Friday, May 22, 2009


I just finished reading Hilldiggers by Neal Asher.
Once again, Asher delivers a very enjoyable SF novel. This one is quite different from most of his other work. There is noticeably less "up close and personal" violence and more political maneuvering. Don't get me wrong, there's still plenty of violence and gore, but much of this novel deals with the broader conflicts between two societies, and later two factions of a single society. And then of course there's destruction and mayhem on a much wider scale to that we usually see from Asher, but is necessarily more impersonal.
Technically, again, very well written and a good page turner and paced well.
The one interesting quirk I wasn't sure about was that chapters featuring the main character were written in first person while all the other chapters, each focussed on a particular character, were written in the normal third person style. I'm still a little confused as to why and found it somewhat distracting. Perhaps it represents the fact that said character is the only Polity citizen and is meant to stand alone, or that we are supposed to empathise more with him because he has the best knowledge or view of events. Not convinced either way, pehaps there is a better reason I am missing.
I really liked the organic technology of the world Brumal. It is different again from other nanotech grown technologies and mixed with the "Consensus" hive style civilisation shows the usual brilliant imagination of the author. Great stuff!

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