Dystopian futures based on today's issues: water rights and water shortages, immigration challenges and prejudice, corporate agriculture, limiting births by law, and a post-petroleum world, to name a few. Written from the point of view of beleaguered protagonists just trying to survive. In literary form, I think the author is equal to Margaret Atwood and her august ilk. So, enjoy while you can. The author sees things getting a LOT worse!
These stories should have been classed horror. If any of these things cone to pass our future will be a pretty horrible place. While listening to them I attended a conference by Riccardo Petrella and the problems of our society which he addressed were reflected in the themes of these stories . It was eerie. I actually wondered if the author had heard him speak. Not an easy read but interesting nonetheless.
These are dystopian visions, and some stories include very violent scenes. They're well written and well read by the narrators. I just hope that they're wrong about where we're headed. All of the stories are IMHO quite plausible depictions of the future.
No. The stories are snippets from an ill defined poorly constructed distant future (except for soft skin which is not worth listening to). There are no clues as to how the world devolved to the current state. The best of the stories "Pump six" involves the obsolescence of essential equipment- waste management pumps which were no longer manufactured or maintained-with no one around with the knowledge or skill to repair them. All of the stories are unsatisfying.
The lack of information about how the dystopic societies evolved or where they were heading. They are all cut off in midsentence.
All of the narrators were excellent dealing with difficult pronunciations and thoughts
No. No educational or entertainment value. What you get are the fanciful dalliance of a creative mind thinking about snippets of a dystopic future.
All of the stories (except soft skin) were interesting musings about a future which has devolved so that the people are stupid and knowledge and energy sources have regressed. I don't think any of these stories have any chance of occurring.
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
Considering that, for the most part, I don't like short stories, this was an exceptionally well-written, interesting and original collection. I have read some of Bacigalupi's works before (Wind Up Girl comes to mind), and I like the dark, depressing future bio-tech world the author has created. All these stories are set in the same world - or, if not the exact same, the same type of world - and they almost feel related, even though they all have separate plots and characters... it is the tone, pacing, and bio-tech I guess, that makes it feel like a single story.
I enjoyed some stories more than others, but as the ones I enjoyed the most are not the same ones that other reviewers enjoyed, I guess that is personal taste. Essentially, though, they are all clearly written by the same author and if you like the first story in the book, you should like all of them well enough. The stage is the same, just the actual characters change.
The stories have different narrators, and, while all of them are at least good, some of them are better narrators than others. I don't think you'll find any of them off-putting though. The stories are dark but not graphic or gory.
None of the stories in this collection were bad, and some I would rate 4 or even 4.5 stars individually, but nothing really impressed me like the The Windup Girl did. I think my greatest disappointment was the similarity of all the themes: Bacigalupi writes dystopian stories about humanity's greed and selfishness and environmental devastation, and that's all he writes about. Two of the stories in Pump Six are from the same world as "The Windup Girl," and most of the others easily could be. He's a good writer, but I'd really like to see him open up a bigger toolbox.
if you've read the wind up girl there is nothing more on offer here. I find this guys view of life too american. Everyone is either sad but virtuous victims or gritty power brokers. Maybe if you're fifteen you might find this titilating or confronting but if you've lived any kind of life you will just find it unrealistic and annoying.