A Time of Changes, by Robert Silverberg

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A Time of Changes, by Robert Silverberg

Postby Omphalos » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:22 pm

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One of the things that I personally like about Robert Silverberg is that he does not harp on an idea too long, and by that I mean that even though he is a prolific author with many, many titles in his back catalog, he really has not written too many sequels in his life. That can be a hard way to go for a SF author. That means that almost every time he or she writes a new story, a new world must be drawn up from scratch. But for those who can do it; those who can come up with ideas that quickly, it can pay off wonderfully over a long career. Before I am done here you will see me write about twenty Silverberg pieces, and only a few of them (Roma Eterna and Majipoor, for example) are multi-story pieces. This week's review is one of Silverberg's most well known stories, A Time of Changes. It is a single-volume story, and quite honestly it is one of the richest SF stories that I have ever encountered. There are some shortcomings in this novel, but nothing worth harping on. In short, it is excellent...Please click here, or on the book cover above, to be taken to the complete review..
Something is about to happen, Hal. Something wonderful!

-James C. Harwood, Science Fiction Writer, Straight (March 5, 1956 - May 25, 2010)



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Postby Liege-Killer » Sat Jan 31, 2009 6:19 pm

Nice review of one of my favorites. :D
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Postby Omphalos » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:22 am

I kept comparing this book with Dying Inside as I read it. I actually did read this one before, but forgot that I did. I read it a long time ago, but I am still sure that I like Dying Inside more. Probably just a bit though.
Something is about to happen, Hal. Something wonderful!

-James C. Harwood, Science Fiction Writer, Straight (March 5, 1956 - May 25, 2010)



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Postby Liege-Killer » Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:40 am

Yeah, they're both very good books, not much quality difference there. I prefer this one by "just a bit," although I admit this probably is influenced by my long history with it. It was one of the first SF novels I ever read, and I've always loved its style. And the quality of the world-building, as you pointed out.

I have divided sympathies regarding the parties in this book. I've always admired Kinnall as the lone dissenter standing up to the unfair customs of a repressive society. On the other hand, I have a certain sympathy for those customs. From as early as I can remember, I've always felt distaste for people who too readily, or too loudly, or too forcefully put their emotions on display for others. I'm also annoyed by people who seem to have no sense of privacy. I get an involuntary shudder every time I pass someone on their phone, loudly blabbing out their personal business for anyone to hear. Then think about all those Jerry Springer type shows where the intimate details of people's lives are put on display, and it's considered entertainment. Think of all the magazines devoted to the intimate, private details of the lives of celebrities. And there are so many ways people force their individuality on others: forcing people to listen to their annoying ringtones, or their blaring car stereos, etc. We live in a "me-first" age of self-baring, and it's frustrating sometimes, and so I can understand to some extent those first colonists who founded Borthan. Maybe individual self-expression had become so annoying and deafening on Earth that they just wanted to get away from it all and live in a quieter, more restrained setting. On the other hand, I think they took it too far in the opposite direction, and actually did become repressive about it, creating a situation that was ripe for a rebel like Kinnall.
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Postby The Phantom » Mon Feb 02, 2009 4:53 pm

i think i'll have to give this one a read. I don't think I've read any silverberg actually.

RE: Springer .... scripted dude :P but point well taken
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