[Riding the Torch Books ] Free Reading as Ebook BY Norman Spinrad


I love mining SF obscurity and uncovering those precious ems of spectacular buried under the surface of anonymity poor marketing and short memories THIS is one of those lost doses OF GREATNESS A POWERFUL DEEPLY MOVING greatness A powerful deeply moving dealing with the foundational issue of humanity s place in the universe It is a spiritual journey but in the humanistic rather than religious sense UniueevocativeintelligentmemorablePLOT SUMMARYSet in the distant future where a convoy of several hundred torch ships containing than religious sense UniueevocativeintelligentmemorablePLOT SUMMARYSet in the distant future where a convoy of several hundred torch ships containing is left of mankind have been traveling through space for than a 1000 years looking for a new home after Earth went FUBAR While the convoy meanders through space the mysterious Council of Pilots coordinate long range survey ships to seeking out habitable planets The survey pilots known as voidsuckers are aloof and detached and spend their time secluded from the rest of the convoy For the rest o I have an endless fascination with how willing people are to just straight up spoil the plot twist in their reviews Anyway I read this as part of my ongoing Who on God's Earth do you 'think' you are?: A true story about TRANSCENDING the ILLUSION of SEPARATION generation ship completist uest and it did not disappoint on the one hand it feels surprisingly fresh for a novella written in 1974 as if it could have been written and published today without any major changes and while incorporating many familiar SF tropes it cross pollinates them into theeneration ship sub enre where they are not so common rather unusually these eneration ships are not forgotten they know what they are and where they are oing On the other the plot twist is slightly weird in a well what did you people expect kind of way but it does not detract from the overall flow of the story and the point Spinrad was driving towards The only complaint I have is that the already short novella is still too long due to a bit of redundant floweriness of expression but this may just be a result of my jaded reader eyes see Threads Of Time Three Original Novellas Of Science Fiction The most interesting thing about this science fiction novella is its unusual presumption that there are no inhabitable planets anywhere in the universe The story is set in a period hundreds of years after we humans have fouled our own nest Earth so as to necessitate its Abandonment And A Search and a search a substitute The crisis of the story is the acknowledgment that we are alone in the cosmos something which author Spinrad attempts to convey in mystical almost Buddhistic termsThe concluding essays about the science behind the story are interesting In the collection Threads of Time Novella length pb only and in short supply at 6 21 2011 35 stars The void neither knew nor cared The void did not exist It was the eternal and infinite nonexistence that dwarfed and encompassed that which did I was a little surprised by this book It s the kind of sci fi I enerally love and the ideas seemed very current to me but the vintage of the book is 1974 In the first twenty pages alone we ve ot classic stuff like enerational starships a fle. Zweitausend Raumschiffe rasen durch die Leere des RaumsAn Bord die letzten ├ťberlebenden der Erde auf der Suche nach einer neuen Heimat f├╝r die Mens. ,


