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LG

Familiar Diversions

I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.

Currently reading

Authority: A Novel
Jeff VanderMeer
Progress: 194/340 pages
Let's Talk About Love
Claire Kann
Progress: 66/277 pages
Princess Prince
Tomoko Taniguchi
Progress: 310/336 pages
Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness
Peter Godfrey-Smith
Progress: 41/255 pages
A Rational Arrangement
Rowyn Ashby
Progress: 89/537 pages
FREE: Locke & Key
Tatiana Maslany, Audible Studios, Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez, Kate Mulgrew, Haley Joel Osment, Full Cast
Progress: 91/806 minutes

Reading progress update: I've read 148 out of 428 pages.

Foreigner  - C.J. Cherryh

This is slow, with lots of pauses for historical/linguistic/cultural details, but I seem to be in a slow book kind of mood right now, so that's fine. I do wonder how this series has managed to go on for as long as it has, considering that humans seem very close to no longer being useful to the atevi.

 

The setup: a human starship accidentally ends up far off-course, unable to get back to any recognizable areas of space. Some time later (150 years?), they find the atevi homeworld and, lacking better options, try to start a colony there. After a good beginning, things suddenly go very badly. A deal is struck in which humans are permitted to live on a single island, Mospheira, in exchange for sharing information about their more advanced technology via a paidhi, a human interpreter living among the atevi. In the book's present (200 years later?), it's a delicate balance between humans secretly trying to nudge the atevi towards technology that will allow humans to escape the planet and trying not to give the atevi so many technological secrets that humans are no longer worth keeping around.

 

One related quote I enjoyed:

"That was the dream he had. The nightmare was less specific, only the apprehension which, long before the assassin tried his bedroom, he had been trying to communicate to Hanks and the rest of the office, that you couldn't go on giving atevi bits and pieces of tech without accelerating the randomness in the process, meaning that atevi minds didn't work the same as human minds, and that atevi cultural bias was going to view certain technological advances differently than humans did, and atevi inventiveness was going to put more and more items together into their own inventions, about which they didn't consult the Mospheira Technology Commission." (135)