Hammered by Elizabeth Bear – astoundingly, this seems to be a novel in which the lead character is Canadian, yet the author is not! The question was nagging at me so much that I had to flip to the bio to check on Bear’s nationality – she is apparently American. Go figure!
Anyhow, I found this book to be a slow start, with an especially brutal attack by bludgeoning exposition around page 30. After literally skipping the page or three, I got back into the story and truly, I never missed knowing about the socio-political history that set it all up. Sheesh. Other minor gripe – the title is awful. I almost wonder whether the word hammer was introduced into the novel purely to allow for the catchy name. The main, main character is called Maker – cool name, but did I miss the reason? Razorface was obvious, but Maker?
On with the praise now. Once characters get moving from one location to the next, it picks up a lot. Some emotional tension gets simmering, the backstory provides lots of juicy angst, and the important personae start to congregate in important locations.
I like the device of the ‘sample starships’ abandoned on Mars to boost Earthlings outward once they make it that far.
Looking forward to book two – Scardown. Again, why this name?
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