Why do your people always ask if someone is ready just before they are about to do something massively unwise?
Paolo had an interesting idea (his personal introduction helps), and ran with it, but the book came across as an exercise in world building or futurism rather than a novel. The plot is difficult to see and weak when glimpsed. The characters are interesting, but so isolated from each other that even when they're interacting, they feel like castaways. Paolo also has some favorite(?) words that keep resurfacing over and over again, to the point of inducing groans. Action is sparse.
Jonathan Davis does his usual great job, but compared to his other performances, this one is kind of flat, but I don't blame him for this: I'm sure he did the best with what he was given.
When I was finished with the book, I was a little lost and simply ready to move on to the next book. After thinking on it for a few days while the next book disappointed me, I was really surprised by Bacigalupi's ability to create Earth after Pandora's gene box was opened. In an effort to recover from all we destroyed we were making it all worse. These characters had to push through the wilting effect of their climate, the impotence of surviving choices made by people stronger them, totally removed from the banality of their existence and survival of persistent and distant trauma alike. In my mind a book that makes you feel and think about the characters days after you've read it is truly brilliant. It's even better if you don't feel like you've been subjected to a high school literature class all over again.
This book is so specific to Japan that its hard to follow if you aren't familiar with terms and customs, etc. I wish to book was more about the Windup girl and not so much about seeds and greed. The whole calorie system is unclear as well. This book could have been broken into 2 sparate books--one about the whole calorie/seed system and another about the Windup girl. I bought it but I probably won't listen to it again.
Immigration lawyer in Kansas City. I like Character driven dramas, fantasy (monsters, magic and witches oh my!) and coming of age stories. Favs include: The Book Thief, The Game of Throne series, Harry Potter Series, Dresden Files, Nightside series, anything by Neil Gaimen, 100 Years of Solitude.
All of the reviews LOVED this book so I had high hopes. Maybe too high...I kept waiting to be wowed and never was. The story was interesting and the characters were interesting, though a little confusing at times with all the Thai name, however it was slow at the beginning and just never picked up. I kept waiting for something powerful that never came. The story wasn't bad it just wasn't outstanding
Horrible facination. Makes you rethink your values and questions concepts that have not been broached before
If you have never lived and worked in a really hot and humid place, you may not be able to appreciate how well Paolo has captured its essence. Paolo soon had me smelling the pungent musk of stale human sweat and recalling how everything does slow down; how the heat and humidity saps the body and fogs the mind. To this environmental condition he deftly adds strange new beasts, the claustrophobia of a closed society, and the paranoia of immigrants competing for a future with the ever present poor. To this setting he adds his characters full of bravado and his Thailand of tomorrow is convincing if not compelling.
Then there is the Windup Girl; a creature condemned to death simply because she lives. I find her intriguing precisely because I can image that during my lifetime someone will genetically engineer new life forms and like her some of these new life forms may be capable of reasoned thought; and even love and hate.
The Windup Girl like all truly great science fiction lets me live in that future today.
I agree with Slow, the narration needlessly drug out this story. When I switched to my MP3 player's fast setting things were much improved.
Overall not a bad book. It was the same middle-tone through out. A near post-famine world in which gen-mod food is the new iron fist. It felt like there were several opportunities in which this book could have really taken off but decided to keep an even distribution between subplots and characters instead. Personally after hearing the introduction a book based on the author's experiences that inspired this novel would have been more interesting.
I really wanted to enjoy this book, unfortunately that ended up not being the case. It took me almost two weeks to finish this audio, because there just wasn't much reason to come back to it. There are a lot of great ideas in this story, compelling plot aspects...and they just sit there. The realism and humanity of the story are overshadowed by the lack of truly gripping plot movements and characters.
I thought the ideas were top notch, but like I said in the title review I could do without the graphic description of some of the sex scenes. The book had some very interesting ideas, and for the most part made for good listening.