Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Book of Strange New Things - by Michel Faber - Genre-defying novel

4 of 5 Stars  Review copy

The Book of Strange New Things tells the story of Peter Leigh, a devoted man of faith called to the mission of a lifetime, one that takes him light years away from his wife, Bea.

Sent to another world at the request of the indigenous intelligent species. Time, distance, and a world that is falling apart back home, all create an enormous strain on what had once been a loving relationship.

I did enjoy the interactions between Peter and the Oasans as he calls the locals to whom he's been called to serve.  The relationship between the Earth colony and the local population was interesting and believable.

A good portion of the story is told in the form of communications between Peter and his wife back home.  Think long distance e-mail.  Generally, I'm not fond of stories told in this manner, but Faber used the technique well.

Although, the story itself is well-told, I was a bit disappointed with the lack of a satisfying ending. At 500-plus pages, I really would have liked to have a bit more closure.

The Book of Strange New Things, published by Hogarth Press is available now in both print, e-book, and audio formats.

Certainly worth reading, particularly if you don't mind open endings.

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