It’s been so long since I wrote on the blog — I don’t have an excuse, just laziness, I guess! Hope you enjoy this following book review that I composed on my Good Reads page and am shamelessly reposting it here! That counts as a blog post, right?
I really enjoyed this book — and not just because it is a science fiction tale. I loved the way the author built up suspense, it had me dying to find out what had happened on the Robinette’s prospecting voyage. It definitely was not predictable in any sense. I was pulled along by the novel, learning more and more with every page turned, until the story had fully unfolded.
Frederik Pohl set his story on a planet, Gateway, owned by the “Corporation”, a conglomerate of sorts, comprised of different planetary governments. Gateway was long ago abandoned by the Heechee, an alien race with an intellect far more advanced than Earthlings that had for reasons unknown left a fleet of spaceships and other treasure behind. Through trial and error, humans painstakingly learned how to use some of the Heechee artifacts for mankind’s benefit, including a way to man the spacecraft in order to search the galaxy for more technology.
Robinette, the main character,tells the story through the memories he replays in his head and the ones he relates to his therapist, Sigmund Freud, a sophisticated robot.
Pohl, artfully fills in the story piece by piece, building the tension, until with, Robinette’s final revelation, we learn of the tragic way he got his big score.
The author’s description of Gateway, the condition of Earth and its solar system, and the technology of this world, all feels very real, and even though, the book was published in 1977, does not seem outdated. Instead, it all seems authentic, plausible and close at hand.
I found this novel to be an easy read, very enjoyable with enough humour to defuse the tension at exactly the right moments. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves science fiction.