cat63 (cat63) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

Book 55 for 2010

The Rapture Effect by Jeffrey A. Carver. 371 pages

I'd read a couple of other books by this author and liked them quite a lot, which is just as well, or I might have given up on this one quite early on. It starts rather slowly and disjointedly with an advertising executive on Earth trying to organise a huge sculpture in space and an alien survivor of a space battle in a faraway galaxy. From there it spins out into a fairly interesting story of interstellar war, colonisation and personal relationships, but I felt it could have been told a great deal better.

For one thing, the narration always seems to be a little distant from the human characters. so that the reader never fully engages with their feelings, particularly Sage DeWeiler one of the principal human protagonists - I actually felt more sympathy for the alien at the beginning than I did for the people on Earth.

The alien Ell were nicely realised, with a suitably different culture and history, and the story itself would have been excellent if it hadn't felt essentially lifeless. I think perhaps the author made the mistake of having too many elements in play so that he wasn't able to fully develop any of them. Pacing was also awkward in places with long periods of essentially nothing happening, which proved necessary for later developments but were still rather dull.

On the whole, this book struck me as a lost opportunity.
Tags: sci-fi

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