I only made it ~18% of the way into this book. I rarely give up on a book, but life is too short to read this one. Characters are flat. Too many irrelevant asides. Boring story. A real disappointment after the Mars series which I read many years ago and really enjoyed.
This is another great story from Kim Stanley Robinson which could be, but not necessarily, set in the same universe as the Mars series. I found the plot to be weaker than the Mars books, but the characters were extremely interesting. The story is about events leading up to the year 2312 and involves characters from Mercury, Earth, Venus and Saturn. There are descriptions of the rolling city on Mercury, and really cleaver ways of turning asteroids into cities and what might happen if we could do this. There are thousands of large asteroids out there. If we could hollow them out, we coudl put different environments in each of them. The plot involves people, politics, the way different societies respond to stimuli, and the way youth perceive things as opposed to those with more experience. For example, the sun walkers on Mercury walk along the edge of the sunrise as the planet rotates. Some walk for the glory of the walk, some walk for the excitement of the continuously rising sun, some walk for the beauty, some walk for the challenge. The lead character, Swan, is a sun walker, but her current view is much different than her younger days.
I would have cast my 9 year old son.
Ok, I get that most people don't or can't pronounce medical and scientific terms the same way "insiders" in the fields do, but as a "professional" narrator don't you even TRY! Maybe ASK someone or LOOK IT UP if you don't know how a certain term is usually said. Ridiculous.
And many place names and non-technical terms suffered the same fate. Who's never heard of Mondragón? I mean "Mon-DRAGON"??? I thought she was referencing D & D. And worse, this mispronunciation deflects from the author's intention of referencing the Mondragón collective enterprises, so this isn't just a nit-picky elitist complaint about pronunciation. It F^%ks up the whole story. Nice work.
The artistic nature of the narration was absurd as well. It was monotonous -I found myself slipping off at times, even during engaging parts of the story. The reading was monotonous, but not completely so, she actually hurried through segments of philosophical reflection or discussion faster than segments describing atmospheric components or the type of rock a typical asteroid was made of.
Additionally, all the attempts at "character" were bland and off-putting. I don't know if she was going for the voice of an automaton or not but it always seemed to be in the wrong characters. Other characters seemed not so much "emotional" as "whiny," or not so much "energetic" and "enthusiastic" as "pushy" and "aggressive" even when the actual writing suggested the former approach would be more appropriate. Was the narrator tone-deaf in an artistic sense?
I listen to books rather than reading when I'm exercising or commuting to work. I like Kim Stanley Robinson's work as it is entertaining and often compelling and challenging. The narration of this book completely diminished all the positives usually evident in his work. I would hope he, the agents, publishers, her friends, family or someone intervenes to see that this narrator finds another line of work...
Checking out Brandon Sanderson's work
This is a very wordy author who goes off on tangents that are barely relevant to the story. There are many interesting SCI-FI hooks - interesting weapon, nano-computing, cool space drives, and a fun vision of the future. But getting through all the rhetoric is very hard.
The audio book is well performed (I think the reader gets bored at times) and it can be mono-tomic at times. But overall a good performance.
No . I love KSR but I would rather bang my head on a wall than listen to this again from this narrator .
More characters . I enjoyed the time when the small group travelled the tunnel underground on Mercury
Very unwilling . I am really not sure ( Sorry Sarah ) if I could , Maybe this book was ot her style .
I have read and listened and enjoyed the Mars Trilogy and understand the style of KSR but the narration for 2312 killed this book . I may try to swap this book and one day purchase a hard copy and read for myself or maybe listen again if re-narrated .
2312 ranks below average among the audiobooks I have listened to so far. Robinson spends to much time describing the scenery and not enough time developing the plot and the characters.
I probably would recommend other audio books before recommending this one, but I would add that the descriptions of the locations off-world were vivid and captivating.
Zimmerman worked relatively well with the dialogue but became somewhat monotonous with the rambling descriptions.
I became bored at times and had to fight the temptation to skip ahead.
The story failed to deliver what the promotion promised.
The book is just too long with too many "side stories and scientific guesses"
Unless confined to solitary confinement in prison - unlikely
Narrator was very montotone on EVERYTHING...Some realy spicy sections and yet monotone
Never be a movie
For hard core SF fans really- great detective story..terraforming...AI ...problems with the help..ha..ha..extraordinary characters and political intrigue...great love story too..get it!
2312 is the latest entry in the Kim Stanley Robinson universe spawned in "Red Mars" and continued through "The Martians." Being beyond even the super extended lives of the cross-book protagonists of previous volumes, we are introduced to an entirely new cast of characters. These center primarily on Swan Er Hong, granddaughter and heir to the latest and recently deceased Lion of Mercury. Primarily an artist and carefree spirit who previously worked on the many terrariums which now orbit the sun, Swan is reluctantly drawn into the intrigues of her late grandmother. This small group of individuals, carefully avoiding the normal communications net, has begun to amass evidence of a conspiracy against the Mondragon (the very loose trading alignment of ex-colonies beyond Earth). Details are sketchy, but it appears to be connected to a highly unauthorized and highly dangerous number of agents who appear to be human, but are actually creations of and repositories for intelligent AI's -- the same kind of AI's that run so much of the day to day existence of humans across the solar system. Linked unexplained attacks on a terrarium and on Swan's home city of Terminator bring home the humanity's vulnerability and hone the group's desperation to unmask the conspiracy before larger havoc is wrought.
The many characters both major and minor slowly piece together this three dimensional puzzle, taking us literally from asteroids inside the orbit of Mercury to the frozen fields of Titan where even here, humanity is working epically to terraform a home. And, of course, much of the problem is connected to Earth. It's an Earth where the promise of reform and openness hinted at a century ago (@end of Blue Mars) has yet to be realized; an ecologically devastated home world groaning under its teeming billions and 10 meter sea level rise.
There are flaws with this book - the economics of the solar system are still quite fuzzy, as are some of the particulars of the technologies and terraforming. Worse still, I don't actually *like* many of the characters featured - least of all the main protagonist - but she merely super-exemplifies the petulant, bohemian, self-absorbed, trans-gendered, labor-phobic extra-terrestrial humans that largely populate Stanley's 24th century. Lastly, the plot meanders often, taking more than a few detours and dead ends through duller spots.
Having said all that, the book is still marvelously engaging. Robinson shows us the "accelerando" from the end of the last trilogy here in full bloom: asteroid terrariums, hollowed out and spinning for gravity, each one a self-contained biosphere and society ranging from the mundane to the exotic. Many of these terrariums are doing dual duty as travelling conduits between the various ex-colony worlds scattered from Mercury to the moons of Neptune, which are themselves exceedingly diverse and fascinating in their detail. Even Venus at last is being changed to habitable under dueling and simultaneous terraforming strategies (fast and friendly enough to get more people off the Earth quicker, or slower and more drastically/thoroughly to make a more Earth-like planet). It is perhaps only because the settings become so vivid that I find myself wanting to know more of the hows and whys and thus finding a few loose ends.
All in all, anyone who either enjoyed Robinson's 'Mars' trilogy, or appreciates SF where an author creates a vivid and different universe for their characters to inhabit should enjoy the book.
I didn't find the narration as bad as some of the other reviews - but I enjoyed Richard Ferrone's narration of the Mars Trilogy more.
No plot, no story
Not if I had to pay for it. Now that I think about it not even for free.
anybody says this was great read, well (a case of the kings cloths)