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Month in review

Reviews:
The Alarming Letters from Scottsdale by Warner Law
Brother by James Fredericks
Bubbles Betrothed by Sarah Strohmeyer
Bunny Modern by David Bowman
Cowboy Feng's Space Bar and Grille by Steven Brust
A Day With My Dad by Lance Waite
Dirt: An American Campaign by Mark LaFlamme
Divine Freefall by Beth Wiseman
50/50 by Dean Karnazes
Game Widow by Wendy Kays
Gateway by Frederik Pohl
How the Day Runs Down by John Langan
If You Give a Cat a Cupcake by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond
Jim the Boy by Tony Earley
Lorna Doone by R. D. Blackmore
Margarettown by Garbrielle Zevin
The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
Memphis: Objects, Furniture & Patterns by Richard Horn
The Minutemen's Witch by Charles Coleman Finlay
The New Writer's Handbook by Ted Kooser
One Crossed Out by Fanny Howe
The Once and Future Celt by Bill Watkins
Peter Hatches and Egg by Louise Bienvenu-Brialmont
Raindrop Plop! by
Ripley Under Water by Patricia Highsmith
A Skeptical Spirit by Albert E. Cowdrey
Smash Trash by Laura Driscoll
Sunsets and Shooting Stars by Rick Seidel
The Trumpet of the Swan by E. B. White
Uh-oh, Calico! by Karma Wilson
We Come Not to Praise Washington by Charles Coleman Finlay
Welcome to the Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
What Makes a Rainbow? by Betty Ann Schwartz
Zodiac by Neal Stephenson

Don Quixote:
Book 3
Book 4: Chapters 28-37
Book 4: End of Part 1

Miscellaneous:
Top Ten Lists

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Gateway

GatewayGateway: 12/03/08

At a time of food shortages, a crashing world economy and recently expensive fuel, Gateway by Frederik Pohl is relevant and contemporary. Told in flashback through a series of conversations between a patient and his psychiatrist, Gateway, is an account of Robinette Broadhead's time on Gateway, an alien outpost.

Gateway captures the feeling of adventure of the classic frontier stories bringing to mind the works of Daniel Defoe, Robert Louis Stevenson, Jack London and Jules Verne. Gateway is both an island of untold mysteries and treasure and port of call for potentially dangerous trips into uncharted space.

The old days of exploration to the "new world" were controlled by governments. Gateway, the profits go to the "Corporation". Anything that can be charged or taxed is and failure to pay will result in being kicked off Gateway (whether or not a seat on a ship is available). Having worked for a number of venture capital funded, cash-strapped corporations, I found the seedy business side of Gateway very amusing.

Gateway by itself is solid, well told science fiction. Pohl adds more realism to it by including tidbits of fictional ephemera like lines of code from the computerized psychiatrist, rules and regulations posted by the corporation and a large number of classified ads. The classifies were my favorite addition to the novel.

The book is the first novel length story set in the Heechee universe. They were first mentioned in Merchant of Venus. The remaining books in the Heechee book are Beyond the Blue Event Horizon (1980), Heechee Rendezvous (1984), Annals of the Heechee (1987) and The Boy Who Would Live Forever (2004). I have the remaining two books of the original trilogy and will be reviewing them early in 2009. If I didn't have other reading commitments, I would be reading and reviewing them now.

A thought for you as I close this review. Don't the ships on 1977 cover look like the Axiom from Wall-E?

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Comments (4)







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Comment #1: Thursday, December, 4, 2008 at 11:17:34

Steve

Good article. Pohl is one of the sci-fi greats, no doubt. "Beyond the Blue Event Horizon" is also a very good read.



Comment #2: Saturday, December 7, 2008 at 10:38:43

Pussreboots

I've just started Beyond the Blue Even Horizon and so far it's been great.



Comment #3: Thursday, December, 4, 2008 at 14:30:51

Brenda

I've never read Gateway, but it sounds interesting.



Comment #4: Saturday, December 7, 2008 at 10:41:15

Pussreboots

If you enjoy adventure stories or science fiction, you'll enjoy it.