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The Ragged Astronauts by Bob Shaw
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The Ragged Astronauts (original 1986; edition 1991)

by Bob Shaw

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296557,252 (3.36)9
Member:raak
Title:The Ragged Astronauts
Authors:Bob Shaw
Info:Orbit (1991), Paperback
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Ragged Astronauts by Bob Shaw (1986)

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English (4)  Italian (1)  All languages (5)
Showing 4 of 4
http://nwhyte.livejournal.com/2671780.html

This is one of Shaw's best known books, second only to Orbitsville. I don't think it has aged particularly well. Shaw's protagonist, Toller Maraquine, is chief engineer of a culture under pressure from its human(ish) neighbours on the planet of Land and also facing extinction at the hands of the non-human Ptertha. Toller's rulers therefore order a mass emigration through space to the neighbouring twin planet of Overland, conveniently linked with Land by a common atmosphere. I thought that the book's attitude to women (never a strong point of Shaw's) was pretty appalling. The female characters are either invisible or two-dimensional, and there is some nasty sexual violence as a defining moment for the most important woman character. It doesn't even do a terribly good job as engineering fiction; because the Land/Overland universe is very different from ours (we learn at one stage that π=3 exactly) we can't really thrill to the solution of engineering problems which are designed to pad out the thin plot. That leaves us with Toller Maraquine's inner journey, and he's just not a very interesting chap. Where I love Shaw's work, it's when he takes people in a contemporary or near-contemporary setting to unexpected settings - A Wreath of Stars, Other Days, Other Eyes. His more space-y books haven't usually worked for me. ( )
  nwhyte | Jun 18, 2016 |
Il mondo creato da Bob Shaw è affascinante: un pianeta binario, ossia un sistema di due pianeti talmente vicini che le due atmosfere si toccano. E' un'ambientazione vagamente steampunk, i cui cieli sono dominati da aeronavi.
La religione di Mondo si basa sulla credenza che le anime delle persone si alternino tra il pianeta e il suo gemello, Sopramondo, pertanto nessuno ha mai sfidato il cielo nel tentativo di atterrarci.
Questo fintanto che gli ptertha, sorta di globi volanti semi intelligenti, non sviluppano un terribile veleno che costringe gli uomini di Mondo a tentare di migrare in massa su Sopramondo.
Insomma la trama è una classica avventura di fantascienza con qualche richiamo fantasy, a renderlo una lettura piacevole sono la caratterizzazione della società di Mondo e i pochi bellissimi personaggi che si aggirano sul palcoscenico di Shaw. E' un libro di intrattenimento, ma di alta qualità. ( )
  Zeruhur | May 26, 2012 |
Il mondo creato da Bob Shaw è affascinante: un pianeta binario, ossia un sistema di due pianeti talmente vicini che le due atmosfere si toccano. E' un'ambientazione vagamente steampunk, i cui cieli sono dominati da aeronavi.
La religione di Mondo si basa sulla credenza che le anime delle persone si alternino tra il pianeta e il suo gemello, Sopramondo, pertanto nessuno ha mai sfidato il cielo nel tentativo di atterrarci.
Questo fintanto che gli ptertha, sorta di globi volanti semi intelligenti, non sviluppano un terribile veleno che costringe gli uomini di Mondo a tentare di migrare in massa su Sopramondo.
Insomma la trama è una classica avventura di fantascienza con qualche richiamo fantasy, a renderlo una lettura piacevole sono la caratterizzazione della società di Mondo e i pochi bellissimi personaggi che si aggirano sul palcoscenico di Shaw. E' un libro di intrattenimento, ma di alta qualità. ( )
  Zeruhur | May 26, 2012 |
NIL
  rustyoldboat | May 28, 2011 |
Showing 4 of 4
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Bob Shawprimary authorall editionscalculated
Brooks, AlanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gutierrez, AlanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
The Ragged Astronauts introduces the twin worlds of Land and Overland, which orbit only a few thousand miles apart and share a common atmosphere. On Land, humanity faces a threat to its very survival - an airborne species, the ptertha, has declared war on humankind, and is actively hunting for victims. The only hope lies in migration. Through space to Overland. By balloon.
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