Thursday, 4 April 2019

Book Review - A Closed And Common Orbit

  • Title And Author: A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers
  • Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Physical
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought
  • Length: 364 Pages

As you guys know, I was meant to start my “Pick My Next Read” polls after I finished The Hand, The Eye and The Heart by ZoĆ« Marriott. However, I was going to holiday (a small weekend break away in Bruges) and I didn’t want to start this while away. Plus, I have been getting an itch to read something else. So, I decided to push it back a read, rewrite my “Pick My Next Read” post and start the book in question. 

 A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers was the book is question. 

A companion/sequel (I’m going to say companion as this really didn’t feel like a sequel) to A Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, A Closed And Common Orbit follows Lovelace. Once, she had eyes and ears everywhere. She was a long haul spaceship’s artificial intelligence system. Not any more. Now, she’s housed in an illegal synthetic body. She might have Pepper by her side, Lovelace feels very alone. 

Pepper is determined to help her. She knows a thing or two about starting over. Because, Pepper wasn’t always Pepper. Pepper was once Jane 23 and, when she was ten, she had never seen the sky. 

So how did Jane 23 become Pepper? What is Pepper trying to find? And will Lovelace find her place in the universe?

Now, I know what you are thinking, what did I think of this book?

Well, I really liked it. I’m actually a little surprised how much I enjoyed reading this. 

I do admit that, while I enjoyed reading this and the characters and everything, I do prefer A Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet a tad more. Not much, though, but I really like this. 

While the plot is more gentle compared to other sci-fi novels I have read in the past, what makes this book and this series shine is its characters and Becky’s writing. Sci-fi novels can feel quite heavy and dense, whereas there’s something quite comforting about Becky’s writing and how she handles sci-fi. Plus, how Becky handles issues such as identity (which is this book’s main theme), gender politics, friendships, love and other issues made this such a delight to read, even though it did take me a while to read compared to the three days I devoured A Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet. But, seeing as I was in Cyprus and reading this by the pool for three days solid, you can forgive my reading speed. 

Now, I know some of you might not like this as this type of warm, gentle, fuzzy sci-fi might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but of course, I have got the third book in the series, Record A Spaceborn Few, on my shelves, ready to read (and I want to read this really soon, though I have been told that this book isn’t as plot driven compared to the previous two) and I have preordered her standalone novella, To Be Taught, If Fortunate. Though I might not be the biggest Sci-fi reader (like you guys know, fantasy and crime/thrillers are my main genres of choice), Becky is slowly becoming an auto-buy author and I can’t wait to read the next two books this year! 

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