Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty

My book for June is Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty. Looking around for a science fiction book to read, this book jumped out. It has been nominated for a number of awards, including a preliminary nominee for the 2017 BSFA Award for Best Novel, a finalist for the 2018 Philip K. Dick Award, a finalist for the 2018 Hugo Award for Best Novel and a nominee for the 2018 Nebula Award for Best Novel.

The plot is a murder mystery. The story takes place on a starship carrying thousands of prospective colonists from Earth to a planet in the Tau Ceti star system. All the passengers are in suspended animation. A six-person crew of cloned former criminals remains awake through the generations-long journey. Given that it is a who-done-it, I am not going to say more about the story...

I give the book a strong "B", but only a lukewarm recommendation. The book's strengths include playing with some interesting ideas about cloning and the human personality and memories as a matrix of information. I also liked the way that the author developed the back stories of the characters. Its weakness is the deus ex machine ending.

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