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Darwin's Radio Mass Market Paperback – Jul 5 2000


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (July 5 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780345435248
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345435248
  • ASIN: 0345435249
  • Product Dimensions: 3 x 10.6 x 17.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 136 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (220 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #226,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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The flat afternoon sky spread over the black and gray mountains like a stage backdrop, the color of a dog's pale crazy eye. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By CalltheDoctor on Feb. 16 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Over the past few years I've devoured most of the writings of Isaac Asimov, Octavia E. Butler, Kim Stanley Robinson, Arthur C. Clarke, Ursula K. Le Guin, Kurt Vonnegut, Margaret Atwood, Neal Stephenson, and William Gibson (along with one or two works by many many other excellent writers). I love science/speculative fiction, and I'm always looking for new authors to read.

My search for new great authors and series led me to this book. The premise sounded exciting, and I was optimistic that I would have another huge body of work to read.

That optimism lasted until I was around 4 or 5 pages in. For an interesting story, I can overlook quite a lot, but the lack of craft in this novel is far too obvious. As stated above, it reads like a first attempt at a novel, and not a particularly successful one. The writing style is choppy; the descriptions vary from over-long and obvious to vague and lazy. Attempts at characterization are incredibly unsuccessful, with Bear leaning heavily on gender stereotypes and characters speaking exposition to each-other.

If you enjoy Harlequin romance novels or watching pornography for the story, then this book may be the right choice for you. Otherwise, I'd skip it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brian on July 17 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Greg Bear's Darwin's Radio was an intriguing look at humanity's grappling with a virus which apparently causes women to have an abortion, but a month after this abortion takes place, the women find they're pregnant again, often without even having had sex. In response to this, riots break out all over the world as people fear these strange occurences and a possible end to modern society as we know it. In the midst of all this is Dr. Kaye Lang, a molecular biologist who has some interesting theories on this supposed virus and its real purpose, and Mitch Rafelson, a palentologist who's discovered the remains of a man, woman and baby from thousands of years ago who may have been experiencing a similar evolutionary process.
The book does a very good job of giving the main characters proper attention. Each character is well defined and their complexities are explored. But, I have to say that the book may have went a little too far in this pursuit. I often found that I wanted more discussion of the attempts at studying and dealing with the virus, but instead much of the book focused on the personal lives of Kaye and Mitch. Although I must admit that the developments between them weren't completely immaterial, the description of the book on the back cover is rather misleading. I would hardly say that Kaye Lang and Christopher Dicken race to solve an evolutionary puzzle.
Despite the fact that the novel headed in a rather different direction than I had anticipated, it was fairly entertaining. The premise was really rather interesting and I liked the questions which were raised by the unfolding events. This novel really had much to do with human nature and questions concerning our own origins. Plus, I hadn't ever read a science fiction novel dealing with evolution so it was a nice change. Overall, I would say read this book if you're really interested. It may not be exactly what you expect, but that doesn't mean you won't like it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 21 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When an apparent virus begins hitting pregnant women and destroying their unborn fetuses, panic ensues. But discoveries made in the Alps, and the Republic of Georgia, show it's happened before; right before a major evolutionary advance in the human species. Soon, healthy children with unusual characteristics are born in increasing numbers. Some insist that they are diseased with retroviruses that threaten all of humanity. Others fight to get the truth accepted: homo sapiens sapiens is not the final word in human evolution.
Darwin's Radio is entertaining and thought-provoking. His homo sapiens novus, the new children whose genomes are shaped by the Sheva virus, are not the usual pat "advanced humans" you find in pulp sf, with big heads and telepathic abilities. They are more realistic than that, tho endowed with unusual abitities from the perspective of society as a whole. The novel in many respects goes beyond its genre, and would interest people not generally into science-fiction.
As the government reacts with political calculation and brutality to the Sheva children, more enlightened minds must find a way to convince the world to live in harmony with them. Read this book, then Darwin's Children. Bear has also talked about writing a third book in the group. A great job; in my opinion the two novels are his best work to date.
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By A Customer on June 8 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm going to keep this review short. Just wanted to give a rating so that system is fair, meaning the ratings are not filled with all 5 star people telling you to buy it.
The book meanders through needless details that do not contribute anything to the story. Main characters husband commits suicide, big deal. They find neanderthals with speciation, big deal.
Read Eon by Bear, it is much better and more imaginative.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Why you should read this:
If you like virus thrillers like Preston's The Hot Zone or Crichton's The Andromeda Strain then you will really like this book. It's a very quick read and a very intriguing one for educated readers who have at least a passing understanding in human evolution. An excellent choice for any holiday.
READ MORE AT INCHOATUS.COM
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