woensdag 31 augustus 2016

Becky Chambers: The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet

Hi everyone

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet is Becky Chambers’ debut novel.
My copy has 404 pages and I got it from Book Depository.

“Somewhere within our crowded sky, a crew of wormhole builders hops from planet to planet, on their way to the job of a lifetime. To the galaxy at large, humanity is a minor species, and one patched-up construction vessel is a mere speck on the starchart. This is an everyday sort of ship, just trying to get from here to there.
But all voyages leave their mark, and even the most ordinary of people have stories worth telling. A young Martian woman, hoping the vastness of space will put some distance between herself and the life she‘s left behind. An alien pilot, navigating life without her own kind. A pacifist captain, awaiting the return of a loved one at war.
Set against a backdrop of curious cultures and distant worlds, this episodic tale weaves together the adventures of nine eclectic characters, each on a journey of their own.”

I loved this book so much.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet is stunning, brilliant. It’s touching, interesting, funny, it has a lot of depth, it has meaning and it’s different from anything else I’ve read so far.

The characters are great; they’re complex, well-developped, completely unique and they feel true. The book is very character-driven. There are some truly unique and very diverse species (in all aspects) and I loved the way they interacted. Most of them try their hardest, but it’s clear it’s not easy to live with or to communicate with someone from a different species. I loved these parts; their doubts and uncertainties, the thoughts about their own and others’ behaviour and the way each of these species communicate. They feel real and they act with real emotions. I felt so connected to them!
There’s so much love in this book and it warmed my heart to read it. Very touching.

The setting is absolutely fascinating. Chambers’ worldbuilding is amazing and I love the universe she created. We get some history about this universe as we travel through it but it never feels like an info-dump. It feels bigger than the book and I mean that in the best way possible.There’s an untold history here that’s only hinted at. Same goes for the other worlds. There’s so much more I want in this universe.
There’s not much to the plot because it’s mostly about the crew’s daily life but I found it to be incredibly entertaining.

The writing is very elegant.
There are lots of details about the food, scents, clothing and many other things.

Chambers can be a bit preachy though. The moral messages she wants to put forward are rather blatant and obvious. It doesn’t make it any less enjoyable but it is something to keep in mind.
What did annoy me was how the book was split into different parts; one for every character. It felt like she just went over her list of characters, giving them all some time to shine.

This book is not for you if you want lots of action, if you’re not interested in the emotions or the small problems of the characters because this book is definitely character- and worldfocused.

It has been compared to Firefly a lot and it’s true. I’m sure that if you love Firefly, you’ll adore this.
The book made me smile and it made me feel all warm and fuzzy reading it.

I absolutely loved this. 

5 STARS

Happy reading!
Helena