The Naked God (Night’s Dawn, #3)

Peter F. Hamilton (1999)

This trilogy is an impressive achievement. More so in the detail than in the broad sweep, I think: the individual episodes, characters, technologies, species, and other elements are all wonderfully creative and varied, deeply envisioned and carefully described. So at a micro level, the plot is a success. But at the macro level, it’s less satisfying. (Spoiler now coming.) A large number of plot twists and difficult pathways are set up, ready for a clever resolution. What happens instead is that a character encounters an alien god-like entity who … well, allows anything to happen, which means that any possible twist can be straightened out. It’s only slightly improved on the stereotyped “and then she awoke from a dream” ending, and really isn’t respectful of all the efforts the author went to in the rest of the books.

3/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

The Neutronium Alchemist (Night’s Dawn, #2)

Peter F. Hamilton (1997)

4/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race

Reni Eddo-Lodge (2017)

2/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914

David McCullough (1977)

The long, twisted history of the Panama canal told with a wonderful eye for detail,. both personal and political. It’s hard to imagine that that a work of construction was considered so vital that it survived the changes of engineering direction, political about-turns, and financial upheavals that bedevilled Panama. It left me wanting to transit the cabal for myself, just to see it and imagine its tortuous construction.

4/5. Finished Thursday 15 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain

Oliver Sacks (2007)

0/5. Finished Friday 5 October, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)