Note: I’m not a book reviewer and I’m not an English professor! 🙂 Three years ago I made a new year’s resolution to read a book a week and I’ve stayed pretty much on track. But, sometimes I fly through books without thinking much about them – which seems such an awful missed opportunity! So, I’m typing up my quick thoughts after finishing.

Adrian Tchaikovsky’s follow up to the sci-fi book Children of Time.

The first book was strange, this book is stranger. The first book was amazing, this book is slightly less so. I loved following the evolution of the Portiads on Kern’s World and the narrative was so immersive. Children of Ruin spent a little more time building anxiety and fear, with much less time given to the stories that made Children of Time so great.

I tried explaining this book to my wife… bad idea. How do you sound sane when you’re describing “spiders, who were supposed to be monkeys, who evolved into a super-species on a distant planet and now partnered up with humans to travel the galaxy. And they run into a partially terraformed planet where sentient octopi try to keep them away from a cellular infection that destroys life but is actually a new form of life itself“. What? Huh? Why am I reading this? Also, why is it actually pretty good.

The first book was recommended to me by a friend and I loved it. I’m partial to books that explore culture. In this case, how differently cultures might develop when left alone. Because, yes, you’ve always wondered how a group of space-faring spiders would interact with each other. Actually, I’m pretty sure only Adrian (the author) has ever pondered that question and I feel strange just typing it out, but somehow the book is immersive and rewarding and weird and great.

DKT