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This review is from: Golden Fleece (Paperback)
Robert Sawyer seems like a parody of what the world generally thinks about hard sf writers: boring, pedantic, with leaden prose, the psychological insight of a backward 11-year-old, and, at all times, an obviously greater concern for the intricacies of the science he's lecturing about than for the demands of story or character.
That last is a mixed blessing, as he writes in LOTS of science detail to show off his research, BUT he feels free to break the laws of physics when they get in the way of how he wants things to turn out. This tends to weaken the solitary strength he commands.
Despite the awards he's been nominated for and won, I feel strongly that Sawyer is the James Fenimore Cooper of our time. I just wish that someone with the verbal acuity and wit of Mark Twain were around to as carefully elucidate Sawyer's literary offenses. And, it is important to remember, there are folks who love the fantasies of Cooper.
I read Sawyer's "Starplex" because it was nominated for a Hugo. I read this one because a number of folks told me I was off the mark on Sawyer, and should try something else he'd written. I should have been warned by the title of this one--I certainly felt I'd been fleeced.
If you like the works of such writers as Hal Clement, Arthur C. Clarke, or Isaac Asimov: AVOID THIS BOOK!