Darwinia

“Darwinia”- such an intriguing word.

I just read “Darwin’s Pious idea” which was quite a piece of philosophic work, so this book by Robert Charles Wilson caught my eye on the Sci-Fi shelves of the library. Fun read – but surprisingly full of ideas. I started a novel that seemed like an adventure in an alternate history: Europe suddenly was a wilderness with an apparent evolutionary track that must have diverged from ours hundreds of millions of years ago. Adventurers of course, go to explore. But suddenly – who would have expected- we are in enormous swathes of time, other sentient creatures (noospheres!) and a Matrix like uncertainty about what is “real”.

I loved it. All sorts of intricacies to make you think.

I occasionally look at Amazon reviews, and I did on this. Many people  did not like the sudden switch from an Edgar Rice Borroughs type of adventure to a complex exploration of long time and evolutionary change, permanency or death… and so on. One reviewer whom I did agree with said he didn’t like understanding more than the characters as the story unfolded.

I enjoyed this story and I have a new author to read. As a sci-fi reader from way back, I got tired of interstellar battles and Tolkien rip-offs a long time ago. If it has a dragon, I tend to avoid it. My granddaughter made me make an exception for Eragon, which she enjoyed, I think, as a coming of age quest story, with a cute dragon. I enjoyed it too. Other than that, I like myth type stories ) alternative worlds and alternative histories, and stories that explore a human dilemma.

Tell me some other new names I have been missing.

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