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Grass

by Sheri S. Tepper

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Arbai trilogy (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,392496,479 (3.95)1 / 155
What could be more commonplace than grass, or a world covered over all its surface with a wind-whipped ocean of grass? But the planet Grass conceals horrifying secrets within its endless pastures. And as an incurable plague attacks all inhabited planets but this one, the prairie-like Grass begins to reveal these secrets - and nothing will ever be the same again ...… (more)
  1. 70
    Dune by Frank Herbert (MyriadBooks)
    MyriadBooks: For the description of the planet.
  2. 10
    The Snow Queen by Joan D. Vinge (sturlington)
  3. 00
    Mother of Demons by Eric Flint (MyriadBooks)
    MyriadBooks: For religion evolving; for human inhabitants as the minority.
  4. 01
    Hunting Party by Elizabeth Moon (MyriadBooks)
    MyriadBooks: For horses in space.
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Group TopicMessagesLast Message 
 Name that Book: 2 Scifi books: alien horses and human pets6 unread / 6Petroglyph, December 2011

» See also 155 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 49 (next | show all)
This book is a wonderful example of how sci-fi can make that which is truely alien, lovable, or hate able and definitely relatable. Some of the humans are the most alien of all.

The world building is first class, and the backdrop is part of the plot without being the whole book. The world of Grass itself is real, believable, wonderful and awful.

There's a political and religious theme that also seems plausible, but it's laid on very heavy handed. it's a clear theme the characters revolve around throughout the book.

The central character is complex, believable and demands your attention throughout. A few of the others grow and change and really make you want them to succeed.

There are quite a few characters though. Some just don't change. Some are just a plot point. Some don't seem to have a point at all. Without spoiling anything, it's not a "they all lived happily every after" story.

A close re-reading and more familiarity with Catholicism would probably help me pick up some facets I'm sure I missed, and maybe tip the rating up a bit, but even without that it's very much worth reading, and will make you question your own choices if you ended up in similar situations. ( )
  furicle | May 25, 2024 |
I really liked a lot about this book - great world-building, characters with interesting internal lives, interesting moral introspection - but something didn't quite click for me. I'd still recommend it. ( )
  mmparker | Oct 24, 2023 |
Good sci-fi about the ecology of an Earth-like planet. ( )
  mykl-s | Aug 13, 2023 |
This is an exciting and interesting novel. Other critics have pointed out its similarity to Herbert’s Dune. As far as details of the setting and the cast of characters the parallels are there, but can be ignored. The book is not a copy. The underlying philosophical themes are different. But, the head hopping point of view of the omniscient narrator was the flaw, in my opinion. With the numerous supporting characters and the fast moving plot, the head hopping was confusing at times. ( )
  drardavis | Oct 16, 2022 |
Reminded me very much of Speaker for the Dead. I couldn't put it down. Horror and wonder in equal parts--truly alien species and Big Questions. The more I think about it the more I like it.

Seriously, though, SO MANY characters are in love with the MC. ( )
  Adamantium | Aug 21, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 49 (next | show all)
When I first read Grass, I realised that Tepper is a genuine wild talent, taking SF in new and unexpected directions.
added by lquilter | editSF Site, Peter D. Tillman (Aug 7, 2009)
 
Tepper (The Gate to Women's Country) delves into the nature of truth and religion, creating some strong characters in her compelling story.
added by lquilter | editPublishers Weekly
 
Tepper's Grass is, with hindsight, one of the most significant works of 1980s SF: a spacious, well-plotted, wise and thought-provoking book with an exceptionally well-drawn central character and a beautiful twist on the 'beauty and the beast' mythos at its heart. ... Those who have not read this powerful masterpiece should be herded with cattle-prods out to the bookshops until that situation is remedied; those who have read it should take this opportunity to re-read the work. Like all great literature, it repays re-reading and close attention. ... It is one of the genuine, and one of the most genuine, classics of twentieth-century SF.
 

» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sheri S. Tepperprimary authorall editionscalculated
Chicheni, OscarCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Karjalainen, TapioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pearlman, DinaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
A voice says, "Cry!"
And I said, "What shall I cry?"
All flesh is grass. . . .Isaiah 40-6
Dedication
First words
Grass!
Quotations
And they were there. Three of them, just as there had been three horses when she and Tony and Rigo had ridden here. Three Hippae doing dressage exercises, walking, trotting, cantering, changing feet to cross the arena on long diagonals. They did everything she had done with Octavo, did it casually, offhandedly, with a practiced ease, concluding with the three animals side by side, facing away from her, the saber tips of their neck barbs pointing at her like a glittering abatis, as threatening as drawn blades. Then they turned and looked up at the place where she was hidden, their dark eyes gleaming red in the light of dawn, soundless.
Amusement, she thought at first. A kind of mime. These Hippae had seen the humans and their horses and were amused at what these little off-world beasts had been doing with their human riders. She held the thought only fleetingly, only for a moment, trying to cling to it but unable to do so. They knew she was there. They knew she was watching. Perhaps they had timed this little exercise to coincide with her arrival . . .
It wasn’t amusement. Nothing in that red-eyed glare was amused.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

What could be more commonplace than grass, or a world covered over all its surface with a wind-whipped ocean of grass? But the planet Grass conceals horrifying secrets within its endless pastures. And as an incurable plague attacks all inhabited planets but this one, the prairie-like Grass begins to reveal these secrets - and nothing will ever be the same again ...

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Book description
Generations ago, humans fled to the cosmic anomaly known as Grass. Over time, they evolved a new and intricate society. But before humanity arrived another species had already claimed Grass for its own. It, too, had developed a culture...
Now, a deadly plague is spreading across the stars. No world save Grass has been left untouched. Marjorie Westriding Yrarier had been sent from Earth to discover the secret of the planet's immunity. Amid the alien society structure and strange life-forms of Grass, Lady Westriding unravels the planet's mysteries to find a truth so shattering it could mean the end of life itself.
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