on June 24, 2003
Joan Vinge developes characters like none other, by the end of the book you are left with a "leaving camp" feeling...like you just spent a week at camp making new friends and now it's time to go. Sure other books develope one or two, but Joan has nearly a dozen going by the end that are all wonderfully done.
Which has it's drawbacks, you get the feeling thoughout the read that Arienrhod is constantly being dwelled upon, and much of the 600+ pages are spent backtracking on character developments. This detracts from what could have been one of the better storylines in sci-fi, I wanted to hear more about the Sibyl net and the mers. I feel perhaps a character could have been cut, or a development cut to make way for this.
At any rate, if you liked the Snow Queen then you need to be reading this, however don't expect to finish with a pleasent feeling. There are some slow parts in the beggining and middle, but once you hit the home stretch it can't be put down :)