Riding the Torch

Norman Spinrad ↠ 1 FREE READ

Nature of life and sentience and its true place in the cosmos also reminded me of Peter Watts Blindsight though Spinrad manages to spin things in a much optimistic way than does Watts I also found it intriguing how Spinrad handled the concepts of virtual realities and the internal world which are iven precedence in this novel In many other sci fi works this is often viewed as a crutch
AN ESCAPE FROM THE REAL WORLD 
escape from the real world is detrimental to human evolution and rowth Spinrad seems to posit in this story that it is in fact the opposite the human ability to cultivate and then realize an unending series of inner worlds that can only be explored virtually is our race s saving race Without it we are nothing than a blip Unless we make our own truths and embrace them we are simply sentient flotsam in the vast immensity of an flotsam in the vast immensity of an reality I ve read this novella years ago probably in translation Now I ot the original on my Kindle Wow The novella tells the story of the Trek a Jimmy: The Terrorist group of torch ships powered by a Bussard ramjet The Trek had fled Earth centuries ago after the planet was rendered dead and uninhabitable by the slow war Theroup of ships has evolved over centuries from an original few retrofitted asteroid miners to the current How to Live the James Bond Lifestyle: The Complete Seminar generation of magnificent torch ships with an incredible rich and inte Five stars for idea but only three stars overall due to presentationPositives1 Voidsuckers eerie isolated humans who live separate from the rest of humanity and who hold a secret2 The society within the fleet of two thousandenerational ships Flighty style changing vapid Senso movies allow one to experience the events on screen with your mind and body Tapping networked minds that allow one to inhabit for brief periods of time other people s minds3 The voidsucker mystery the reason they call D Mahl to o with them into deep space is the meat of the story It is a profound realization but one that could have been presented better as a short storyNegatives1 Too long The vivid descriptions in the beginning present the vastness of space and the life on the ships effectively but as the book drags on the descriptions become repetitive2 The climactic reveal of the story is presented 23rd of the way in leaving us only with D Mahl s the protagonist reaction for the remainder Of The Novel I the novel I that his reaction is the author s main point but to me I didn t care after the 23rd point3 Topless women and sex Why does sci fi from this time period always use casual sex and nakedness in order to be edgy Actually don t bother I know why it helps sell books I uess my point is that reading this book decades later this feature of it seems a clich from the time period in which it was written Interesting ideas especially the main idea Sometimes presented too rushed sometimes too repetitive Had kind of an open ending which I personally don t like very much I would rather have learned the reaction of the people to the reat revelation Great book Classic science fiction. Eres GeheimnisF├╝r diesen au├čergew├Âhnlichen Roman erhielt Norman Spinrad eines der herausragenden Talente der Science Retion 1975 den Jupiter Award. Et of torchships streaking through the void and a dead earth in a distant past add to that such new ideas as artificially created elements shades of nanotech shared realities and sensations virtual reality substances doctored to alter perceptions and induce tailored results in the imbiber and at least one set of humans apparently modified to suit their environmentpurpose in deep space and you ve ot a heck of a lot Heads of the Colored People going onThe basic premise is that the earth has been destroyed by the selfish mismanagement of humanity and the remnants of the species are now housed in a fleet of torchships known as the Trek that are streaking through the cosmos searching for a viable new home We are immediately introduced to Jofe D mahl a crafter of sensos fully interactive and immersive movies as he hosts a party in hisrand salon for the cream of the Trek s society He is premiering his newest creation The Wandering Dutchman a commentary on the society and plight of humanity since embarking on the Trek mankind s last best hope for survival Unfortunately he is upstaged by the presence of Haris Bandoora a voidsucker one of the roup of humans who undertake the task of piloting scout ships into the void in the hopes of finding a new planetary home for humanity and the terse announcement from the Council of Pilots that this voidsucker s crew may have found the Eden that the Council of Pilots that this voidsucker s crew may have found the Eden that has been waiting for Tempers flare and a challenge is issued does D mahl dare to leave the comfortable confines of the Trek where every pleasure can be ratified every sense stimulated to excess and every thought and feeling shared in the communal altered reality of each human s cranial tap in order to undergo the hardships and isolation of travel into the void with Bandoora and his crew We et our answer soon enough and it is no surprise iven our early discovery that D mahl is a creature of almost pure ego though it appears that this is both his reatest flaw and ultimately his saving race On his journey D mahl is fated to learn the secret of the voidsuckers and bear the burden of making a decision that will change the fate of humanity forever There are definitely some shared themes between this book and Spinrad s perhaps well known The Void Captain s Tale primarily the strange uasi mystical communion that seems to occur between the human mind and the endless void and which appears to be an integral aspect of space and the endless void and which appears to be an integral aspect of space While the normal pilots of the torchships being used by the Trek do not seem TO TAKE PART IN THIS THE VOIDSUCKERS ARE OBSESSED take part in this the voidsuckers are obsessed it indeed they consider the truth of spaceflight to be a burden that they bear for the rest of humanitynot altogether unlike the situation posited by Cordwainer Smith in his famous short story Scanners Die in Vain There is also the hedonistic baroue and highly stylized society that Spinrad has created again much like the Second Starfaring Age he later created in The Void Captain s Tale and Child of Fortune The uestions the novel raises about the. Chheit Besatzung und Passagiere scheinen efangen in einemzur Wirklichkeit ewordenen Traum Und die endlosen Tiefen des Alls bergen ein letztes d├╝st. ,

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