Reynolds, Alastair -- Blue Remembered Earth

The worst I can say about Reynolds at this point is that he doesn't repeat his mistakes. This book is a nicely readable story with lots of momentum, set in a interestingly complicated (and not stylized) future Earth, full of characters whom I cannot wave away. There are dramatic unities. There is no overly clever gimmick. There is... no plot, as such. The "plot" role is filled by a great long interplanetary clue-hunt organized from beyond the grave by Hari Seldon, who in this book is a peripatetic Tanzanian grandmother (and engineering genius).

For the first half of the book I kept waiting for the protagonist(s) to solve the clues so that they could get into the story. Then it was clear that this would never happen, and the book would end with some final clue Revealing Something, fade out. Just so. But with enough depth to make a satisfying read.

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