Books Etc...

Posted on Thu 29 January 2004 in general

I finished Life of Pi while on holiday. I must say I was surprised I enjoyed it as much as I did considering I'm usually a Sci-Fi/Fantasy man. While my main staple books concentrate on following plot this reminded me that books are good for discussing ideas as well. I've come to the conclusion I really should make an effort to become a little more widely read (but as of yet I'm not going to re-attempt any Dickens :-)

I've moved onto Northern Lights which is Philip Pullman's exercise in children's fiction. Although billed as a competitor to Harry Potter its a lot more adult and deals with darker issues from the outset (which to its credit the later Harry Potters do as well - I assume as the audience matures with the books). One problem I have with books set in alternative worlds is understanding the terminology and relationships every thing has. I like to know in advance where daemons come from and what anabaric fields are meant to be. Of course as Dave pointed out to me earlier this week this sort of info-dump approach is not really conducive to good writing style. I guess its just the scientist in me getting frustrated when I don't fully understand what's going on. Having said that Pullman does a pretty good job in bringing in these facts in as part of the narrative of the story in a way that lends to your growing realisation of what's going on. I suspect by the time I finish the first book reading the next two will be a lot easier given a good grounding in his world. The next two are already in my Amazon shopping basket in case you where wondering if I'm enjoying the book :-)