Friday, June 29, 2012

Retro Friday Review: Earthseed by Pamela Sargent

Retro Friday is a meme hosted by Angie of Angieville and "focuses on reviewing books from the past. This can be an old favorite, an under-the-radar book you think deserves more attention, something woefully out of print, etc."

Earthseed by Pamela Sargent
Publisher: Tor Teen (and various others)
Publication date: 1983
Pages: 288
Source: Review copy provided by publicist
For: Review
Series: Seed Trilogy, Book 1

Zoheret was born and raised by Ship, the sentient space craft that is flying the human race to a new home.  She has known no other life.  But when Ship must prepare them for life on their new planet, things do not go as planned.  Will they be able to survive living with each other, even before they've gotten to their new home?

Things I Liked:
This felt like a pretty unique and interesting story.  I was really intrigued when I first read what it was about - a sentient ship planting humankind on foreign planets.  It had even more going on than I first expected.  I loved the thought-provoking situations and that there weren't ever any easy answers to the dilemmas the people face.  There were so many unexpected twists and turns the story took that I honestly had no idea where the characters would end up.  It had a depth that was belied by the new cover (which, I think, is quite unfortunate).  An interesting, complicated story that will have you thinking about it long after you leave behind Ship.

Things I Didn't Like:
I had a really hard time connecting with any of the characters.  I felt like I never could quite figure out Zoheret - she seemed to be like no one I know.  Whenever I'd think she would respond in a certain way, she would do something completely unexpected.  I guess I just never cared very much about her or the other people on Ship.  They were not well characterized and there were too many of them to keep track of.  I thought Ship was most interesting, though I didn't get much of a sense of it either.  Definitely more of a plot-based, idea-heavy book than a character-driven book.  I also was a little put off by some of the dialog between the teens.  Maybe it was designed that way, since they grew up isolated and without outside contact, but it was really awkward at times.  Still, it kept me interested enough to see where the story would go.

Across the Universe series by Beth Revis
Incarceron and Sapphique by Catherine Fisher

s-factor: ! 
a very few

mrg-factor: XX
not so much in descriptions, but teen sex was very casually presented

v-factor: ->->
some brutality and fighting, not generally graphic

Overall rating: *** 

Have you picked up this classic sci-fi?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage


  1. See, and then you wonder if the stilted dialogue was meant to be that way or just because the author can't write dialogue...or maybe, it's because of when it was written. K, I'm becoming way to analytical. The story does sound interesting.

  2. You really can't help but wonder. I'm with you on that.


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