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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews

Bones Of The Earth

Copyright 2002 by Michael Swanwick

SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Mediocre (2/5)

I first read this on the 4th April 2003.

It is hard for famous paleontologist Richard Leyster to believe his unusual visitor with his tale of time-travel and a chance to travel into the distant past. Pretty soon, however, he and his colleagues will be making a desperate, terrifying trek through the late Cretaceous period.

Very strange. One's first thought is that Michael has gone for the teenage market, and then after a few more pages one thinks that he is doing a Michael Crichton, Eventually one decides that he has done both - this novel is even published as "Fiction", not SF.

It rolls along merrily introducing time travel, the dinos, casually dismissing most of the paradoxes that time travel introduces, and slowly revealing how and why time travel has become available.

The first hundred pages feel like preparation for something, some great adventure.

The last hundred pages are great, getting better as it draws to a close, with a superbly touching ending.

The problem is the middle of the book. Sadly, the walk in the jungle simply was not impressive enough.

So the novel was a disappointment, masked by a fine ending.

For the dinosaur lovers amongst you, here's the inside cover of the book. The dinos look surprisingly benign and the oddity of the illustration matches to some extent the oddity of the book.

Loaded on the 1st August 2003.
Cover of Bones Of The Earth

Reviews of other works by Michael Swanwick:
In The Drift
Stations Of The Tide