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3.0 

The Thing Itself

By Adam Roberts
The Thing Itself by Adam Roberts digital book - Fable

Publisher Description

Adam Roberts turns his attention to answering the Fermi Paradox with a taut and claustrophobic tale that echoes John Carpenters' The Thing.

Two men while away the days in an Antarctic research station. Tensions between them build as they argue over a love-letter one of them has received. One is practical and open. The other surly, superior and obsessed with reading one book - by the philosopher Kant.

As a storm brews and they lose contact with the outside world they debate Kant, reality and the emptiness of the universe. The come to hate each other, and they learn that they are not alone.

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6 Reviews

3.0
“Ugh. What is there to say? If you're Adam Roberts, too much. My own personal mark for a well crafted narrative is one where not a single line is wasted in building it. And this book was riddled with lines that were pointless. So so so many lines commenting on the female characters appearance, who is ugly, who is attractive, who our main character wants to bone. And it serves no narrative purpose. This is just misogyny with extra steps. The main narrative was so weirdly paced it was a slog to get through and so clunky. However in a book regarding the nature of time, maybe I shouldn't gripe about pacing. The writing, however, is good. Roberts can really describe some cool shit. The secondary narratives were interesting to read, however for some of them I had a real hard time understanding their connection to the main narrative and overall themes. They were, however, well written in their own rights. The concept was cool, the execution was lame, the misogyny was unnecessary and”
“An interesting read, full of ideas. Good to see a book that indulges the 'exploration of ideas' style of Sci-Fi rather than the much more common (though also often enjoyable) 'fantasy of the future'. I have always found Kant to be rather impenetrable, so to find a more digestible description of his major theory was mentally stimulating. Though I can't validate the accuracy. The varying styles of prose that are exhibited throughout the book (as we observe the different 'bounces' through time) kept things fresh and show the author's skill. In fact the weakest part of the book is probably the plot itself, which ends up as a fairly unremarkable 'on the run' from government conspiracy plod. The ideas are much stronger than the execution, and the characters are not developed to any sort of satisfaction. Curtius, who assumes the role of bogeyman through much of the plot, feels like a missed opportunity. And at the end rather squibs out. Certainly worth reading, but not a classic.”

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