Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Reading: Escape From Hell

This is Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle's sequel to Inferno. I seldom read SF any more (I stuffed myself with it in my youth), and almost never touch fantasy, but having read the original I was curious what they would do with this. Color me unimpressed, but I am not the target market here.

Following Dante's example, they use this as a chance to imagine people they don't like suffering, which must be the most "fun" part of writing this sort of thing. [Imagine who you would show in your own version -- Cheney being waterboarded could be just the beginning.] Sadly, they use this authorial power here for cheap shots against their own pet peeves, such as opponents of DDT. If they can't win the political argument in public, okay, they'll just put straw men in hell. How Paulistic of them.

The story is even more jumbled psychologically and theologically than was their first book on this, but it reads quickly and easily. A passable time-killer, but it ain't no Mote.

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