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  • Quietly powerful book about humanity

    Was late to reading this, after reading The Book of Strange New Things and The Crimson Petal and the White and enjoying them very much, and after seeing the movie adaptation (loose adaptation, I should add) of this one. It’s a quiet, intriguing book, sci-fi but not really sci-fi, a book about the meaning of being a woman, and being human—especially, the arbitrary boundaries we use to distinguish ourselves from animals so that we can feel superior and eat them without conscience: “In the end, though, Vodsels couldnt do any of the things that really defined a human being. They couldnt siuwil, they couldn't mesnishtil, they had no concept of slan. In their brutishness, they'd never evolved to use hunshur; their communities were so rudimentary that hississins did not exist; nor did these creatures seem to see any need for chail, or even chailsinn.” With all that said, it’s not a book that preaches. It reveals itself slowly, lets you draw your own conclusions. It’s beautifully written, and I think probably my favourite of all his books that I’ve read. A friend who loved this book hated the film; I enjoyed both, although really all they share is an idea and a conceit. A literal adaptation of the book would likely be unfilmable; I think they chose well in their adaptation.

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  • Enjoyable

    Some slightly heavy handed stuff about the evils of farming aside, this is very enjoyable. I enjoyed ‘The Book of New Things’, which I read immediately before this, more.

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