those readers who are not hardcore hard sci-fi fans. The ending in particular felt as though it rushed to its conclusion, though its essential premise and resolution was neat. I'm not entirely convinced by Tchaikovsky's worldview, which appears to be a deeply pessimistic view of humanity (i.e. we are all irredeemably violent, tribal, genocidal, nature-destroying organisms), but his message at the end is compelling in light of the story he has spun. However, it requires an almost Hobbesian sensibility to get there ("the curse of the Old Empire, that division of man against man that was the continual brake on human progress" (pg. 319)), and this can become rather depressing for the reader. Particularly when starved of action or likeable characters.

It's quite a brew Tchaikovsky has concocted in Children of Time but, as I said at the start of my review, an oddly-weighted one. Strong, often exceptional, worldbuilding and ideas are offset by occasionally flat pacing and characterisation. The price is worth paying, for once you identify and accept the author's terms the book begins to read much quicker. All in all, it felt good to stray outside my comfort zone, but I can't help but conclude that, in developing the spiders, Tchaikovsky overlooked the importance of writing truly about humanity – its glories as well as its flaws. ( )
  MikeFutcher | May 20, 2021 |
Terraforming, human space arks, and cannibal sex among hyper intelligent spiders in a matriarchal society. This book seriously SLAPS.

This was some of the most inventive sci-fi I've read in a long time, filled with very memorable scenes and unique biotechnologies that might if an insect species became the prevailing form of intelligent life on an earth-like planet. Loved the subversion of so many sci-fi tropes, ( )
  jiyoungh | May 3, 2021 |
Visa 1-5 av 83 (nästa | visa alla)
The concept of “uplift” has been around for a while; in this version, humans have destroyed Earth, and are making a last ditch effort to terraform a new home planet. The last stage of the terraforming includes uplifting some apes to serve as slaves for colonists via a nanovirus.

Alas for the humans, things do not go as planned. They accidentally create a planet of sentient spiders.
tillagd av bug_girl | ändraWIRED.com, Gwen Pearson (Jun 17, 2015)
 

» Lägg till fler författare (1 möjlig)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Adrian Tchaikovskyprimär författarealla utgåvorberäknat
Herden, BirgitÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Hudson, MelBerättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat

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Who will inherit this new earth? The last remnants of the human race left a dying Earth, desperate to find a new home among the stars. Following in the footsteps of their ancestors they discover the greatest treasure of the past age--a world terraformed and prepared for human life. But all is not right in this new Eden. In the long years since the planet was abandoned, the work of its architects has born disastrous fruit. The planet is not waiting for them, pristine and unoccupied. New masters have turned it from a refuge into mankind's worst nightmare. Now two civilizations are on a collision course, both testing the boundaries of what they will do to survive. As the fate of humanity hangs in the balance, who are the true heirs of this new Earth?

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