redbyrd_sgfic (redbyrd_sgfic) wrote,

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More books!

And a couple more book reviews for the list- the Bujold also marks the start of my 2007 reading:
Note- I am trying to review without spoilers, so read without fear!  

A Man On The Moon by Andrew Chaikin
I really wasn't sure when I started this if it was a re-read or not.  That's because it's the basis for the (excellent) television documentary "From the Earth to the Moon".   After finishing it, I'm still not sure, but it was a fascinating read.   It's the story of the Apollo program, from its inception through the last mission.  It follows half a dozen of the astronauts, including Jack Schmitt, a geologist who is the only professional scientist to have made it onto a moon landing mission.  The complexity of the problems they faced was daunting.  The commitment and work ethic of just about everyone on the program is admirable.  And the things they accomplished were amazing.    Chaikin's account is readable and entertaining, not overly technical, and despite the complexity of the topic and the number of people involved, clear and concise.    Highly recommended.  

The Sharing Knife: Beguilement by Lois McMaster Bujold
This was very disappointing.  I'm glad I didn't spend any money on it.   I'm fairly lukewarm on most of Bujold's fantasy (though I love much of her SF), but this was unfortunately a new low.  I really wanted to like this book.  The worldbuilding was very good, the magic fascinating, the hero appropriately heroic, the writing fluid.  Even the heroine was fun if a bit underdeveloped.   However, 99% of the action in the book takes place in the first two chapters.  And after that, all that happens is that the relationship between the characters is developed.   The big McGuffin of the story is left hanging for the next book.   And I'd have liked the romance better if  the man hadn't been so much older than the woman.   It's a convention that makes my teeth itch.  Why would someone my age want a relationship with a teenager?  Gah.    Romance readers may quite like this, but I thought it had too much book for the amount of story. 
Tags: books
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